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Re: LYNX-DEV Re: Lynx updates

From: Drazen Kacar
Subject: Re: LYNX-DEV Re: Lynx updates
Date: Tue, 12 Nov 1996 22:43:16 +0100 (MET)

Foteos Macrides wrote:

Let me first comment this one...

>       I'm not saying these thing to insult you, Dave, or anyone else.
> But unless the people who can continue substantive development start
> really doing that...

I know. I apologize. I think that my posts come out too harsh, because I'm
constantly trying to minimize the amount of text in English I'm writing.

> >Lynx sources are huge. And without enough documentation. Unless I missed
>                                                           ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >something, WWW Library part is poorly documented and all major additions
>  ^^^^^^^^^
>       Perhaps what you've missed is the state of the code and documentation
> in May 1994, when v2.3 was released.

No, I didn't. I'm not sure, but I think it was two years ago when I first
looked at the WWWLib. I needed some FTP routines and I thought the library
might be a good thing to use. I spent 12 hours looking at the docs and
trying to figure how to use it. Where to start, at least. I found out that
modules need to be registered with something and that I should look at
the line mode browser source. I gave up and started reading RFC instead.
In the end some other people wrote the utility that was needed.

The point is that I know the difference between that code and the present
Lynx sources and it *is* huge. Did I look through all of the source files?
No. I'm lazy... I'd like someone to tell me where to look. Guilty as charged.

> >This would take time and effort of those few who understand Lynx good
>  ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^????^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> >enough, but it should pay off very soon. I think it's impossible for
>  ^^^^^^^^^^^^????????????????????????????              ??????????
> >anyone new to jump in and start developing Lynx without a very big learning
> >period.
>       I can tell you how much time and effort went into developing an
> overview of the global structures and variables, and of existing functions,
> and of adding new functions, since the release of v2.3 in May 1994.  But
> more to the point of what you wrote, I can tell you how many, many hours
> were spent adding documentation into the code, updating the documentation
> files, and greatly expanding the User's Guide and associated help files.

I subscribed to the list because of help files. I've seen how much they
had grown and it was a bit peculiar. It looked too much like the last
effort. Than I found out about your vacation... There are people out
there who care about Lynx but are not doing anything (except installing
new versions) because they think Lynx is being developed like it used to

>       Frankly, Dave, I see little indication of real "pay off" from those
> efforts.  Sure, there are lots of people in the Lynx User Community who
> do not have the skills to develop the actual code in substantive ways, and
> who therefore should, and often do, "pay back" the favor of making Lynx
> available to them in other ways.  But you, Dave, are one of the people
> who does have those skills.

I'm not sure I am...

>       One's rationalizations are even more difficult to face than one's
> name mispelled (e.g., as Drazen without ž).  But really, Dave, is
> what you wrote not really just a long winded rationalization?  You'll
> pay back the benefit you've derived from Lynx as soon as somebody else
> adds more documentation to the code.  Will you?  Really?

Depends... If I manage to solve problems with Latin 2 on servers, I can
try to convince the people who are deciding to fund the larger i18n project.
I don't expect to succed, but I'll try. In that case there will be people,
money and other resources. An attempt to fully internationalize Lynx is
guaranteed. Just an attempt, I don't know if I'll be able to do it. At
present I don't know enough about these matters. I have some understanding
of needs for Latin world, but I'm completely ignorant about others.
Although, Klaus will probably do most of the work by the time the project
gets started. I know, it's too much ifs...

If I don't manage to get the funding, I don't think I'll do much. I suppose
you know the excuse. :(

About the WWWLib... I have trouble with it because it's not intuitive at
all for me. What should I do? Single step in debugger? Run some fancy
flow charting tools? Read the comments? Where is the entry point for the
library docs? Pretty please?

Life is a sexually transmitted disease.

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