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Re: [Gnumed-devel]

From: Sebastian Hilbert
Subject: Re: [Gnumed-devel]
Date: Sat, 28 Aug 2004 11:30:14 +0200
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On Saturday 28 August 2004 09:57, Ian Haywood wrote:
> On Thu, Aug 26, 2004 at 09:48:30AM +1000, Horst Herb wrote:
> > On Thu, 26 Aug 2004 10:38, Kevin Ollivier wrote:
> > > This looks potentially useful and simple to use:
> > >
> >
> > This it utmost useful.
> >
> > What we should snatch immediately is the "visual HTML editing" - I
> > suppose they use wxMozilla for it, has anybody looked into what
> > dependencies that would have?
> > If not too complicated to set up / install (for end users) and not too
> > many dependencies, that would be the *ideal* "letter writer" for gnumed -
> > even better, progress notes could be written in "visual" HTML.
> Although this may look good, I'm not sure it has the extra features we want
> like popup lists for auto-completion, which  wxScintilla does, although it
> maay be possible to add them.
> My personal view on referral letters is that the GUI should focus on
> content, the TeX-based backend can make it look good (but I appreciate
> there will aways be calls for a WYSIWYG editor phase in letter-generation)
IMHO content/layout separation will be a good choice. It is a concept users 
need to get familiar with but once they get the hang of it they won't miss 
WYSIWYG at all. I have seen this happening many times lately when talking 
people into LATEX for thesis writing. First they are confused because they 
cannot edit the layout but once they get my latex style for our university 
they appreciate not ever having to worry about layout again. Sure you have 
styles in OpenOffice as well but nothing beats TEX in terms of formatting.

What I don't understand as of yet is what happens to the document once it's 
finished. Do we store the tex file in the database ? Or just the content of 
the input widget? Plus maybe directions on how to render it ( in case we need 
to reproduce this document later) ? Most likely we won't edit the content of 
a document later but rather derive a new one from it (do we keep revisions 
somewhere ?)

> We also need "protected" text for SOAP headers, ideally in the left margin.
> wxScintilla can do this but its a hack, and doesn't put then in a separate
> margin. The C++ base does support margin labels but, frustratingly, this
> isn't available in the Python wrapper.
Do you think it can be added ? If so do you think this would be a better 
solution than writing you own from scratch ? If yes I would try to find out 
excactly what is involved and talk to the maintainer of wxpython. Is this the 
way to go ?
> There are other problems 
> (wxScintilla forces popup lists to be in alphabetical order, you can't
> select by substrings) I have started writing a editor class from scratch
> which will do all of these things, but obviously this is going to be a bit
> of work, and pointless if it's not what people want as a notes editor
Ian, what does writing a custom editor involve. Is it a whole new widget or do 
you derive it from some other widget ? I am always worried about maintaining 
custom code.

I see you have put a lot of energy into this so I trust you on what you think 
is best.

> Straw poll:
> 1/ wxScintilla-based, no proper margins, etc., see
> gnumed/client/wxpython/ 2/ wxMozilla-based, ? may not have
> popup lists at all
> 3/ handwritten editor clas, does exactly what we want.
> 4/ ???
> Obviously I vote for "3" but IMHO the most important thing is to make a
> clear choice, as it's frustrating to be beset by alternative proposals when
> you have already done a lot of work (I'm not saying this has happened here
> as yet)
Absolutely. Remember. We are use case oriented. Code what you need. If others 
on this list raise their voices they can influence your decision. If not it's 
entirely up to you.  

I would like a separated content / layout mechanism. That's the way CARDAS 
does it (used at Leipzig heart center) and I like it. They keep revisions in 
case you don't finish the whole document. They save the finished version once 
you print a copy of it. 

BTW. This doesn't mean there can only be a single widget for one task.
People are free to code whatever they need.

Sebastian Hilbert 
Leipzig / Germany
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My OS: Suse Linux. Geek by Nature, Linux by Choice

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