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Re: Serious feedback and improvement headroom

From: Henning Hraban Ramm
Subject: Re: Serious feedback and improvement headroom
Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2014 21:39:02 +0600

Hi Urs,
really interesting!
I have just some short comments.

Am 2014-04-04 um 16:43 schrieb Urs Liska <address@hidden>:

> treble F 4/4 is the equivalent to
> \clef treble
> \key f \major
> \time 4/4
> (,9 .... ),10_a140140h30
> seems to be an equivalent to a \shape invocation
> Personally I think that LilyPond's approach is a very good compromise between 
> Amadeus' assembler-like appearance and the confusing verbosity of e.g. XML 
> formats. But this is something Henle's engraver would consider a significant 
> problem because he thinks that he needs considerably less time entering the 
> music in Amadeus.

I learned LinoSetting in vocational school and saw colleagues use a Berthold 
system at the newspaper where I studied typesetter. I learned to write 
PostScript by hand and I use TeX. My second word processor was WordStar (you 
know those dot commands?) on DOS (my first was Scripsit on TRSDOS). Just to 
prove I know old input methods...

These „ancient“ typesetting „languages“ (Lino, Berthold) are very similar to 
that Amadeus „assembler“ as LilyPond is to TeX. (Maybe NOTE is like PostScript, 
I don’t care.)
LinoSetting could do great things, but I really prefer TeX, it’s much more 
readable. And that’s the advantage of LilyPond over Amadeus, I think.
Of course a professional daily working in „Assembler“ is faster in writing. But 
is he in reading/bugfixing?

> I don't suggest any significant changes in our input syntax. But I want to 
> point out that editing efficiency on that level _is_ an issue we should keep 
> taking into account when it comes to professional work. For this guy it makes 
> a difference if he can (thousands of times) type "ho" instead of "\stemUp". 
> And we all know that the process of tweaking output isn't that 
> straightforward with LilyPond (although I very much appreciate all the little 
> and bigger improvements we constantly see).

The backslash is a slow-downer in fast typing, at least on German keyboards, 
esp. on German Mac keyboards, where you have to press Alt-Shift-7.
But for everyone who is NOT producing scores on piece-rate – and that is MOST 
users of ANY music typesetting system, I’m sure – this doesn’t matter.
If the typing speed would really be so important, more people would use 
advanced keyboard layouts like Neo.

> In another context I see a similar thing with LaTeX: Compiling a file with 
> lualatex and fontspec takes longer by orders of magnitude than with plain 
> latex. So maybe we really have a conceptual issue with the efficiency of 
> LilyPond's runtime work.

Hm, ConTeXt (MkIV/LuaTeX) can be really slow - on the other hand you have a lot 
of control over internals.
I guess you can’t script Amadeus like you can LilyPond with Scheme – if the 
whole code is hard-compiled, it must be faster. Or is this a false assumption?

Greetlings, Hraban
fiëé visuëlle
Henning Hraban Ramm (I'm an assurer)

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