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[XForms] Thanks for the great library!

From: Frank Cox
Subject: [XForms] Thanks for the great library!
Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2015 15:09:42 -0600

The software that I write tends to be of the long-term, "we'll look at that 
again in twenty years" type. A water vending machine that I wrote in the 80's 
is still working fine today, counting beats from a water meter and moving 
thousands of gallons of (paid for) water every day. I've recompiled it a few 
times for newer hardware, but there is no user interface so that hasn't been 
problem. And I just had a phone call a year or so back from a drilling outfit 
asking a question about the logging software that I wrote for them in the early 
90's. I hadn't realized that it was still in use until that phone call.

The stumbling block in this stuff always seems to be user interfaces. Something 
that just reads input X and prints Y on the screen or on paper is no problem, 
but as soon as you start showing anything much fancier than that you're looking 
for trouble.

For the past several years I've been using ncurses for most of my user 
interfaces -- it hasn't changed significantly since the mid-90's and it works 
very well.

However, these days folks expect a fancy gui and I've been looking for a stable 
library to provide that for quite a while. Since I'm one of those nutheads that 
writes his programs in C (not C++) that lets out things like wxWidgets.

I've done a few minor things using GTK+ but that's a constantly moving target 
and while I like the results I'm not impressed with the function calls that 
either disappear or change over time so I'm a bit afraid to use it for anything 
much more significant than toys and experiments. GTK+ also puts out cats and 
makes coffee, which is nice in some ways but doesn't exactly make it a simple 
user interface library. My "holy grail" has been a simple gui library that with 
a C api that isn't constantly evolving; basically a gui version of something 
like ncurses.

And a few weeks ago I finally found xforms.

I'm thrilled.  Really.

I think it looks pretty too -- I don't mind that old-school X11/CDE style. 

Thanks, Jens Thoms Toerring and everyone else who's worked on and contributed 
to this library over the years.  I am truly grateful to you.

Now I'm wondering how I managed to overlook xforms for so many years since it 
really is just what I've been looking for.

Incidentally, if anyone needs or wants Centos/RHEL 7 rpms for xforms, I've made 
them available here:  http://www.melvilletheatre.com/articles/el7/

MELVILLE THEATRE ~ Real D 3D Digital Cinema ~ www.melvilletheatre.com

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