[Openmcl-devel] we need more aliens and beggars on the list who use GUIs (wws2)

wws2 new ww.s2 at ukonline.co.uk
Mon Apr 5 09:15:44 UTC 2010



On Apr 4, 2010, at 6:00 PM, openmcl-devel-request at clozure.com wrote:
> 
> Message: 1
> Date: Sun, 4 Apr 2010 08:37:51 -0600
> From: Alexander Repenning <ralex at cs.colorado.edu>
> Subject: Re: [Openmcl-devel] we need more aliens and beggars on the
> 	list who	use GUIs
> To: wws2 new <ww.s2 at ukonline.co.uk>
> Cc: openmcl-devel Devel <openmcl-devel at clozure.com>
> Message-ID: <89F72F1A-40A8-416E-868C-2DA151C365BE at cs.colorado.edu>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
> 
> Sounds like XMLisp (= CCL + Cocoa + OpenGL + Layout managers) may be worth a shoot: http://code.google.com/p/xmlisp/
> 

I will take a look... but I gather from discussions on this list and a quick look that it is not in LISP.  It appears to have both much more than I advocate making part of CCL, and a little less.   A Little less, because it appears to bypass defining a simple and relatively complete LISP-GUI, and much more as it appears to go on to develop a rich set of specialised applications.  So as far as I cant tell, from a quick look, is that it would be possible to define that middle LISP-GUI layer and strip it out.  More below...    
 

> It is being distributed as ready to go (no UNIX skills required ;-) binary (still OS X 10.5 unfortunately) and source. It does have 2D and 3D GUI functionality that AgentSheets and Clozure are collaborating on to make work on Macs and PCs.
> 
> What kinds of GUIs are you in need of developing? If you had MCL based GUI can you share some examples (screen dumps and source)?

What do I mean by a LISP-GUI?  One of the great things about MCL (besides FRED, may he come back to renewed life soon in Clozure) is that it provided, from the very beginning, access to graphic-windows, quickdraw, dialog-items, menus and menubars. 

So right away I could make use of these tools to 'see' my data and 'control' the program flow in a Mac-like way, which having been lucky enough to only experience Symbolics and MCL, I take to be synonymous with LISP.  Unfortunately APPLE has lost sight of well-designed user interface guidelines.  Nevertheless, CCL needs something in LISP (to be a true LISP in the heritage of Symbolics and MCL) so it would be hard to better the old MCL user-interface set of basic tools as a target model to emulate.

Having started with MCL (coral) from 1988 or so, I have naturally attached GUI tools to most modules either to analyse data or control the program.  These range from control strips, to charts, to three-d, to input screens.  Here are some example screen shots of control strips, charts, three-d items, and input screens.  They are all rather simple, as all they do is draw (color and texturise) lines and regions, or throw up dialog- and menu items. The example show a 3d-chart of default probabilities over time and by risk rating.  A chart and its control panel for changing formats and other features.  A panel for selecting and displaying user fonts.  A set of trading-risk screens.  And a panel for doing regressions.  I would gladly contribute the underlying modules for doing these, but first they would need to run in CCL!  

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> Alex
> 
> 
> 
> On Apr 4, 2010, at 12:46 AM, wws2 new wrote:
> 
>> 
>> For several years now I have been following this discussion and the state of CCL with anticipation.  Recently I have gotten most of my non-GUI MCL code to run on CCL without much effort other than pathname junk, and have been blown away by the fact that CCL is for the most part 50-100 times faster.  
>> 
>> For a couple years I have been hoping for just a little more attention to the GUI side of CCL, something like the old MCL quickdraw file is more or less all it needs, but that has been very slow in coming.  Okay it needs something like FRED too, but that GUI Layer seems like a precursor to me.  My point is the list of things needed for a basic abstract GUI layer is pretty short.  As far as I can tell from discussions on the list, some users seem to be close to reproducing large chunks of Quickdraw-like functionality.  So it seems possible for a nice abstract GUI layer to take shape.  
>> 
>> I think one of the reasons that this has not been a priority is that everyone that uses CCL seems to be very comfortable using all the UNIX-like features, whereas GUI functionality comes from users who want FINDER like behaviour.  For example, the thing I have not done, and want to avoid doing, is all the updating from trunk, swank, upper lower lisp emacs stuff that makes this list tick at present.  That makes me a sort of alien on this list, but I like to use stable releases that look like an application (so I use 1.4) and allow me to write or port applications which include GUIs.  So I hope that CCL will eventually become this platform.  
>> 
>> Now to be honest that makes me a beggar.  I need you guys who know all the Objective-C blah blah to make the abstract GUI Layer.  I can help define what it should do (quickdraw.lisp is a good start), but writing it would not be in my ability-set.  Nevertheless I hope you realise you need me to beg.
>> _______________________________________________
>> Openmcl-devel mailing list
>> Openmcl-devel at clozure.com
>> http://clozure.com/mailman/listinfo/openmcl-devel
> 
> Prof. Alexander Repenning
> 
> University of Colorado
> Computer Science Department
> Boulder, CO 80309-430
> 
> vCard: http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~ralex/AlexanderRepenning.vcf



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