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Re: Dselect proposed interface (was Re: 1.1 installation notes.)

On Tue, 14 May 1996, Christian Hudon wrote:

> About the interface, it'd be nice to have something mc-ish. (mc = Midnight
> Commander; get it and take a look if you don't have it, there's a Debian
> package for it). It's got pull-down menus and dialog boxes... it's very
> nice, supports gpm mice and is something DOS people will recognize
> instantly. 
> And since mc is GPL'ed, we could borrow their low-level
> interface code. Would save quite a bit of coding work and would make for a
> nice interface, IMHO at least.

Just another suggestion: why not using Ctk?  Ctk is a text oriented
version of the well known X Window Tk toolkit.  As Tk, Ctk offers a
collection of widgets, that can be combined (via the tcl language) to
create user interfaces with drop-down menus, buttons, check boxes,
etc.  The difference is that interfaces made with Ctk can be displayed
on text only terminals (like the Linux text console).  Additionally,
Ctk is designed to be compatible (as much as possible) with Tk.
Although not every Tk script can run under Ctk (especially those using
the Tk canvas widget won't work) many of them actually do.  That makes
easy to create programs that run both on X and text terminals without

IMHO, dselect is a specially well suited application to run both under
Tk and Ctk, because it doesn't need to display complicated graphics.
With a good design, it would be possible to have a dselect offering a
nice Motif-like GUI interface under X (Tk) and a decent character
oriented interface under the Linux text console (Ctk).  By now, Ctk
doesn't offer mouse (gpm) support or ANSI color support, but I think
those features wouldn't be so hard to add if necessary (by the way,
Ctk comes under the same Berkeley license used by Tk).

I think this would be a very interesting (and useful) project, that
could be worked in a distributed group fashion, just like the whole
Debian.  Of course, I'm willing to do some volunteer work, so, if
somebody else is interested please drop me a line.


M. S.
Martin A. Soto J.                          Professor
Departamento de Ingenieria de Sistemas y Computacion
Universidad de los Andes      masoto@uniandes.edu.co

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