Should I abandon Athena for Motif/LessTif?
I think I've reached a turning point in the development
of V, but I need the advice of the group. I would like
to abandon the Athena version of V in favor of Motif
(or more specifically, LessTif!).
When V was originally developed, one of the major goals
was to keep it totally free and not dependent on any
non-free software. Because of this, the Athena version
of V has always been the main version supported for
X Windows. It now seems that LessTif has reached the
point that it is at least as stable as V itself, and
probably more. Thus, my original objection to using
Motif because it was not free is gone - as long as
you have LessTif available.
A second thing has happened - Linux has become THE
free platform of choice. While there remain many
truly free versions (Debian being the most notable),
a growing number of "nearly" free versions are becoming
the platforms of choice (RedHat and Caldera seem to
be the best to me). One thing that has happened with
these commercial distributions is that the default
Athena library is being messed with. For example,
the latest version of Cladera OpenLinux 2.2 supports
the Athena 3D widget set by default. This really makes
V Athena based apps look very ugly.
I've spent the past couple of weeks playing with the
Motif version of V, and have found out that it really
didn't work well. After a bunch of work, it actually
is really, truly working with LessTif. I don't have
a true Motif lib to test, but the LessTif version
looks very good - much better than the Athena version.
My question to the group - can anyone see any real
reason (other than perhaps the complication of
downloading and compiling LessTif) to continue
to support the Athena version?
(I still hope to get a stable gtk version, and have
been thinking of a Qt version, too. But for now,
the question is about Athena/Motif/Lesstif.)
Respond directly, or to the group.
Bruce E. Wampler, Ph.D.
Author of the V C++ GUI Framework