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Re: Readability of troff documents (Was: [Groff] Bug in gxditview)

From: Peter Schaffter
Subject: Re: Readability of troff documents (Was: [Groff] Bug in gxditview)
Date: Fri, 23 May 2003 11:39:16 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.0.1i

Hi, all.

On Fri, May 23, 2003, Gaius Mulley wrote:
> Nevertheless it would be great to have a pseudo dreamweaver front end
> (lyx) for producing groff allowing new users to edit the troff or edit
> the wysiwyg. I wonder whether this could be done in Python?

This has always been my dream.  Out of the
wordprocessing-wysiwyg/textprocessing-formatting debate, one thing
has always been clear: wysiwyg is the right tool for some things
(like complex page layout), "coding" is the right tool for others.

In the early nineties, some software out of Britain called Quoin,
which ran on Macs, did the dreamweaver thing: a split screen with
editable wysiwyg at the top and "coded" text at the bottom.  Any
edits to one screen were immediately reflected in the other.
Brilliant, perfect solution.  Problem was, it was buggy.  The shop
I worked in then used it to typeset a couple of contracts worth
over a million dollars.  Problem was, it was buggy and closed
source, so Quoin died.

Still, I've always wondered if open-source couldn't take the
concept and do it right?  Frankly, I wouldn't care whether the
underlying engine was groff or TeX.  (Not quite true -- I don't
like TeX that much. :) )

Peter Schaffter

Author of _The Schumann Proof_, appearing fall, 2004
(pub. RendezVous Press, Canada)

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