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Re: macOS 64-bit

From: Marnen Laibow-Koser
Subject: Re: macOS 64-bit
Date: Fri, 17 May 2019 10:10:15 -0400

On Fri, May 17, 2019 at 1:33 AM Werner LEMBERG <address@hidden> wrote:

> > I think this is poor advice.  IMHO MacPorts is very hard to work
> > with (as an end user) compared to Homebrew, and I haven't seen
> > anyone using MacPorts on their Mac in well over a decade.
> Given that MacPorts supports more packages than Homebrew this is a
> very bold statement.

Homebrew supports enough packages, and it’s really easy to add new ones, so
that’s pretty much irrelevant.  (I used to maintain the Homebrew
Frescobaldi package, before there were Mac binaries available.)

And all users that don't use the two latest
> releases of MacOS (like me) are out of the game, too.
> [Note that I'm not a MacOS user at all.  For daily work I'm
>  exclusively using GNU/Linux.  It's just that I'm interested in
>  providing support even on exotic platforms :-)]

Since you’re not a Mac user, are you in any position to talk about what’s
more usable on Mac OS *to experienced Mac users*?

I use Mac OS as my primary platform, FWIW.

> > For myself, I hate MacPorts so much that if LilyPond came to require
> > MacPorts, [...]
> Just wondering: What's the reason for this?

It’s been a long time since I used MacPorts, so my recollections are hazy.
But as far as I recall, it puts a lot of duplicated crap on the computer,
the CLI was needlessly complicated compared to Fink or Homebrew, and
virtually every interaction with it annoyed me.  Perhaps they’ve fixed
these issues, but since it kind of wants to take over the world, it’s hard
for me to test it again and get rid of it if I don’t like it.  (I suppose I
could use a VM.)

Also, since I already use Homebrew extensively, I’d rather avoid installing
a parallel piece of software with a parallel package tree.

If you’re not a Mac user, I suppose it makes sense that you’d prefer
MacPorts: isn’t it more or less a BSD package manager?  The problem,
though, is that it doesn’t fit the spirit of Mac OS very well.  Homebrew
does a *much* better job at playing nice with the rest of the OS, its CLI
is pleasant, and it’s easy to create new packages.

> > I just don't want MacPorts anywhere near my computer, and I hope I
> > will not be forced to use it in order to continue to use LilyPond on
> > my Mac.
> There is a fundamental misunderstanding.  Nobody is *forced* to use
> MacPorts!  LilyPond doesn't depend on it.

If the alternative is manually downloading all the dependencies and
building manually, then a package manager is nearly essential for a complex
program like LilyPond. :)

(For myself, even with Homebrew installed, I’d rather download a binary
than build from source anyway, though I will do the latter when it makes

Homebrew itself doesn't
> contain lilypond-dev; you rather have to use a private cask instead,
> for example

I’m not sure how this is relevant.  And it wouldn’t be hard to make the
cask public if wanted.

> > [...] I could probably put some effort into getting a Travis Mac
> > build environment set up (though I don't expect to have much free
> > time before July).  I've used Travis on many projects in the past
> > and I'm reasonably familiar with it.
> It would be really great if you can assist in providing a 64bit Mac
> binary that doesn't violate any licences, and we are more than happy
> if you have success.

I intend to try if no one has come up with a better solution by then.  It’s
important to me to keep Mac binaries available.

A lot of the natural users for LilyPond are composers.  Many of them are
not very technical and won’t want to install a package manager when they
can get MuseScore, Finale, Sibelius, or Noteflight without that extra
step.  That’s one reason that I think it’s important to lower the bar to
getting a binary as much as possible.

>     Werner
Marnen Laibow-Koser address@hidden Sent from Gmail

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