[brailleblaster] Re: Some Thoughts

Hi,

My point was more about the language of the core of BB.

I still think SWT is a good consideration for the generic UI that I mentioned.

Regards,
Aelx,


On 2011-02-02, at 5:07 PM, Michael Whapples wrote:

> We've discussed wx before and it was rejected. I have never really been 
> satisfied with results (from an accessibility view) when using wx, even for 
> some relatively simple UIs.
> 
> Also the accessibility API they offer programmes is currently windows only.
> 
> Michael Whapples
> On 03/02/11 00:33, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>> Hi,
>> 
>> If you wanted to use Python, there is WX-Python, essentially SWT for Python.
>> 
>> I am not suggesting that we use python, this is just an observation.
>> 
>> Regards,
>> Alex,
>> 
>> Alex Jurgensen,
>> VoiceOver Trainer,
>> 
>> Visit me on the web at: http://www.vipbc.org/
>> 
>> 
>> On 2011-02-02, at 3:56 PM, Michael Whapples wrote:
>> 
>>> My short answer is, "get over your problems with Java, it can interface 
>>> with native system libraries if you want to do that". So others would be 
>>> equally as able to enhance BrailleBlaster if it is written in Java or any 
>>> other language, probably what matters more for customisation is the quality 
>>> of the design. The arguments of what happens if Oracle were to ditch Java 
>>> and so JRE's were hard to come by (an unlikely case I think, Oracle has a 
>>> number of there software packages in Java and others could continue 
>>> development of the JDK now Java is opensource in the form of the OpenJDK), 
>>> well that applies as much to other programming languages, what if Apple 
>>> feel that Python isn't worth supporting (they are behind the latest Python 
>>> version by a bit), Ruby needs an interpreter, ocaml needs a compiler, what 
>>> if Apple decided they could do better than objective-c as their main 
>>> development language, etc. Java has a number of large companies behind it, 
>>> including Apple (they are contributing to the Mac port of OpenJDK), so 
>>> where's the evidence of death of Java?
>>> 
>>> I will just add, actually python got some consideration near the beginning. 
>>> I certainly like python, its great for quickly getting things done. The 
>>> problem in python is the GUI support, it probably would have required 
>>> separate GUI modules for each platform and this very well could have eaten 
>>> back the advantages of python being really easy to work in.
>>> 
>>> Michael Whapples
>>> On 02/02/11 23:45, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> 
>>>> What about C++, C, Rubie, or any of the other "First Class" languages.
>>>> 
>>>> If we as a project built the generic UI and then left the door open to 
>>>> third parties to create their own UI's, who knows, we may end up with 
>>>> hands-free Braille translation software or a version of BB that only 
>>>> embosses for certain people, using facial recognition.
>>>> 
>>>> I know these are far fetched ideas, but there is a lot of potential to go 
>>>> above and beyond the specification.
>>>> 
>>>> For instance, what if a third-party made a mobile version of BB that could 
>>>> sync with a modified desktop version for embossing?
>>>> 
>>>> This is what we gain by making an engine that is robust and is written in 
>>>> something that is easy to integrate with other programming languages 
>>>> through wrappers or natively.
>>>> 
>>>> Regards,
>>>> Alex,
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 3:30 PM, qubit wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> Hi Alex --
>>>>> you want to component out a braille translation engine separate from the
>>>>> UI -- I believe that is already the case as braille translation and
>>>>> back-translation is being handled almost completely by JohnB's C 
>>>>> libraries.
>>>>> Your arguments are compelling (you almost had me convinced about objective
>>>>> C), but I think that it is not used nearly as widely as java, and its 
>>>>> future
>>>>> depends on Apple's projections to take over the world as we know it 
>>>>> *smile*
>>>>> I also think that separating out a language-independent way of expressing
>>>>> the UI is awkward and prone to bias.
>>>>> I think that some work could be done to produce a layer of code between 
>>>>> the
>>>>> liblouis* libraries and the UI to flesh out whatever is put in the
>>>>> requirements, but I'm still not convinced that ditching java is the best
>>>>> approach.
>>>>> Just my $0.02.
>>>>> --le
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> ----- Original Message -----
>>>>> From: "Alex Jurgensen"<asquared21@xxxxxxxxx>
>>>>> To:<brailleblaster@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>>>>> Sent: Wednesday, February 02, 2011 4:42 PM
>>>>> Subject: [brailleblaster] Re: Some Thoughts
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> Hi,
>>>>> 
>>>>> To answer your questions, I don't dislike Java in any way.
>>>>> 
>>>>> I am just looking into the future. With Microsoft roomered to launch an 
>>>>> apps
>>>>> store with Windows 8, and Apple having successfully launched two so far, I
>>>>> think that we must look at the direction the market is heading and not 
>>>>> just
>>>>> at what would work right now.
>>>>> 
>>>>> I started my development in Java and continue to have plans for some
>>>>> projects in Java, but I think that Java has its place, as does any
>>>>> programming language.
>>>>> 
>>>>> As to Macs representing a very small number of users, I would have to 
>>>>> agree
>>>>> over all, but disagree that we can afford to ignore the platform.
>>>>> 
>>>>> It is gaining in popularity among blind users.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Let's say that tomorrow all desktops disappeared. What would run BB, a
>>>>> handful of tablets?
>>>>> 
>>>>> As computers evolve, we can't live in the desktop paridyme. We must flow
>>>>> with the market.
>>>>> 
>>>>> My suggestion of using a natively compiled language would allow us to 
>>>>> secure
>>>>> against changes in the UI that we can't predict today.
>>>>> 
>>>>> I suggest that we component out BB into a Braille translation engine with 
>>>>> a
>>>>> UI as a separate component.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Then, if Viewplus drops support for a platform, it would be straight 
>>>>> forward
>>>>> for another group to pick it up.
>>>>> 
>>>>> I know the same can be said for writing the logic in Java, but I think 
>>>>> that
>>>>> Java is a weakness in the structure of BB.
>>>>> 
>>>>> There are two main reasons for this.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Embedded distros may not support Linux and although they form a very small
>>>>> percent of the market today, may form a bigger percentage tomorrow.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Secondly, it relies on a JVM, which not only can use more resources, but,
>>>>> even if the issue of efficiency could be worked around, would rely on 
>>>>> JRE's
>>>>> being maintained.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Just my thoughts.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Regards,
>>>>> Alex,
>>>>> 
>>>>> Alex Jurgensen,
>>>>> VoiceOver Trainer,
>>>>> 
>>>>> Visit us on the web at: http://www.vipbc.org/
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 1:56 PM, Michael Whapples wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>>> I am going to be direct, you keep bringing it up and honesty may be the
>>>>>> only way to get to the bottom of it.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> I am getting the feeling your issue is not really with SWT but rather 
>>>>>> with
>>>>>> Java. What is it about Java you don't like?
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> As an example to why I draw the conclusion above, you say use
>>>>>> C/C++/objective-c for logic code but possibly use SWT for the UI. The
>>>>>> rationale you give for this is to have the possibility of being able to
>>>>>> develop a native GUI for the Mac. Well having the logic code in Java also
>>>>>> would allow for that as I have pointed out in the past. Java can access
>>>>>> native code and so use the platform's native GUI libraries directly. The
>>>>>> example I have given before is cyberduck http://www.cyberduck.ch, which 
>>>>>> in
>>>>>> fact Apple have put in their list of applications accessible with
>>>>>> voiceover http://www.apple.com/accessibility/voiceover/applications.html,
>>>>>> look under utilities.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> I won't say my views on the app store again, other than to mention, Macs
>>>>>> only represent a small number of users, as Linux probably does, and so
>>>>>> technologies of one platform, particularly optional ones which the app
>>>>>> store seems to be, should not drive the direction of the project.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> I guess the last say on all this could and probably does fall back to
>>>>>> ViewPlus, who are the ones wanting this project. How important is the Mac
>>>>>> to ViewPlus? What is the minimum acceptable standard of support for the
>>>>>> Mac? Oh, and I am not getting at the Macs here,the same questions should
>>>>>> be asked for the other platforms.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> Michael Whapples
>>>>>> On 02/02/11 17:49, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>>>>>>> Hi,
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> If we use the web approach, we can style the applcations to look like
>>>>>>> native Mac apps.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> These are the headaches that just kill me about cross-platform stuff.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> If we only wrote hte main logic in something like C, Objective-C or C++
>>>>>>> and then did our UI's in SWT, that would at least give us the 
>>>>>>> possibility
>>>>>>> to write an alternative UI down the road for the Mac.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Regards,
>>>>>>> Alex,
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 9:41 AM, Chris von See wrote:
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> Highly unlikely - rule 2.24
>>>>>>>> ofhttp://stadium.weblogsinc.com/engadget/files/mac-app-review.pdf  
>>>>>>>> seems
>>>>>>>> pretty clear:
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 2.24 Apps that use deprecated or optionally installed technologies
>>>>>>>> (e.g., Java, Rosetta) will be rejected
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> You *may* be able to get around the rules regarding deprecated
>>>>>>>> technologies by bundling a JRE (it would almost certainly need to be
>>>>>>>> SoyLatte since you can't include anything with a third-party installer
>>>>>>>> such as an Oracle JRE for Mac).  You almost certainly will not be able
>>>>>>>> to get around the requirement that the UI adhere to the Mac Human
>>>>>>>> Interface Guidelines - Java apps that don't use Apple's enhanced JRE
>>>>>>>> look nothing like native Mac apps.
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> On Feb 2, 2011, at 9:29 AM, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> Hi,
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> I realize that.
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> However, I think that including a JDK might solve this.
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> Regards,
>>>>>>>>> Alex,
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 9:28 AM, Chris von See wrote:
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> Java applications cannot be included in the Mac App Store.  Java is
>>>>>>>>>> now considered to be an "optional" technology on the Mac, according 
>>>>>>>>>> to
>>>>>>>>>> Apple.
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>> On Feb 2, 2011, at 9:21 AM, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Hi John,
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> I was refering more to Chris' message about using STW's browser
>>>>>>>>>>> control as a UI. That would get us half way to having a web app,
>>>>>>>>>>> would it not.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Now, that depends on how we end up doing the UI.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> About the auto updater, I am working on it because this is where I
>>>>>>>>>>> feel the most confident, creating a boot loader.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Here is my question.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> How far along are we in the 2 year development cycle? The website
>>>>>>>>>>> does not list a date that the project was started on.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> I have also been investigating the rules for submitting the
>>>>>>>>>>> application through Apple's Mac App Store.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> I know it is a little early for this, but I have read about
>>>>>>>>>>> developers who wrote entire applications that got rejected because 
>>>>>>>>>>> of
>>>>>>>>>>> something that was too difficult to change at the time of 
>>>>>>>>>>> submission.
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> Regards,
>>>>>>>>>>> Alex,
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 9:13 AM, John J. Boyer wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> Alex,
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> Sorry about the need to modify your application bundle, but
>>>>>>>>>>>> BrailleBlaster has always been written as one word.
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> I think you are getting ahead of us. It is too early to include
>>>>>>>>>>>> auto-updatre, and a web application is a whold divverent project. 
>>>>>>>>>>>> We
>>>>>>>>>>>> have to stick to what we are doing. After BrailleBlaster is working
>>>>>>>>>>>> as a
>>>>>>>>>>>> desktop  application we can consider a Web application.
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> John
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> On Wed, Feb 02, 2011 at 08:52:17AM -0800, Alex Jurgensen wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Hi,
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> I suppose that the Mac issues should be resolved in any case. This
>>>>>>>>>>>>> would help the Mac community as a whole.
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> I've built my boot loader now, but I can't test it yet.
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Did you get a chance to look at my mock up yet?
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> What do you think of it?
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Regards,
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Alex,
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Alex Jurgensen,
>>>>>>>>>>>>> VoiceOver Trainer,
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> Visit me on the web at:http://www.vipbc.org/
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>> On 2011-02-02, at 12:19 AM, John J. Boyer wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I've read through all these messages, and I'm convinced we should
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> stick
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> with SWT. By the time BrailleBlaster is ready for use by anybody
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> other
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> than a developer the problems on the Mac may be resolved. We can
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> add a
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> little pressure to the Eclipse developers to help things along.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> The idea
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> of using the SWT browser to present GUI content is interesting.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> The classpaths specified in the ant build.xml file go iknto the
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> manifest
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> of the BrailleBlaster jar file. This makes callinng 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> BrailleBlaster
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> very
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> convenient on my flavor of Linux and on Windows. We could make
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> different
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> versions of BrailleBlaster for different distros, but I think 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> that
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> is
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> something for the early adapters who use these distros to worry
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> about.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> They will know their own flavors. And many of them won't care
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> about the
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> standard locations.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Let's learn from Alex's experience in proting BrailleBlaster to
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> the Mac.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Concern about various Linux flavors at this time is a 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> distraction.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> As for me, I'm concentrating on getting BrailleBlaster to work
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> with at
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> least generic embossers. Then I'll make a simple text editor 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> using
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> a
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> GUI. the experience in doing this will be necessary to make the
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> real
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> GUI. The text editor will remain as a BrailleBlaster feature to 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> be
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> used
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> by advanced users.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Incidentally, BrailleBlaster is a single word.  It should not 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> have
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> a
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> space.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> John
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> -- 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> John J. Boyer; President, Chief Software Developer
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Abilitiessoft, Inc.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://www.abilitiessoft.com
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Madison, Wisconsin USA
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Developing software for people with disabilities
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> ----- End forwarded message -----
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> -- 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> John J. Boyer; President, Chief Software Developer
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Abilitiessoft, Inc.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> http://www.abilitiessoft.com
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Madison, Wisconsin USA
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Developing software for people with disabilities
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> -- 
>>>>>>>>>>>> John J. Boyer; President, Chief Software Developer
>>>>>>>>>>>> Abilitiessoft, Inc.
>>>>>>>>>>>> http://www.abilitiessoft.com
>>>>>>>>>>>> Madison, Wisconsin USA
>>>>>>>>>>>> Developing software for people with disabilities
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>> 
>> 
> 
> 
> 


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