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Development News

This week was extremely busy, with 37 different new patches in the tree, from 16 developers. This week, we also added 4 new contributors. Congratulations to Ash, Ithamar, Ed and Joseph.

Without question, this week's biggest patch came from Martin, who finally committed list support, originally begun by Luke Jordan. Later in the week, he committed several updates to this patch, which is still under heavy development. However, this is one of the most vital (formerly) missing features in AbiWord, and its addition brings us significantly closer to 1.0. Since getting to 1.0 is AbiWord's primary focus, Martin becomes the first person to win a second patch prize. We offer our congratulations and another $299.

The other big checkin this week was from Bill Carpenter, who, in a series of patches, provided everything from proper handling of smart quotes to unbreakable cryptogrpahy. Amazingly, these capabilites were provided by the same patch.

Finally, Michael Pritchett created a preview for the Insert Picture dialog that he added last week. It currently works only on Win32, but it looks great.

Significant credit this week also goes to Ithamar Adema, who made significant progress in getting the BeOS build to compile correctly again. Also on the build front, Tom and Michael made significant contributions to getting the Win32 build to work.

In addition to these, there were far too many other patches to list them all, ranging from one liners to i18n to improvements in wv contributed by the KWord developers. It has been a good week to be an AbiWord user.

On The List

After a slow week last week, the abiword-dev list has bounced back, with 172 messages posted since last issue. Significant topics included:

  1. Lists - After Martin's commit to add list support, there was some discussion of the code, and a discussion of the merits of const in C++.

  2. Insert Picture Preview - Michael provided a patch to add picture previews, which sparked both discussion of the patch, and of how to convert DOS line-ends to Unix format.

  3. Patch Format - The question of the preffered patch format was raised, with several developers preffering unified diff format.

  4. Legal issues - Aaron wondered who held the copyright on AbiWord code, and Eric clarified that the copyright belongs to all the contributors.

  5. Unprintable characters - Bill raised a question about formatting characters and their many names. Sam suggested calling them non-printing characters, but then Bill suggested printing them (as an option).

  6. GIF vs. PNG - Bob suggested converting our help file GIFs to PNG format, which met with hearty approval.

  7. ANSI vs GNU - One of the recent patches utilized a GNU GCC extension not part of the ANSI/ISO standard. Various opinions were expressend on the desirability of this.

Bugzilla Status

Currently, Bugzilla lists 200 bugs outstanding, with 21 of those still in SUBMIT state. Last week, we closed 12 bugs, 8 of which were fixes, and 7 new bugs were opened.

Other News

This week's cool post award goes to Bill Carpenter, for his ingenious implementation of rot13 in AbiWord.

Sam TH
sam@uchicago.edu

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