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Development News

This week saw more significant development, with 12 developers contributing 27 different patches to the tree. Sadly, there were no new developers this week.

The most significant series of patches this week came from Bill Carpenter, who continued to make significant progress towards Smart Quote support in AbiWord. This week, his work included fixing a few minor problems in his remapGlyph code, and adding a Smart Quotes preference item. This preference item was then ported to both Win32 and QNX by Tom and Thomas. For his work this week, Bill wins the Patch Prize, and 299 dollars from Sourcegear.

Another significant feature added this week was automatic backup on crashes in the Unix build, thanks to Sam. Now, if AbiWord ever crashes, it will back up your data before dying. Bruce and Matthew contributed ideas for improving the code, which were quickly incorporated. Hopefully this will lead both to regular backup possibilites, and crash handling on our other platforms.

Additionally, hj provided additional support for wide (Unicode) characters, utilizing the standard C facilites. Martin also improved several aspects of his list patch, including adding support for broken lists and fixing symbol font support, among other achivements. Joaquin improved to toolbar layouts on the GNOME build. Alexey continued his work on Show Paragraphs. Finally, Ash and Joaquin contributed additional help file translation, while Eutanazy Sercxemulo updated the Polish translation.

On The List

The abiword-dev list continued to see significant activity this week, with 167 messages posted, dealing with the following interesting topics

  1. Smart Quotes - Bill Carpenter's continued work on Smart Quotes generated lots of discussion, on issues ranging from how they should be represented in text documents, to how users should turn them on and off.
  2. Who Builds on Windows? - This week, there was much good-natured speculation as to the size of our Win32 development community. However, with the addition of Tom Briggs to to list of developers with CVS commit access, the quantity of breakage has begun to decrease.
  3. Signal Handling - After Sam committed his Unix signal handler (to detect crashes), several people expressed concerns about how this would affect the quality of debugging output. Additionally, several inelegances in Sam's code were quickly solved.
  4. StarOffice goes GPL? - When rumors of Sun's annoucement began to come out, Eric wrote a long message on what he believed the impact would be. Since then, Sun has officially annouced a code release on October 13.
  5. BeOS Port - This week, a new developer expressed interest in working on the Be port, making two new developers in just a few weeks.
  6. Columns Dialog - This week, Bruce expressed the desire to work on the columns dialog. Hopefully, this will make it in time for 1.0, leaving us with only three other unimplemented dialogs.

Bugzilla Status

Currently, Bugzilla lists 201 bugs outstanding, with 19 of those still in SUBMIT state. Last week, we closed 10 bugs, 5 of which were fixes, and 4 new bugs were opened.

Other News

This week's cool post award goes to Eric, for his insightful analysis of the current state of the word processor market, and our place in it.

Sam TH

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