AbiWord Weekly News #161, (2003, week 35, released 2003.09.17)

Welcome to this issue 161 of the AbiWord Weekly News.


      Please use this.

This week in development

      I'm sure you already heard the news...now see the screenshots.   Also, more translators wanted!

Request for user assistance

      Attention Windows Users.   AbiWord 2.0.1 will be the first stable 2.x abi to be released to you.   Now, answer me this, how long have I been asking for bug reports and new developers?   Uh huh.   Now we learned something today*.

Silliness of the Week

      It's come to my attention that a joke written to entertain a Libertarian may have offended other party goers, so to speak.   AbiWord is non-political, at least, not in any sense that affects any particular nation.   Now, if George W. Bush declares that QT should be the default toolkit of the United States or that Tony Blair decides InterLingua should be the default language of all applications, we will definately have some issues to discuss.   Open Source and Free Software should be thought of as science or art...the experiencer only interprets whats already in their own mind.

      Now, if you want to say (or assume) that I, personally, the editor referred to as "Lone Nut Productions," that Eric Fooquing Zen is being political, you go right at it.   I've been to more rallies than you've been at tupperware parties.   I'm loud, annoying, opinionated and possess a criminal record on three continents.   I think one of the developers has price on my head, but that doesn't stop me from publishing the weekly news.   Granted, said news comes across with large chunks of me, but I'm still more fair and unbiased than a news company owned by an Australian.   The spirit of Mike Royko lives!

      Now, let's chat.   I know you love my chat logs.   But, you know what I get when I actively look for something good to add?

<MPritchett> EAZen: Why give you a line, you can make one up much easier. :)
<dobey> EAZen: "Drink up me 'earties, yo ho!"
<dom> EAZen: ah line or two, eh? "A priest, a rabbi, and Bill Clinton walk into a bar..."
<MPritchett> EAZen: "But for $87,000,000,000 I will be happy to have a go at it."
* MPritchett is worried about overloading EAZen with quotes. Imagines an EAZen-Explosion!!

      Do you suppose the Clinton joke Dom started evens things out from last week?

      While in chat, I learned of a "new" hacking technique called Leary-ism.   Now, this beats the pants off of extreme programming and anything else you may have tried.   Brace yourself for an actual log of actual events.   The few people innocent of practicing this technique have been kept out completely.

* uwog is so gonna fix all mem corruption bugs he can find
<MPritchett> uwog will have to stop taking drugs then
<hub> uwog: there is none left :)
<uwog> hub: yeah, right :-P
<uwog> MPritchett: what's wrong with drugs? this is nl_NL you know...
* EAZen waits for this answer....
<MPritchett> uwog: See -> *uwog is so gonna fix all mem corruption bugs he can find
<mgAfk> hehehe
<dom> who has drugs, and why aren't they sharing with me?
<mgAfk> uwog's memory and the code are orthogonal, the drugs help the code regardless of what they do to him

      And, no, it doesn't just stop at the hackers.   The drugs slowly creep into their software as well!

<uwog> wtf! configure: error: Valgrind works on kernels 2.2 and 2.4
<hub> LOL
<uwog> damned valgrind
<dobey> i guess he doesn't like you very much right now
<uwog> MPritchett: gimme Linus('s home) phone number!
<EAZen> That error works nicely with the drugs.
<uwog> stupid penguin lover
<MPritchett> [ed. stuff] --enablethemotherofallmemorycheckers

      Naturally, I did a minor edit to, um, enhance the moment.   Yes, that's it.

      I shall rush to the front and get more crap, err, quotes for next week, unless you do that whole joke thing mentioned in the mailing lists.

*today:   Don't mind the fact that the actual cause was due to a last minute build issue!   Man behind the curtain and all that.   However, in all honesty, there was some last minute hacking to clean up a few other issues...so...think about it.

This Issue

      And remember, I give you an email address so you can talk to me, in case you're not on either mailing list.

In this issue:

Editor(s) of this issue:  E. A. Zen

      If you're interested in using AbiWord for the first time, receiving a more up-to-date version, any particular version or special release, feel free to visit the new  Latest Releases page.

DISCLAIMER:  It should be generally noted that anything said before the "In this issue:" line is purely editorial.   Actually, everything I say is purely editorial.   You kind of get used to it.


Traffic on the  developer mailing list has settled at about 200-400 postings per week.   This week, interesting topics on the developer list included:

  1. Build problems on OS X :   David meets AbiCocoa for Mac OS X, and teaches us a lesson in building.   This enlightening read informs Mac OS X readers how to build AbiCocoa port, via project builder, on their own system.   You'll note the assumption of Fink, Project Builder, reading the build instructions, et cetera, et cetera.   It should be noted, however, that as AbiCocoa is not yet ready for actual testing and use, Hub is not yet ready to receive and work with bug reports.   When that time comes, it will most surely make it to the AWN.

  2. commit: Welsh :   Rhoslyn Prys sends to Pierre what would be, save for a typo or two, the final version pre-2.0 of the Welsh translation.   This officially makes AbiWord useful for Red Hat employees currently on an educational sabbatical to a university, especially ones that stay out of the United States out of fear of being arrested under the DMCA.   Believe it or not, this is twice as many people as you would otherwise assume it to be!   Now, if I mentioned something about the kernel....

  3. AbiWord Weekly News #160 (2003, week 36) released :   The Follow-ups section was originally meant to be a place of corrections and updates, but it devolved into pointless jibber.   Come to think of it, most of the AWN has become a total load of crap that way, yet people still read it, so, go figure, or, Go Figuiere!   Anyhow, anyone who read the AWN in the first 24 hours, may have misread, or something like misreading, that the anoncvs is nolonger available.   This is not true; it's still there, and life is still good.   The AWN unfortunately must also include some bad news.   Mark Gilbert, almost beloved collegue, died September 27th of 2003, from a sudden lynching.   He will be mourned by the Dutch and Alan Horkan.

  4. QNX "Patches" :   Hey, do you have a favourite real time, embeddable operating system?   Yeah, I like Tron, too, but I was talking about the other one.   No, not that one, silly goose--QNX!   Johan, who was not entirely entertained by my ISO-character-set comment a couple weeks ago (read: he fixed it), has returned to making QNX buildable.   QNX, BeOS, Mac OS X and Win32 all have to wait for some point later in the game (Hub just announced that Mac OS X won't be until 2.2).   Various unicies still counts as cross-platform, right?   Please send in your obligatory SCO or Microsoft joke to me, and the really good ones will go into next week's SOTW.

  5. abiword 1.99.6 dies: All font failbacks failed :   Leonid Petrov, a user that knows the power of the user list, finds and solves his font-related problem.   For people with more than one version of fontconfig's include files floating around, Leonid recommends dumping the older version include files if possible.   Otherwise, you'll need to be path specific in the configuration of the making of your AbiWord.

  6. http://www.abisource.com/mailinglists/abiword-dev/2003/Sep/0172.html :   You know how, in "South Park", the way Cartman says, "pie?"   Pierre says, "po," in the exact same way.   Though, as Dom tells us, there is a way to create a string file from a po file, you, as in the translator, are less likely to encounter issues if you translate a strings file first, then change it into a po.   Also, please send both the po and the strings file to the list.   This makes Pierre's life easier.

  7. Fundamental misunderstanding in Windows graphics class. ,
    commit: Fix cursor weirdness in windows. ,
    commit: More win graphics class fixes. ,
    Help from Win32 Guru's requested. and
    Win build broken for MINW32 :   To give some of the Windows users an idea of some of the really basic issues that cropped up at the last minute, I present you with several points of issue.   Excluding the massive graphics class issue, there was also the issue with getting a proper build.   In the end (and out of the date range of the tradition weekly news) after cropping up twice, a build issue recurred, holding back Win32 binaries.   Perhaps Dom will get married for the holidays.   Perhaps I may sprout wings and fly back in time to visit Atlantis.   Perhaps Microsoft might port their office suite to Linux.

  8. ATTN: release ok for the 14th :   Dom informs us that the never quite specified, heavily speculated fully unknown issue will not prevent AbiWord from going out on its fallback release date.   Ironically, other unexpected problems, however, did manage to do just that.

  9. Quote for 2.0 PR :   "I'm a freelance writer, and I've been earning my living with the development version of AbiWord 2.0 for almost a year.   It easily handles the different style sheets required by different publishers, and exchanging files with people working with other word processors is no problem at all.   Thanks to all the coders for a great tool!" --David Chart
      If you're interested in looking at some of these abi-written books, head to David's Books Page.   As for which one of those are Abi-written, exactly, I haven't a clue.   None before 98, and all after 03?   Yup, I'll put money on The Black Monks of Glastonbury.   Go RPG!

  10. po file copyrights :   Why do the po files have "Free Software Foundation" in their copyright notices?   No, really, anyone know?

  11. Requesting help for completing the missing translations :   Translations for 2.0.0 are pretty locked by this point.   However, there's still more AbiWord 2.0.x to come!   If you could help with the following languages, it would be greatly appreciated:

    Hausa (Niger)[ha-NE]
    Hausa (Nigeria)[ha-NG]
    Marshallese (Nauru)[mh-NR]
    Flemish (Belgium)[nl-BE]
    Chinese (Singapore)[zh-SG]
      If you can help, please contact either Jordi Mas or Pierre Abbat.

  12. ATTN: tree closing for 2.0 soon ,
    ATTN: tree closed for 2.0 and
    ATTN: Tree Tagged. Tarballs created. :   That was ball number one, but we're all still ever so happy!   And, a message for David and Marc's entertainment.

  13. Abiword 2.0 Hebrew Screenshot ,
    Abi 2.0.0 screenshot: Yiddish and
    Abi Screenshot in Latvian :   That's right, not one, not three, but four screenshots for your drooling pleasure   In chronilogical order, we have an English AbiWord writing Hebrew from Nadav, a German AbiWord running on Windows from Dr. Oliver "schurro" Schurr*, a Yiddish AbiWord from Raphael Finkel, and a Latvian AbiWord from Stephen Viles.   It should be noted that the Windows/German screenshot was compiled from a post-2.0-release cvs-head, and those there...those are the plugins!

Traffic on the  user mailing list is sporadic at best.   Often, a good topic comes up, but users tend to only respond to the original poster rather than the list (as well), which limits what I would add, as the only lone threads I post are announcements of importance or points of great interest.   This week, interesting topics on the user list included:

  1. Re: non root install :   "I really recommend installing 1.99.6.  This is the 1.0.x maintainer speaking." --Hubert Figuiere.   Many of this week's user list problems were either quite common (such as version mismatching between plugins and abiword) or version specific (such as issues that appeared in 1.99.5, disappeared in 1.99.6 and re-appeared in CVS-HEAD).   Most entertaining, however, was in relation to this same thread, where Hoyt Bailey asks for more help on, "A system that dosent have a root."   Believing it was a specialised GNU/Linux system, Martin attempted to assist him.   Apparently Hoyt was talking about something called "Windows."   That certainly is a new one.   As Hub points out, users can install software to their own home directories or to any other directory that they have access to add files.

  2. Abiword for SGI IRIX :   George Benedikt is looking for someone who has a far more current version of AbiWord installed on SGI's Irix.   He could only find 1.0.3 SGI's "FreeWare"* site.   Quite possibly just looking for build instructions or a nice tardist to download.   Mentioning this is my good deed for the day ^_^

*Schurr:   Sent via email to me rather than the list, so, I got a special sneak peek ;o)
*FreeWare:   Hi, Rui; my precognition informed me that I should explain to you that this SGI's fault, not mine.   Please send elongated politically-oriented drafts to them ;o)


CVS Stats

      Track who put in how much and why.   And, while you're at it, consider whether you'd like to keep your own cvs build as well.   Tables...ooh....

CVS checkins 2003.09.07 - 2003.09.14
Who Commits In summary
David Chart a lot Revisions and edits for 2.0, Screenshots using Bitstream fonts, We no longer have a Web menu--so deleting the documentation for it, Documentation for the HTML Export Options dialog, Removed due to font preview, Updated the documentation to reflect the new position of the header and footer commands, Edits and updates for 2.0, Revisions and edits for 2.0, In 1514
Dom Lachowicz some Footnote/MailMerge patch from Gilles, remove some outdated dox, update the swedish strings, remove the edit header/footer entries, fix bmp plugin build, don't install the dicts when using enchant, new desktop file, disable middle mouse button paste for non-unix platforms, bump version #'s, update french strings, distcheck fixes, the fifth Duke
F.J.Franklin doché add missing qnx GNUmakefile references to configure.*, while on a drinking spree
Hub Figuiere UNO! Fix HTML export problem part for bug 5687
K. J. Davis some mo'a fixing EOLs, proper End Of Lines and minor MinGW correction, Add Makefile so library built during Aiksaurus plugin building..., MinGW/cygwin tools plugin Makefile fixes, rode to church on a cow
Jordi Mas li'l bit Catalan string update, serbian strings chg, remove dead code, and set fire to the choir
Mike Pritchett dré Bugfix #5719, Fix Build System between mingw and cygwin, he fled to France
Martin Sevior! a good few Fix Robert Wilheim's select-all bug, Fix table selection bug, Robustness fix that allows us to load all 167 pages of the RTF 1.7 specification in RTF :-), Fix for crash in incorrect imported MS Word doc from Jon Kare, (it would be good to fix the import bug sometime), Headers and footers are in the menus again, Fix the cursor weirdness on Win32, Fix for windows line breaking, Now runs always break at the same point no matter what the zoom, fix bug 5743, Crash changing a font in line right after a table, Stifler's ma is hot, fix 5669, fonts go transperent in cells that cross page boundaries, where he lived
Pierre hm? Abbat that much Welsh update by Rhoslyn Prys, Typos corrected in Welsh translation, Finnish strings update by Ismo Mäkinen, Turkish strings update by Team Turca, Lojban update in progress, what's a lojban?, Change code for Lojban to "jbo", and subsequently died
Rui something something Seabra Dawn Updated to cover all strings and removed obsolete strings, this mv is no longer needed, Update from Marco, updated, quick enchant'ment, new build changes, under the delusion
Marc Mason a chunk Fix memory curruption issues on lists, Where did that \n go, I wonder...., New Line Cinema renamed to \n /., Bug 5730, Patch by Andrew Church, Fix localisation in Format Footnotes dialog, Fix bug 4704, es-ES update by Fco. Javier F. Serrador (like FJF but with an S), Install a nice icon for abiword as well (speaking of icons, when I get home, Jan and I are SO ready), Updated sl-SI translation by Andraz Tori, <whig>Bloody Tori!</whig> ;o), Upgrade the WordPerfect plugin to work with libwpd 0.6.0, Update nl-Nl translation, Updated lt-LT translation by Mantas Kriau_i_nas (my god, Mantas, is that really your name!?), Updated cs-CZ translations by Radek Vybiral, Bug 4456, Patch by Patrick Lam, Fix left ruler drawing when the cursor is in a footer, he was a footstool


      Current pows are here. This will probably be replaced LONG after 2.0 has come out..

Name:  More Windows Maintainers
Description:  Jordi and Jeremy could always use help
Advertisement:  Help free people from the oppression of MSWord today!
Recommended Outline:  You must become magical to know how to fix this.
Comments:  Wouldn't be a bad idea to start with the printing bug...
System:  Windows
Challenge level:  ****. 4 stars out of 5
Current Heros:  Jordi Mas, Jeremy Davis, Michael Pritchett

Bug Update

Bug Market


      I am NOT doing this stuff by hand!   You people ain't payin' me enough.   In fact, you ain't payin' me!

Release HackDown

      To return eventually!   Congratulations, AbiDevelopers on the 2.0 final re-final release!

Abi's Relatives

      This will probably be cleaned up and expanded over by next week.   There are several projects that are used as a part of or in conjunction to AbiWord.   From Gnome Office in general to libwpd, there's quite a bit of stuff to keep track of the ongoing changes.   Right now, I have actual news from OTS (no I don't) from Nadav and libwpd from Marc.   With WV and Enchant having gone 1.0, I anticipate including even more after this week.


      AbiWord uses several libraries, and other sub-applications, to give it that extra bit of polish.   Here, you will learn whatever news I scrape together or has been sent to me in relation to them.   I wanted to do more this week, but not so much.

Open Text Summariser

      The web page for OTS is still there...go OTS!


      Marc's looking to extend the ability to load even older versions of wordperfect.   He plans on reaching WP4.2, WP5.0, WP5.1 and WP5.2, and, if he can find documents written in it (read, if you send him some), the versions between WP2.2 and WP4.2, even though, he points out, he's not sure if those file formats are the same or not.   If you have or can create documents in those versions (especially those between 4.2 to 5.2), please send some his way.   A picture of how it's supposed to appear would probably be a plus.   Some of this should be appearing in the CVS Real Soon Now™.


      It went 1.0.0 while Abi's tree was shut down.   It's actual news page is far more out of date than this, so, guess who's on the bleeding edge!   There might be a release note somewhere....


      First off, this comes up second in google when searching for just "Enchant".   Now, that's popular.   I highly recommend going to the first one, however ;o)   Second, Enchant, also, went 1.0 during that same period of time.   Once again, the news site is out of date, so, guess who's on the bleedin' edge!   Dom and news don't mix.   /Me makes a mental note.


      AbiWord is crucial to the use of or coordinates with a number of full blown applications.   Ok, I only know of, like, two.   Well, there was that screen play thing, but that went straight out the window.   And there was AbiMoz, but some other application has taken its place.   I'm sure, once AbiWord is seen to all, there will be more to see.   Screw the Ant, it's AbiWord II: The Wrath of Dom!!!

GNOME Office Suite

      Since I don't know of applications outside of AbiWord that use AbiWord, I'll be doing this Gnome Office business.   These people should have newsletters, so, I can steal crap from them.


      Guess who went 1.2!   That's right, Jody and gang brought the absolute best spreadsheet to extreme superiority with it's debut 1.2.   Gnumeric rocks most eternally.


      Both libgnomedb and libgda go 1.0.0 to sync with Gnome Office.   Rodrigo and friends most certainly rock


      Look, a place to talk about the AWN

Abiword Weekly News

      I'm not home.   I'll be that way until Monday.   The AWN was delayed to let me sleep before leaving, I mean, to sync with the release of AW2tWoD(StA).   I was worried I'd forget things, so, I copied over my CVS and this week's mail.   The thing I was least worried about...I forgot.   Script free and lovin' every DECADE of it!   All this is a day and a half later than it should have been.   You, naturally, care about this || much.

Latest Releases

      I wanted to do this at the same time, but, not going to happen.   Before the next AWN, 100% gauranteed!   Unless given good reason, it'll be 1.0.7, 2.0 and the tinderboxen.

Open Source, Open Books.

Last Updated: April 10, 2003

      Approximately once a month, don't hedge bets, I'll get this updated by asking (read: whining at) dom.   In the meantime, whenever you want to see how much is in and where it gets diverted, just peek down here.

      Word of caution, numbers lightly fudged due to (hopefully) temporarily incomplete data.   Like a consultant's suggested price, you'll find hidden meaning in the data if you stare long and hard.   Surgeon's General's Warning:  Staring long and hard may have psychotropic affects; keep out of reach of people who like that sort of thing.

      I cannot promise the time of de-fudging, nor can I promise there will be de-fudging any time soon. However, I feel confident that there will be some de-fudging going on.

Current Balance: $1604.34
Interest earned: $8.64

Expenditures: $950
$400 to pay for Martin's Boston Gnome Summit Trip
$400 to buy Andrew Dunbar a new computer
$ 60 to misc./entertainment expenses at GNOME summit, GUAD3C, other, paid out of dom's pocket
$225 Patch Prize (those already successfully awarded)
-   $ 45 Will Lachance
-   $ 45 Marc Maurer
-   $ 45 Ruud Vring
-   $ 45 Patrick Lam
-   $ 45 Dom Lachowicz

Unique contributors: 58*
paypal: 57
check :  3
cash  :  1
*58: plusse 3 repeat offenders whom we love dearly

Contributions: $2723.00
Less paypal and other banking fees: $115.00

PLEASE!  Help promote AbiWord development by donating money. The money go to a general AbiWord "fund", presently hosted by Dom Lachowicz (cinamod@hotmail.com).
In order to donate money, you must have a PayPal account. If you do not already have one, the links above will allow you to open one. Please consider putting cinamod@hotmail.com in the "Referral ID" field, which results in a one-time $5 donation from PayPal to AbiWord development if you verify your account. Note that only donations of $3 or more are of interest. Sorry, this is due to the fees imposed by credit card companies and PayPal.