This Program Lets You Write Letters Weekly News #172,
      (2003, week 48, released December 1st, 2003)

Welcome to this issue 172 of the This Program Lets You Write Letters Weekly News.


      Iomega Active Disk is now at where it will be until 2.0.2 or later is released.

This week in development

      Features are enhanced, screenshots are taken and the City of Largo likes to do things the hard way.   Meantime, Nadav shows off a little OTS power, as Tomas creates a new commandline option for regular AbiWord users and he recently gives Iomega AD buildability to whomever wants it.   Plusse, some final preparations for the soon-to-be-released 2.0.2!   Also, due to some technical review of usability, AbiWord name changed.

Request for User Assistance

      Hi there.   We're looking for people who can help keep This Program Lets You Write Letters accurate and uptodate in a number of languages.   Please look over them and see if ither you or someone you know might be able to assist us.   Remember, your contribution is not only welcomed or encouraged but is also documented, for an easier-to-brag experience.   The languages we are looking for are listed below:

  • Afrikaans[af-ZA]
  • Armenian[hy-AM]
  • Assamese[as-IN]
  • Chinese (Singapore)[zh-SG]
  • Cornish[kw-GB]
  • Corsican[co-FR]
  • Croatian[hr]
  • Esperanto[eo]
  • Estonian[et]
  • Farsi[fa-IR]
  • Flemish (Belgium)[nl-BE]
  • Frisian[fy-NL]
  • Georgian[ka-GE]
  • Hausa (Niger)[ha-NE]
  • Hausa (Nigeria)[ha-NG]
  • Hindi[hi-IN]
  • Icelandic[is-IS]
  • Korean[ko-KR]
  • Macedonian[mk]
  • Marshallese (Nauru)[mh-NR]
  • Occitan[oc-FR]
  • Thai[th-TH]
  • Urdu[ur-PK]

      Due to the traffick of people who are trying to help with picked up languages, those who are interested in helping us are encouraged to join ither mailing list.   Please read the instructions for the list you are most interested in joining to get the correct address.   Joining, as you'll find out, is a simple three step process.   First, send a letter to one email address; second confirm you sent the letter by sending a reply, and third...oops, there is no step three.   Ok, so, excluding all the minor steps of what to click and/or type, it's really a simple two-step process.

      There are just two important reminders in using the mailing lists which all users are expected to do.   If you want your message to even make it to the list, you message will need to be in plain text only.   Due to an insurgence of a certain virus a while back, all HTML email is rejected for reasons of sanity.   Webmail users will have to figure out how to turn on plain-text only before sending email.   Second, you are required to send the language in Engrish or English.   For those of you who don't speak English well enough to send Engrish, it is recommended that you send the letter in both your native language (identify your language please) and after that, in the same message, send it in a machine-translated version of your message, like BabelFish, in case no-one who speaks your language is available to translate your message for the list.   Failure to follow these proceedures in the past have led to frustration and resentment.   We apologise in advance for any inconvenience these two requests may cause you.

Silliness of the Week

      I'm just going to use this slot to say Congratulations to A&A...tomorrow.   I won't see you for another month, so, take lots of pictures!

      To the rest of you, I apologise for blithering on where things don't make sense, like, the whole of the AWN, for example.

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:

  • Discussion
  • Development
  • Bug Update
  • TPLYWL Relatives
  • Editor(s) of this issue:  E. A. Zen

          If you're interested in using This Program Lets You Write Letters 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. commit: Split Cells, Format Frame Dialogs, table fixes. ,
      commit: Format Frame begins to work. ,
      commit: Frame backgrounds properties can now be set. and
      commit: More frame dragging, clearing fixes. :
      →   Martin has finally achieved functionality with the FormatFrame dialogue.
      §   I suppose you'd like to see it, wouldn't you?   Note:  This probably should be updated, as colours and images can be set, something that wasn't possible when this screenshot was taken.

    2. beos patch 8 :
      →   Daniel's update, including some small changes, also adds the nifty FontPreview option, a.k.a. Secret Project II, and the HTML Options dialogue.
      §   A person can really come to love a BeOS developer who loves his work...or atleast TPLYWL.

    3. Win32 Screen Shots for CVS :
      →   Ryan Pavlik sends in some updated Windows screenshots.   Interestingly, sending in the updated dialogues allowed Marc to spot an otherwise unnoticed bug, thanks to Mike Nordell's keen eye and questioning of details.   Mike had some other technical points, but interest focused on the “big fat black border.”
      §   Like you really want the technical details....   Here are your screenshots ;o) : Insert Field, Set Language, Columns.   My favourite image format ^_^

    4. AbiWord Weekly News #170 “Do not mix with Alcohol” Released. ,
      Fwd: Re: AbiWord Weekly News #170 “Do not mix with Alcohol” Released. [stro at gnomedesktop spot com] and
      Re: Re: Fwd: Re: AbiWord Weekly News #170 “Do not mix with Alcohol” Released. [s :
      →   Stro of FootNotes fame, forwards the article at Largo rolls out OpenOffice.org, looks at Gnome.”   The City of Largo is switching over to using Open Office, and at this time, they need to translate their old WordPerfect files.   Dave Richards of Largo was able to find LibWPD but was apparently unable to learn about using it with AbiWord to translate all those files at the commandline.
      §   Maybe when they finish all of that one-at-a-time-by-hand work, they'll send Marc and Will some of that cash they were able to save ;o)

    5. NLP Inner Product Using OTS :
      →   “Wow, Linear Algebra meets Linguistics!”   Nadav shows-off more useful yumminess of our favourite text summariser.   Nadav created a bash script that allowed one of his professors to find, “The Inner Product of two texts, defined as the number of topics they share.”
      §   Though OTS maybe far from the sophistication of Natural Language Processing utilities that have been developed for the past decade or more, it is nice to have something of its abilities available to the rest of us.

    6. commit (HEAD): iomega active disk files :
      →   Tomas has committed the necessary JavaScript and build notes for Iomega AD; however, he will not build the installer until the regular Win32 This Program Lets You Write Letter 2.0 series meets his criteria.
      §   Have I mentioned yet this week that more Win32 developers would be nice?

    7. Commit (HEAD, STABLE): 2.0.2 ChangeLog and
      2.0.2 release? :
      →   Marc's preparing for the big 2.0.2 release.
      §   Preparing...pushing, it's all the same concept.

    8. commit (HEAD): userprofile cmd line option :
      →   Tomas has made it possible to specify individual preferences files at the commandline.   This shall become a nifty feature for launching and parsing purposes.
      §   I wonder if that means Win32's 2.0 version of This Program Lets You Write Letters is finally at place where he wants it ;o)

    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, e.g. solutions to problems in a preceeding thread.   Happily, the user list is becoming more active!   This week, interesting topics on the user list included:

    1. Footnotes/Endnotes: Have They Worked for Anyone? ,
      Re: Footnotes/Endnotes ...--huge ones ,
      commit: Nested table and footnote fixes. ,
      commit: More footnote fixes. ,
      commit: Fix another endnote bug. Implement cntrl-End to return to reference. ,
      commit: Superscript footnote/endnote anchor by default. ,
      commit: Limit the size of a footnote. ,
      commit: Fix end of paragraph offset for footnotes. and
      commit: Yet another footnote bug fix. :
      →   “This thread is an incredible advertisement for open source development.”   Words from the pseudo-anonymous person that asked Martin to look into his very first post-1.0 pride and joy, footnotes&endnotes.   As you can tell just looking at the announcements to the list, a lot of incredible work was put in to making them even better.
      §   Most importantly, I found that Martin agreed with me on the subject of people who create massive, multi-page footnotes—they should be shot.   We now enforce a crash-free means of shooting yourself in the foot...note.


    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.   Textboxes...ooh....

    CVS checkins for HEAD from November 23rd to November 29th, 2003
    Who Commits In summary
    Martin Sevior 46 .
    Footnotes&Endnotes:   general fixes, deleting footnote references deletes the footnote as well, another endnote bug, implement cntrl-End to return to reference, superscript the footnote/endnote anchor by default, limit the maximum size of a footnote to just short of a full page, fix a bug in calculating the EOP run offset in a paragraph containing a footnote, fix bugs introduced by EOP fix
    Tables:   nesting fixes, all cells can now be split horizontally or vertically
    TextBoxes:   dialog can toggle the frame borders and change their colours, can have their with background set with either color and images, image fixes especially for dragging frames over image backgrounds

    Hubert Figuiere 40 .
    BeOS:    started the move from Frame to FrameImpl From Danial Furrer,  added BeOSDlg_HTMLOptions From Danial Furrer,  added BeOSFontPreviewMany small changes From Danial Furrer
    MacOS X:   Format Frame dialog, Split Cell dialog, enlarge buttons for Split Cells dialog, fix extraneous ... at the end of labels, fix layout changes for macOS X (#ifdef'ed), enable SplitCell command from menu (was not), set default values on Insert Table dialog, contextual menu works, map ctrl-click to right click, remap modifiers, fix a crasher in left ruler, fix update when of rulers when resizing frame
    Unix:   set the default values properly for Insert Table dialog
    Project Builder:   added new files
    5023:   (From Jordi) — format footnote dialogue needs ‘do not restart’ option

    Tomas Frydrych 40 .
    CrossPlatform:   added copyString() to ut_contextGlyph, some tweaking of return values of renderString() to ut_contextGlyph, disable latin ligatures to ut_contextGlyph, tweaked handling of return values from UT_ContextGlyph::renderString(), improved prefs handling, code cleanup, changed call the UT_contextGlyph::static_destructor(), preference for Latin ligatures (default off), fp_Run::updateOnDelete(), reduce calls to GR_Graphics::measureString(), new userprofile cmd line argument, made getPrefsPathname() non-virtual; added pure virtual _getPrefsPathname(), remove #include
    All:   getPrefsPathname() to _getPrefsPathname()
    Iomega Active Disk:   build instructions, active disk JScript, active disk readme/licence files

    Marc Maurer 14 .
    MSVC6:   update project files with the SplitCells and FormatFrame dialogs
    ChangeLog:   add 2.0.2 changelog
    nl_NL (Nederlands):   fixes and additions
    5739:   (From Jordi) — Wrong sort order for languages list (fi-FI locale)
    5869:   (From Jordi) — “bullet list” style has no effect from toolbar
    5894:   Printing fails to embed fonts
    5980:   Postscript printing does not work
    5990:   (From Jordi) — [W32] Options dialog stale
    6086:   (From Jordi) — Messages in Status Bar are not cleared after event

    Jordi Mas  8 .
    Win32:   fixes include, FormatFrame initial work
    6094:   Non-downloaded dictionaries have white, not bg icon

    Nadav Rotem  6 .
    Open Text Summariser:   remove stupid warnings, tf and idf are now both lists of OtfWordTF, filled in ots_grade_doc_tf outline

    Dom Lachowicz  2 .
    Unix:    font patch From Fudje [ed. I like Fudge, any relation?]

    CVS checkins for STABLE from November 23rd to November 29th, 2003
    Who Commits In summary
    Hubert Figuiere 14 .
    CrossPlatform:    implement cntrl-End to return to reference From Martin Sevior,  superscript the footnote/endnote anchor by default From Martin Sevior,  limit the maximum size of a footnote to just short of a full page From Martin Sevior,  this fixes a bug in calculating the EOP run offset in a paragraphcontaining a footnote From Martin Sevior
    Unix:    font patch from Fudje, small gtk fix: Set the default values properly
    5495:   (From Martin Sevior) — Footnote insertion and formatting
    5773:   (From Martin Sevior) — delete the footnote marker don't delete real footnote
    5774:   (From Martin Sevior) — deleting footnote text does not delete footnote marker
    5775:   (From Martin Sevior) — weird footnote behaviour

    Jordi Mas 11 .
    5023:   format footnote dialogue needs ‘do not restart’ option
    5739:   Wrong sort order for languages list (fi-FI locale)
    5869:   “bullet list” style has no effect from toolbar
    5990:   [W32] Options dialog stale
    6086:   Messages in Status Bar are not cleared after event

    Marc Maurer  5 .
    ChangeLog:   add 2.0.2 changelog
    nl_NL (Nederlands):   fixes and additions
    6094:   (From Jordi Mas) — Non-downloaded dictionaries have white, not bg icon


          It's happening...right after the bug thing....

    Bug Update

    Bug Market


          This week's activity: ResoUnconf +14 (15 : 1), VeriNew +7 (8 : 1), ClosAssi -1 (0 : 1),

          A positive swing in the Markets from last week, with no relative changed for ClosAssi.   Alan Bluespan warns that this is bound change the moment both 2.1.0 and 2.0.2 have been released.   Louis Bugkeyser was suggests that the Markets will stay in good shape as this positive swing occurred during a major American holiday, Bhokertom.   G.O.B.D.

          For information about how to view the chart, please read 142's Special Interest.

    Bug Votes

          These are the week's Top 20 Bugs in the categories  problems and  requests for enhancements.   Influence next week's results by  casting your own votes.   Ah, another release, another change of what bugs are on the "Most Wanted" list.

    Top 20 MisFeatures™ as of November 16th, 2003
    ID Votes Milestone Summary
     376  82 2.0.x File associate problems for all file types with Win32Slu......
    3778  46 --- Hanging indent setting ignores units
    5059  41 2.2 Recent Files breaks with international file names
    5815  35 --- Variable-width font issue
    4896  32 2,0,x the very last character can't be selected
    4745  31 Future Change colour of foreground text for screen only
    2362  30 2.2 This Program Lets You Write Letters only prints across half of page
    4031  30 Future Hebrew status line message is not displayed correctly
    4722  30 --- When using -p or --print the output isn't usable
    5252  30 2.2 Contrast between cursor (caret) and background is ruined ......
    5794  30 --- Horizontal space and distortion at print page break in We......
    6011  30 --- Spelling check provides bad suggestions and improperly pl......
    2868  25 2.0.x character widths are not calculated correctly for some fonts...
    4020  25 --- UTF8 strings not shown in list of spelling alternatives
    6112  24 --- Win32 Windows Accumulate Dirt from Windows Objects
    2421  23 2.0.x TM, Bullet, Euro, Smart Quotes and other symbols originat......
    4733  20 --- File paths with ampersands kill preferences
    1679  17 --- List changes should keep selection
    3216  15 2.2 [Tabstops Cannot be Set in Second (or Third) Column
    Top 20 Requests For Enhancement as of November 16th, 2003
    ID Votes Milestone Summary
    2183 455 Future Fully Support OpenOffice's XML file format
    2321 145 2.2 [RFE] Maths/Equation Editing, as a plugin maybe?
    3668 136 Future Support for window tabs instead of separate windows
    4038 136 --- Outline View Support
    2490 126 2.2 Finish Cocoa Frontend
    1950 121 Future Wish for automatic Table of Contents
    1374 108 Future [RFE] print odd and/or even pages only (for front & back ...
    2565  82 Future Add true MS Word .doc export capability
    4057  70 --- Thesaurus Shift+F7 keybindings shortcuts consistency
    1144  68 Future Improve KWord import/export filters
    1929  50 Future Hyphenation is missing in This Program Lets You Write Letters
    2365  43 --- This Program Lets You Write Letters needs 'view codes'
     515  41 2.0.x columns change should only affect selected text
    2164  36 2.2 Ability to set default print command anywhere
    2473  35 2.0.x [rfe] Support move & resize of images anchored to a page...
    1851  31 Future [rfe] Ability to create an ALL CAPS style, and Small Caps......
    2186  30 Future The insert page break setting is lost for custom styles
    2219  27 Future AUTONUM wanted in [ Insert/Field/Number ] menu
    2169  24 Future Line numbering

          In the glorious world of MisFeatures™, we have two bugs new to the current list.   First, a return from an old friend, 4896, the very last character can't be selected.   Haven't we missed that one, though?   The latest and greatest of MisFeatures™ is 6112, Win32 Windows Accumulate Dirt from Windows Objects.   A hinting to answer the question, “What do you mean by ‘a usable Windows build?’ ”

    TPLYWL's Relatives

          Several projects are used by, use or synchronise with This Program Lets You Write Letters.   Some of the most noteworthy libraries and applications will be summarised here.   Some may be added under guise of the GNOME Office Suite.; others may be added because it's really just a plug by request.   Want your project plugged?   Send money to Dom.   I'm offering rates of $10 per plug, $25 for a month-long plug, $50 for a quartly plug and $200 to go all year.   P*ing us off or the discontinuation of this section does not result in a refund.


          This Program Lets You Write Letters 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 Summarizer

          See minor technical bits mentioned in CVS


          Used by Largo!






          This Program Lets You Write Letters 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 This Program Lets You Write Letters 2.0 is seen to all, there will be more to see.   Screw the Ant, it's This Program Lets You Write Letters II: The Wrath of Dom!!!

    GNOME Office Suite

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


          NAMFT!   Not A Mother Friendly Thang!


          Rodrigo “started changing the UI of the gnome-database-properties tool (part of libgnomedb, which allows users to configure their data sources) so that it now displays the tables data directly when opening the properties page for a data source.”   To see the dialogue now available in This Program Lets You Write Letters, Gnumeric and Mergeant click here!


          NAFT!   Not A Friendly Thang!


          Geert Stappers moved the moved the deb directory stuff to Debian.   Meantime, special message to Dave: Get a news section, Man, and filter the crap!   Just a few sweet rules would help, ya know?   Noise to signal ratio is not a positive number.   I'm just sayin'....


          Look, a place to talk about the AWN

    This Program Lets You Write Letters Weekly News

          I think the only thing holding me back from the new CVS summaries is Cross Application.   The Cross Application bits probably shouldn't go into just the Cross Platform bits, but I'm just not sure.   Also note, “All Platforms” means each of the front-end bits, while Cross Platform refers to those platform neutral bits.   Did I go too far with the Contents thingy?   Unless I'm told to not do it, I'm probably going to keep it up.   It's the only way you know about the anchors that have otherwise been in the AWN for, like, a year now.

    This Program Lets You Write Letters

          Notice:   Not actually changing name.   See link to humor at the beginning of the AWN.


          You're right, it is time to harrass Dom.   All book work should be done by the Nonnes.


          This week, users were reminded of the main difference between Proprietary and Open Source software:   When it's going to pot, you can locate and whine at who-ever screwed it all up in the first place.   I'd just love to see you hunt down Brian Higgs working on MSWord's DDOC (read: bidi).   Go ahead.   Show me!   I want to see it!   I want a complete copy of your email exchange, err, Exchange® where you explain that you work with more than one language at a time, sometimes.   Come on!   Prove me wrong!

    Open Source, Open Books.

    Last Updated: November 16th, 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.

          Despite the last updated marker, these numbers are only accurate to something around the 19th.

    Current Balance: $2809.18
    Interest earned: $17.70

    Expenditures: $2185
    $210 to feed 12 people at GUADEC
    $100 to pay for Marc's work on the new server
    $700 to pay for the new server
    $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
    -   -   note: Pat and Dom went to an Italian restaurant named Dom's on Boston's North End.   Neither Pat or Dom seem to recommend visiting Dom's anytime soon.   Actually, I didn't ask Pat, but I'm pretty sure he'd agree.   Personally, I recommend avoiding Dom altogether.   Hmm, typo, what?

    Unique contributors: 61*
    paypal: 66
    check :  3
    cash  :  1
    *61: plusse 3 repeat offenders whom we love dearly

    Contributions: $2975.20
    Less paypal and other banking fees: $166.02

    PLEASE!  Help promote This Program Lets You Write Letters development by donating money. The money go to a general This Program Lets You Write Letters "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 This Program Lets You Write Letters 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.