Re: Pango portability (or rather the lack of it)

From: Tomas Frydrych (
Date: Thu Apr 25 2002 - 05:22:05 EDT

  • Next message: Tomas Frydrych: "Re: Pango?"

    Hi Havoc,

    > "Tomas Frydrych" <> writes:
    > > So, the bottom line is that Pango only really works on Unix. Until
    > > this changes, it is not suitable for use in AW.
    > So you're going to reimplement over a year of debugged work by an i18n
    > expert and a bunch of contributors with language-specific expertise,
    > instead of working on fixing up the win32 port, which needs to be done
    > for GTK itself anyway?

    I did not say we were going to reimplement anything, in fact I have
    made it repeatedly clear for a long time on this list that I believe
    that AW needs a 3rd party renderer of some kind. But AW is _not_
    a gtk-only application, nor is it gtk and win32 only. For us to use
    Pango it would also have to work on QNX, Mac, and BeOS, that is
    much more than fixing the win32 build. I was hoping that Pango
    with the FT2 backend would be the answer, but obviously that too
    is not very advanced, and if all we could expect from Pango at this
    stage is handling of Hebrew and Arabic, then there is no point to
    using Pango (at this stage), for we already handle Hebrew, and to
    some extent Arabic.

    > And end up with a document editing area with different behavior
    > from your entry boxes in terms of selection, delete keys, etc.

    Again, AW is _not_ a gtk-only application, so as long as gtk,
    win32, BeOS, QNX and Mac widgets do not behave the same way,
    we will end up with different behaviour in the editing window
    somewhere, whether we use Pango or not.

    > This just doesn't make sense to me. I don't think you understand how
    > complex it will be to implement all this

    I do understand, and I have no intention of implenting this. I am
    merely saying that as long as Pango is not portable, it is not
    suitable for use in a Wordprocessor which has wide portability as
    one of its prominent design goals. I have no doubts that the gnome
    project benefited greatly from taking Pango under its wings, but I
    do wonder whether Pango did not suffer in turn by too much
    (exclusive?) focus on a single platform.

    We, the AW folk, have three principal options here: (1) look for a
    different, portable, renderer; (2) wait for Pango to reach the
    functionality we need; (3) join the work on Pango to add the
    functionality we need.

    (1) I know of no such suitable renderer.

    (2) I have serious doubts, because of the GNOME-Pango
    alignment, that we can expect rapid development of Pango for any
    non-Unix platforms.

    (3) This is logically our best option, but our own development team
    is very small, and we have to consider this very carefully.

    So, since you are in a better positon than any of us on this list,
    how much work would be required for us to get full Pango
    functionality with the FreeType2 backend?


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