AbiWord Weekly News #101, (2002, week 29, released 2002.07.22)

Welcome to issue 101 of the AbiWord Weekly News.

AbiWord development is ramping up. This week there has been a massive amount of development happening, on many different fronts: tables are gaining features that make them look really pwetty, font support improvements on Unix (also looks really pwetty), we now have automatic download of spell checker dictionaries, and there's been many many bugs fixes.

There's also been some mumbling from E. A. Zen and Mark Gilbert taking over the editing of AbiWord Weekly News, so there's a good chance you may still be able to get your weekly fix when I stop AWN work in a week or two.

In this issue:

Editor(s) of this issue: Jesper Skov

CVS Stats

CVS checkins 2002.07.15 - 2002.07.21
WhoCommitsIn summary
fjfranklin 114 Finished SPI implementation, fixed a hack, new wv XML config (from Martin Junius), autoconf support for hash downloader, diving make fixes, nautilus autoconf tweak, xft support (from Joaquin), build tweaks to xft support, fixed wv compiler warnings, and use SPI in module manager.
gg 58 Download file work (including dialog) and build doc update.
jskov 52 Work to make colors configurable, cleaned up header dependency, fixed geometry argument parsing and preferences, fixed many warnings, makefile fixes, and added some comments.
tomas_f 42 Added support and checkbox for hidden text, added selectControlText to win32 dialog helper, removed verbose assertion, fixed win32 hyperlink dialog focus, hyperlink selection fix, added problemfonts comments, ttf utils issue messages about CJK fonts, language handling fixes, fixed document level attr/props handling, revision fixes, and win32 revision dialog focus. Fixed Bugs 2698, (2715), 3089, 3109, 3122, 3582, 3590, 3722
plam 30 Less table background color bleeding (from Martin), xft speed improvement (from abela), backend cleanup and ground work for footnote support, table code tweaks and fixed Bug 1928 with Martin.
uwog 28 Moved static arrays from header to source file, print fixes, table code tweaks and cleanups, line styles for table cells, background color and style for table cells, line color support for cell lines, win32 build tweak, and a ruler fix.
msevior 24 Insert table column support, fix gnome menus, and delete table row and columns support.
jeremyd 18 Win32 download cancel dialog, OLE drag&drop tweaks (from Jordi Mas), and win32 build corrections.
hub 17 Added Cocoa option dialog, added a couple of empty Cocoa rendering functions, and Cocoa app no longer calls loadBundle.
phearbear 12 Insert table and download dialogs for QNX, and added QNX drawGlyph and thread implementation.
dom 10 Table related tweaks, build fix, fixed Bug 3109, grey out some menus when appropriate, and removed Web menu.
phma 2 Bulgarian update (from Iassen Pramaratov).
rms 2 RPM spec update due to plugins and nautilus-config build tweak.
mgilbert 1 autoconf cleanups

Bug Update

Here's the AbiWord bug update for the last week. If you can spare some time, please help us triage the bugs - you don't need to be a programmer to do this.

Bug Statistics

Bug stats graph

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.

Top 20 Problems
1030370FutureInstalling AbiWord messes up fonts in other applications ......
3269120---Crashing on printing
140295FutureCan not use other than original type1 fonts
376791.2File assosciate problems for all file types with Win32Slu......
1406611.0.xxhtml documents fail to open: "Bogus html document" msg
352560---font incorrectly printed and spaced
3171551.0.xrtf sets top and bottom margins to 0
1747421.2background colour of text selection is always grey
1194381.2alt+xxxx does not insert special symbols
2598361.2Abiword installs bogus fonts of dubious heritage
236230---AbiWord only prints across half of page
377829---Hanging indent setting ignores units
181825---Font reverts to Times New Roman when it shouldn't
2868251.2character widths are not calculated correctly for some fonts...
2421201.2TM, Bullet, Euro, Smart Quotes and other symbols originat......
1394171.2on-screen landscape actually prints portrait in Win95
3216161.0.xtabstops can't be set in second (or third) column
2299151.0.xPrints incorrect margins with split page.
292415---printing abw documents defaults to black pages
Top 20 Requests For Enhancement
12768221.2Table support
12614881.2Need to support footnotes and endnotes
2321245Future[RFE] Maths/Equation Editing, as a plugin maybe?
2183178FutureFully Support OpenOffice's XML file format
236590FutureAbiWord needs 'view codes'
137467Future[RFE] print odd and/or even pages only (for front & back ...
195052FutureWish for automatic Table of Contents
246351Futuresupport embedded objects
192941FutureHyphenation is missing in Abiword
114437FutureImprove KWord import/export filters
51535Futurecolumns change should only affect selected text
256531FutureAdd true MS Word .doc export capability
218630FutureThe insert page break setting is lost for custom styles
365730FutureRapid Document Production, Insert File
221927FutureAUTONUM wanted in [ Insert/Field/Number ] menu
1762251.2.0import html
229625Futuredoc import: footnotes
216924FutureLine numbering
236023FutureResizing bitmap images

Verified Bugs

In the past week, the following Bugs have been verified as fixed. The listed Bugs have all been put in RESOLVED mode as either FIXED or WORKSFORME and have then been verified by the people listed below. Other causes of resolving a Bug (e.g. as INVALID) are not tracked since they usually do not represent a fixed problem.

Bugs Verified This Week
Bug IDDescription
This Week's 5 Most Active QA Helpers

To get your name in neon, help QA the Bugs. If you want your name rather than your email address to appear, drop me a line.

Latest Releases

Here are links to the latest official releases of AbiWord for various architectures and operating systems.

AbiWord 1.0.2- Release Notes
HPUX 10.20pa-riscabiword-1.0.2-sa-10.20.depot.gz
AbiWord 1.0.1- Release Notes
AbiWord 1.0.0- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.99.5- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.99.3- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.99.2- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.99.1- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.9.6- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.9.5- Release Notes
AbiWord 0.9.4- Release Notes

These are links to snapshot builds of AbiWord for a subset of the supported architectures/operating systems.

Note that the snapshot builds may not work (at all!), but are likely to include more features and have fewer bugs than (older) official releases. Use the official releases for "production systems" and the snapshot builds for testing and when you want to help with Bug triaging.

AbiWord Snapshots
Linux (GNOME+GTK)i386http://pinohuis.dhs.org/uwog/abiword/Provided by Marc Maurer. These are updated daily. Plugins, clip art, fonts and help files are available too.
Linux (GTK)i386http:// Gilbert's GCC3 tinderbox builds. Do not require libstdc++-libc6.2
Win32i386http://abiword.pchasm.org/Provided by Jeremy Davis. These are updated twice a day. Plugins are available too.
Win32i386http://www.niksbiks.dk/Software/Abi/Provided by Nikolaj Brandt Jensen. These are updated about once a week. BiDi builds are available too.

On the Mailing List

Traffic on the developer mailing list has settled at about 200-400 postings per week.

You may also find interesting threads on the user and documentation lists (unfortunately the archive for the latter is broken at the moment).

This week, interesting topics on the developer list included:

  1. commit: abi: cuenca's Xft mega-patch: Frank committed Joaquín's xft work. Although there are still some issues (mainly performance) to sort out, this is very promising: the font rendering in AbiWord looks much better than it ever did before (on Unix) and avoids the font registration problems of the past too.

  2. [ANN] New Win32 maintainer: Hubert announced that Jordi Mas is now the new Win32 maintainer of AbiWord. Go Jordi!

  3. Commit: New Dialog_Download_File: Gabriel Gerhardsson added a new functionality to AbiWord; the first time you load a file that uses a language for which you do not have a dictionary, it will be automatically downloaded and installed. This fixes a long-standing usability problem; users now do not have to know how to install extra dictionaries to get proper spell checking.

  4. Commit (HEAD): Cell border color support: Marc added support for changing the color of cell borders in tables. Apparently not content with this, Marc has also added support for changing the background color and style of cells. Here's a snapshot. Looks very nice!

  5. Fwd: libole2 -> libgsf: Jody Goldberg would like the AbiWord developers to look at libgsf and start using it. This library will allow code sharing with Gnumeric (and probably other GNOME apps). It's a good idea, no question about it. But there's very limited development resources in AbiWord at the momement, and nobody appears willing to jump at libgsf integration; other AbiWord features are prioritized higher. Hopefully someone will look at it before Jody gives up trying to share code... Here is a later followup from Jody.

  6. commit: Delete rows and columns.: Even though Martin has been attending the Boston summit, he managed to check in some more table work. He also later admitted to having added support for inserting columns.

  7. commit: abi: activate the Spider: Frank activated his "spider" (SPI) which I mentioned briefly in last week's issue. Having read a bit more about it, I think the previous description I made was wrong. The SPI should allow loading/registration/unloading of modules, and dependency tracking between them. The other API mentioned (by Jeremy) is exporting the AbiWord API as C functions, rather than the natural C++ functions. The point of this is to reduce the linker problems caused by the way C++ function names are mangled.

  8. commit: start of footnote backend: Patrick has started working on footnotes. It seems that the next AbiWord release is going to make a lot of people happy.

  9. commit - color preferences preparation: I have started working on making the colors used by AbiWord for rendering squiggles, hyperlinks, paragraph information and other stuff configurable.

Special Interest --

From time to time, this section will contain essay-style text about various special interests of the AbiWord development.

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.