Re: Serious issues with abiword on windows using non-standard typefaces

From: Marv Waschke (
Date: Sun Mar 14 2004 - 16:20:40 EST

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    Hey Marc-- Don't get me wrong. I am _very _sympathetic. And I have a
    sarcastic sense of humor that gets me in trouble, as it has here. I was
    trying to be constructive in my own perverse way. Let me explain. I know
    exactly what you feel like. It may be hard to believe, but to me 'damn
    flaky piece o' crap' is a term of endearment. That's what I call all
    code that I have worked on and love, but it was presumptuous to apply it
    to a project I love but have not contributed to. And I do love Abiword.
    I have written two word processors single handedly in the past. Neither
    was very good, but they gave me a taste of the difficulty and a sense
    of what an achievement Abiword is.

    And I have written enough code to know what it feels like to have
    something you have worked at very hard criticized by some boor looking
    in from the outside. For appearing to be one of those, I sincerely
    apologize. It really made me cringe when I realized how bad I sounded.

    If the bug has been fixed, that is great.

    Why do I use Windows? I think that deserves a long answer. First, I
    hate Windows. I live in Redmond part of the week and I started writing
    code in Seattle when DOS was an alternative OS for PCs. I have seen the
    arrogance of the MS crew grow and I experience it every day. Those guys
    need competition. But I am also a realist. For naive computer users,
    people who just want to do something with the box they bought at Costco,
    a PC is Windows. End of story. Not a story I like, but it is the story
    none the less. But besides being a realist, I am an idealist. Software,
    at least basic software, should be free. Nobody should have to pay for
    the basic utilities of the information age. The world loses big by
    putting the basic tools only in the hands of those with the economic
    means to make a donation the Empire of Redmond.

    And word processors are the most basic of basic tools on a PC. So you
    have no idea how much I admire you guys.

    So finally, running Windows on my personal laptop is a populist
    statement. I want to be in touch with the experience of naive users and
    improve that experience. So I am kind of a watchdog. I want to make sure
    that I can tell the guy I meet at a John Kerry meet up that he doesn't
    have to buy MS Office to get a great word processor, and not have to
    apologize or explain next time I see him because Abiword appeared to
    drop whole lines of text.

    OK. This is a lot of talk, but no action. One of my home boxes is
    running Linux. I am setting it up as a development environment. And I
    hope I can find enough midnite hours to make some contributions. I
    will continue to QA on Windows for the reasons above.

    I really apologize . And this is also a plea for help. I want to
    contribute, but as yet, I have not even begun to find my way in. Like I
    said, I have the qualifications to help. So please accept my apology and
    give me any pointers you can. Are there any diagrams of the internal
    architecture? I am sure the Doxygen stuff is great after you know your
    way around, but I am guessing which classes are important and which are
    not critical.

    Marc Maurer wrote:

    >Hi Marv,
    >>But there are problems. I think they derive from my choice of fonts, but
    >>I could be way off base. Lines disappear from my display. Very bad. I am
    >>never sure if the damn flaky piece o' crap has dropped data or what.
    >We are not waiting for these kind of responses. If you can't type
    >anything constructive, please refrain from typing at all.
    >Imaging our (my) situation: hack abi in our spare time, often till deep
    >into the night, sleep somewhat, wake up again, check mail, see the
    >result of SPARE TIME WORK BEING CALLED a "damn flaky piece o' crap". We
    >have no obligation to deliver ANYTHING you would like to see. Unless you
    >paid us to fix it for example. We don't have to learn any lesson,
    >deliver anything even remotely usable, etc etc etc.
    >Say, I intended to fix it today, then after this message, I _certainly_
    >would not fix it anymore. Of course, you're in luck, since this issue
    >has been resolved :)
    >Now, thanks for using AbiWord. We love to see feedback from our users. I
    >normally don't write rants, but this one was one too many. I still love
    >you, truly I do...

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