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digitalmars.D - "Code Sandwiches"

reply bearophile <bearophileHUGS lycos.com> writes:
Despite D is currently not widely used, it's not hard for me to find references
about D into computer science papers I find around.

This paper is titles "Code Sandwiches", by Matt Elder, Steve Jackson, and Ben
Liblit, it discusses D scope guards too (page 7 and several successive pages):
http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~liblit/tr-1647/

One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards do not
provide encapsulation".

Bye,
bearophile
Mar 09 2011
next sibling parent reply dsimcha <dsimcha yahoo.com> writes:
== Quote from bearophile (bearophileHUGS lycos.com)'s article
 One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards do not

(Rolls eyes.) I feel like this is a "standard" criticism of language features that's code for "I don't like this feature". IIRC they said the same thing about delegates in Java. Without even reading the paper, there are two reasons why this is an idiotic thing to say: 1. D also provides struct destructors, which are a more encapsulated way of accomplishing the same thing. Scope guards are intended for one-off use cases where declaring a type, etc. is just extra overhead and accomplishes nothing. 2. Encapsulation is only a means, not an end in itself. Sometimes people lose sight of this. The end goal is to write correct, efficient, readable, maintainable programs. If increasing encapsulation hurts these goals instead of helping them (as excessive encapsulation as practiced by obsessive-compulsive people does), then it's a Bad Thing.
Mar 09 2011
next sibling parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"dsimcha" <dsimcha yahoo.com> wrote in message 
news:il8nlh$10c1$1 digitalmars.com...
 == Quote from bearophile (bearophileHUGS lycos.com)'s article
 One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards 
 do not

(Rolls eyes.) I feel like this is a "standard" criticism of language features that's code for "I don't like this feature". IIRC they said the same thing about delegates in Java. Without even reading the paper, there are two reasons why this is an idiotic thing to say: 1. D also provides struct destructors, which are a more encapsulated way of accomplishing the same thing. Scope guards are intended for one-off use cases where declaring a type, etc. is just extra overhead and accomplishes nothing. 2. Encapsulation is only a means, not an end in itself. Sometimes people lose sight of this. The end goal is to write correct, efficient, readable, maintainable programs. If increasing encapsulation hurts these goals instead of helping them (as excessive encapsulation as practiced by obsessive-compulsive people does), then it's a Bad Thing.

Section 5.2 makes it clear that's not what he's trying to say. Although, the second-last sentence of that section is "But [D's scope guards] remain statements, not functions or classes, and thus do not form reusable sandwich encapsulations." Frankly, though, that's true. Of course, they can be used as part of a mechanism for creating a reusable "code sandwich", but by themselves they're not an encapsulation and not intended to be. And he never actually says that that's a bad thing. And if there's any subtext inferring it's a bad thing, then as far as I can tell it's small enough it may as well not even exist. That said, I wouldn't put much stock in the average academic paper anyway. (Although, from what little I read, this one doesn't seem quite as bad as some. It's actually readable by programmers, which is a nice change from the usual. And I didn't notice any blatantly stupid comments either. It doesn't seem to make much of a point, but it does still seem to have value in discussing the concept of "code sandwiches" and enumerating various approaches to them.) But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all things? This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it. Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the mid-90's. Sheesh.
Mar 09 2011
next sibling parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message 
news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release 
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all 
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is fucking 
 useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it. Isn't it 
 about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is more than a 
 PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the mid-90's. Sheesh.

Mar 09 2011
parent reply Daniel Gibson <metalcaedes gmail.com> writes:
Am 09.03.2011 22:33, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message 
 news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release 
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all 
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?

No it's not. At least PDF is a standard format with free and open viewers on about any platform. And while sticking photos into a Word document is pretty pointless using PDF for papers does make sense. One thing is that papers are usually published in printed form, the PDFs are more or less a by-product of that. Also they're usually written with LaTeX (or something similar) and the obvious (digital) formats to publish stuff written in *TeX are Postscript and PDF - I guess you agree that PDF is preferable, as it can be searched etc ;) You can also export *TeX to HTML, but that'll probably fuck up formatting and formulas. So you'd have to use some LaTeX->HTML converter and clean up stuff afterwards to make sure the formatting is OK, the formulas are like they were intended to be (missing a small detail like a ' or an index or whatever will make a formula unusable) etc.. This may not be a problem for this specific paper (it's only text, sourcecode and some tables I think), but for many other scientific papers it is. That's the reason why they're mostly published as PDFs. Cheers, - Daniel
Mar 09 2011
parent reply Daniel Gibson <metalcaedes gmail.com> writes:
Am 09.03.2011 22:49, schrieb Daniel Gibson:
 Am 09.03.2011 22:33, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message 
 news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release 
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all 
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?

No it's not. At least PDF is a standard format with free and open viewers on about any platform. And while sticking photos into a Word document is pretty pointless using PDF for papers does make sense. One thing is that papers are usually published in printed form, the PDFs are more or less a by-product of that. Also they're usually written with LaTeX (or something similar) and the obvious (digital) formats to publish stuff written in *TeX are Postscript and PDF - I guess you agree that PDF is preferable, as it can be searched etc ;) You can also export *TeX to HTML, but that'll probably fuck up formatting and formulas. So you'd have to use some LaTeX->HTML converter and clean up stuff afterwards to make sure the formatting is OK, the formulas are like they were intended to be (missing a small detail like a ' or an index or whatever will make a formula unusable) etc.. This may not be a problem for this specific paper (it's only text, sourcecode and some tables I think), but for many other scientific papers it is. That's the reason why they're mostly published as PDFs. Cheers, - Daniel

One more thing: Published papers will probably be cited by other papers or theses. With PDF this is easier, you can write "XYZ, page 42, l 13" - with HTML pages it's not that easy, you could maybe write "in chapter 3 somewhere in the 5th paragraph" or something like that, but that sucks. Or worse "on the fourth page in the third paragraph" and once a new CMS is used that splits pages differently that is completely meaningless..
Mar 09 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Daniel Gibson" <metalcaedes gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:il8t79$2t70$2 digitalmars.com...
 Am 09.03.2011 22:49, schrieb Daniel Gibson:
 Am 09.03.2011 22:33, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message
 news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?

No it's not. At least PDF is a standard format with free and open viewers on about any platform.


Vaguely free, open and standard. Only in the same sense that swf, doc and docx are free, open and standard. HTML (bad as it may be) still wins here.
 And while sticking photos into a Word document is pretty pointless using 
 PDF for
 papers does make sense.

 One thing is that papers are usually published in printed form,


Still?
 the PDFs are
 more or less a by-product of that.
 Also they're usually written with LaTeX (or something similar) and the 
 obvious
 (digital) formats to publish stuff written in *TeX are Postscript and 
 PDF - I
 guess you agree that PDF is preferable, as it can be searched etc ;)


*Some* PDFs can be searched.
 You can also export *TeX to HTML, but that'll probably fuck up formatting 
 and
 formulas. So you'd have to use some LaTeX->HTML converter and clean up 
 stuff
 afterwards to make sure the formatting is OK, the formulas are like they 
 were
 intended to be (missing a small detail like a ' or an index or whatever 
 will
 make a formula unusable) etc..


So after 15 years there still isn't a good Latex->HTML converter? Sounds more like the matter is a lack of interest in using anything other than PDF rather than a lack of a good Latex->HTML converter.
 This may not be a problem for this specific paper (it's only text, 
 sourcecode
 and some tables I think), but for many other scientific papers it is.
 That's the reason why they're mostly published as PDFs.

 Cheers,

 - Daniel

One more thing: Published papers will probably be cited by other papers or theses. With PDF this is easier, you can write "XYZ, page 42, l 13" - with HTML pages it's not that easy, you could maybe write "in chapter 3 somewhere in the 5th paragraph" or something like that, but that sucks. Or worse "on the fourth page in the third paragraph" and once a new CMS is used that splits pages differently that is completely meaningless..

These formal papers are divided into sections and subsections, plus HTML supports links and anchors, and even supports disabled word wrapping if that's really needed, so those are non-issues.
Mar 09 2011
parent reply Daniel Gibson <metalcaedes gmail.com> writes:
Am 09.03.2011 23:38, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Daniel Gibson" <metalcaedes gmail.com> wrote in message 
 news:il8t79$2t70$2 digitalmars.com...
 Am 09.03.2011 22:49, schrieb Daniel Gibson:
 Am 09.03.2011 22:33, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message
 news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?

No it's not. At least PDF is a standard format with free and open viewers on about any platform.


Vaguely free, open and standard. Only in the same sense that swf, doc and docx are free, open and standard. HTML (bad as it may be) still wins here.

No, PDF is an ISO standard, swf and doc aren't and docx isn't either, because it doesn't really conform with the OOXML ISO standard.. As mentioned before: there are free and open viewers for PDF for (almost?) all platforms that work reasonably well. Can't say the same about doc(x) or swf.. That HTML is rendered almost the same on different browsers is a pretty recent development as well... Nevertheless HTML doesn't have as much formatting possibilities as LaTeX, especially for formulas, so you'd end up using a lot of images which is suboptimal. (Yeah I know there's MathML, but AFAIK it's not properly supported by all browsers).
 
 And while sticking photos into a Word document is pretty pointless using 
 PDF for
 papers does make sense.

 One thing is that papers are usually published in printed form,


Still?

I think so. And even if they aren't they're formatted like that anyway.
 
 the PDFs are
 more or less a by-product of that.
 Also they're usually written with LaTeX (or something similar) and the 
 obvious
 (digital) formats to publish stuff written in *TeX are Postscript and 
 PDF - I
 guess you agree that PDF is preferable, as it can be searched etc ;)


*Some* PDFs can be searched.

Most can, the others are - most probably deliberately - broken. You can do the same with HTML if you want, just use images instead of real text..
 
 You can also export *TeX to HTML, but that'll probably fuck up formatting 
 and
 formulas. So you'd have to use some LaTeX->HTML converter and clean up 
 stuff
 afterwards to make sure the formatting is OK, the formulas are like they 
 were
 intended to be (missing a small detail like a ' or an index or whatever 
 will
 make a formula unusable) etc..


So after 15 years there still isn't a good Latex->HTML converter? Sounds more like the matter is a lack of interest in using anything other than PDF rather than a lack of a good Latex->HTML converter.

I don't know. I think I don't have to tell someone who still uses Firefox2 that people don't have the motivation to try new software all the time just because it may finally be usable ;)
 
 This may not be a problem for this specific paper (it's only text, 
 sourcecode
 and some tables I think), but for many other scientific papers it is.
 That's the reason why they're mostly published as PDFs.

 Cheers,

 - Daniel

One more thing: Published papers will probably be cited by other papers or theses. With PDF this is easier, you can write "XYZ, page 42, l 13" - with HTML pages it's not that easy, you could maybe write "in chapter 3 somewhere in the 5th paragraph" or something like that, but that sucks. Or worse "on the fourth page in the third paragraph" and once a new CMS is used that splits pages differently that is completely meaningless..

These formal papers are divided into sections and subsections, plus HTML supports links and anchors, and even supports disabled word wrapping if that's really needed, so those are non-issues.

If anchors etc are used.. fine. But you can't take that for granted.
Mar 09 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Daniel Gibson" <metalcaedes gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:il90m3$2t70$3 digitalmars.com...
 Am 09.03.2011 23:38, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Daniel Gibson" <metalcaedes gmail.com> wrote in message
 news:il8t79$2t70$2 digitalmars.com...
 Am 09.03.2011 22:49, schrieb Daniel Gibson:
 Am 09.03.2011 22:33, schrieb Nick Sabalausky:
 "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> wrote in message
 news:il8rmg$176i$1 digitalmars.com...
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to 
 release
 any form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things?

It's like how my dad tries to email photos by sticking them into a Word document first. WTF's the point?

No it's not. At least PDF is a standard format with free and open viewers on about any platform.


Vaguely free, open and standard. Only in the same sense that swf, doc and docx are free, open and standard. HTML (bad as it may be) still wins here.

No, PDF is an ISO standard, swf and doc aren't and docx isn't either, because it doesn't really conform with the OOXML ISO standard..

Yea, well, it's still heavily rooted in Adobe.
 As mentioned before: there are free and open viewers for PDF for (almost?) 
 all
 platforms that work reasonably well.

Reasonably well only as far as viewing pdfs on a pc *ever* works "reasonably well".
 Can't say the same about doc(x) or swf..

No argument here. Never been a fan of doc or swf anyway.
 That HTML is rendered almost the same on different browsers is a pretty 
 recent
 development as well...

They're documents. They have no need for perfectly consistent rendering. Hell, these are exactly the sorts of things html was *created* for. It was *intended* for people to view documents however they want to view them.
 Nevertheless HTML doesn't have as much formatting possibilities as LaTeX,
 especially for formulas, so you'd end up using a lot of images which is 
 suboptimal.

I don't see what's wrong with using images for formulas. As for other types of formatting, how much does a document (that isn't pretending to be real software or a multimedia "experience") really need?
 the PDFs are
 more or less a by-product of that.
 Also they're usually written with LaTeX (or something similar) and the
 obvious
 (digital) formats to publish stuff written in *TeX are Postscript and
 PDF - I
 guess you agree that PDF is preferable, as it can be searched etc ;)


*Some* PDFs can be searched.

Most can, the others are - most probably deliberately - broken. You can do the same with HTML if you want, just use images instead of real text..

Yea, you can do the same with html, but nobody ever does. OTOH, I've come across plenty of pdfs with "text" that isn't really text. But I'll grant that's not much of a reason against the content producer choosing pdf, since they're fully capable of choosing to make it searchable.
 You can also export *TeX to HTML, but that'll probably fuck up 
 formatting
 and
 formulas. So you'd have to use some LaTeX->HTML converter and clean up
 stuff
 afterwards to make sure the formatting is OK, the formulas are like 
 they
 were
 intended to be (missing a small detail like a ' or an index or whatever
 will
 make a formula unusable) etc..


So after 15 years there still isn't a good Latex->HTML converter? Sounds more like the matter is a lack of interest in using anything other than PDF rather than a lack of a good Latex->HTML converter.

I don't know. I think I don't have to tell someone who still uses Firefox2 that people don't have the motivation to try new software all the time just because it may finally be usable ;)

I don't use FF2 because I like it. And I *certainly* don't use it for lack of trying all the alternatives. I have a *huge* amount of interest in a variant of FF3 or SRWare Iron or even IE that gets rid of all the crap that I don't have to deal with in FF2. The problem is, I'm the *only* one that has such interest.
 One more thing: Published papers will probably be cited by other papers 
 or
 theses. With PDF this is easier, you can write "XYZ, page 42, l 13" - 
 with
 HTML
 pages it's not that easy, you could maybe write "in chapter 3 somewhere 
 in
 the
 5th paragraph" or something like that, but that sucks.
 Or worse "on the fourth page in the third paragraph" and once a new CMS 
 is
 used
 that splits pages differently that is completely meaningless..

These formal papers are divided into sections and subsections, plus HTML supports links and anchors, and even supports disabled word wrapping if that's really needed, so those are non-issues.

If anchors etc are used.. fine. But you can't take that for granted.

Strawman argument. We're talking about the party that *releases* the document choosing pdf, not the party viewing it. The person putting the paper out is in *exactly* the position to include anchors. Of course they can take that ability for granted. Additionally, if one of the main reasons they choose pdf is because they usually start with latex, why not *at least* release the latex as well as the pdf? PDF can't be converted to other formats worth a damn, just because of the over-engineered over-permissive nature of the format. But, though I may be wrong, I would think latex wouldn't be quite so bad. And if it is, maybe they shouldn't even be using it then.
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling parent bearophile <bearophileHUGS lycos.com> writes:
spir:

 (Thank godS, Unbuntu's doc viewer recently got an "inverse video" mode.
Unthank 
 gods, white on black is far to be the most legible color combination. Anyway, 
 better than the opposite...)

Two of the most important PDF viewrs have an option to change the backgroup color of the pages to the color you want :-) Bye, bearophile
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/09/2011 09:24 PM, dsimcha wrote:
 2.  Encapsulation is only a means, not an end in itself.  Sometimes people lose
 sight of this.  The end goal is to write correct, efficient, readable,
 maintainable programs.  If increasing encapsulation hurts these goals instead
of
 helping them (as excessive encapsulation as practiced by obsessive-compulsive
 people does), then it's a Bad Thing.

Oy, que yes! Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/09/2011 10:30 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is fucking
 useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it. Isn't it
 about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is more than a
 PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the mid-90's. Sheesh.

Agreed. Actually, AFAIK, pdf was born as a paper-printing format (ps legacy, in fact). That's why it systematically has white background. (Thank godS, Unbuntu's doc viewer recently got an "inverse video" mode. Unthank gods, white on black is far to be the most legible color combination. Anyway, better than the opposite...) Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg gmx.com> writes:
On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is fucking
 useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it. Isn't it
 about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is more than a
 PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense. And yes, most of these papers are published in print format as their main form of release. You're usually lucky to be able to get a PDF format instead of having to have bought the appropriate magazine or book of papers from a particular conference. - Jonathan M Davis
Mar 09 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release 
 any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is fucking
 useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it. Isn't it
 about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is more than a
 PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf. Of course, show me a pdf viewer that's actually worth a damn for viewing documents on a PC instead of just printing, and maybe I could be persuaded to not mind so much. So far I've used (as far as I can think of, I know there's been others), Acrobat Reader (which I don't even allow on my computer anymore), the one built into OSX, and FoxIt.
 And yes, most of these papers are published in print format as their main 
 form
 of release. You're usually lucky to be able to get a PDF format instead of
 having to have bought the appropriate magazine or book of papers from a
 particular conference.

I'm all too well aware how much academics considers us unwashed masses lucky to ever be granted the privilege to so much as glance upon any of their pristine excellence.
Mar 09 2011
next sibling parent Daniel Gibson <metalcaedes gmail.com> writes:
Am 10.03.2011 11:46, schrieb Lars T. Kyllingstad:
 I don't understand your big gripe with PDF readers either.  Maybe Adobe
 just makes a crappy one?  I use the one that comes with the GNOME
 desktop, Evince, and it works perfectly.  (It's open source, too!)  As we
 speak I have it open on a 1422-page PDF document, and I can scroll
 without any lag, search for text (and math, even), and basically do
 anything I can in a web reader.

 -Lars

One thing I find annoying when viewing PDFs (and this is especially true for academic papers) is that big margins (on left and right) often prevent me from seeing two pages at once at a reasonable text size. Also better support for annotations and such would be great (but HTML doesn't have this either). Adobe Acrobat (not the free reader) supports creating some kind of annotations, but most free readers don't and if they do it's in a proprietary format and it's generally not a very pleasant experience. For example xournal allows you to paint and write onto a PDF, but it can't search PDFs and it can only export the result as a PDF that consists of images, losing searchability.. But in general I don't think having papers as PDFs is such a big deal. Cheers, - Daniel
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/11/2011 09:25 AM, Lars T. Kyllingstad wrote:
 Based on your above comments, I get the feeling that you don't find
 typography important at all.  But typography is at least as important as
 any other design decision, and most people do care about design.

 If you create a web site for some company, you want to design it so it
 looks professional and is easy to use.  If I write a scientific paper, I
 want it to look professional and be easy to read.  And although you may
 not have a conscious opinion about typography, your eyes and brain
 certainly do.  Try reading 20 or 30 pages worth of heavy material,
 perhaps interspersed with a bunch of mathematical formulas here and
 there, as rendered by a web browser.  I guarantee you, your eyes and
 brain will be a lot more exhausted than they would have been if the
 document were professionally typeset.

 I wish the designers of web sites and browsers would pay more attention
 to typesetting issues and spend less time on bloating the web with Flash
 animations and JavaScript misfeatures.

I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information (white backgrounds). Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 11 2011
parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/11/11 11:30 AM, spir wrote:
 I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would
 care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information
 (white backgrounds).

Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David
Mar 11 2011
next sibling parent reply Andrei Alexandrescu <SeeWebsiteForEmail erdani.org> writes:
On 3/11/11 5:21 AM, David Nadlinger wrote:
 On 3/11/11 11:30 AM, spir wrote:
 I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would
 care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information
 (white backgrounds).

Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David

Paper has white background, which worked quite well for it. Andrei
Mar 11 2011
next sibling parent David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/11/11 4:35 PM, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
 On 3/11/11 5:21 AM, David Nadlinger wrote:
 On 3/11/11 11:30 AM, spir wrote:
 I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would
 care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information
 (white backgrounds).

Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David

Paper has white background, which worked quite well for it. Andrei

Yes, but I think spir meant it the other way round… David
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/11/11 5:55 PM, Jonathan M Davis wrote:
 The problem with a white background on a computer screen is that a computer
 screen projects light whereas paper merely reflects it. So, while reading black
 on white works great with paper, it's harder on the eyes with a computer
screen.

My question from above still remains: Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David
Mar 11 2011
parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/11/11 11:17 PM, Jonathan M Davis wrote:
 On Friday, March 11, 2011 11:18:59 David Nadlinger wrote:
 My question from above still remains: Is there any scientific data to
 back this assumption?

I don't know. I haven't gone looking. However, I know that there's lots of anecdotal evidence for it. There's probably experimental evidence as well, but I haven't gone looking for it.

The reason I'm asking is that while I can understand that you might personally prefer light text on dark backgrounds, I don't think that this can be generalized so easily. I don't know of any research specifically studying eyestrain, but there are results indicating that *black-on-white* text is significantly easier to read, e.g. Hall and Hanna (2004) [1] or Bucher and Baumgartner (2007) [2]. Also, while I don't want to doubt that you know lots of anecdotal evidence favoring light-on-dark text, I think there is probably more for the opposite: Just look at the standard text settings of most widely used OS/DEs out there, or at the color scheme of the most frequented web sites, etc. Light-on-dark color schemes certainly had their advantages on early monitors (flicker, tearing), but with today's sophisticated screens, I personally prefer dark text on light backgrounds. Even with a brightness setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned the backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my eyes, as demonstrated by this site: http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/. David [1] http://sigs.aisnet.org/sighci/bit04/BIT_Hall.pdf [2] http://www.psycho.uni-duesseldorf.de/abteilungen/aap/Dokumente/Ergonomics-2007-Text-background-polarity.pdf
Mar 12 2011
next sibling parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"David Nadlinger" <see klickverbot.at> wrote in message 
news:ilgjnj$1oui$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/11/11 11:17 PM, Jonathan M Davis wrote:
 On Friday, March 11, 2011 11:18:59 David Nadlinger wrote:
 My question from above still remains: Is there any scientific data to
 back this assumption?

I don't know. I haven't gone looking. However, I know that there's lots of anecdotal evidence for it. There's probably experimental evidence as well, but I haven't gone looking for it.

The reason I'm asking is that while I can understand that you might personally prefer light text on dark backgrounds, I don't think that this can be generalized so easily.

That may be a very fair point.
 I don't know of any research specifically studying eyestrain, but there 
 are results indicating that *black-on-white* text is significantly easier 
 to read, e.g. Hall and Hanna (2004) [1] or Bucher and Baumgartner (2007) 
 [2].

 Also, while I don't want to doubt that you know lots of anecdotal evidence 
 favoring light-on-dark text, I think there is probably more for the 
 opposite: Just look at the standard text settings of most widely used 
 OS/DEs out there, or at the color scheme of the most frequented web sites, 
 etc.

 Light-on-dark color schemes certainly had their advantages on early 
 monitors (flicker, tearing), but with today's sophisticated screens, I 
 personally prefer dark text on light backgrounds. Even with a brightness 
 setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned the 
 backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark 
 background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my eyes, as 
 demonstrated by this site: http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/.

That's a very poor example of light-on-dark: It's all-bold, pure-white on pure-black. Even light-on-dark fans don't do that. The "white" is normally a grey.
 [1] http://sigs.aisnet.org/sighci/bit04/BIT_Hall.pdf
 [2] 
 http://www.psycho.uni-duesseldorf.de/abteilungen/aap/Dokumente/Ergonomics-2007-Text-background-polarity.pdf

Neither of those (and from what I noticed when I skimmed through, none of the experiments they cited) appear to take into account whether the subject is more accustomed to positive contrast or negative contrast. Since most people are more accustomed to positive contrast I would expect the findings to be biased in favor of positive contrast. FWIW, I found the white backgrounds of those pdf's to be rather eye-searing. Eventually ended up looking for a "use system color settings" option in my pdf reader.
Mar 12 2011
next sibling parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/12/11 11:07 PM, spir wrote:
 Another obvious remark (not from me, read on the web) is that what is
 good for paper is not good for screens; because they are light sources.
 Reading text on white backgroung is like staring at an intensely
 luminous sky, without moving your sight: doesn't this hurt you?

Only if you have turned up the brightness/backlight of your monitor way too high… David
Mar 12 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"David Nadlinger" <see klickverbot.at> wrote in message 
news:ilgs4q$27rk$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/12/11 11:07 PM, spir wrote:
 Another obvious remark (not from me, read on the web) is that what is
 good for paper is not good for screens; because they are light sources.
 Reading text on white backgroung is like staring at an intensely
 luminous sky, without moving your sight: doesn't this hurt you?

Only if you have turned up the brightness/backlight of your monitor way too high.

I have the same effect as him, but my monitor is so dark that when I look at an image or video that has low lighting (such as any typical night-time scene in hollywood movies, or any low-lit room in an FPS) I can barely see anything at all. My monitor is so dark that a large square of 0x252525 is barely distinguishable from a large 0x000000 square right next to it. And my contrast isn't too high: Any lower is noticably overly-dark and overly-washed-out. And, of course, pure-white on pure-black doesn't give me any bloom.
Mar 12 2011
parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/12/11 11:49 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "David Nadlinger"<see klickverbot.at>  wrote in message
 news:ilgs4q$27rk$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/12/11 11:07 PM, spir wrote:
 Another obvious remark (not from me, read on the web) is that what is
 good for paper is not good for screens; because they are light sources.
 Reading text on white backgroung is like staring at an intensely
 luminous sky, without moving your sight: doesn't this hurt you?

Only if you have turned up the brightness/backlight of your monitor way too high.

I have the same effect as him, but my monitor is so dark that […]

What effect? In the post you quoted, I was referring specifically to the »obvious remark« by Denis, which only holds for unsuitable monitor brightness settings – even if my monitor was capable of delivering a luminous intensity close to an »intensely luminous sky«, I doubt that I would ever run it at that setting (well, maybe if I was on a sandy beach on a bright summer day). David
Mar 12 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"David Nadlinger" <see klickverbot.at> wrote in message 
news:ilgvk8$2dmt$2 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/12/11 11:49 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "David Nadlinger"<see klickverbot.at>  wrote in message
 news:ilgs4q$27rk$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/12/11 11:07 PM, spir wrote:
 Another obvious remark (not from me, read on the web) is that what is
 good for paper is not good for screens; because they are light sources.
 Reading text on white backgroung is like staring at an intensely
 luminous sky, without moving your sight: doesn't this hurt you?

Only if you have turned up the brightness/backlight of your monitor way too high.

I have the same effect as him, but my monitor is so dark that [.]

What effect? In the post you quoted, I was referring specifically to the obvious remark by Denis, which only holds for unsuitable monitor brightness settings - even if my monitor was capable of delivering a luminous intensity close to an intensely luminous sky, I doubt that I would ever run it at that setting (well, maybe if I was on a sandy beach on a bright summer day).

I meant about positive-contrast being hard on my eyes.
Mar 12 2011
prev sibling parent =?ISO-8859-1?Q?g=F6lgeliyele?= <usuldan gmail.com> writes:
On 3/12/11 11:10 PM, Andrej Mitrovic wrote:
 On 3/13/11, Nick Sabalausky<a a.a>  wrote:
 snip

OSX is a nice OS. I gave it a try once or twice. The OS is nice, but man, when I started looking for software on the web I almost got sick. "Top 10 software for Your Mac", "5 Apps that will make your Mac Experience Awesome!", "This app will make you feel a Better Mac Person". "You deserve Beautiful Mac Software".

If you are a linux person, you may like Mac ports. I use a large number of linux apps on my Mac, such as GIMP, GNU emacs, Inkscape, vncviewer, etc.
 Ugh.. It's like every single app has a 10$ price tag and it's all
 about selling bullshit with pretty words hidden behind colorful
 websites. There was a text editor that had this one major feature:
 Full screen mode with black side-bars. That was it. Nothing else, just
 a text editor with black bars on the side running at full-screen. And
 there's a whole website devoted to how awesome and inspiring and
 unique this is, how it "helps you focus". And a price tag. People buy
 this shit, it's unbelievable.

 There was also this thread on Reddit with a guy making some
 window-management software. All it did was divide the screen and
 resized the windows and put them side by side or something. And
 apparently this was so awesome everyone started yelling "Take my
 wallet NOW!!!". Same thing happened on ycombinator.

 I know of at least Autohotkey which came out in 2003 with which you
 can do window management with ease. Hotkeys, keyboard or mouse, or add
 buttons to your taskbar that do whatever you want with your windows.
 There's an entire community devoted to writing all sorts of cool
 window management scripts, and that's just one small feature of this
 app. But apparently this Mac software that resizes windows is
 revolutionary, comes with a price tag and everyone thought it was the
 best thing that ever happened.

Mar 13 2011
prev sibling parent reply spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/12/2011 10:16 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Even with a brightness
  setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned the
  backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark
  background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my eyes, as
  demonstrated by this site:http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/.


pure-black. Even light-on-dark fans don't do that. The "white" is normally a grey.

It's very strange. What the text on this page explains, complaining about light text on dark background, is exactly what I experience when reading text with the opposite combination, eg PDFs. His text holds a link that switches colors (thus suddenly displaying black on white): this kills my eyes! I have to zap away at once. I must admit I'm kind of an exceptional case in that my eyes are extra sensitive to light (there are called "pair" eyes in french, I don't know the english term). On the nice side, I can see very well at night, on the other side, excess light hurts me badly very fast. But an ophtalmologist explained me what I experience is just normal reaction, simply over-sensitive, that what hurts me strongly and fast hurts everyone else on the long run (sounds obvious). Another obvious remark (not from me, read on the web) is that what is good for paper is not good for screens; because they are light sources. Reading text on white backgroung is like staring at an intensely luminous sky, without moving your sight: doesn't this hurt you? On this other hand, it seems that pure white text on pure black bg is far too be an optimal combination; text looks hard too read. I guess the reason is that fonts are originally drawn for the opposite combination, and also for paper. Full B/W or W/B contrast seems a bad scheme in both cases. What looks nice and readible instead is choosing ~ 25% lightness bg, 75% lightness fg, with the same hue; one can also adjust saturation to increase or decrease contrast. The opposite (dark on light with 25%/75% saturation) is also pleasant and non-agressive. Why insist on imposing black on white? I guess this has to do with our civilisation demanding clean / white / uniform things. Like hospitals. An esthetic of death. (Sorry for the personal tone, if ever you mind.) Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 12 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"spir" <denis.spir gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.2474.1299967680.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On 03/12/2011 10:16 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Even with a brightness
  setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned 
 the
  backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark
  background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my eyes, 
 as
  demonstrated by this site:http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/.


pure-black. Even light-on-dark fans don't do that. The "white" is normally a grey.

It's very strange. What the text on this page explains, complaining about light text on dark background, is exactly what I experience when reading text with the opposite combination, eg PDFs. His text holds a link that switches colors (thus suddenly displaying black on white): this kills my eyes! I have to zap away at once.

Yea, I have a hard time looking at that version, too. And I didn't even see it until after I was away from the page for about an hour and then came back. There are also other reasons that both versions of that page are hard to read: - All bold. - All justified (I honestly do find justified text harder to read than left-algned. And the difference is much more pronounced with narrower text columns, such as that page uses.) - One loooong paragraph.
Mar 12 2011
parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/12/11 11:34 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "spir"<denis.spir gmail.com>  wrote in message
 news:mailman.2474.1299967680.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On 03/12/2011 10:16 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Even with a brightness
   setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned
 the
   backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark
   background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my eyes,
 as
   demonstrated by this site:http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/.


pure-black. Even light-on-dark fans don't do that. The "white" is normally a grey.

It's very strange. What the text on this page explains, complaining about light text on dark background, is exactly what I experience when reading text with the opposite combination, eg PDFs. His text holds a link that switches colors (thus suddenly displaying black on white): this kills my eyes! I have to zap away at once.

Yea, I have a hard time looking at that version, too. And I didn't even see it until after I was away from the page for about an hour and then came back. There are also other reasons that both versions of that page are hard to read: - All bold. - All justified (I honestly do find justified text harder to read than left-algned. And the difference is much more pronounced with narrower text columns, such as that page uses.) - One loooong paragraph.

Oh, really? I guess there is no way this site could be a fabricated example for clearly demonstrating the effect, right?
Mar 12 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"David Nadlinger" <see klickverbot.at> wrote in message 
news:ilgt04$298s$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/12/11 11:34 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "spir"<denis.spir gmail.com>  wrote in message
 news:mailman.2474.1299967680.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On 03/12/2011 10:16 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Even with a brightness
   setting matching the ambient light (many people I know have turned
 the
   backlight up way too high), longer blocks of white text on a dark
   background have the nasty habit of leaving an after-image in my 
 eyes,
 as
   demonstrated by this site:http://www.ironicsans.com/owmyeyes/.


on pure-black. Even light-on-dark fans don't do that. The "white" is normally a grey.

It's very strange. What the text on this page explains, complaining about light text on dark background, is exactly what I experience when reading text with the opposite combination, eg PDFs. His text holds a link that switches colors (thus suddenly displaying black on white): this kills my eyes! I have to zap away at once.

Yea, I have a hard time looking at that version, too. And I didn't even see it until after I was away from the page for about an hour and then came back. There are also other reasons that both versions of that page are hard to read: - All bold. - All justified (I honestly do find justified text harder to read than left-algned. And the difference is much more pronounced with narrower text columns, such as that page uses.) - One loooong paragraph.

Oh, really? I guess there is no way this site could be a fabricated example for clearly demonstrating the effect, right?

Doesn't matter, he's still constructed a blatant strawman. Those three things I mentioned, plus the fact that he's using maximum contrast, all make text harder to read *regardless* of positive/negative contrast. And *despite* that, he's still using those tricks in his attempt to "prove" something completely different (ie, that light-on-dark is hard to read/look-at and shouldn't be used). It's exactly the same as if I made chicken noodle soup with rotted rancid chicken, tossed in some dog shit, and then tried to claim: "See! Chicken makes food taste terrible!" ("But you used bad ingredients..." "Well excuse me for trying to clearly demonstrate the effect!") Even if it weren't a strawman, it's still exaggerated and unrealistic - and demonstrating that an excess of something is bad does not indicate that ordinary usage is bad (salt and fat are perfect examples).
Mar 12 2011
parent reply David Nadlinger <see klickverbot.at> writes:
On 3/13/11 12:14 AM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Doesn't matter, he's still constructed a blatant strawman. Those three
 things I mentioned, plus the fact that he's using maximum contrast, all make
 text harder to read *regardless* of positive/negative contrast. And
 *despite* that, he's still using those tricks in his attempt to "prove"
 something completely different (ie, that light-on-dark is hard to
 read/look-at and shouldn't be used). It's exactly the same as if I made
 chicken noodle soup with rotted rancid chicken, tossed in some dog shit, and
 then tried to claim: "See! Chicken makes food taste terrible!" ("But you
 used bad ingredients..."  "Well excuse me for trying to clearly demonstrate
 the effect!")

 Even if it weren't a strawman, it's still exaggerated and unrealistic - and
 demonstrating that an excess of something is bad does not indicate that
 ordinary usage is bad (salt and fat are perfect examples).

Calm down, this isn't a religious war or something, at least not for me. If you want to try to prove everybody else »wrong«, feel free to do so, but I just picked that example because it neatly illustrates the effect I experienced when I was experimenting light-on-dark color schemes in my text editor/IDE… David
Mar 12 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"David Nadlinger" <see klickverbot.at> wrote in message 
news:ilgvf0$2dmt$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/13/11 12:14 AM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 Doesn't matter, he's still constructed a blatant strawman. Those three
 things I mentioned, plus the fact that he's using maximum contrast, all 
 make
 text harder to read *regardless* of positive/negative contrast. And
 *despite* that, he's still using those tricks in his attempt to "prove"
 something completely different (ie, that light-on-dark is hard to
 read/look-at and shouldn't be used). It's exactly the same as if I made
 chicken noodle soup with rotted rancid chicken, tossed in some dog shit, 
 and
 then tried to claim: "See! Chicken makes food taste terrible!" ("But you
 used bad ingredients..."  "Well excuse me for trying to clearly 
 demonstrate
 the effect!")

 Even if it weren't a strawman, it's still exaggerated and unrealistic - 
 and
 demonstrating that an excess of something is bad does not indicate that
 ordinary usage is bad (salt and fat are perfect examples).

Calm down, this isn't a religious war or something, at least not for me. If you want to try to prove everybody else wrong, feel free to do so, but I just picked that example because it neatly illustrates the effect I experienced when I was experimenting light-on-dark color schemes in my text editor/IDE.

I'm not upset or worked up about it at all (emotional state usually doesn't come across in text very well anyway, so it's best not to make assumptions about it). I was just explaining how that page fails to make the point that it tries to make. I realize you only brought it up to help describe a certain effect, and naturally that's fine, but I was objecting more to the page itself rather than the appropriateness of your reference to it.
Mar 12 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg gmx.com> writes:
On Friday 11 March 2011 07:35:09 Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
 On 3/11/11 5:21 AM, David Nadlinger wrote:
 On 3/11/11 11:30 AM, spir wrote:
 I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would
 care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information
 (white backgrounds).

Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David

Paper has white background, which worked quite well for it.

The problem with a white background on a computer screen is that a computer screen projects light whereas paper merely reflects it. So, while reading black on white works great with paper, it's harder on the eyes with a computer screen. But naturally, the folks doing the computer stuff have typically emulated paper, so most text read via the computer is still black on white. This can help cause eye strain though, which is one of the reason that there are plenty of programmers out there who mess with the color scheme of at least their code editor to make it light text on a dark background. Now, beyond some eye strain in some folks, I'm not aware of there being any real problems with black text on white with a computer screen - certainly nothing about the saturation of light with non-information harming your nervous system (I'm really not sure what Spir means here). But I don't think that there's much question that reading black on white is harder on your eyes on a computer screen than it is on paper. Still, I wouldn't expect computers to do white on black or anything similar at this point. The whole black on white thing is just too ingrained in people. - Jonathan M Davis
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling parent spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/11/2011 04:35 PM, Andrei Alexandrescu wrote:
 On 3/11/11 5:21 AM, David Nadlinger wrote:
 On 3/11/11 11:30 AM, spir wrote:
 I do agree. I also wish -- something much easier to do -- they would
 care for our nerval systems & stop saturating them with non-information
 (white backgrounds).

Is there any scientific data to back this assumption? David

Paper has white background, which worked quite well for it.

Paper is not a light emitter. Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling parent reply Walter Bright <newshound2 digitalmars.com> writes:
On 3/9/2011 10:18 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is
 lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always
 been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much
 any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I used to use HTML for presentations. Frankly, it was terrible. The text was rendered badly, especially when blown up on a screen. I could never get it to look right. I couldn't email the presentation to anyone without sending a wad of other files along with it. I switched to pdf presentations, and they worked great and looked great. The pdf viewers would render text that looked great blown up. The pdf was all in one file, meaning I could email it to someone and they could look at it directly from their mail program. I would bring backups on a thumb drive so in case my laptop was busted/stolen by the TSA, I could run my presentation on anyone's computer. I do not understand why HTML engines do such an ugly job rendering text, while PDF's on the same machine do a great job. This is true on Windows as well as Ubuntu.
Mar 11 2011
parent reply lurker <a a.a> writes:
Walter Bright Wrote:

 On 3/9/2011 10:18 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is
 lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always
 been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much
 any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I used to use HTML for presentations. Frankly, it was terrible. The text was rendered badly, especially when blown up on a screen. I could never get it to look right. I couldn't email the presentation to anyone without sending a wad of other files along with it. I switched to pdf presentations, and they worked great and looked great. The pdf viewers would render text that looked great blown up. The pdf was all in one file, meaning I could email it to someone and they could look at it directly from their mail program. I would bring backups on a thumb drive so in case my laptop was busted/stolen by the TSA, I could run my presentation on anyone's computer. I do not understand why HTML engines do such an ugly job rendering text, while PDF's on the same machine do a great job. This is true on Windows as well as Ubuntu.

This can't be true! Walter defending inferior semi-standard formats. PDF doesn't even have as nice transition effects as powerpoint or new jQuery using presentations stored in the cloud services. Your thumb drives break anyway once a year so I'm in favor of a subscription model for the cloud. Stardard HTML + CSS + JavaScript or Flash works for everyone. There's also Silverlight coming soon.
Mar 11 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"lurker" <a a.a> wrote in message news:ile1fe$2i8q$1 digitalmars.com...
 Walter Bright Wrote:

 On 3/9/2011 10:18 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html 
 is
 lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's 
 always
 been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty 
 much
 any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I used to use HTML for presentations. Frankly, it was terrible. The text was rendered badly, especially when blown up on a screen. I could never get it to look right


What specifically was done badly?
 I switched to pdf presentations, and they worked great and looked great. 
 The pdf
 viewers would render text that looked great blown up. The pdf was all in 
 one
 file, meaning I could email it to someone and they could look at it 
 directly
 from their mail program. I would bring backups on a thumb drive so in 
 case my
 laptop was busted/stolen by the TSA, I could run my presentation on 
 anyone's
 computer.


Well, PDF's are designed for a page-by-page medium, and presentation slides do fit that bill, unlike documents.
 This can't be true! Walter defending inferior semi-standard formats. PDF 
 doesn't even have as nice transition effects as powerpoint or new jQuery 
 using presentations stored in the cloud services.

Ugh. Transition effects are cheesy. (Hollywood avoids them for a reason.)
 Your thumb drives break anyway once a year so I'm in favor of a 
 subscription model for the cloud.

I've never had a USB drive or an SD card die on me. And I've been using the cheap no-name ones from MicroCenter. Maybe you're just using *really* bad ones or being rough on them? Or spend time near strong em fields? I'm going to try to refrain from saying anything about "the cloud". Don't really feel like another big debate, atm.
Mar 11 2011
next sibling parent reply lurker <a a.a> writes:
Nick Sabalausky Wrote:

 I've never had a USB drive or an SD card die on me. And I've been using the 
 cheap no-name ones from MicroCenter. Maybe you're just using *really* bad 
 ones or being rough on them? Or spend time near strong em fields?

You might forget them in the wrong pocket or your dog might bite the usb connector into pieces. I also don't like the unmount feature. You sometimes forget to sync data and boom the whole file system is corrupt.
Mar 11 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"lurker" <a a.a> wrote in message news:ile4mh$2qoe$1 digitalmars.com...
 Nick Sabalausky Wrote:

 I've never had a USB drive or an SD card die on me. And I've been using 
 the
 cheap no-name ones from MicroCenter. Maybe you're just using *really* bad
 ones or being rough on them? Or spend time near strong em fields?

You might forget them in the wrong pocket or your dog might bite the usb connector into pieces.

Outside of chinese restaurants, I hate dogs, so that second part isn't a problem for me ;)
 I also don't like the unmount feature. You sometimes forget to sync data 
 and boom the whole file system is corrupt.

Yea. I have always thought it seemed strange that "modern" removable media lacks the sensible lock/eject system that CD-ROM drives have had since the 90's.
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling parent Walter Bright <newshound2 digitalmars.com> writes:
On 3/11/2011 1:21 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "lurker"<a a.a>  wrote in message news:ile1fe$2i8q$1 digitalmars.com...
 Walter Bright Wrote:

 On 3/9/2011 10:18 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html
 is
 lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's
 always
 been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty
 much
 any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I used to use HTML for presentations. Frankly, it was terrible. The text was rendered badly, especially when blown up on a screen. I could never get it to look right


What specifically was done badly?

Something as simple as getting the text to be rendered attractively. HTML text looks ragged blown up. HTML fonts simply do not look good. There were other problems such as the presentation machine differing slightly from my dev machine, throwing everything off. The HTML stuff was so bad that I regularly got pretty negative feedback about it. Those problems all vanished when I switched to pdf. No complaints.
 I'm going to try to refrain from saying anything about "the cloud". Don't
 really feel like another big debate, atm.

As if I'm really going to have my presentation hinge on getting a reliable internet connection. (I've seen some that did, and they always got derailed and spent their allotted time trying to get it to work.) One huge impediment to me doing cloud computing is the random nature of responsiveness of the internet. And, when it is not responding, the software gives you no clue what the problem is: 1. your browser crashed 2. your browser is slowly executing javascript 3. your ethernet cable fell out of its socket again 4. your hub needs to be power cycled 5. another machine on your lan is hogging the bandwidth 6. your router needs to be rebooted 7. your cable modem needs to be rebooted 8. your ISP needs to be rebooted 9. a tree fell on the wires again 10. the internet is just slow today 11. any of the above happened to the web site you're trying to access
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply retard <re tard.com.invalid> writes:
Thu, 10 Mar 2011 01:18:53 -0500, Nick Sabalausky wrote:

 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to
 release any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things? This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF
 is fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know
 it. Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web
 is more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf. Of course, show me a pdf viewer that's actually worth a damn for viewing documents on a PC instead of just printing, and maybe I could be persuaded to not mind so much. So far I've used (as far as I can think of, I know there's been others), Acrobat Reader (which I don't even allow on my computer anymore), the one built into OSX, and FoxIt.
 And yes, most of these papers are published in print format as their
 main form
 of release. You're usually lucky to be able to get a PDF format instead
 of having to have bought the appropriate magazine or book of papers
 from a particular conference.

lucky to ever be granted the privilege to so much as glance upon any of their pristine excellence.

You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. If you want to publish your results in a peer reviewed conference, which is often a requirement for further funding if you happen to depend on it, then you MUST adopt to their guidelines. This paper is a TR, it probably does not even go through a (peer) review process. Usually you're asked to publish your conference paper using a standard document template, but you're not allowed to republish the paper elsewhere. Sometimes you're allowed to republish it on your personal site if you make some changes. Ever read proceedings where every paper uses different formatting? It doesn't look professional. Now, another point against HTML or DOC or something similar is that you can't really tell what it looks like when printed. I tried to manually write a paper once, but it just didn't work. Also one of the biggest problems is that there's a maximum number of pages allowed. Extra pages cost money due to printing costs. With HTML or DOC you can't be sure how the system that prints the paper organizes all figures and line wrapping. Usually it fails and you get bad quality. You should also take a look at this wrt html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justification_(typesetting)
Mar 10 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"retard" <re tard.com.invalid> wrote in message 
news:ilbo57$31ie$1 digitalmars.com...
 Thu, 10 Mar 2011 01:18:53 -0500, Nick Sabalausky wrote:

 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to
 release any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things? This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF
 is fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know
 it. Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web
 is more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf. Of course, show me a pdf viewer that's actually worth a damn for viewing documents on a PC instead of just printing, and maybe I could be persuaded to not mind so much. So far I've used (as far as I can think of, I know there's been others), Acrobat Reader (which I don't even allow on my computer anymore), the one built into OSX, and FoxIt.
 And yes, most of these papers are published in print format as their
 main form
 of release. You're usually lucky to be able to get a PDF format instead
 of having to have bought the appropriate magazine or book of papers
 from a particular conference.

lucky to ever be granted the privilege to so much as glance upon any of their pristine excellence.

You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. If you want to publish your results in a peer reviewed conference, which is often a requirement for further funding if you happen to depend on it, then you MUST adopt to their guidelines. This paper is a TR, it probably does not even go through a (peer) review process.

If so, then that paper doesn't need to be restricted to PDF. But regardless, my complaints about PDF usually being the only option were directed at academic papers in general, not just this particular one.
 Usually you're asked to publish your conference paper using a standard
 document template, but you're not allowed to republish the paper
 elsewhere.

Oh, I see. That makes it perfectly clear that the academic world is *not* interested in restricting access to information. After all, what could possibly be more open and free than being required to send your work to an obscure publisher with minimal visibility who then says you can't redistribute your own work to a wider audience? Or maybe it's not about restricting access to information at all - maybe they're just stupid and can't see what's happening. Could that be it? Or is it arbitrarily-restricted access?
 Ever read proceedings where every paper uses
 different formatting? It doesn't look professional.

I never said that a collection of works shouldn't be able to use a consistent style for what's contained within. I was only talking about internet distribution of individual articles.
 Now, another point against HTML or DOC or something similar is that you
 can't really tell what it looks like when printed.

How often do people print a document from the web to read it? And as for mass-printing to distrubute in hardcopy, I've been saying from the start that PDF (AFAIK) is fine for printing.
 Also one of the biggest
 problems is that there's a maximum number of pages allowed. Extra pages
 cost money due to printing costs. With HTML or DOC you can't be sure how
 the system that prints the paper organizes all figures and line wrapping.
 Usually it fails and you get bad quality.

Since when are PDF and HTML mutually exclusive?
 You should also take a look at
 this wrt html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justification_(typesetting)

I'm familiar with justified text.
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling parent Andrej Mitrovic <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> writes:
Transition effects? Is this the 90s?
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Tomek =?ISO-8859-2?B?U293afFza2k=?= <just ask.me> writes:
bearophile napisa=B3:

 One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards d=

Yep, they don't. So? --=20 Tomek
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Dmitry Olshansky <dmitry.olsh gmail.com> writes:
On 09.03.2011 23:15, bearophile wrote:
 Despite D is currently not widely used, it's not hard for me to find
references about D into computer science papers I find around.

 This paper is titles "Code Sandwiches", by Matt Elder, Steve Jackson, and Ben
Liblit, it discusses D scope guards too (page 7 and several successive pages):
 http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~liblit/tr-1647/

 One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards do not
provide encapsulation".

provide is a convenient way to write exception safe code, with less fuss and bugs. It's a practical "shortcut" feature meant to be used inside of encapsulated entity, not to create or support one.
 Bye,
 bearophile

-- Dmitry Olshansky
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg gmx.com> writes:
On Wednesday 09 March 2011 22:18:53 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to release
 any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is
 fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know it.
 Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is
 more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I'm afraid that I don't understand at all. The only time that I would consider html better than a pdf is if the pdf isn't searchable (and most papers _are_ searchable). And I _definitely_ don't like dealing with whatever word processor format someone happens to be using. PDF is nice and universal. I don't have to worry about whether I have the appropriate fonts or if I even have a program which can read their word processor format of choice. I don't really have any gripes with PDF at all. - Jonathan M Davis
Mar 09 2011
next sibling parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.2411.1299739219.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 22:18:53 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...

 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to 
 release
 any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all 
 things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is
 fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know 
 it.
 Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is
 more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I'm afraid that I don't understand at all. The only time that I would consider html better than a pdf is if the pdf isn't searchable (and most papers _are_ searchable). And I _definitely_ don't like dealing with whatever word processor format someone happens to be using. PDF is nice and universal. I don't have to worry about whether I have the appropriate fonts or if I even have a program which can read their word processor format of choice. I don't really have any gripes with PDF at all.

PDF: *Complete* inability to adapt appropriately to the viewing device, *completely* useless page breaks and associated top/bottom page margins in places that have absolutely *no* use for them, no flowing layout, frequent horizontal scrolling, poor (if any) linking, inability for the reader to choose the fonts/etc that *they* find readable. Oh, and ever tried reading one of those pdf's that use a multi-column layout? All of this together makes PDF the #1 worst document format for viewing on a PC. All for what? Increased accuracy the *few* times it ever gets printed? Outside of print-shops, pdf needs to die a horrible death.
Mar 09 2011
parent Andrei Alexandrescu <SeeWebsiteForEmail erdani.org> writes:
On 3/9/11 11:49 PM, spir wrote:
 pdf is a printing format (a poor one,
 according to typo professional, please ask); nothing else.

This is rather surprising given that Addison Wesley uses pdf throughout as their publication format. Other publishers I talked to do the same, and so do smaller publishers (including shops such as Kinko's). So yes, I'd be curious.
 Also, nowadays, it's no more necessary to use ps or pdf to get (correct)
 printing. Nearly anything can be composed and printed as is.

What do you mean by "as is"?
 An
 exception may be complex math formulas (in latex indeed). Even then, one
 can precompose them into plain graphics.

You mean raster graphics? That would suck pretty badly. Or instead vector graphics? But then the question remains how you represent the symbols, and you're back to the issue of embedded fonts, at which PDF is quite adept. Andrei
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling parent spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/10/2011 08:15 AM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis"<jmdavisProg gmx.com>  wrote in message
 news:mailman.2411.1299739219.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 22:18:53 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis"<jmdavisProg gmx.com>  wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...

 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to
 release
 any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is
 fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know
 it.
 Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is
 more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I'm afraid that I don't understand at all. The only time that I would consider html better than a pdf is if the pdf isn't searchable (and most papers _are_ searchable). And I _definitely_ don't like dealing with whatever word processor format someone happens to be using. PDF is nice and universal. I don't have to worry about whether I have the appropriate fonts or if I even have a program which can read their word processor format of choice. I don't really have any gripes with PDF at all.

PDF: *Complete* inability to adapt appropriately to the viewing device, *completely* useless page breaks and associated top/bottom page margins in places that have absolutely *no* use for them, no flowing layout, frequent horizontal scrolling, poor (if any) linking, inability for the reader to choose the fonts/etc that *they* find readable. Oh, and ever tried reading one of those pdf's that use a multi-column layout? All of this together makes PDF the #1 worst document format for viewing on a PC. All for what? Increased accuracy the *few* times it ever gets printed? Outside of print-shops, pdf needs to die a horrible death.

Agreed. pdf (or maybe rather the more powerful ps) should be an end-of-chain format just before printing. Delivering pdf docs for anyhting else makes no sense. pdf is a printing format (a poor one, according to typo professional, please ask); nothing else. Also, nowadays, it's no more necessary to use ps or pdf to get (correct) printing. Nearly anything can be composed and printed as is. An exception may be complex math formulas (in latex indeed). Even then, one can precompose them into plain graphics. Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg gmx.com> writes:
On Wednesday 09 March 2011 23:15:01 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2411.1299739219.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 22:18:53 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Jonathan M Davis" <jmdavisProg gmx.com> wrote in message
 news:mailman.2409.1299728378.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 
 On Wednesday 09 March 2011 13:30:27 Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 But why is it that academic authors have a chronic inability to
 release
 any
 form of text without first cramming it into a goddamn PDF of all
 things?
 This is one example of why I despise Adobe's predominance: PDF is
 fucking useless for anything but printing, and no one seems to know
 it.
 Isn't it about time the ivory tower learned about Mosaic? The web is
 more than a PDF-distribution tool...Really! It is! Welcome to the
 mid-90's. Sheesh.

And what format would you _want_ it in? PDF is _way_ better than having a file for any particular word processor. What else would you pick? HTML? Yuck. How would _that_ be any better than a PDF? These are _papers_ after all, not some web article. They're either written up in a word processor or with latex. Distributing them as PDFs makes perfect sense.

They're text. With minor formatting. That alone makes html better. Html is lousy for a lot of things, but formatted text is the one thing it's always been perfectly good at. And frankly I think I'd *rather* go with pretty much any word processing format if the only other option was pdf.

I'm afraid that I don't understand at all. The only time that I would consider html better than a pdf is if the pdf isn't searchable (and most papers _are_ searchable). And I _definitely_ don't like dealing with whatever word processor format someone happens to be using. PDF is nice and universal. I don't have to worry about whether I have the appropriate fonts or if I even have a program which can read their word processor format of choice. I don't really have any gripes with PDF at all.

PDF: *Complete* inability to adapt appropriately to the viewing device, *completely* useless page breaks and associated top/bottom page margins in places that have absolutely *no* use for them, no flowing layout, frequent horizontal scrolling, poor (if any) linking, inability for the reader to choose the fonts/etc that *they* find readable. Oh, and ever tried reading one of those pdf's that use a multi-column layout? All of this together makes PDF the #1 worst document format for viewing on a PC. All for what? Increased accuracy the *few* times it ever gets printed? Outside of print-shops, pdf needs to die a horrible death.

LOL. It's _supposed_ to have a fixed look. That's part of what's so wonderful about it. You _know_ that it will look right every time. I think that it's quite clear that we're never going to see eye-to-eye on this one. - Jonathan M Davis
Mar 09 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent spir <denis.spir gmail.com> writes:
On 03/10/2011 01:58 AM, bearophile wrote:
 spir:

 (Thank godS, Unbuntu's doc viewer recently got an "inverse video" mode. Unthank
 gods, white on black is far to be the most legible color combination. Anyway,
 better than the opposite...)

Two of the most important PDF viewrs have an option to change the backgroup color of the pages to the color you want :-)

Would you tell me which ones (off list). Denis -- _________________ vita es estrany spir.wikidot.com
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply "Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> writes:
On Thu, 10 Mar 2011 02:15:01 -0500, Nick Sabalausky wrote:

 PDF: *Complete* inability to adapt appropriately to the viewing device,
 *completely* useless page breaks and associated top/bottom page margins
 in places that have absolutely *no* use for them, no flowing layout,
 frequent horizontal scrolling, poor (if any) linking, inability for the
 reader to choose the fonts/etc that *they* find readable. Oh, and ever
 tried reading one of those pdf's that use a multi-column layout? All of
 this together makes PDF the #1 worst document format for viewing on a
 PC. All for what? Increased accuracy the *few* times it ever gets
 printed? Outside of print-shops, pdf needs to die a horrible death.

I completely disagree. But then again, you would probably label me as one of the "ivory tower academic authors". ;) PDF ensures a consistent look across different platforms and viewers, because the layout is fixed and fonts can be embedded. This is especially important when the document contains formulas. Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the document's main font. This is generally not possible with HTML, because you never know which fonts are installed on the target computer. (Yes, there's the font-face CSS thingy, but AFAIK it's rarely used due to font licensing issues.) As I see it, the only viable option for embedding math in HTML is to use MathML. Unfortunately, that's generally not supported in any of the current web browsers, though most of them will support it in their upcoming releases (IE being the exception, I think). It remains to be seen how good the MathML rendering engines turn out to be. (You think badly rendered text is hard to read? Badly rendered formulas are *much* worse.) Anyway, besides ensuring good-looking formulas, a fixed layout means that you are in full control over other typesetting issues such as hyphenation. Yes, you can do that automatically with JavaScript, but you can never be sure of the result. And finally, I have yet to see any web browser or word processor that even comes close to LaTeX with regards to typesetting quality. Show me a PDF file created by LaTeX and a PDF version of a Word document, and I'm pretty sure I can tell at a glance which is which. I don't understand your big gripe with PDF readers either. Maybe Adobe just makes a crappy one? I use the one that comes with the GNOME desktop, Evince, and it works perfectly. (It's open source, too!) As we speak I have it open on a 1422-page PDF document, and I can scroll without any lag, search for text (and math, even), and basically do anything I can in a web reader. -Lars
Mar 10 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> wrote in message 
news:ilaa5k$2vls$2 digitalmars.com...
 PDF ensures a consistent look across different platforms and viewers,
 because the layout is fixed and fonts can be embedded.

That's a significant part of what makes it good for printing and terrible for everything else.
 Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want
 them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the
 document's main font.

That strikes me as worrying over a trivial detail. Is the formula's font *really*the point, or it is the formula itself?
 As I see it, the only viable option for embedding math in HTML is to use
 MathML.

"Viable" and "perfect" are two very different things. If you feel that the formulas *MUST* be in the same font as the rest, then it sounds like you mean "perfect" not "viable".
 Anyway, besides ensuring good-looking formulas, a fixed layout means that
 you are in full control over other typesetting issues such as
 hyphenation.

Again, that *belongs* in the realm of the reader, the reader's machine and the document viewer. This isn't old-school dead-tree media we're talking about here. In printed form, the viewing device/app and the publication format are inherently the exact same thing, so the distinction is irrelevent and presentation details like that may as well be handled by the producer. But with computers, the two things are inherently very different. The bottom line is, viewing a document should work as well as it reasonably can on *anything* it's viewed on, any app, any device, any person. Yes, that might *seem* to indicate letting the producer control every detail, but outside of paper (where there *is* only one "app/device" the document is viewed with) that doesn't work: Obviously, different viewers are going to have different needs, different optimal uses, etc. Is it at all reasonable for the content producer to take into account every viewer/device or even personal preference that it's going to come across, even just in the present, let alone the future? Certainly not (heck, that would be lke the days before device drivers). Is it even conceivably *possible* with PDF? Not remotely. The *only* thing that has the proper information to appropriately format a document is the viewer itself, the device itself, etc. *Not* the content producer.
 And finally, I have yet to see any web browser or word processor that
 even comes close to LaTeX with regards to typesetting quality.  Show me a
 PDF file created by LaTeX and a PDF version of a Word document, and I'm
 pretty sure I can tell at a glance which is which.

I don't doubt that. But show *me* the same two documents and *if* I can tell them apart I'm pretty sure I could tell that I don't care which is which. Seriously, does anyone without a typesetting background ever even notice such things?
 I don't understand your big gripe with PDF readers either.  Maybe Adobe
 just makes a crappy one?

They do. A *very* crappy one. That's why I use FoxIt instead.
 I use the one that comes with the GNOME
 desktop, Evince, and it works perfectly.  (It's open source, too!)  As we
 speak I have it open on a 1422-page PDF document, and I can scroll
 without any lag, search for text (and math, even), and basically do
 anything I can in a web reader.

Does it stick page breaks in the middle of a document? Do the page breaks serve *any* useful purpose outside printed form? Can web pages link to specific parts of the document? When the PDF is from a book that has smaller inner margins than outer margins, do the left/right margns keep changing form one page to the next? If you resize the window, can you still read it without introducing horizontal scrolling? If you find the chosen font difficult to read, or you merely prefer a different one, can you change it? Are comparable programs as widespread on mobile devices as web browsers are? Do they integrate well with the mobile device's browser?
Mar 10 2011
parent reply Andrei Alexandrescu <SeeWebsiteForEmail erdani.org> writes:
On 3/10/11 2:22 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Lars T. Kyllingstad"<public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet>  wrote in message
 news:ilaa5k$2vls$2 digitalmars.com...
 Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want
 them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the
 document's main font.

That strikes me as worrying over a trivial detail. Is the formula's font *really*the point, or it is the formula itself?

http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~uno/cm.html Andrei
Mar 10 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Andrei Alexandrescu" <SeeWebsiteForEmail erdani.org> wrote in message 
news:ilbmlp$oq$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/10/11 2:22 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Lars T. Kyllingstad"<public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet>  wrote in message
 news:ilaa5k$2vls$2 digitalmars.com...
 Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want
 them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the
 document's main font.

That strikes me as worrying over a trivial detail. Is the formula's font *really*the point, or it is the formula itself?

http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~uno/cm.html

Those look the same to me. "In fact, the old delta was so ugly, I couldn't stand to write papers using that symbol; now I can't stand to read papers that still do use it." And I thought *I* tended to be particular about things!
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Ary Manzana <ary esperanto.org.ar> writes:
On 3/9/11 5:15 PM, bearophile wrote:
 Despite D is currently not widely used, it's not hard for me to find
references about D into computer science papers I find around.

 This paper is titles "Code Sandwiches", by Matt Elder, Steve Jackson, and Ben
Liblit, it discusses D scope guards too (page 7 and several successive pages):
 http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~liblit/tr-1647/

 One of the things the paper says about D scope guards is: "Scope guards do not
provide encapsulation".

 Bye,
 bearophile

So strange they don't mention Ruby, which has the best code sandwiches ever :-P Sample code (won't work, this is just the idea) def with_lock(some_lock) some_lock.lock yield some_lock.unlock end Usage: with_lock(foo) do # Whatever end This way you get syntactic linkage and encapsulation, but not inevitability (because # Whatever might raise an exception). For that you have to do: def with_lock(some_lock) some_lock.lock yield ensure some_lock.unlock end
Mar 10 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply "Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> writes:
On Thu, 10 Mar 2011 17:22:53 -0500, Nick Sabalausky wrote:

 "Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> wrote in message
 news:ilaa5k$2vls$2 digitalmars.com...
 PDF ensures a consistent look across different platforms and viewers,
 because the layout is fixed and fonts can be embedded.

That's a significant part of what makes it good for printing and terrible for everything else.
 Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want
 them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the
 document's main font.

That strikes me as worrying over a trivial detail. Is the formula's font *really*the point, or it is the formula itself?
 As I see it, the only viable option for embedding math in HTML is to
 use MathML.

"Viable" and "perfect" are two very different things. If you feel that the formulas *MUST* be in the same font as the rest, then it sounds like you mean "perfect" not "viable".
 Anyway, besides ensuring good-looking formulas, a fixed layout means
 that you are in full control over other typesetting issues such as
 hyphenation.

Again, that *belongs* in the realm of the reader, the reader's machine and the document viewer. This isn't old-school dead-tree media we're talking about here. In printed form, the viewing device/app and the publication format are inherently the exact same thing, so the distinction is irrelevent and presentation details like that may as well be handled by the producer. But with computers, the two things are inherently very different. The bottom line is, viewing a document should work as well as it reasonably can on *anything* it's viewed on, any app, any device, any person. Yes, that might *seem* to indicate letting the producer control every detail, but outside of paper (where there *is* only one "app/device" the document is viewed with) that doesn't work: Obviously, different viewers are going to have different needs, different optimal uses, etc. Is it at all reasonable for the content producer to take into account every viewer/device or even personal preference that it's going to come across, even just in the present, let alone the future? Certainly not (heck, that would be lke the days before device drivers). Is it even conceivably *possible* with PDF? Not remotely. The *only* thing that has the proper information to appropriately format a document is the viewer itself, the device itself, etc. *Not* the content producer.
 And finally, I have yet to see any web browser or word processor that
 even comes close to LaTeX with regards to typesetting quality.  Show me
 a PDF file created by LaTeX and a PDF version of a Word document, and
 I'm pretty sure I can tell at a glance which is which.

tell them apart I'm pretty sure I could tell that I don't care which is which. Seriously, does anyone without a typesetting background ever even notice such things?

Based on your above comments, I get the feeling that you don't find typography important at all. But typography is at least as important as any other design decision, and most people do care about design. If you create a web site for some company, you want to design it so it looks professional and is easy to use. If I write a scientific paper, I want it to look professional and be easy to read. And although you may not have a conscious opinion about typography, your eyes and brain certainly do. Try reading 20 or 30 pages worth of heavy material, perhaps interspersed with a bunch of mathematical formulas here and there, as rendered by a web browser. I guarantee you, your eyes and brain will be a lot more exhausted than they would have been if the document were professionally typeset. I wish the designers of web sites and browsers would pay more attention to typesetting issues and spend less time on bloating the web with Flash animations and JavaScript misfeatures.
 I don't understand your big gripe with PDF readers either.  Maybe Adobe
 just makes a crappy one?

They do. A *very* crappy one. That's why I use FoxIt instead.
 I use the one that comes with the GNOME desktop, Evince, and it works
 perfectly.  (It's open source, too!)  As we speak I have it open on a
 1422-page PDF document, and I can scroll without any lag, search for
 text (and math, even), and basically do anything I can in a web reader.

breaks serve *any* useful purpose outside printed form? Can web pages link to specific parts of the document? When the PDF is from a book that has smaller inner margins than outer margins, do the left/right margns keep changing form one page to the next? If you resize the window, can you still read it without introducing horizontal scrolling? If you find the chosen font difficult to read, or you merely prefer a different one, can you change it? Are comparable programs as widespread on mobile devices as web browsers are? Do they integrate well with the mobile device's browser?

If by "mobile devices" you mean mobile phones, I really don't think scientific papers need to be typeset with those in mind. Tablet computers are another matter, and PDFs look quite good on those. And please note that I'm not saying PDF is perfect for everything. Actually, I agree with you that the only thing it is *perfect* for is printing. But it *is* preferable over HTML in some situations, and scientific/technical literature is one of those. Novels are another example. If someone comes up with an alternative format for on-screen document reading that does away with obsolete artifacts of printed media, such as page breaks, odd/even page margins, etc. and has better hyperlinking capabilities than PDF, but still lets you embed fonts and have full control over other typesetting issues, I'd be happy to use it. Heck, web browsers with decent typesetting engines would be a *huge* step in the right direction. -Lars
Mar 11 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> wrote in message 
news:ilcmaf$19dg$1 digitalmars.com...
 Based on your above comments, I get the feeling that you don't find
 typography important at all.  But typography is at least as important as
 any other design decision, and most people do care about design.

I wouldn't say I find it to be *zero* importance, I just find it to be of much less importance than UI. And the UI is something I find all PDF readers I've tried to be severely deficient in compared to web browsers (heavily animated sites notwithstanding). And I really think those UI issues have more to do with the nature of PDF than just the quality of the readers.
 I wish the designers of web sites and browsers would pay more attention
 to typesetting issues and spend less time on bloating the web with Flash
 animations and JavaScript misfeatures.

That I can agree with. I'd *much* rather have a slightly better font and typesetting than flashing, flying, spinning bullcrap. Heck, I'd rather have *worse* fonts and typesetting than Flash/JS misfeatures :)
 And please note that I'm not saying PDF is perfect for everything.
 Actually, I agree with you that the only thing it is *perfect* for is
 printing.

Right. I realize that.
 But it *is* preferable over HTML in some situations, and
 scientific/technical literature is one of those.  Novels are another
 example.

Well, I'd much prefer html for any of those. I *really* *really* hate trying to read anything in a pdf viewer. I'm actually very surprised that anyone finds it practical.
 If someone comes up with an alternative format for on-screen document
 reading that does away with obsolete artifacts of printed media, such as
 page breaks, odd/even page margins, etc. and has better hyperlinking
 capabilities than PDF, but still lets you embed fonts and have full
 control over other typesetting issues, I'd be happy to use it.

 Heck, web browsers with decent typesetting engines would be a *huge* step
 in the right direction.

I'd be all for that stuff as well. Heck, I'm normally one of the first people to agree that HTML, CSS and web browsers have serious problems. But at least I can get by with them (thanks largely to NoScript) as opposed to pdf which I find to be nearly intolerable. I guess there's two good things I can say about pdf's and pdf viewers though: There's rarely any idiotic scripted or multimedia nonsense, and it's not as hard to find pdf viewers that actually obey my system's visual settings.
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent "Lars T. Kyllingstad" <public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet> writes:
On Thu, 10 Mar 2011 18:43:43 -0500, Nick Sabalausky wrote:

 "Andrei Alexandrescu" <SeeWebsiteForEmail erdani.org> wrote in message
 news:ilbmlp$oq$1 digitalmars.com...
 On 3/10/11 2:22 PM, Nick Sabalausky wrote:
 "Lars T. Kyllingstad"<public kyllingen.NOSPAMnet>  wrote in message
 news:ilaa5k$2vls$2 digitalmars.com...
 Embedding formulas as images isn't really an option, because you want
 them to be in the same font as (or a font that looks good with) the
 document's main font.

That strikes me as worrying over a trivial detail. Is the formula's font *really*the point, or it is the formula itself?

http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/~uno/cm.html


A tiny difference in one symbol, for sure, but in a document with thousands and thousands of symbols, such small differences add up and can impact both reading speed and eye strain.
 "In fact, the old delta was so ugly, I couldn't stand to write papers
 using that symbol; now I can't stand to read papers that still do use
 it."
 
 And I thought *I* tended to be particular about things!

Well, Knuth is the designer of TeX, so it's not too surprising that he has opinions about such details. :) -Lars
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent Jonathan M Davis <jmdavisProg gmx.com> writes:
On Friday, March 11, 2011 11:18:59 David Nadlinger wrote:
 On 3/11/11 5:55 PM, Jonathan M Davis wrote:
 The problem with a white background on a computer screen is that a
 computer screen projects light whereas paper merely reflects it. So,
 while reading black on white works great with paper, it's harder on the
 eyes with a computer screen.

My question from above still remains: Is there any scientific data to back this assumption?

I don't know. I haven't gone looking. However, I know that there's lots of anecdotal evidence for it. There's probably experimental evidence as well, but I haven't gone looking for it. Personally, I know that my eyes do much better when I have a dark background and light text on the screen. It's much harder on my eyes to have a white background with black text. None of those problems occur with paper. - Jonathan M Davis
Mar 11 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply Andrej Mitrovic <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> writes:
I wish all apps followed a defined standard and allowed us to set all
applications to use dark backgrounds at once.

On Linux you can't even set the cursor blinking to be the same for all
apps. Either it's a GTK/KDE/XF/Whatever-specific setting, or you have
to hunt down some configuration file Sometimes it ends up being in xml
format, so you have to read the manual on how to configure an app..,
and this was for a hex editor. Geeeez.

Someone wrote a freakin manual on how to set cursor blinking for each
app they could think off:
http://www.jurta.org/en/prog/noblink

Ridiculous. And then Windows is a pita. Right! Commence thread derailment. :-P
Mar 12 2011
parent reply "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Andrej Mitrovic" <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.2479.1299981498.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
I wish all apps followed a defined standard and allowed us to set all
 applications to use dark backgrounds at once.

 On Linux you can't even set the cursor blinking to be the same for all
 apps. Either it's a GTK/KDE/XF/Whatever-specific setting, or you have
 to hunt down some configuration file

Hear hear! And I thought Linux/Unix was supposed to be the world of standards. Even on standards-inept Wndows, we have standardization for that sort of thing. Or at least we used to, until we got invaded by non-native toolkits and apps with non-optional skins. (...grumble, grumble...)
 Sometimes it ends up being in xml
 format, so you have to read the manual on how to configure an app..,
 and this was for a hex editor. Geeeez.

A hex editor with XML configuration...That's just deliciously ironic.
 Someone wrote a freakin manual on how to set cursor blinking for each
 app they could think off:
 http://www.jurta.org/en/prog/noblink

Wow. I thought it was just me who found that blinking distracting. I've never actually thought to turn it off though. Maybe I should try that.
 Ridiculous. And then Windows is a pita. Right! Commence thread derailment. 
 :-P

Why stop at just one derailment? ( :) ) I'm gonna sabatage the other track, too: From that link: "To stop the cursor from blinking in Micro$oft Windows applications:" I certainly can't object to the idea of MS being evil (what large corporation isn't?), but the whole "M$"/"Micro$oft" thing is just downright juvenille. Not to mention it smacks of l33t-speak. What is this, the 90's? ("Yes, we know you don't like MS. Nobody does. Now quit being deliberately dumb.") It's the internet meme equivalent of pants "sagging" - the obnoxious fad that just won't die.
Mar 12 2011
parent linux user <l user.org> writes:
Nick Sabalausky Wrote:

 "Andrej Mitrovic" <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> wrote in message 
 news:mailman.2479.1299981498.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
I wish all apps followed a defined standard and allowed us to set all
 applications to use dark backgrounds at once.

 On Linux you can't even set the cursor blinking to be the same for all
 apps. Either it's a GTK/KDE/XF/Whatever-specific setting, or you have
 to hunt down some configuration file

Hear hear! And I thought Linux/Unix was supposed to be the world of standards. Even on standards-inept Wndows, we have standardization for that sort of thing. Or at least we used to, until we got invaded by non-native toolkits and apps with non-optional skins. (...grumble, grumble...)

There are freedesktop.org standards. Unfortunately they only advocate XML for every application. Posted via http://httpdget.com
Mar 12 2011
prev sibling next sibling parent reply Andrej Mitrovic <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> writes:
On 3/13/11, Nick Sabalausky <a a.a> wrote:
 snip

OSX is a nice OS. I gave it a try once or twice. The OS is nice, but man, when I started looking for software on the web I almost got sick. "Top 10 software for Your Mac", "5 Apps that will make your Mac Experience Awesome!", "This app will make you feel a Better Mac Person". "You deserve Beautiful Mac Software". Ugh.. It's like every single app has a 10$ price tag and it's all about selling bullshit with pretty words hidden behind colorful websites. There was a text editor that had this one major feature: Full screen mode with black side-bars. That was it. Nothing else, just a text editor with black bars on the side running at full-screen. And there's a whole website devoted to how awesome and inspiring and unique this is, how it "helps you focus". And a price tag. People buy this shit, it's unbelievable. There was also this thread on Reddit with a guy making some window-management software. All it did was divide the screen and resized the windows and put them side by side or something. And apparently this was so awesome everyone started yelling "Take my wallet NOW!!!". Same thing happened on ycombinator. I know of at least Autohotkey which came out in 2003 with which you can do window management with ease. Hotkeys, keyboard or mouse, or add buttons to your taskbar that do whatever you want with your windows. There's an entire community devoted to writing all sorts of cool window management scripts, and that's just one small feature of this app. But apparently this Mac software that resizes windows is revolutionary, comes with a price tag and everyone thought it was the best thing that ever happened.
Mar 12 2011
parent "Nick Sabalausky" <a a.a> writes:
"Andrej Mitrovic" <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:mailman.2483.1299989460.4748.digitalmars-d puremagic.com...
 On 3/13/11, Nick Sabalausky <a a.a> wrote:
 snip

OSX is a nice OS. I gave it a try once or twice. The OS is nice, but man, when I started looking for software on the web I almost got sick. "Top 10 software for Your Mac", "5 Apps that will make your Mac Experience Awesome!", "This app will make you feel a Better Mac Person". "You deserve Beautiful Mac Software". Ugh.. It's like every single app has a 10$ price tag and it's all about selling bullshit with pretty words hidden behind colorful websites. There was a text editor that had this one major feature: Full screen mode with black side-bars. That was it. Nothing else, just a text editor with black bars on the side running at full-screen. And there's a whole website devoted to how awesome and inspiring and unique this is, how it "helps you focus". And a price tag. People buy this shit, it's unbelievable. There was also this thread on Reddit with a guy making some window-management software. All it did was divide the screen and resized the windows and put them side by side or something. And apparently this was so awesome everyone started yelling "Take my wallet NOW!!!". Same thing happened on ycombinator. I know of at least Autohotkey which came out in 2003 with which you can do window management with ease. Hotkeys, keyboard or mouse, or add buttons to your taskbar that do whatever you want with your windows. There's an entire community devoted to writing all sorts of cool window management scripts, and that's just one small feature of this app. But apparently this Mac software that resizes windows is revolutionary, comes with a price tag and everyone thought it was the best thing that ever happened.

Heh, actually, you've described how I feel about the OS itself (along with every other Apple product out there, sans the Apple II). I spent a year or two trying to use OSX as my primary OS. I was impressd at first, but eventually found myself running away screaming, in large part for many of the things you've mentioned about their third party apps, except I found it to also be applicable to all of the first-party hardware and software. I think OSX's third party market is primarily an effect of Apple itself having the same attitude.
Mar 12 2011
prev sibling parent Andrej Mitrovic <andrej.mitrovich gmail.com> writes:
On 3/13/11, g=F6lgeliyele <usuldan gmail.com> wrote:
 If you are a linux person, you may like Mac ports. I use a large number
 of linux apps on my Mac, such as GIMP, GNU emacs, Inkscape, vncviewer, et=

MacVim looks nice. I've also heard great things about Textmate. There's definitely nice software out there, of course.
Mar 13 2011