09 Feb 2005

A couple of responses…

Ankh, I wasn’t claiming that gedit is better than textedit on your computer today, what I wanted to point out is that we (gedit and gnome) definately want to work in that direction: to do so we would love to hear from you why textedit suits your needs better… a webpage and a screenshot of textedit would be a good start :)

dfenwick, I totally agree with you about avoiding adding features just for the sake of it… however once a feature is added and its considered useful (and the recent files list is one of these considered my daily use of gedit and the number of bugreports we get) I think it should be implemented in the most nicely looking way, if the eyecandy doesn’t impact usabilty and performance. In this case it caused performance problems, but this was a problem with the implementation that we managed to solve.

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09 Feb 2005

Ankh, we are aware that gedit startup time is not as good as we would like and during 2.9 we worked quite a bit on trying to understand what was wrong and how we could improve it.
For instance it turned out that one of the major offenders was the EggRecent code, which which is used throughout GNOME to create a list of recently used files… we found out that creating that nifty and apparently innocent dropdown menu on the toolbar was really taking up a lot of time since it hit the disc a lot of times to lookup the icons for files.
The large set of libraries is definately one of the problems and we are actively working on reducing the dependecies: the worst offender here is the eel lib which is huge and nowadays is only used by nautilus: when we started using it, it looked like a good idea to avoid code duplication… now we managed to almost completely remove it: we are down to one function call, unfortunately it’s a really important one and not something that we can easily cut and paste… that function should really go in gnome-vfs, but it has not happened in this devel cycle.

I also have to disagree with the statement that we are focusing on developers as our user target: gedit is and will remain a general purpose text editor, in fact we said a lot of “no” to requests for enanchements that we didn’t feel were useful for the generic user and we follow the HIG fairly strictly.
We also put in place a plugin system which easily allows to extend the editor with specific features, for instance uwog of abiword fame has recently hacked up a nice plugin which allows reformatting. Specific suggestions and bugreports are always welcome in bugzilla and/or on the mailing list.

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