Why I don't like wxWidgets.

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ABX
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Post by ABX » Thu Apr 06, 2006 12:03 pm

Jorg wrote:I still vote for a generator tool (which I have in mind for bloody ages to write) which people get along with the toolkit, a friendly GUI shows the options, figures out how wxWidgets is going to be built or is built, and created the settings and a project for you.
I have it started some time ago. I have to refresh the work I already made. Thanks for encouragement.
Jorg wrote:If we all would shout hard enough it should get heard some day.
I disagree. Without showing new free hands waiting for new responsibilities it's only another annoying shouting for me.
Jorg wrote:lack of structure and procedures, dedicated tasks and a clear overview of who is doing what. This can all be improved.
I agree, this can all be improved. I like your forum - big improvement. I like new site by Kevin. I like Mart split to wxGTK2. But that's all made because there were people who not only wanted it but also were able to do it. So yes, this can all be improved but with existing devs it can't be improved because there is a lot needed with current sources, current bugs, current releases. So everything more than current state needs more hands, not more words with "IMO".

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Post by ABX » Thu Apr 06, 2006 12:12 pm

priyank_bolia wrote:What I feel and mentioned repeatly that a sense of business is lacking in the core group
Any chance to get url to the post where you were saying this directly to core group? I would like to reread it.
priyank_bolia wrote:I feel a commercial model of wxWidgets focused on the windows/linux GUI only will help wxWidgets more.
There was trying in creating foundation around wxWidgets but it failed. There is still some small commercial model: Julian is paying for some particular features. Also other companies were paying for some improvements and even for whole port.

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Post by priyank_bolia » Thu Apr 06, 2006 1:34 pm

ABX wrote:
priyank_bolia wrote:What I feel and mentioned repeatly that a sense of business is lacking in the core group
Any chance to get url to the post where you were saying this directly to core group? I would like to reread it.
ABX
http://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?p=21183#21183

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Post by ABX » Thu Apr 06, 2006 1:49 pm

priyank_bolia wrote:
ABX wrote:Any chance to get url
http://forums.wxwidgets.org/viewtopic.php?p=21183#21183
Ah, sorry, I was under impression you meant some posting in wx-dev or wx-discuss mailing lists addressed directly to so called 'core' group.

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Post by cpp » Thu Apr 06, 2006 11:19 pm

ABX, After reading your reply to my post and seeing phrases like
Sorry if it doesn't meet your expectations.
And then after a few years of such hard work I came to the post where somebody is saying like the work all devs made was not made. Thank You!
you seem to kidding here
and so on, i can only conclude that you were somehow offended by it, if that is the case, then i want to get some things straight right now:
1) The intention of this post, was NOT to offend you, or the other devs (i dint even know you are a dev), nor to say the devs were lazy, dumb or evil.

2) You seem to think that i undermine (im not shure this is the correct word in english), or not appreciate all the hard work the devs (including you), put into wxWidgets.
You are talking to someone who spends 14 hours a day in front of a computer to make a living + also has to deal with that other "detail" called living a life, like family, friends, etc. So belive me, i understand you perfectly.
To make this 100% clear, i do know that you guys are making a huge effort in wxWidgets, and that if you dont do "more", is because you simply dont have the time.

3) You said: "Many brave persons proposed improvements for documentation but nobody seem to be interested in doing hard work".
From the tone of this, i asume that what you really meant to say was:
"You users complain about the things you dont like, but dont do anything to help out fix them".
If that is in fact what you are trying to say, then heres my answer to that, personally, i do everything i can to help wxWidgets, and yes, i realize that i dont do much, but (like i said before), i, just like you and the devs, also have a ton of things to do, and very little time to do it, in fact, i might have even less time to help, why? because i am an independent software developer, independent as in im NOT on a payrole, independant as in i dont fisnish my work on time = i (literally) dont have money for food. Plus, ibe only been using wxWidgets for a relatively sort time (a few months), so im not precicely a "wxGuru".
Still, (and you can check my posts here, and the stuff ibe submitted to wxCode), i do try to help out as much as i can. for example, i wrote a little "how to" to try to help out the issue of people having trouble compiling wxWidgets in VC2005. (wich BTW, i have suggested be made a sticky several times).

4) You ask that i quote the use of Turbo C, i think you do understand what i mean, in case you dont, what i meant (the idea) was that the library should be modernized, to use more templates, namespaces, and other "modern" C++ features. And so that you dont think im calling you lazy for not doing it, i like to point out that idid say:
If you are still using & supporting prehistoric C stuff & compilers because you dont have the time to do a full "overhaul", then we understand, well be patient and help out where we can
.

Bottom Line (again):
please do not get offended (again) for me saying this, but you (ABX) should learn to tell the diference between a critic and a mere sugestion. Sugestion as in im NOT critizising your work, trying to make you look bad, or ofend you, im merely trying to help out by pointing out issues that in my opinion need attention.
In any case, if us (the users) issuing sugestions to you (the devs), is offensive, or somehow unwanted, then i apologize for doing so, and issue one more final sugestion:
i sugest that the forum rules be updated to say something like: "Please avoid making sugestions or comments about the negative aspects of wxWidgets, as it offends the developers".

BTW: in case its still not clear: my original reply (as well as this one), are
sugestions ***** NOT ****** a critic, or an intend to offend you.

Nice day to you too :D
Hier Kommt die Sonne...

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Suggestion

Post by priyank_bolia » Fri Apr 07, 2006 5:37 am

As robohelp is also the sponsor of wxWidgets, I think we can use that to create a web based help, like MSDN, or IBM E-books, that will look much better, also there should not be much effort in that as we already have the html pages and all things like index, TOC for win chm help. Atleast that will give a look and feel boost to wxWidgets documentation. Don't know its a good idea or bad, but not too bad also.

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Post by Jorg » Fri Apr 07, 2006 6:56 am

Hi ABX,
I agree, this can all be improved. I like your forum - big improvement. I like new site by Kevin. I like Mart split to wxGTK2. But that's all made because there were people who not only wanted it but also were able to do it. So yes, this can all be improved but with existing devs it can't be improved because there is a lot needed with current sources, current bugs, current releases. So everything more than current state needs more hands, not more words with "IMO".
You are right. I would like to volunteer to everything I can help with, the problem is, I am in sort of an overload right now. I love to contribute, but I *hate* to promise something, and not being able to do it due to lack of time.

I have 5 controls of my own to maintain, one application I am rewriting and one that is in concept phase. Besides that I have enough hobbies that do not include staring at a PC screen .. At average I have 2 hours a day behind the PC, 3 days of my week are filled with social activities, and sometimes I don't feel like sitting behind the PC at all. That said I can only advice, observe and talk about it. I most certainly do not want to sound like some voice in the crowd that knows it all, but is not willing to help ;-)

I understand what you mean and that is the problem with a lot of us. We all have something to complain, but not enough people actually help.

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Post by upCASE » Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:25 am

Jorg, thanks for summing it up like this!
It's exactly what I'm experiencing and I guess we are not the only ones...

Let's face it: We could contribute and fix errors if we had the time. Personaly I thought about this recently and I came to the conclusion that I can't really do this. Instead I decided that helping in this forum and improving it is currently the only way for me to "give something back".

Back in school and college I would have had the time for this, as (appart from projects) it was all about tinkering with existing and improving old and new things. But I have a job now. I spend most of my daytime in front of a PC. And when I'm back home, I want to do other things. I used to code at home, too, but I decided it's not "healthy" if I allready did that the whole day.

But I think there are people who would be able to contribute. There should be many students using wxWidgets and if only 10% of them would help, fixing errors could be done quickly. The way I see it the devs group is very *closed*. Apart from the bug fix day I never heard something like "we need help". Maybe it would be a good idea to call out for help and make sure that the tasks assigned to someone can be solved by them. There are things that could be fixed in 10 minutes or less I guess, while others need days. The problem is that the task assignment would need organisation and someone to observe it.
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Post by priyank_bolia » Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:38 am

upCASE wrote:I never heard something like "we need help". Maybe it would be a good idea to call out for help and make sure that the tasks assigned to someone can be solved by them. There are things that could be fixed in 10 minutes or less I guess, while others need days. The problem is that the task assignment would need organisation and someone to observe it.
Community partnership is a must for the success of every project whether its Linux or other. I agree that if more people are involved in the bugs and feature process, things will go easier and people also feel a sense of ownership and responsibility towards it.

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Post by Jorg » Fri Apr 07, 2006 8:52 am

Hi upCASE,

Well this is what might work for me. I am the kind of person that when I can see what amount of work it will bring, and I can fix it within 1 or at most 2 days, I am willing to help! I really dislike abstract problems I have to dig in myself, as I am already doing that 8 hours a day at work, and at some time your mind gets saturated with that, and needs a break.

But for example, if there would be a wiki page, where there would be a couple of investigated bugs where a pointer is given in what direction to go to fix it, together with the steps to reproduce and all, I can once in a while jump into it and attempt a fix. This is some layer above of SF bu tracker, where work is kind of divided in smaller chunks with essential info like;

- file x or y is where you must look at
- it is somewhere in this method or area
- this is the patch to the minimal sample
- this is what it does
- this is what it should do
- time esitmated it takes to fix (very important)

I understand this creates an extra layer, but this is how it actually works in a company as well. We have tech support here they get calls from frustrated customers, they chrystalize the issue, write down steps to reproduce, nail the issue down to the functionality where the bug most likely is found, the work is divided by the project leader, and the devs work on it.

As I said, due to uncertainty in my time, I work best with chunks that are finished at the end of the available time that I have on that day. If I Cannot check it in working at the end of the day, there is a big chance that within a week when I have time time again I forgot where I was, I get discouraged and have to get back to making effort in continuing again.

If small chores are handed out by one or two people on the list, the procedures are formalized and a more clear status is given per chunk, I believe more people are willing to help.

For example, wxCheckListBox has a sucky client data interface. I would love to help. But where to start? How to approach the iassue? Should ie be like a wxTreeItemData but then called wxListItemData? Where are the essentials in the file? If these pointers would be given, with esitmation then people are more willing, PLUS (this is a big plus) guides can be given HOW it should be solved! If the API needs more consistency, the architect needs to have a say in the effort and suggestions how to fix. The wxWidgets API has flaws in the consistency which is logical if you realise how it is done right now. Lot of people apply patches or new functionality, but they do not look at the big picture.

Again much talk and no promises. I think we should make this thread available on wx-discuss / wx-dev, just to let them know there is a need for structure, a need for consistency and clarity.

Disclaimer, this is all my personal view ;-)

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Post by Jamie » Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:18 am

What would be really helpful is a list of users that are prepared to do some testing.

For instance, on occasions I have accidentally broken the WinCE build or even VS6 as I don't have access to these environments. Thanks to ABX for fixing my WinCE breakages :)

A considerable amount of any development time is spent in testing. If people could test some new features/bug fixes on a variety of compilers/platforms then perhaps this would free some time for the developers to do other things. Or even hasten the acceptance of new patches, see the OpenGL patch here as an example:

http://sourceforge.net/tracker/index.ph ... tid=309863

OT: It is clear to me that users of this forum have a hard time distinguishing who exactly the devs are that also use this forum. If they don't read wx-dev then how are they to know who is a dev and who isn't?

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Post by ABX » Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:25 pm

cpp wrote:ABX, After reading your reply to my post (...) i can only conclude that you were somehow offended by it
No. I was 'only' irritated. Think about it this way (sorry in advance for speeking so much on myself but that's the only way I find to explain things):

I wasn't born as development member. I'm average programmer, rather not good in C++ deep details. I always wanted to write cross platform POV-Ray frontend but could not find suitable method (POV-Ray engine is already platform independent). One day I started to read about wxWidgets. It seemed nice but first try of building it gave me lots of errors. I thought: people are using it so it must be errors specific to my build which is rarely used so there is no sense in wasting time and reporting it, just fix it yourself ABX and give it them back. And that's what I did. I send my first patches. Then I started to write my first application and started to more and more look into samples. What the hell - they are broken. So I started to fix them and more patches appeared. Moreover I found mismatches between documentation and library. More patches again. Within half a year I created more than 150 patches and uploaded them to sf.net. It quickly appeared that my patches are not applied. Why? Because I send more than developers were able to apply. Did they ignore me? No. They verified a few of my patches and simply gave me writing access to do the rest. Since then during 3 years I'm doing only cleaning of the sources. Lining up interface for counts in ControlWithItems container took me more than a week of contignous coding (had to be done twice) and doing test builds - more than week just for replacing 'size_t' and 'int' with 'unsigned int'. I spend three years on such minor cleaning and everyone is using my work while I even not touched my original idea of having POV-Ray frontend written in wxWidgets.

During three years I also readed lots of bug reports, notes what should be fixed and notes about possible improvements. I'm selecting which of them I'm able to do and add them to my TODO. The list is long and towards users. My observation is that development of other devs is towards users as well. Thinking about what changed between 2.6.0 and 2.6.3 it is clear that developers are fixing bugs and do work on improving this library. This library surely is not perfect. But I spend last 3 years on improving this gift for you and I expect some day to get same gift in improvements made by new devoted users.

What I tried to show you above was that I'm not 'wx-developer'. I'm wx-user with writing access and willing of improvements. And everyone can get writing access if he really want to make common code better.
cpp wrote:please do not get offended (again) for me saying this, but you (ABX) should learn to tell the diference between a critic and a mere sugestion. Sugestion as in im NOT critizising your work, trying to make you look bad, or ofend you, im merely trying to help out by pointing out issues that in my opinion need attention.
In any case, if us (the users) issuing sugestions to you (the devs), is offensive, or somehow unwanted, then i apologize for doing so
I do know what critic is and I do agree with all what you said about wxWidgets quality. What you seem to miss is that all of this was said many times and isn't invisible to the development group. In other words I'm not offended by the words you said but because you once again repeated them. This seemed like begining of another loop in endless circle with more complains than power for fixes/imporovements. As I said in reply to Jorg: without more hands it just another shouting.
cpp wrote:i sugest that the forum rules be updated to say something like: "Please avoid making sugestions or comments about the negative aspects of wxWidgets, as it offends the developers".
That's not the way I hoped end this topic. If there is anything to be fixed then I see following optional ways of improving things:
- make bug report @ sf.net
- make patch if you are able and post @ sf.net
- try to contact proper developer and try to explaing importance of the problem and give your time in testing fixes
- donation/payment if fix is related to your business
- selfeducation and doing patch
- opening discussion in wx-users, wx-devs, wxForum trying to resolve _particular_ problem

Writing something like "devs should prioritize on fixing bugs" or "remove outdated code" is pointless discussion and I'm always irritaded with pointless discussions. I could of course ignore this thread but then I would confirm your other statement that devs are not looking into forum.

And since you touched forum... Creation of forum is great, fantastic, usefull etc. etc. but when it was created, number of developers was not increased immediatelly so don't be surprised we can hardly read and browse every thread here. IIRC at the begining only me was here, now mainly Mart, Jamie and others from time to time. There is great support from Ryan, Jorg, upCase, priyank_bolia (and many others) who are not part of development group but fortunatelly they are heavily skilled so the problems are solved quickly and it is pleasure to read their support. Thanks to them all.

Sorry in advance if my posts looked arrogant. It's coicidence that it's you who I'm answering to. It's just frustration which has to exit from time to time from my deep soul and unfortunatelly I still don't have blog to write it elsewhere ;)

Have nice all days :)

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Last edited by ABX on Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:57 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Suggestion

Post by ABX » Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:29 pm

priyank_bolia wrote:As robohelp is also the sponsor of wxWidgets, I think we can use that to create a web based help, like MSDN, or IBM E-books, that will look much better, also there should not be much effort in that as we already have the html pages and all things like index, TOC for win chm help. Atleast that will give a look and feel boost to wxWidgets documentation. Don't know its a good idea or bad, but not too bad also.
I wait for final version of new website and I plan to integrate it with tex2rtf output so it will create documentation which looks and behave like rest of website. I hope that user-commented version of documentation will include such appearance too so I think it will all look better and better.

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Post by ABX » Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:38 pm

upCASE wrote:I used to code at home, too, but I decided it's not "healthy" if I allready did that the whole day.
I can confirm: it's not healthy. But what else can people do if users are waiting for more and more improvements ;)
upCASE wrote:The way I see it the devs group is very *closed*. Apart from the bug fix day I never heard something like "we need help".
We need help :)
Please verify OpenGL changes: http://lists.wxwidgets.org/cgi-bin/ezml ... :sss:72646

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Post by billconan » Sat Jun 24, 2006 2:37 pm

the problem is: what else i can use? i want to develop a platform independent program with skin-able, free ui. but i just can not find.

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