In article <61AC3AD3E884D411836F0050BA8FE9F33550C6 / franklin.jenkon.com>,
 <brk / jenkon.com> wrote:
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>Ben's got a great suggestion, which aside from helping with system
>administration would also enable accessibility. Writing a cross-platform,
>cross-windowing-toolkit GUI is far from easy. The difficulty goes way up if
>you want to support internationalization, accessibility, or even drawing. 
>
><rambling>
>
>Dylan's DUIM
>(http://www.functional-objects.com/products/doc/dguide/index.htm) is one
>interesting attempt (interesting because Dylan idioms are often reminiscent
>of Ruby idioms, and because people have said nice things about it),
>wxWindows and Qt are two others. I've written one myself in Python that
>currently runs on Qt or Java Swing. All have their weaknesses. 
>
>Starting with a strong MVC bias is probably a good way to do it, and if you
>work really, really hard, the payoff could be handsome - if Ruby had a
>single, convincing answer to the question 'What GUI toolkit do I use?', it
>might help improve the user base significantly. 
>
>However, this is not a project that should be started lightly. If you want
>to do this right, pick a cross-platform GUI toolkit which supports Unicode
>(and other encodings, possibly) and is free on all platforms as one
>implementation (wxWindows or gtk might be acceptable compromises, since
>they're both moving toward I18N support, and Ben's text-only implementation.
>Develop them simultaneously to keep yourself from cheating and making some
>things inaccessible from the text version.
>
>Don't forget to look elsewhere for ideas. Consider UIML (www.uiml.org), XUL
>(www.mozilla.org/xpfe), Swing, and the SmallTalk GUIs. Read some books on
>user interface design.
>
>If people think this all the way through and still decide to do it, and do
>it well, Ruby could benefit greatly.
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I like your recommendations for sources of good ideas.

I think you wrote truest, though, right at the beginning:
  Writing a cross-platform, cross-windowing-toolkit
  GUI is far from easy. The difficulty goes way up
  if you want to support internationalization,
  accessibility, or even drawing. 
I'm not sanguine about the prospects for the grand ambition
you describe.  Java wants all that, and Swing is, frankly,
unusable in several regards.
-- 

Cameron Laird <claird / NeoSoft.com>
Business:  http://www.Phaseit.net
Personal:  http://starbase.neosoft.com/~claird/home.html