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Re: GUI Builder or lack of!

I  agree that there should be a GuiBuilder for all systems, since it saves
considerable time for many users. (Even the much maligned WIDED builder from
idl4.x -  included in idl5.2 under 'obsolete routines, and probably useable
on unix -  is better than no guibuilder at all).  However I can see why RSI
might be wary of committing (finite) resources to other platforms until
positive feedback is received from windows users.  Unfortunately, many
windows rsi programmers are less than complimentary about the GuiBuilder - a
fact which surprises me somewhat.  GuiBuilder-generated code is of course
not pretty to look at (nor is assembly code when generated by a fortran
compiler!) but if generated properly it calls user-written routines and does
not (and should not) require user editting.  It sure beats sweating over gui
programming for a user like me.

In defence of RSIs present policy, I wonder whether it is really difficult
to use a GuiBuilder on a PC and transport the  resulting idl code to a unix
box.  PCs litter offices like stickytape dispensers nowadays, and low-end
pentium/win95 computers sufficient for basic idl programming are being
thrown out even by primary schools.  Maybe you unix-users should be leaning
on RSI to give you a complimentary PC licence with the unix licence, just so
they dont have to develop the GuiBuilder on unix.

I also believe RSI share some of the blame for a slow takeup of the
GuiBuilder, due to the limited documentation/tutorials provided in idl5.2.
It would be great if one or two  of our top-gun idl programmers exercised
the GuiBuilder and distilled out a few lessons in correct useage - their
communication skills are generally  better than RSIs documentation writers,
but somehow the GuiBuilder concept does not win their favor.

Perhaps if a few more users gave positive feedback to RSI on the GuiBuilder,
RSI would be more inclined to make it available on other platforms.

You can see I am an impurist where programming is concerned.  If am the only
such person in the world, then -
"Let the flaming begin..."

Michael Asten

Dave Brennan wrote:

> Hi,
> I was wondering what other newsgroup members think about the lack of GUI
> builder on platforms apart from window systems.
> We have Unix workstations for which the licenses are more expensive and
> yet even though we pay more we get less.
> Is this an RSI policy?
> In a previous communication with RSI about this subject I was told,
> "It was easier to impliment the GUI builder in windows and that is why
> it hasn't been ported to other platforms"
> Is this true? Even if it is, it surely RSI should be working a little
> harder in porting it to other platforms!
> It alsmost feels like I have a student version of IDL. Maybey I should
> be paying student rates.......
> Any comments?
> Cheers
> Dave Brennan