RunRev Script Editor and Linux

Peter Alcibiades palcibiades-first at yahoo.co.uk
Thu Jul 15 03:28:06 CDT 2010


I'm not (publicly at least) telling Kevin how to run his business.  I am
saying to him, I bought it, and I want it to work.  That is an entirely
legitimate point to make, first privately, then publicly if that has no
results.

Are native Linux apps distro and installation specific?  No.  Are they
compiled individually?  Yes.  You can download the source code for gedit and
compile it on any Linux installation with the classic

     configure
     make
     make install

We do not have a version of gedit which is tweaked for ion2 or Debian.  We
have a version of gedit that is written to be compileable so as to run on
any Linux.

Installation differs from distro to distro, because the various files may be
in different places, and they use different package managers.  The source
code is the same however.   But this specific install issue is not what is
going wrong with Rev.  It is not being released in an apt or rpm version for
installation, its being released as a universal binary that should just run
from the home directory, from /etc - from anyplace.  

Take RealBasic.  You download a package.  From memory, they have deb, rpm
and universal binary versions.  I picked the universal binary, put it in my
home directory, fired it up, and it runs.  If its correctly written why
wouldn't it?  If RealBasic can do it, Rev can do it.

We need to accept the real situation.  This is not about whether some of us
are suited to a particular programming language more than another.  Rev
suits me perfectly, when it works.  Its about whether core functionality of
a particular programming language works as required and as advertised.

Its not about standardizing on one distro.  Python does not have to
standardize on one distro, gedit does not, RealBasic does not, neither does
Rev.  The task is to run on Linux.  That's the standard.  If it don't run on
a plain vanilla install of Debian or Suse or Red Hat, it ain't a product.

It is not that Rev works perfectly, but only on one distro that it has
standardized on.  It does not work properly on any distro.  This is why,
while releasing a community distro with Rev preinstalled might be a step
towards diagnosing the problem,  it is not the solution to the problem.

It is not that some of us do not have the dependencies that Rev needs either
installed, properly installed, or properly configured.   This could happen I
suppose, but it is Rev's problem and not ours if it does.  A well behaved
Linux application will test for the short list of dependencies that Rev has
and notify the user if they are missing.   And they are, incidentally,
minimal.  It will be hard to find a mainstream distribution that does not
include them.

I have found Window Managers Rev will not run on.  I've not found a distro
it will not run on. 

It is not about whether Linux is suitable for the desktop.  It is, but if
even were it not, this would not be a valid excuse for releasing product
that does not work on it.  If you really don't think its suitable for the
desktop, don't sell product that is doomed for failure when attempting to
run on it.  Of course, Linux is perfectly suitable for the desktop, and
there is no reason why you cannot have stable applications on it. 
Debian/Ubuntu/Fedora/Suse have tens of thousands of them.

Should we use workarounds?

In a way yes, that was a route I took in the beginning.  The editor crashes,
use Geany.  The fonts don't show, use the few ones that do.  Printing?  Use
awk to reformat, or output to a handwritten .rtf file and pipe it into
OpenOffice.  Of course, all this is the reverse of write once and run
everywhere, but still.  The screen?  Reset the resolution every time you use
Rev?  This is where I draw the line.  No, I'm not doing that.  As a
customer, I won't be treated like this by any company.

What should we do for Rev?  It seems to me that the best thing we could do
for them is, stop making excuses for them.  Python, RealBasic, PyQT, PyGTK,
Perl, Lua.... they all run on Linux without all this stuff.  There is no
reason Rev cannot too.  It must, if its to have a future on the platform.
-- 
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