Open Source Kickstarter Report Card

Richard Gaskin ambassador at
Tue Aug 18 01:03:10 EDT 2015

RunRevPlanet wrote:
> Here is my point and regret: every month that a new user downloads LiveCode,
> plays with the IDE, and then leaves (likely never return) and laughs with her
> colleagues about a code editor that doesn't have bookmarks or search and replace
> in selected text, is a month wasted in building up the LiveCode user base.
> Forget the big plans and clever stuff like code completion or code tips, just
> deliver basic functionality that should be standard in any IDE worthy of he name
> Integrated Development Environment straight out of the box and then maybe the
> "tire kickers" will stay and the number of users grow.

Been meaning to say that your earlier to-do list was a most excellent one.

But what you wrote here is so compellingly clear and succinct, I hope 
it's well understood.

The other stuff is cool, but let's keep it real: it's a scripting 
language, and it needs a world-class editor.  The editor is where any 
user of any scripting language will be spending most of their time, so 
no matter how cool anything else is the experience will diminish if the 
editor isn't top-notch.

Besides, the script editor is what the team needs to work on LiveCode, 
and what all of us need to contribute, so there's nothing but reasons to 
make it the #1 priority.

The script editor got a good makeover a few years ago, but it's grown 
since then and has become Third Level Slow on the Gaskin Inverse 
Performance Scale:
1. Measurably Slow
2. Noticeably Slow
3. Annoyingly Slow
4. Prohibitively Slow

It's not quite at 4 yet, but when a 3.0GHz Haswell has trouble keeping 
up with my slow typing I figure it's being asked to work way too hard.

Probably a lot of opportunity for optimization there, and along with it 
a chance to tidy it up a bit, add the code completion newcomers keep 
asking for every month in the forums, and flatten appearances along the way.

If I were running the show (and there are many reasons most people are 
glad I'm not) I'd take my best engineers and put them on the script 
editor full-time until it's clean, robust, and performant.

Then I'd put them on the debugger.

And only when those two are air-tight would I resume work on anything else.

Because unless those two are air-tight, nothing else matters.

All the cool new greenfield stuff will be just a playground for an aging 
audience of a fixed size if newcomers are disappointed with very basic 

  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  Ambassador at      

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