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ZZDEV Problems

I've been trying for the past several days to post some new msgs to ZZDEV,
without any success. The mail keeps bouncing.

The address I've been sending to is zzdev@xxxxxxxxxx, which should be the
list, correct? I'm not sure what I am doing wrong so far, and it naturally
is disturbing to me.

I'll include the two msgs I wanted to send below. HTH.

Windows port project
Sorry for being gone for so long, but other matters have been getting in
the way. After my talk with Marlene, I had promised to try and work on the
prototype Windows 95/98 installation package, and I should be free to do so
now. If anyone else is already working on this, let me know (I thought
someone said Andrew was?), as I don't want to step on anyone's toes.

I am aware of the liability concerns that you've voiced earlier, so this
will be just a proof-of-concept version for now. What'll happen with it
later will be you decision, of course).

For now, I'm using ActivePerl 1.0 (build 509), which is supposed to be BC
with Sarathy's port. Since its under the Community Liscense, it supposedly
doesn't restrict your usage, but I can't say how it would effect us. The
other alternative, Perl for Win32, is under both Artistic Liscense and GPL,
and I know that there are concerns about the latter already. Both are
distributed and supported by ActiveState, and  can be found at
http://www.activestate.com/default.htm . If there are other Win32 perl
ports that we may use or need to support, let me know.

I have a few questions before going ahead, and a few suggestions  that have
already come to mind after going over the porting instructions that already

First off, when we're ready to do so, I assume we'll want a self-installing
system a la InstallShield. In order to do this, I'll need to know what
we'll be bundling together with the program. For example, will we want to
have it autoinstall Perl (or offer the option to do so), or should we
assume that the user has already installed it (or can install it later)? In
the latter case, we might have to suppoort multiple Perl ports, which would
be a major hassle; in the former case, the install might walk all over any
existing Perl they have, which is just as bad. Also, there are additional
packages needed, like the DBFile and WinCurses libraries, or (in the case
of ActivePerl under Win95) the  DCOM95 controls. What it comes down to is
this: either we bundle them together, adding to the overhead of the install
and sticking a lot of options for the user to choose from, or we require
them to pick up a lot of packages on their own from several different web
sites, with all the hassle that that entails. IMHO, while its not
unreasonable to require the latter for developers, trying to do so for
novice users is a potential disaster. The all-in-one package solves the
problem better, even if it means having to write seperate 'auto' and
'expert' install modes. Better to solve the problem once on our end than
have each user solve it themselves.

This may seem obvious, but there are also issues of licensing and such that
would need to be addressed in order to do it that way. I thought I'd bring
it all up now rather than leave things to chance.

The second point I'd like to make is that it IMO we've gotten to the point
where we need to break zigzag.pm into seperate pieces. The progam is
getting quite large, and it will soon be unmanageable this way. More
importantly, it will be a lot easier to maintain all the ports (I'm
assuming that there will be a Mac port too, at some point) if we break the
system-related part out into seperate files. Again, this is pretty obvious
from an SE point of view, but it adds to the trouble with distributions
etc. and needs to be carefully thought out.

I've only just picked up version 6.8, so I'll see how it works with the
existing material. I should have some suggestions and (hopefully) a working
port RSN.


Next time I'll salt my toes first...
Earlier today I wrote :

>The second point I'd like to make is that it IMO we've gotten to the point
>where we need to break zigzag.pm into seperate pieces. 

OK, well, I should have been paying more attention, but as I said, I was
only just getting my bearings. I now can see that it *is* broken into two
parts (zigzag, the main file, and zigzag.pm, the support functions). Sorry
for any hostile implications that I might have seemed to have been making.

I think I'd best keep my mouth shut, until I've got a better idea of how
the program works...

Schol-R-LEA;2 ELF JAM LCF BiWM MGT GS (http://www.slip.net/~scholr/)
First Speaker, Last Eristic Church of Finagle and Holy Bisexuality
i with the soul of a hamlet	 ** Ye shall know the Truth, and 
doomed always to wallow in farce ** The Truth shall drive you mad.