text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

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text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
Hi friends,

I know that copying text form a PDF file may result in unexspected results,
but this is really ridicoulous!?

I created a PDF from LC (selected "Save as PDF" in the macOS Print dialog)
and when I copy some text and past it into TextEdit, this is what i get:
<https://major-k.de/staxx/text_from_lc_pdf.jpg>
Where on earth are my numbers and where is my text?

Any insights very appreciated!


Best

Klaus
--
Klaus Major
https://www.major-k.de
[hidden email]


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode

That looks like a perfectly valid WTF file.

Best wishes,

Curry Kenworthy

Custom Software Development
"Better Methods, Better Results"
LiveCode Training and Consulting
http://livecodeconsulting.com/

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode

> Am 18.02.2020 um 19:45 schrieb Curry Kenworthy via use-livecode <[hidden email]>:
>
> That looks like a perfectly valid WTF file.

very funny, almost as funny as "FieldTrip: fully paid, but still in beta after 7 (SEVEN) years"! 8-)
Yes, I know I am just too impatient...

> Best wishes,
>
> Curry Kenworthy

--
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https://www.major-k.de
[hidden email]


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode

Touche! :)

Best wishes,

Curry Kenworthy

Custom Software Development
"Better Methods, Better Results"
LiveCode Training and Consulting
http://livecodeconsulting.com/

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode
On 2/18/20 10:40 AM, Klaus major-k via use-livecode wrote:

> Any insights very appreciated!

Wieder came through with no problem.
What more could you possibly ask for?

--
  Mark Wieder
  [hidden email]

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode


> Am 18.02.2020 um 19:53 schrieb Klaus major-k via use-livecode <[hidden email]>:
>
>
>> Am 18.02.2020 um 19:45 schrieb Curry Kenworthy via use-livecode <[hidden email]>:
>>
>> That looks like a perfectly valid WTF file.
>
> very funny, almost as funny as "FieldTrip: fully paid, but still in beta after 7 (SEVEN) years"! 8-)
> Yes, I know I am just too impatient...
>
Not to forget SpreadLib..... ;)



>> Best wishes,
>>
>> Curry Kenworthy
>
> --
> Klaus Major
> https://www.major-k.de
> [hidden email]
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> use-livecode mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Please visit this url to subscribe, unsubscribe and manage your subscription preferences:
> http://lists.runrev.com/mailman/listinfo/use-livecode


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode


> Am 18.02.2020 um 19:40 schrieb Klaus major-k via use-livecode <[hidden email]>:
>
> Hi friends,
>
> I know that copying text form a PDF file may result in unexspected results,
> but this is really ridicoulous!?
>
> I created a PDF from LC (selected "Save as PDF" in the macOS Print dialog)
> and when I copy some text and past it into TextEdit, this is what i get:
> <https://major-k.de/staxx/text_from_lc_pdf.jpg>
> Where on earth are my numbers and where is my text?

additional info:
I exclusively use the build-in means of macOS 10.14.6 with LC Indy 9.5.1:
1. System wide Printing to PDF resp. "Open in Preview"
2. Preview to open and diplay the PDF, I copied the text here
3. TextEdit to paste the copied text from 2

--
Klaus Major
https://www.major-k.de
[hidden email]


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode

 > Not to forget SpreadLib..... ;)

Since you mention it, SpreadLib is not forgotten at all! Proud that
SpreadLib was first, and is best, of its type. SpreadOut, especially,
has come a long way since last public release. Looking forward very much
to that update.

Most addons have progressed with features and fixes privately, and are
waiting for official release, but releases take some time in themselves,
and client deadlines always have to come first. We have some clients
here that could vouch for both parts of that statement. :)

(I'm physically handicapped with some taxing health limitations, thus my
active time is finite, determined by actual daily energy/strength and
endurance, without anywhere near as much choice or freedom over my
remaining time as most people take for granted. So clients get heavy
priority, but addons are never forgotten and the work continues. Nor is
this list ever forgotten, although I can't afford to be very vocal here
beyond the occasional quick joke or brief comment. Mostly I'm a reader!
Not by choice.)

LC's "infinite bugs" increasing in tempo since LC7 and frequent breaking
changes have outpaced me at times, providing an ever-shifting foundation
for building upon. Breaking things is usually easier and faster than
cleaning up. In fact, I've devoted an amazing amount of my entire career
to finding, documenting, and developing high-quality workarounds for
these IDE and engine bugs - and it seems that we're just getting started.

But here's the good news - I'm adjusting strategies and tactics to that
reality, having finally accepted it as the norm to expect now and
perhaps forever. So I'm also developing new tools to gain the upper hand
again in this Age of IDE Bugs, and therefore confident that I will
indeed have the last laugh on this subject of my delayed progress (ha
ha) and get addon updates back on a much more regular schedule, among
other things that are likely to cause a big splash - perhaps even shake
up the industry a bit! :D

Another high priority for update release this year is WordReport - quite
a lot of inquiries lately, which are pushing it toward the top of my
list. Yep, it's coming, and it's going to reach new heights. Thanks to
all for your feedback and support! Exciting things are on the way.

--

About the subject of copying and pasting to/from LC, here's a current
bug that's easy to workaround, but also easy to forget to workaround -
and can cause mayhem:

https://quality.livecode.com/show_bug.cgi?id=22172

--

BTW, it's a tad difficult to completely ignore "WTF" posts, and my post
here was a joke on two levels, the first of which Klaus immediately
acknowledged.

But the second level had a more serious undercurrent, and it's why I
posted a reply in the first place: is WTF considered completely
squeaky-clean and shock-free nowadays? Has it, along with its component
words, been completely sanitized for all ages and audiences? And if so,
then logically: why unfailingly abbreviate, without ever using the
component words every now and then for variety, and also why not use
something a little more risque and exciting than a plain-old
unprovocative WTF? :)

Thus the WTF file format, since it is so often mentioned here lately.

Take care and enjoy coding, everyone....

Best wishes,

Curry Kenworthy

WordLib: Take charge of MS Word and OpenOffice documents
SpreadLib: "Excel-lent" spreadsheet import/export for LC
http://livecodeaddons.com/

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
@Curry, mainly.
The easy one. WTF has lost most of its bite due to simple continued usage. As Lenny Bruce noted 60 years ago, if you use a bad word often enough, it loses its badness.
The hard one. Several threads on the forum have bemoaned what is labeled an overarching bug issue in LC. There have been calls for a complete halt to development until most of the existing ones are squashed. For my part, I only notice that LC 9x crashes intermittently, though regularly. I must add that I am working mainly on a single project when this happens, and am conditioned to save often. The other projects I have currently do not exhibit this at all, though that may be simply due to the fact that I am involved in them much less intensely.
I suppose it is less worrisome that this is a problem in only a single project, than if it happened here and there, everywhere. At least I tell myself that.
I am really only concerned that LC not get a reputation for being unstable. That would turn off new users long before they ever actually experienced such a thing.
Craig


-----Original Message-----
From: Curry Kenworthy via use-livecode <[hidden email]>
To: use-livecode <[hidden email]>
Cc: Curry Kenworthy <[hidden email]>
Sent: Tue, Feb 18, 2020 5:29 pm
Subject: Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?


 > Not to forget SpreadLib..... ;)

Since you mention it, SpreadLib is not forgotten at all! Proud that
SpreadLib was first, and is best, of its type. SpreadOut, especially,
has come a long way since last public release. Looking forward very much
to that update.

Most addons have progressed with features and fixes privately, and are
waiting for official release, but releases take some time in themselves,
and client deadlines always have to come first. We have some clients
here that could vouch for both parts of that statement. :)

(I'm physically handicapped with some taxing health limitations, thus my
active time is finite, determined by actual daily energy/strength and
endurance, without anywhere near as much choice or freedom over my
remaining time as most people take for granted. So clients get heavy
priority, but addons are never forgotten and the work continues. Nor is
this list ever forgotten, although I can't afford to be very vocal here
beyond the occasional quick joke or brief comment. Mostly I'm a reader!
Not by choice.)

LC's "infinite bugs" increasing in tempo since LC7 and frequent breaking
changes have outpaced me at times, providing an ever-shifting foundation
for building upon. Breaking things is usually easier and faster than
cleaning up. In fact, I've devoted an amazing amount of my entire career
to finding, documenting, and developing high-quality workarounds for
these IDE and engine bugs - and it seems that we're just getting started.

But here's the good news - I'm adjusting strategies and tactics to that
reality, having finally accepted it as the norm to expect now and
perhaps forever. So I'm also developing new tools to gain the upper hand
again in this Age of IDE Bugs, and therefore confident that I will
indeed have the last laugh on this subject of my delayed progress (ha
ha) and get addon updates back on a much more regular schedule, among
other things that are likely to cause a big splash - perhaps even shake
up the industry a bit! :D

Another high priority for update release this year is WordReport - quite
a lot of inquiries lately, which are pushing it toward the top of my
list. Yep, it's coming, and it's going to reach new heights. Thanks to
all for your feedback and support! Exciting things are on the way.

--

About the subject of copying and pasting to/from LC, here's a current
bug that's easy to workaround, but also easy to forget to workaround -
and can cause mayhem:

https://quality.livecode.com/show_bug.cgi?id=22172

--

BTW, it's a tad difficult to completely ignore "WTF" posts, and my post
here was a joke on two levels, the first of which Klaus immediately
acknowledged.

But the second level had a more serious undercurrent, and it's why I
posted a reply in the first place: is WTF considered completely
squeaky-clean and shock-free nowadays? Has it, along with its component
words, been completely sanitized for all ages and audiences? And if so,
then logically: why unfailingly abbreviate, without ever using the
component words every now and then for variety, and also why not use
something a little more risque and exciting than a plain-old
unprovocative WTF? :)

Thus the WTF file format, since it is so often mentioned here lately.

Take care and enjoy coding, everyone....

Best wishes,

Curry Kenworthy

WordLib: Take charge of MS Word and OpenOffice documents
SpreadLib: "Excel-lent" spreadsheet import/export for LC
http://livecodeaddons.com/

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode
Not sure but the resulting text looks like this has been OCRd. We had a similar issue with this at a customer and I noticed that OCR seems to work best on greyscale 300dpi. It just depends on the engine.

Bob S


> On Feb 18, 2020, at 10:45 , Curry Kenworthy via use-livecode <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>
> That looks like a perfectly valid WTF file.
>
> Best wishes,
>
> Curry Kenworthy
>
> Custom Software Development
> "Better Methods, Better Results"
> LiveCode Training and Consulting
> http://livecodeconsulting.com/
>
> _______________________________________________
> use-livecode mailing list
> [hidden email]
> Please visit this url to subscribe, unsubscribe and manage your subscription preferences:
> http://lists.runrev.com/mailman/listinfo/use-livecode


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode

Craig:

 > WTF has lost most of its bite due to simple continued usage

Then, to indulge your premise, which I agree is the trend in a great
many social and media circles (but not all) consider this:

So WTF is the continued point of using WTF? If it no longer has enough
shock value to raise any eyebrows, then it can hardly be the most
appropriate choice of expression for any real-life surprise, concern, or
scorn. Might as well say, oh golly gee. Oh me oh my.

As I mentioned before, logically "why not use something a little more
risque and exciting than a plain-old unprovocative WTF? :) "

(But if it makes anyone uncomfortable that I'm using WTF repeatedly
while discussing its previous use here, I apologize. But the point is -
that also would tend to call the premise into question.)

Social trends and norms are usually not logical, but as coders we should be.

 > I am really only concerned that LC not get a reputation for
 > being unstable. That would turn off new users long before they
 > ever actually experienced such a thing.

In contrast to scoundrels such as myself who have long worked to protect
LC from a reputation for being unstable, by the alternative and
nefarious means of working hard to encourage its stability. :D

It's much more likely for someone to get a bad impression from unlucky
hands-on experience with the thing itself, than to stumble across these
discussions while surfing. And if so, they'd be as likely to see me
praising LC as, in this case, using the "bad language" of (not WTF, but)
explaining how I've come to accept the sandy foundation and use new
tactics to gain the upper hand again.

BTW, stability was actually not the main category of bugs I was talking
about. Perhaps I could have said the Age of LC Bugs or Engine Bugs. I
actually thought IDE Bugs sounded less negative. Ah well. Sorry for the
bad language, WT(xxx) was I thinking! :)

Anyway, that's all the talk I can afford (otherwise at the expense of
work) so back to lurking and working. I enjoyed taking this "interval"
here to discuss and will do so again when time/energy permits. Hope to
read more of Dar Scott (a very logical man) and Richmond (always
provocative, never boring) too. Curry interval over, back to the usual
programming here. Take care, all!

Best wishes,

Curry Kenworthy

Custom Software Development
"Better Methods, Better Results"
LiveCode Training and Consulting
http://livecodeconsulting.com/

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
Or a bad infection for that matter.

> On Feb 18, 2020, at 15:39 , Curry Kenworthy via use-livecode <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> It's much more likely for someone to get a bad impression from unlucky hands-on experience with the thing itself...

Bob S


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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode
On 2020-02-18 18:40, Klaus major-k via use-livecode wrote:

> Hi friends,
>
> I know that copying text form a PDF file may result in unexspected
> results,
> but this is really ridicoulous!?
>
> I created a PDF from LC (selected "Save as PDF" in the macOS Print
> dialog)
> and when I copy some text and past it into TextEdit, this is what i
> get:
> <https://major-k.de/staxx/text_from_lc_pdf.jpg>
> Where on earth are my numbers and where is my text?
>
> Any insights very appreciated!

As requested by Klaus on the forum thread
(http://forums.livecode.com/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=33683&start=15) this
isn't a bug.

TL;DR version - extracting text from PDFs is hard, and viewers all do it
differently with different levels of 'correctness'.

The fonts used and the layout can affect what they can produce.

In this case, the stack in question was being printed with the default
system theme fonts (on macOS this is .SFNSText it would seem) - and for
whatever reason that font generates glyphs for numbers in the PDF which
PDF viewers don't seem to be able to map back to actual digits.

Upshot - make sure the controls you are printing have an explicit font
setting to a 'normal' font if you want to be able to copy text from any
PDF you might generate as a result :)

Warmest Regards,

Mark.

--
Mark Waddingham ~ [hidden email] ~ http://www.livecode.com/
LiveCode: Everyone can create apps

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Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
Hi Mark,

> Am 20.02.2020 um 14:55 schrieb Mark Waddingham via use-livecode <[hidden email]>:
>
> On 2020-02-18 18:40, Klaus major-k via use-livecode wrote:
>> Hi friends,
>> I know that copying text form a PDF file may result in unexspected results,
>> but this is really ridicoulous!?
>> I created a PDF from LC (selected "Save as PDF" in the macOS Print dialog)
>> and when I copy some text and past it into TextEdit, this is what i get:
>> <https://major-k.de/staxx/text_from_lc_pdf.jpg>
>> Where on earth are my numbers and where is my text?
>> Any insights very appreciated!
>
> As requested by Klaus on the forum thread (http://forums.livecode.com/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=33683&start=15) this isn't a bug.
> TL;DR version - extracting text from PDFs is hard, and viewers all do it differently with different levels of 'correctness'.
> The fonts used and the layout can affect what they can produce.
> In this case, the stack in question was being printed with the default system theme fonts (on macOS this is .SFNSText it would seem) - and for whatever reason that font generates glyphs for numbers in the PDF which PDF viewers don't seem to be able to map back to actual digits.
> Upshot - make sure the controls you are printing have an explicit font setting to a 'normal' font if you want to be able to copy text from any PDF you might generate as a result :)

thank you very much for this valuable hint! :-D

> Warmest Regards,
>
> Mark.

Best

Klaus

--
Klaus Major
https://www.major-k.de
[hidden email]


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Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode
dunbarx wrote:

 > Several threads on the forum have bemoaned what is labeled an
 > overarching bug issue in LC.
...
 > I am really only concerned that LC not get a reputation for being
 > unstable.

Most of us share that concern.  To assess the issue soberly compels us
to examine the nature and sources of reputation.

Reputation is only partly a reflection of actual technical fitness. The
rest is a mix of factors that lie far outside of computer science, into
the realms of psychology, sociology, and political science.

This thread is a good example:  What might have seemed at first like a
bug in LC turned out to be a limitation inherent in the nature of PDF
itself.

On the forums we see a another, with surprising frequency:  when the
behavior of a script is not understood, the poster will sometimes
surmise that the cause is somehow file format corruption. Many cases
turn out to be just syntax errors, and IIRC few or none of those have
turned out to be file format corruption.

We see a similar pattern with the documentation: many posts point to a
need for additional information being added to the docs, with
recommendations for learning basics linking to any of a wide range of
resources spread out across the web, but on further examination we find
that the fairly comprehensive 655-page User Guide included with the
install hadn't yet been consulted at all.


None of this is to suggest that LiveCode is the world's first
million-line code base that's completely bug-free.

But neither is it a roach motel when we consider the scope and
complexity of the system with common metrics like bugs/kloc.


In the vast gulf between needlessly contentious allegations of
"apologists" at one extreme and "Henny Pennys" on the other is a middle
ground where meaningful product improvement can actually happen:

- Let questions be questions:  When an unexpected outcome is observed,
we can keep an open mind about possible causes until the issue is
diagnosed.  If we keep telling new users in advance that every
unexpected outcome is a bug in LC they'll eventually believe it, even in
the many cases where that isn't true.

- Let learning happen right in the box: We are blessed with a great many
contributions from community members all across the web.  But to be
clear, many of these predate the expanded documentation effort the team
undertook several versions ago.  Moreover, those written after LC
adopted an open source workflow missed the opportunity for greater
readership, keeping them in a relatively small corner of the
possibly-discoverable web rather than submitting them to the core docs
every user is directed to right in the Help menu.  The docs are good,
and can always be made even better.  We can help. Of course we want to
see as much LC info everywhere, but core basics might just as well be in
the box, and we do a good service to the learner to let them know when
they already are.

- Let pre-release builds realize their value:  use them, whenever
practical.  Putting off trying a new version until after Stable is the
one choice that guarantees any issues affecting your specific work won't
be fixed in that version.  We know from our own experiences and decades
of industry literature that the earlier in the process bugs are
identified, the less impact they have, and thus the total systemic cost
to address them is much lower.


These are just suggestions, and certainly not any attempt at
establishing any sort of "rules".  I have no authority to require anyone
to do anything, nor would I even try, as I understand that from time to
time there can be good reason to ignore each of these, and any other
common practices observable in healthy software communities.

But most of us have been around the block enough times to recognize the
value of such ordinary practices.  And all of us want LC to improve -
both in terms of actual product quality, and its *perceived* quality,
its reputation.

LiveCode is moving its way up the TIOBE Index of programming language
popularity, slowly but steadily. For all the reasons Geoff Moore
outlined in Crossing the Chasm and many more, expanding LC's audience
benefits all of us: more tools, more libraries, more eyeballs, more hands.

There isn't a single language on the TIOBE Index that's bug-free, and
yes, that includes LiveCode.

We the community have at least as much power and influence over LiveCode
adoption as anything the core team can do, by virtue of our numbers and
reach.  With any programming tool, the number of end-users who
ultimately benefit is orders of magnitude larger than the number of
developers using it.

Let's produce great work, and build upon those practices proven across
the industry to expand both real and perceived quality.



Along those lines, I'll extend an offer here:

 > For my part, I only notice that LC 9x crashes intermittently, though
 > regularly. I must add that I am working mainly on a single project
 > when this happens, and am conditioned to save often. The other
 > projects I have currently do not exhibit this at all, though that
 > may be simply due to the fact that I am involved in them much less
 > intensely.
 > I suppose it is less worrisome that this is a problem in only a
 > single project, than if it happened here and there, everywhere.

Crashers are of course serious, but the good news is that you're only
seeing it in one project.  Feel free to email me directly if you're in a
position to allow me to review the errant code, and I'll see what we can
do to both find a workaround to keep your progress moving along well,
and submit a report for the underlying cause once we find it.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  ____________________________________________________________________
  [hidden email]                http://www.FourthWorld.com


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Re: Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode


Crashers are of course serious, but the good news is that you're only
seeing it in one project.  Feel free to email me directly if you're in a
position to allow me to review the errant code, and I'll see what we can
do to both find a workaround to keep your progress moving along well,
and submit a report for the underlying cause once we find it.
Richard.
This happens all over the place, and seems to occur only after the stack has been fiddled with for a while. I cannot imagine that anything can be gleaned from the code base, which is 9000 lines of straight LC, with only a smattering of printing, printing to PDF, creating text files and reading and writing to them.
In fact, none of those "outside LC" gadgets have ever caused a crash. The bugaboo is inside somewhere; I do not believe it is something I wrote.
I have seen this in my other projects. They are not free of this issue. They just are not worked as hard,
Can I say "bugaboo" which is not a bug, but rather something that just bugs me?
I save often, and thereby save myself a lot of trouble.
Craig


-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Gaskin via use-livecode <[hidden email]>
To: use-livecode <[hidden email]>
Cc: Richard Gaskin <[hidden email]>
Sent: Thu, Feb 20, 2020 2:57 pm
Subject: Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

dunbarx wrote:

 > Several threads on the forum have bemoaned what is labeled an
 > overarching bug issue in LC.
...
 > I am really only concerned that LC not get a reputation for being
 > unstable.

Most of us share that concern.  To assess the issue soberly compels us
to examine the nature and sources of reputation.

Reputation is only partly a reflection of actual technical fitness. The
rest is a mix of factors that lie far outside of computer science, into
the realms of psychology, sociology, and political science.

This thread is a good example:  What might have seemed at first like a
bug in LC turned out to be a limitation inherent in the nature of PDF
itself.

On the forums we see a another, with surprising frequency:  when the
behavior of a script is not understood, the poster will sometimes
surmise that the cause is somehow file format corruption. Many cases
turn out to be just syntax errors, and IIRC few or none of those have
turned out to be file format corruption.

We see a similar pattern with the documentation: many posts point to a
need for additional information being added to the docs, with
recommendations for learning basics linking to any of a wide range of
resources spread out across the web, but on further examination we find
that the fairly comprehensive 655-page User Guide included with the
install hadn't yet been consulted at all.


None of this is to suggest that LiveCode is the world's first
million-line code base that's completely bug-free.

But neither is it a roach motel when we consider the scope and
complexity of the system with common metrics like bugs/kloc.


In the vast gulf between needlessly contentious allegations of
"apologists" at one extreme and "Henny Pennys" on the other is a middle
ground where meaningful product improvement can actually happen:

- Let questions be questions:  When an unexpected outcome is observed,
we can keep an open mind about possible causes until the issue is
diagnosed.  If we keep telling new users in advance that every
unexpected outcome is a bug in LC they'll eventually believe it, even in
the many cases where that isn't true.

- Let learning happen right in the box: We are blessed with a great many
contributions from community members all across the web.  But to be
clear, many of these predate the expanded documentation effort the team
undertook several versions ago.  Moreover, those written after LC
adopted an open source workflow missed the opportunity for greater
readership, keeping them in a relatively small corner of the
possibly-discoverable web rather than submitting them to the core docs
every user is directed to right in the Help menu.  The docs are good,
and can always be made even better.  We can help. Of course we want to
see as much LC info everywhere, but core basics might just as well be in
the box, and we do a good service to the learner to let them know when
they already are.

- Let pre-release builds realize their value:  use them, whenever
practical.  Putting off trying a new version until after Stable is the
one choice that guarantees any issues affecting your specific work won't
be fixed in that version.  We know from our own experiences and decades
of industry literature that the earlier in the process bugs are
identified, the less impact they have, and thus the total systemic cost
to address them is much lower.


These are just suggestions, and certainly not any attempt at
establishing any sort of "rules".  I have no authority to require anyone
to do anything, nor would I even try, as I understand that from time to
time there can be good reason to ignore each of these, and any other
common practices observable in healthy software communities.

But most of us have been around the block enough times to recognize the
value of such ordinary practices.  And all of us want LC to improve -
both in terms of actual product quality, and its *perceived* quality,
its reputation.

LiveCode is moving its way up the TIOBE Index of programming language
popularity, slowly but steadily. For all the reasons Geoff Moore
outlined in Crossing the Chasm and many more, expanding LC's audience
benefits all of us: more tools, more libraries, more eyeballs, more hands.

There isn't a single language on the TIOBE Index that's bug-free, and
yes, that includes LiveCode.

We the community have at least as much power and influence over LiveCode
adoption as anything the core team can do, by virtue of our numbers and
reach.  With any programming tool, the number of end-users who
ultimately benefit is orders of magnitude larger than the number of
developers using it.

Let's produce great work, and build upon those practices proven across
the industry to expand both real and perceived quality.



Along those lines, I'll extend an offer here:

 > For my part, I only notice that LC 9x crashes intermittently, though
 > regularly. I must add that I am working mainly on a single project
 > when this happens, and am conditioned to save often. The other
 > projects I have currently do not exhibit this at all, though that
 > may be simply due to the fact that I am involved in them much less
 > intensely.
 > I suppose it is less worrisome that this is a problem in only a
 > single project, than if it happened here and there, everywhere.

Crashers are of course serious, but the good news is that you're only
seeing it in one project.  Feel free to email me directly if you're in a
position to allow me to review the errant code, and I'll see what we can
do to both find a workaround to keep your progress moving along well,
and submit a report for the underlying cause once we find it.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  ____________________________________________________________________
  [hidden email]                http://www.FourthWorld.com


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Diagnosing a crasher (was Re: Quality, reputation, and improving both)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
dunbarx wrote:

 > Richard wrote:
 >> Crashers are of course serious, but the good news is that you're only
 >> seeing it in one project.  Feel free to email me directly if you're
 >> in a position to allow me to review the errant code, and I'll see
 >> what we can do to both find a workaround to keep your progress moving
 >> along well, and submit a report for the underlying cause once we find
 >> it. This happens all over the place, and seems to occur only after
 >> the stack has been fiddled with for a while.
 >
 > This happens all over the place, and seems to occur only after the
 > stack has been fiddled with for a while.

Apparently I was mistaken.  When I read:

   "I must add that I am working mainly on a single project when this
    happens, and am conditioned to save often. The other projects I
    have currently do not exhibit this at all, though that may be
    simply due to the fact that I am involved in them much less
    intensely.
    I suppose it is less worrisome that this is a problem in only a
    single project, than if it happened here and there, everywhere.

...I got the impression that it was a problem in only one single
project, less worrisome than if it happened in others.

Do you see a pattern to the crashes that might lead to a recipe?


 > I cannot imagine that anything can be gleaned from the code base,
 > which is 9000 lines of straight LC, with only a smattering of
 > printing, printing to PDF, creating text files and reading and writing
 > to them.

Software is code. I already have the engine code.

I'm of the opinion that crashers are something that ideally should never
happen in any scripting language.  So even if there's something we can
change in your code to eliminate the crash, I'd still submit a bug
report to see if a more graceful degradation is possible.

You're not obliged to accept the help.


 > In fact, none of those "outside LC" gadgets have ever caused a crash.

That may be useful diagnostic info.  What is an "'outside LC' gadget"?


 > The bugaboo is inside somewhere; I do not believe it is something I
 > wrote.

If you wrote nothing no crash would occur. :)

I'm not interested in seeking blame, only in seeking solutions.  And as
I've said above, if there needs to a be any sort blaming we can always
blame crashes on the engine.  So even if we find a workaround in which
we change your script to stop the crash, that it resulted in a crash and
not an error dialog implies an opportunity to further refine LC's
exception handling.  And along the way you'd see the end to a
long-standing crasher that's been interrupting your workflow.


 > Can I say "bugaboo" which is not a bug, but rather something that just
 > bugs me?

Sure, feel free to say anything you like.  But to me, any crash in any
scripting language is a serious issue that merits further diagnosis.

If I can help diagnose this one I'd be happy to lend a hand.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems
  Software Design and Development for the Desktop, Mobile, and the Web
  ____________________________________________________________________
  [hidden email]                http://www.FourthWorld.com

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Re: Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
In reply to this post by Klaus major-k via use-livecode
On 2/20/20 11:56 AM, Richard Gaskin via use-livecode wrote:

> On the forums we see a another, with surprising frequency:  when the
> behavior of a script is not understood, the poster will sometimes
> surmise that the cause is somehow file format corruption. Many cases
> turn out to be just syntax errors, and IIRC few or none of those have
> turned out to be file format corruption.

So here's one for you: As I've mentioned before, I don't use 9.6dpx for
anything serious. I've been working with LC9.6dp2 lately to see if my
stacks still work with the latest builds and I've been coming up with
interesting results.

At least twice now I've been editing scripts with two tabs open in the
script editor. After dutifully saving my changes I close the IDE and
relaunch to ensure a clean slate. I see that my stack crashes horribly
because the script I was editing has been saved into the wrong object
(the other script I was editing). Luckily backups saved me.

I have two different corrupted stacks after editing them (one of the
corrupted stacks is your 4wdevolution stack - happy to send it your way
if desired). Again backups saved the day. Made the same changes to the
stack and it works fine.

One of my stacks that behaved properly in LC9.5.1 consistently crashed
my distro's desktop manager in LC9.6dp2 (any edition), having to be
restarted. I just spent two days trying to figure out if I was doing
something wrong or something changed in LC itself, and it turns out to
be a combination. The cef browser code has changed enough that just
instantiating a browser widget is enough to cause havoc, so I now
sidestep some previously-working code and hope that still works when we
get dp3.

Yes, I realize that these are dp releases and shouldn't be considered
stable, but it's gotten to the point where I don't know whether problems
I come across are bugs in my code, bugs in the latest LC build, or
upcoming changes to The Way Things Work.

--
  Mark Wieder
  [hidden email]

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Re: Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
Thank you, Mark.  Receiving the corrupted stack might be interesting,
but what would certainly be most interesting would be to re-create that
here.

Do you have a recipe I can follow for this?

Do you see the same behavior if plugins are disabled?

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World Systems


Mark Wieder wrote:

> On 2/20/20 11:56 AM, Richard Gaskin via use-livecode wrote:
>
>> On the forums we see a another, with surprising frequency:  when the
>> behavior of a script is not understood, the poster will sometimes
>> surmise that the cause is somehow file format corruption. Many cases
>> turn out to be just syntax errors, and IIRC few or none of those have
>> turned out to be file format corruption.
>
> So here's one for you: As I've mentioned before, I don't use 9.6dpx for
> anything serious. I've been working with LC9.6dp2 lately to see if my
> stacks still work with the latest builds and I've been coming up with
> interesting results.
>
> At least twice now I've been editing scripts with two tabs open in the
> script editor. After dutifully saving my changes I close the IDE and
> relaunch to ensure a clean slate. I see that my stack crashes horribly
> because the script I was editing has been saved into the wrong object
> (the other script I was editing). Luckily backups saved me.
>
> I have two different corrupted stacks after editing them (one of the
> corrupted stacks is your 4wdevolution stack - happy to send it your way
> if desired). Again backups saved the day. Made the same changes to the
> stack and it works fine.
>
> One of my stacks that behaved properly in LC9.5.1 consistently crashed
> my distro's desktop manager in LC9.6dp2 (any edition), having to be
> restarted. I just spent two days trying to figure out if I was doing
> something wrong or something changed in LC itself, and it turns out to
> be a combination. The cef browser code has changed enough that just
> instantiating a browser widget is enough to cause havoc, so I now
> sidestep some previously-working code and hope that still works when we
> get dp3.
>
> Yes, I realize that these are dp releases and shouldn't be considered
> stable, but it's gotten to the point where I don't know whether problems
> I come across are bugs in my code, bugs in the latest LC build, or
> upcoming changes to The Way Things Work.

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Re: Quality, reputation, and improving both (was Re: text copied form LC generated PDF, WTF?)

Klaus major-k via use-livecode
On 2/20/20 7:34 PM, Richard Gaskin via use-livecode wrote:
> Thank you, Mark.  Receiving the corrupted stack might be interesting,

A doubtful prospect at best.

> Do you have a recipe I can follow for this?

Absolutely no recipe. These things just sneak up on me, and by the time
I can notice them I've already relaunched the IDE. That's what's most
frustrating. If I had a recipe there would be something to fix.

--
  Mark Wieder
  [hidden email]

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