[Oberon] PO2013 - System.CloseTrack / System.ExtendDisplay

Skulski, Wojciech skulski at pas.rochester.edu
Fri May 3 13:01:42 CEST 2019

It is tempting to have a configuration file, even though I can appreciate Joerg's remark that such a file can be in fact a module. A config file can lead to a Unix disease that one never knows what the computer is doing without digging into and deciphering .rc files which seem to be everywhere. It is a serious illness in my opinion, though "seasoned programmers" seem to appreciate it very much.

I like Andreas' idea of adding a system-wide menu bar. Another such menu bar is implicitly present on my keyboard, though not on screen, in a form of F-keys. These can be assigned to various common tasks. I used to place a strip of paper above the F-keys in the past. For example, I am now used to the F2 which creates a shallow copy of a viewer in BlackBox.

I am also not sure if I would call this mechanism a "config file". I would prefer talking of "macro facility" of the sort HOT-KEY = "string". For example: 
CTRL-K = "Compiler.Compile list-of-files".

I know that this idea opens a Pandora box, because the Compiler takes its input from a Text rather than from a string. So it is not as obvious as it might look to me.


From: Oberon [oberon-bounces at lists.inf.ethz.ch] on behalf of Andreas Pirklbauer [andreas_pirklbauer at yahoo.com]
Sent: Friday, May 3, 2019 6:45 AM
To: ETH Oberon and related systems
Subject: [Oberon]  PO2013 - System.CloseTrack / System.ExtendDisplay

   > The drawback of the commands, and of Text User Interface (TUI) in general, is that the commands need be present on every screen.

The commands System.NextDisplay and System.PrevDisplay are placed in the *same* spot in System.Tool in *every* virtual display, i.e. every screen. So if the user doesn’t change the height of the log viewer (which is shared among all displays), one can *rapidly* rotate forward and backwards through all currently open virtual screens with ease. It’s a hack to make it work with a TUI such as Oberon.

A keyboard combination may be worth considering, for example -> (arrow right) and <- (arrow left) or some other key combination (ctrl-n, ctrl-b) like in emacs. I have also played with placing little arrows in the title bar of the *log* viewer (which usually stays at the same spot on the screen, no matter the display one is in) or even adding a permanently present top or bottom level menu bar as in macOS or Cedar.

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