atrn is currently certified at Journeyer level.

Name: Andy Newman
Member since: 2000-07-16 01:11:43
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I've been writing software for about 25 years now and have always shared and believed in free software. Licensing is always an issue and I have mostly donated things to the public domain to remove the issue entirely. More recently I'm retaining copyright but going BSD-style and demanding credit where credit is due. The GPL is also an option for some things. So much for that. I mostly look after the ICI programming language which is a neat little C-like object-based dynamic, interpretative language written by Tim Long. I had the fortune to work with Tim for many years and picked up the language when there where a couple of users. For a long time Tim didn't do much with ICI and I maintained it in a state of suspended animation. Then I started adding things I needed and branched it because I started making fundamental changes. Tim got back into things and the mainline ICI adopted most of my additions. Tim optimised things and weaved his magic and I was able to make my additions a loadable module so the branch could go. We now have a small but growing and useful community of users. An article in SunWorld magazine and a handful of commercial products using ICI. It once got used for a "distributed astronomical database" according to some mail from a Dr. John Good at NASA. That was one of the greatest accolades - code in space. I wonder if it ever got there? But back to ICI. It's entirely public domain and the developers are resolved to maintain that status. We all use it in commercial products and donate changes back to the project. ICI gets used in Windows and Unix applications, in embedded systems and as the basis for a Canon page description language. It is a versatile beast.

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Not many updates in the last few months. ICI just got a GUI debugger, or at least the first stages. Works well. Gtk/Glade are quite good and it doesn't mangle added code which is nice. I hacked together a version of the interpreter with its own internal scheduler to play with CSP contructs but it needs a little work (it's a real hack) but the debugger is more important. The module collection grows and grows, larger than the interpreter now (which is the way it should be). Will have to do a proper configuration tool for it one day and get it distributed/known better. Gee I could do with some help with this...

The ici gtk module is coming along. The multiple interfaces (simple direct mapping of the Gtk C biding to ICI and a set of ICI classes mapping that back to the Gtk class hierarchy!) are a pain to keep in synch but the work is largely mechanical so its not too hard. Keeps the fingers nimble and goes well with some techno streaming in from northern Europe somewhere.

More hacking at ici and its module systems. Modules now have a better makefile setup and build cleanly for both ici versions. Playing with ici's regexp substitution to make it faster. Got initial Flash output working with a simple movie generated. Next to hook it into the ici http server and stream stuff out.


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