At 04:56 AM 6/14/01 +0800, Seshadri GK wrote:
>i have just been looking about to see is there any stable/mature typesettign
>system where we can borrow the algorithm. I have just started looking at Tex
>and groff. Do u think its a good place to start? I would like to see what
>has been done in these systems to do intelligent page layout. Since the
>layout is what needs changing most, I suggest that bug-fixes for those
>portions of fop which will not need major tweaking of layout related code,
>can continued to be fixed. Problems like row-span, floating objects could be
>postponed for the revamped fop.
>I would be starting to do the reachitecturing of fop-layout, and anything
>positive that might come out shall be discussed and committed with FOP.

We should establish exactly what it is that we are talking about here - 
layout improvements on the existing development track, so as to facilitate 
refinement of existing features and addition of new ones, or the complete 
re-design of FOP.

I think the general consensus so far is that a "re-architecting" will be a 
lengthy affair, and simply cannot be done to the existing development track 
without stalling other work for a considerable period. A re-architecting 
indicates a second track and a second team, leading to an improved FOP.

It would be useful to pin down precisely who wishes to work on what, I think.

I suggest that we immediately (i.e., deliverables due before end of month) 
do the following:

1. Produce a new FOP Mission/Objectives statement (the existing one is on 
the website and is obsolete); this statement should (at a high-level) 
acknowledge 2 tracks, one leading to FOP 1 (listing the goals for that), and 
one leading to FOP 2 (ditto) - input from everyone encouraged;

2. Produce a release plan based on the above (this order seems topsy-turvy, 
a bit, but I think this plan needs to drive what we hope to achieve from FOP 
1 in particular, not the other way around); committers need to prepare & 
vote on this (but community input is encouraged);

3. Re-do/improve/create design docs for FOP 1, including spelling out 
improvements and enhancements work (i.e. these docs will describe existing 
stuff _and_ anticipated stuff) - everyone involved;

4. Issue initial architectural documents for FOP 2, for _review_.

Let me elaborate on 4. Karen Lease and myself already have a fair amount of 
time put in on "re-architecting". This effort has not been conducted in 
secrecy, and we have incorporated external input. Furthermore, the 
deliverables of what we are doing are _proposed_ designs. Everyone who is 
interested will then get another chance to shape those some more. As much as 
possible we are talking about coordinated effort here.

I am most definitely not singling out Seshadri here, and I apologize in 
advance if it seems that way. I am however singling out the specific thing 
that he wants to do. I want to make it clear that in an ASF project, that 
coordination and cooperation is everything.

I understand the impetus and the motivation behind the several outside 
efforts. I work in software development in real-life, after all - I know how 
things are. In my experience communication and shared understanding is the 
key to making differing interests mesh, and that usually translates into 
publicly-available and agreed-upon basic documents such as the ones I listed 

Hoping for feedback.

Arved Sandstrom

Fairly Senior Software Type
e-plicity (
Wireless * B2B * J2EE * XML --- Halifax, Nova Scotia

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