Manuel Mall wrote:

thanks for the update and explanation on your Alt-Design.

To be honest: I like it. Reminds me very much of my first exposure to
programming language processing (Compilers) nearly 30 years ago => top-down
recursive-decent parsing for Pascal. I still think its the best parsing
model around (beats YACC type stuff by a long way) in terms of ease of
development / understanding / use.
Recursive descent is like magic, isn't it? I agree that it's a very tidy approach, which I have used a few times. What motivated me here, though, was just the desire to have the flow of processing follow the natural hierarchy of the data. Such an approach starts with a guaranteed basis of algorithmic clarity; the alternative, it seems to me, starts with a guaranteed basis of obscurity. That, certainly, is what I found when I tried to follow the logic trail through the code.

The other idea was the old unix principle of the pipeline. Isolate the components and have them communicate via (possibly bi-directional) pipelines of data/commands/events. This doesn't map very cleanly onto the processes that operate on the FO tree and the layout/Area trees, but it was just what I needed to invert the flow of control during FO tree building.

Do you have any similar simple / effective ideas for the layout part which,
following the discussions on this list, the new FOP design under CVS HEAD
seems to struggle most with?
There are good reasons why the layout is not susceptible to the same simple solution.. I do have a number of ideas to contribute, and when the web site is restored I will be referring to some of the notes I have made and posted there.

"Lord, to whom shall we go?"

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