On 03/22/2011 10:58 PM, John McCabe-Dansted wrote:

1) Compile Errors. Normal users aren't used to dealing with compile
errors and shouldn't be expected to fix them. Even I don't like
dealing with compile errors all that much.

With LyX you should not get compile errors unless you are doing something fancy. It should be the case that no ERT => smooth compilation. I can't recall the last time that was not the case with LyX.

1a) Perhaps we could do some sort of bisect to determine where the
error is (either over the file itself or some fine-grained history).

That is hard because sometimes TeX gets royally confused, and doesn't really understand what's wrong until far past the real mistake.

1b) Perhaps we could improve the latex export so that compile errors
only occur if the user uses ERT. Particularly with beamer, this isn't
always the case.

Well, AFAIK beamer is a new addition to LyX, and is not yet mature.

2) Compatibility with Word. Typical users expect to be able to open
and save word documents.
2a) It is easy to bundle import/export filters so that the users don't
have to manually set up OOXML and ODF. This export wouldn't work as
well as e.g. OOXML<->  ODF though.

I really don't think this will work, since LyX documents have a lot more structure than word documents. You can certainly import word documents successfully, but exporting them is going to lose a lot of structure. You don't want to be saving to word format and expect to get the right file when you import it into LyX again.

3) Not WYSIWYG.  Normal users clearly expect WYSIWYG. WYSIWYG and
WYSIWYM don't need to be mutually exclusive.

They are to an extent, since WYSIWYG really means that all the document contains is what you see on the screen, without additional structure that properly formats it for a number of different export situations.

Think about writing a document in word. You spend time getting the spacing right, the margins to look right, and align all the bits of text by hand. I never have to worry about that in LyX, since I trust TeX to get it right.

Ignoring the difficulty
in implementing for a while, having a WYSIWYG mode would be great.
After the content is complete, I go though a cycle of: Notice
something weird with the line-breaking in the PDF, muck around with
the LyX source hoping it fixed the problem;

No. TeX handles all that, don't ask users to spend effort in dealing with how lines break. Write the paper, let TeX format it. I would not want to worry about how it looks on the page while writing, that is a bad habit that you can avoid with LyX.

recompile PDF. This can
take a while and having a WYSIWYG mode could make this process a
factor of ten times faster.

No, in my experience it creates the "takes a while" part.


David L. Johnson

"A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by
little statesmen and philosophers and divines."
                --Ralph Waldo Emerson

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