IDLE in any other GUI.

Just van Rossum just at
Wed Feb 16 10:30:33 EST 2000

At 2:02 PM +0000 16-02-2000, J.C.Travers wrote:
>Is anyone working on or wanting to work on implementing IDLE in a
>different gui to TK. Something like QT, which is also cross platform
>would be good (i.e. I would much prefer using it, IMHO TK is horrible,
>and QT simple and beautiful, and MUCH MUCH easier to code in!). Just a
>question, not wanting to start an inter-gui war!

When I started building my own IDE for the Mac (which was 2-3 years before
Guido started working on Idle), Guido thought it was a shame I wrote in a
platform-dependent manner. Although he was right, Tk was definitely not an
option for me (it sucked & seems to keep on sucking on the Mac), and I
wrote it because *I* needed it. It would've been much more work for me then
to factor out the user interface: it was one of my first non-trivial Python
apps, I just didn't have the experience.

Later, when Guido write Idle, I complained to him that his code was tightly
bound to Tk, which I consider a platform also... (Of course he denied
this...) It was not easy for me to take advantage of Idle's code in my own
IDE. In the meantime, the situations has apparently become better, I
believe PythonWin uses some parts of Idle.

Some parts of an IDE are hard to factor out: eg. Idle's syntax coloring is
neccesarily bound to Tk for performance reasons. I haven't studied the
latest Idle sources, so I have no idea what how the amounts of "generic"
code and Tk-dependent code relate, but it would be interesting to know.
Anyone familiar enough with Idle guts to give a brief summary of what's
there? Idle could be a killer app, but I think it has to separate itself
from Tk as much as practical to actually become one.


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