Is it worth persevering with Macports_Framework?

Ian Wadham at
Sun Feb 10 20:13:13 PST 2013

Hello Guido,

On 10/02/2013, at 10:36 PM, Guido Soranzio wrote:
> On 10/02/2013, Ian Wadham wrote:
>> Maybe there is scope for a simpler interface to Macports, such as
>> running scripts and intercepting the output, but I have not looked at
>> that.
> You can have a look at the sources of Guigna I published on GitHub:
> <>.

That looks very nice.  You have certainly put in a lot of work.

> It is at a very early stage of development and it is rather naive:
> on the contrary of you, I am no so proficient in multithreading
> programming but I think that a "screen scraping" approach is not
> that evil.

There is no great virtue in multi-threading or multi-processing if you
do not have to, IMHO.  I cut my teeth on multi-user O/S and real-time,
but my rule-of-thumb has always been: "The number of difficulties
and bugs goes as the square of the number of threads or processes
involved" … :-)  Conversely, by keeping processing simple, you get
working results sooner.

"Screen scraping" is a term that is new to me.  What does it mean
in Guigna's case?

> In my humble opinion, a really useful GUI for MacPorts should address
> not only the final users but also the developers and the budding new
> committers. It should go far beyond wrapping the basic commands and
> instead be capable of launching its own automating scripts,
> detecting other package managers and solving the conflicts,
> aggregating the latest commits from the Web and comparing
> the different versions available from different sources,
> connecting to experimental repositories from third parties.

I think it might be confusing for end-users to have all of that in one
app, but great for developers and system admins.

I heartily agree with you that "wrapping basic commands" is not enough.
I particularly hate GUIs that wrap basic programming and then pass
through base-level error messages ---unedited and out of context.

The popup message "Invalid type.  OK?" is a classic example (from
MSAccess 2000).  What type is invalid?  In which program?  And what
data was being accessed?  The user/programmer is left to guess.

Guigna passes through everything, in context, and that is a valid way
to go, IMHO, as long as your target users can understand what they see.

All the best with Guigna, Guido.  Please keep in touch.  A multi
repository, multi system GUI for installing FOSS on a Mac is indeed
an ambitious undertaking.  Go Guido!

Cheers, Ian W.

More information about the macports-dev mailing list