[sugar] Pippy and Calculate
Wed Sep 5 07:00:50 EDT 2007
Yoshiki Ohshima wrote:
> Firstly, I apologize if my first email sounded too harsh to you.
> (It definitely didn't mean to be personal.)
That's alright, I could have phrased it a little differently as well
actually! I just think the two activities are suited for different
things. Calculate is now more focussed on collaboration than the
previous version, and the interface aims to resemble a calculator and
expose the user to mathematics directly. Maybe I can include some extra
educational features as well, like a help() command that explains things
about functions. Pippy, for now, looks (to me) like a one-person
activity, although I can imagine inclusion of a similar 'output-history'
window to integrate the collaboration aspect.
On the other hand, I was thinking about allowing user-written functions
in Calculate as well. I guess part of the success of the TI89 style
calculators is that children can program stuff for it. In the end,
Calculate functionality might overlap a little with Pippy. However, some
overlap should not be a problem: for example, I designed Calculate so
that it's easy to implement arbitrary precision math in the future. The
end-user will never have to adjust to this underlying change, and can
just continue to think about the relevant aspect of the activity: math.
>> Being the main Calculate developer, I don't agree on your opinion about
>> Calculate. I think it deserves to be a separate activity. It's true that
>> it was a little underdeveloped lately, but that was mainly because I was
>> on a (long) holiday. The last couple of days have produced major
>> improvements in Calculate: tab-completion of variable names, copy-paste,
>> journal support, etc. (not sure if it made it into the build yet, did a
>> release though: http://rwh.corps.nl/Calculate-7.xo). More new features
>> are coming, for example I just started working on a plot() function (an
>> obviously useful extension), which I estimate to be functioning
>> somewhere next week.
> It was not so much as Calculate is underdeveloped or not, I
> think. (Almost every end-user software including Etoys is
> underdeveloped). But looking at the similarity of Pippy and Calculate,
> for example the plot feature you are making could be beneficial for
> both, right? And, you would wish to have a calculator whose syntax is
> closer to Python, right?
I'm not sure. I think the main goal is to have the syntax as close to
(written) math as possible.
>> There seem to be some performace issues with Calculate on the XO. I
>> haven't been able to profile these yet, but I expect them to be related
>> to the way the application is shared (basic sharing should be
>> functioning). This problem has the highest priority now...
> Yes. I filed a bug report for it. The length of old expressions
> seems to be strongly affecting the performance.
>> The equation parser I wrote isn't perfect yet either, although in
>> general it does a pretty good job at parsing simple as well as more
>> complex expressions. Please file bug reports if you notice weird behavior...
> Yes. I did it, too. It must be something to do with an error within
I saw that and fixed it, thanks :-)
> -- Yoshiki
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