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MathGroup Archive 1998

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Re: Wish list for next version



Vilis Nams wrote:
> 
> I have recently been using Mathematica on a notebook with Win95, and
> have seen how awkward pointing devices are with notebooks.
> Unfortunately, you cannot use Mathematica easily with only a keyboard
> (some 'features' and some bugs). Thus, following is my wish list for
> the next version of Mathematica. Does anyone know if these can be
> implemented now in any manner?
> 
> My wish list
> - Control-Home: when it moves my view to the top of the  document, I
>     would like the cursor to go with it. The cursor remains where it
> was. - similarly for Control-End, PageUp and PageDown - actions of the
> Shift key: in Windows, holding down the  Shift, and then
>     moving, causes selection. This only  works with Left and Right in
> Mathematica. It
>     will work with  Control-Left/Right only after fiddling with the file
>      KeyEventTranslations.tr. I would also like it to work with Down,
> Up,
>      Home, End, PageUp, PageDown, Control- Home, Control-End. Also, in
>      cell-select mode, holding the shift key should also select cells.
> Perhaps
>      after holding Shift-Down and moving beyond a cell, it should
>      switch to cell-selection mode, and select a bunch of
>      cells.
> - Help screen: 1) ability to move from the top half to the  bottom half
> using
>     the keyboard
>      2) it always starts with Built-in Functions set. If I reset it to
> Master
> 
>       Index, I would like it to remain  there.
>      3) Once youre in the bottom half, then pressing Alt-G  should
> bring you
>           back to the Go To box at the top.
>      4) If I change the style of the help screen (e.g.  magnify), I
> would like to
>         make that change permanent
> - Once youre in cell-select mode, Left/Right will take you  out of it.
> But there
>      should be a key to move you into  cell-select mode.
> 
> --------------------
> Vilis O. Nams
> Dept of Biology, NSAC
> Box 550, Truro, NS,  Canada
> vnams @ nsac.ns.ca
> -------------------


Wow!  You sure are easy to please.  I want  1.	The ability to compile
stand-alone executables. 2.	Object oriented data typing.  Meaning that
I can say that a symbol is a Real number greater than 2 and have every
function in the language to which that fact is relevant respond
appropriately. 3.	A browsable help index.  In other words that I can
scroll to the bottom of one entry and then have it jump to the top of
the next one-more like a book, rather than having each entry separated
from its neighbors.
4.	The entries in the help index actually matched up with their
listings.  Try looking up a named symbol like \[LeftBracketingBar]
5.	The ability to turn off ALL "smart-editing" features.
6.	Mathematicas fixation on always returning something eliminated.  My
classic example of this is Listplot[myarray].  Since ListPlot is
misspelled, mathematica has to return something and expands myarray out
to glorious full size, which is a real waste of time.  I would rather a
dialog box pops up which says "undefined symbol Listplot, execute
anyway?"
7.	More of the lanaguage in packages so the Kernel is smaller and
hopefully execution speed is brought up.  Mathematica really has a huge
penalty over C, FORTRAN, MatLab etc in execution speed.  The trade-off
is power.  I want both.
8.	Built-in protection against runaway recursive definitions.  A
misspelling or an inadvertant error should not be able to crash the
machine.
9.	An "abort evaluation" command that actually works.  On my machines,
it only works on simple things.  It won't actually stop a large
calculation with multiple functions and routines. 10.	Another version
of the program with no front end.  I want a "mathematica C++ library"
which would be a set of C++ header files that I could load into a C
program and access mathematica functions. 11.	A less clumsy way of
setting options that the options inspector. 12.	A Front End manual with
LOTS of examples. 13.	The version totally debugged and thoroughly
tested by humans and machines before release.  Not like 3.0.0 which, in
my opinion, shouldn't have been released for another six months.


Of course, I think it more likely that you get what you want than I do.
-- 
Remove the _nospam_ in the return address to respond.



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