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MathGroup Archive 2002

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Are configuration & UI better in 4.2?

  • To: mathgroup at smc.vnet.net
  • Subject: [mg36824] Are configuration & UI better in 4.2?
  • From: fjolsvit <fjolsvit at netscape.net>
  • Date: Fri, 27 Sep 2002 04:15:31 -0400 (EDT)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at wolfram.com

I have spent far more time attempting to get Mathematica configured than I 
have using it.  I've found the the product to be exceptionally difficult to 
configure.  My platform is SuSE Linux on Intel.  

As an example, I spent several hours trying to figure out how to tell Mathematica to 
understand the delete key in the way most contemporary systems understand 
it.  I wanted to avoid modifying system configuration files such as:
/usr/local/mathematica/SystemFiles/FrontEnd/TextResources/KeyEventTranslations.tr

I expected to be able to change something in my own ~/.Mathematic directory, 
but I could not figure out an obvious way to affect this modification. I 
want to adjust the font size used in the widgets, but again, I see no 
ovbious means of modifying these attributes.  I suspect it can be 
accomplished by modifying the ~/.Mathematica/4.1/FrontEnd/init.m.  Perhaps 
to an experienced Mathematica user, the syntax and semantics of this file are 
obvious.  They aren't to me.

I also find the overall look & feel of the interface to be archaic.  I 
understand that Mathematica 4.1 was written years ago, and much of the desktops for 
Unix which exist today did not exist when it was written.  I should be 
receiving Mathematica 4.2 in a few days, so perhaps these concerns will prove 
undounded.  Something tells me that not a lot has changed in this respect.

What have others observed?


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