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Re: Re: Mathematica's (and others) ancient widget toolkit ... why?

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  • Subject: [mg51758] Re: [mg51752] Re: Mathematica's (and others) ancient widget toolkit ... why?
  • From: Andrzej Kozlowski <andrzej at>
  • Date: Mon, 1 Nov 2004 02:52:35 -0500 (EST)
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at

On 31 Oct 2004, at 15:17, symbio wrote:
> In addition, it seems Mathematica was intially designed on Apple/Mac, 
> and
> focuses on postscript and quicktime formats, but today's users are 
> mostly PC
> Windows, they should really change their focus to cater to their new 
> and
> much larger customer base.  Needs a complete GUI make-over.

The first Mathematica Front Ends where designed for the Mac and for 
Next,  when niether  QuickTime or Windows existed. The Next Front End 
was designed was certainly not a copy of the Mac Front End, in fact it 
was considerably superior, due to DisplayPostScript.
I can't understand what you mean by "focuses on postscript and 
quicktime formats" since only the Mac Front End can use QuickTime? Do 
you mean this ability should be taken away to cater to the "much larger 
user base"?  As for PostScript: it is still the standard for 
professional printing although itis gradually being displaced by PDF. 
And, as I mentioned above, for screen display it was never used on Macs 
but only on  Next (the first version of Mathematica came bundled with 
the Next, not with Macs) . Today the native Mac graphic format is PDF. 
The current Windows Front End was designed from scratch and, just like 
the Next Front End,  was not based on the Mac one. It now even has 
certain capabilities the Mac does not have because WRI chose to go the 
"cheap and easy" way and produce a Carbon Front End for the Mac instead 
of a vastly superior Cocoa one. (You can also tell that the Windows 
Front End was designed from scratch for Windows users by its 
characteristic ugliness.). Mac users are certainly a minority of 
Mathematica users but judging by this list much less of a minority than 
in the case of probably any other program that runs on both platforms. 
Moreover, judging again by this list,  among the users who know 
Mathematica well they may well be a majority.
Finally, version 6 of Mathematica will probably come with the long 
promised new graphics system, no longer based on PostScript.

Andrzej Kozlowski
Chiba, Japan

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