bioLegato: Biolegato Menu Language
Note: We should have a look at menus from other applications to see if
there are capabilities that need to be in our menus (OpenOffice,
Mozilla, MS-Office, NetBeans)
1. Biolegato will probably just directly read the menu directory
hierarchy, rather than reading a .bioLegatomenus file.
- we get rid of makemenus.py
- easier to maintain; quicker turnaround for development and
2. A more strict grammar than .GDEmenus
- Are there disadvantages to specifying menus by their location in
a directory tree? The early GNOME menus were a pain in the butt for
3. Need real number arguments
- Specific order for each line for a varialbe
- Descriptive error-messages to stdout
- A syntactical distinction between internal bioLegato variables
and external environment variables.
- eg. $TEXTEDITOR is an environment variable; !TEXTEDITOR! is an
internal variable; !IN1! is another
- Should variables be case-insensitive?
4. argvalue is an actual value, rather than a reference?
5. File chooser
6. Possible multiple help buttons? Have a command like itemopen: to let
you choose both the help file and the method to open it. (Should
itemopen and itemhelp be combined into a single line?)
7. Need ways of using data from an object in the menu. For example, the
sequence length should be accessible as a variable within the menu. Two
8. Should be human-readable, human-editable ie. NOT XML
- variables can be taken directly from the hash
- a small language for doing manipulations: conditonals,
comparisons etc. (Maybe this could all be handled by an external script)
9. Tabbed panes in menus
10. Grouping menu widgets visually in boxes
11. Graphics eg. icons in menus
12. mouse-over help items
13. Sanity checking at the level of the menu (with interactive prompts)
This is why we need #7 above.
14. Menu parsing should be extendable by means of plugins.
15. Conditional display of some parameters? That is some parameters are
irrelevant depending on the settings of others. For example, in
DNAPARS, there are four parameters that can are not used if resampling
is not done. In GDE, these are offset by five dash characters to make
it look like indentation. You can still set these parameters, but they
are only used if resampling is done.
One approach is to gray out irrelevant parameters. Another would be to
just not have them appear if not used.
16. Right now all scripts run by bioLegato require that all parameters
be specified on the command line, regardless of whether or not they are
used. This works, but it's a bit crude.
17. We will need a script that converts the old .GDEmenus files into
bioLegato files. This is useful not just because it will speed out
progress in converting to the new format, but also, it will give others
who have made local .GDEmenus items a chance to convert them as well.
Instead of a script, another way to do this is to add a plugin to
bioLegato that reads .GDEmenus as usual, but then writes out the new