[cairo] Proposal to disable PDF and PS backends by default for 1.0

Gustavo J. A. M. Carneiro gjc at inescporto.pt
Wed Aug 24 06:46:37 PDT 2005


On Wed, 2005-08-24 at 05:12 -0700, Carl Worth wrote:
> As sad as it is to do so, I think the right thing to do at this point
> is to disable-by-default the PDF and PostScript backends and mark them
> as experimental in the 1.0 release notes. This is definitely a shame
> as we won't have a solid implementation of display-and-print in 1.0,
> but we still have a solid story about where we're headed in that area.
> And I think it's actually better to avoid advertising as complete
> backends that just aren't quite there yet.
> I think the important thing here is to look at 1.0 for what it
> is---the beginning---and move forward quickly to lots of improved
> versions of cairo down the road.

  As much as I admire your desire to have a perfect 1.0 implementation,
when deciding whether GNOME 2.12 would adopt gtk+ 2.8 with cairo, you

	"I just updated the ROADMAP[1] to reflect our current plans, which is
	  that all API _changes_ are scheduled for an as-soon-as-possible 0.6,
	leaving just a couple of API additions on the 1.0 roadmap."

  Well, removing PDF/PS backends is a _huge_ API break, but you were
supposed to only make API _additions_ after 0.6 release.

  Even with that consideration apart, I don't think disabling the PDF
backend just because the gradients don't look so good is a sound idea.
Sure, go ahead and document it as experimental, but please don't disable
them by default, they are still useful.  Many applications out there
don't need to use gradients, and so do not trigger these bugs.  But if
this backend is disabled by default, and if distributions follow this
default, people won't test it, you don't get bug reports, and it won't
improve much, leaving GNOME stuck with a buggy PDF library again in 6
months.  And cairo was supposed to bridge the gap between screen and
printing worlds; if both PS and PDF backends are left out, imho it is
failing the main goal, and is only marginally useful.


Gustavo J. A. M. Carneiro
<gjc at inescporto.pt> <gustavo at users.sourceforge.net>
The universe is always one step beyond logic

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