Nikolaj de Fine Licht LSfE - input ideas for future releases
Sep 26, 2005; 12:09
Nikolaj de Fine Licht
LSfE - input ideas for future releases
Below standing text is what I intend to send to OP as a feature request or inspiration for future versions, but I would be very happy for any response from other users on this before submitting.
Lasso Studio for Eclipse - input ideas for future releases.
PowerBook running OSX 10.4, Lasso 8.0.5, testing on the build-in Apache/Lasso Server.
Let me shortly introduce myself: I'm a Lasso programmar for quite some years, and I really welcomed LSfE! I had, however, a really tough time getting used to Eclipse itself AND the way the Lasso- plugin works. Unlike others on this list I had never seen Eclipse before, and as familiar it looks to me now, as tough was my learning curve.
Let me point out: I think this tool is fantastic and I use it all the time despite the problems I have. What I hope to achieve with below standing is that the great developers at OP take a fresh look at the HCI-aspect of the LassoStudio/IDE in order to make it easier to access and adopt to various - and sometimes maybe untypical - situations.
Here we go:
I still don't understand the underlayings of Eclipse and LSfE, and that may be the reason for what I write here, but I do believe there must be many like me, and especially many potential users like me, shame on me if I'm wrong here. Please bear with me for not going in-depth with most of the things, I hope it will be seen more as 'highlights from a confused mind'...
1. Terminology. Eventhough I have read the documentation I still don't really understand a lot of the terminology. Like 'Workspace', 'Workbench', 'Working Set', 'Build Project', 'Build Working Set' and 'Build Automatically', Clean Project'. Why, for example, can I 'Switch Workspace'? I don't get it why we have 'Run History', 'Run As' and just 'Run', where the latter leads to the Run Setup dialogue, actually, and the same three for 'Debug' respectively. Choices in 'Run As' and 'Debug As' seems superflouos to me because all I will ever want is to run/ debug as Lasso Script... I can't grasp what 'Launch' and 'Launch Configuration' is, apparently differring from the the two previously mentioned - 'Run' and 'Debug'.
2. Lasso Run/Debug Setup. This is maybe the hardest part, where IMHO something really has to be simplified. Take this one as an example: seen from a HCI-point of view it's not easy to understand why Run -> Run... and Run -> Debug opens the same window with the only exception of the window title and the submit button label. Then, once you are in this dialogue, the confusion increases. One example: there are 5 different tabs to relate to, and one of them is called Debugging, also if you access this dialogue from Run -> Run... But what especially is hard for my surely limited understanding to wrap itself around is why there are SO INCREDIBLY MANY settings necessary to get the plug-in to communicate with the server, of which some seem to cover the same matter just in different ways... You have to enter the Lasso Server WSDL (BTW: what is WSDL?). Makes sense. But why do you need a Default File, when you a little later have to add content to a tab named Source? And how is it that you need a Default File at all when you can actually work on other files if Preferred Configuration is ticked - or is it the other way round...? Why do you need to add yet another server address in the tab Debugging - we just entered one in Lasso Server WSDL? And, really, what is the meaning of the tab Source? As mentioned before you enter a default file, but still the system can't operate - or operates wrongly - if there is no or wrong source given. How come a source can be a Workspace or a Working Set or whatever, even a Java- thingy - out of which I don't understand the meaning of at least the half of the terms, as mentioned earlier? And there can be more than one source - isn't this against elementary human logic? And what does it mean to search for duplicate source files on the path? I have actually had alerts telling me to choose from 2 or more files when debugging, but why does this has to be a problem at all? The tab Common makes almost no sense to me at all, all I can understand is the Display in favorites menu checkbox-group...
3. Virtual Hosts. And last but not least to my particular problem, with which I have been bothering the list without ever getting it resolved: if you, like me, want to use absolute paths in your code, you need to set up virtual hosts for local testing according the Greg's walk-through, resulting in this kind of URLs while testing on your local machine: www.projectname.dev. Otherwise it won't work. Now, this REALLY causes LSfE problems. I haven't been able to nail down a safe-and-sure method to get this to work. However, it SOMETIMES works, that is what is so odd... If only my basic understanding of the whole thing was less vague... There are so many settings, apparently, that influence how LSfE looks for files and execute them, in particular if you want to debug with browser input which IMHO is one of the most powerfull features of LSfE, and it just does NOT combine well with virtual hosts on a local machine. LSfE does not understand how you can have one server address in the field Lasso Server WSDL, a default file on another path in the field just below and yet a Project Folder situated on yet another path in the Source tab.
So, what is my conclusion? It would be fantastic if general setting where kept general, and project-wise settings were kept strictly related to projects, getting rid of all terms like Workspaces, Building Sets and whatever. At least to me all these terms make no sense... The term Project is what makes sense to me, sorry for being lame...
General Server Settings in one dialogue, valid throughout whole eclipse with no regard to which project you actually work on. Project settings in another dialogue, kept very simple: a project server address, so you can enter virtual host addresses, and then LSfE simply resolves all the rest itself! Paths, default files if needed, sources if needed (I still don't understand why this tab is needed), basically anything. So, when you run or debug inside a project, LSfE automatically choses all the right configurations, default file stuff, debug listen address, sources etc. etc., necessary to run or debug literally any file inside this project on any conditions. Done! Doesn't it sound intreaguing :)
Have a good day, best wishes, Nikolaj
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