X Mosaic update, and question.

Marc Andreessen (marca@ncsa.uiuc.edu)
Thu, 11 Feb 93 05:03:32 -0800

Just an X Mosaic update, and a question...

Update: 0.7 is almost ready to go; some more stress testing and we'll
ship. A list of things that have changed follows.

Question: X Mosaic is starting to get big. And it's probably starting
to slow down a little, due to a lot of the housekeeping things needed
to support the more advanced functionality, user interface components,
and so on. We're basically developing with fast RISC boxes in mind as
the platform for running Mosaic, but we realize that many sites (in
particular, those with large numbers of machines and in
non-development environments) don't have that much power for their
user base. At what point will we start making X Mosaic unusable for
people with less-powerful systems? In particular, what kinds of
features, and GUI toys, are particularly expendable for performance
reasons? And how concerned should we be about this anyway?

Anyhow, on to the current list of changes (cut straight out of X
Mosaic with the new fancy selections feature :-):

Help On Mosaic v0.7

Version 0.7 includes the following changes from version 0.6:

o Annotations!
o Personal only (until smart servers get written).
o Automatic inlining of annotation pointers into documents.
o Annotations automatically persistent across sessions
o Annotations are subsequently editable/removable.
o Lots of neat GUI things.
o Underlined anchors! You're gonna love this.
o 0, 1, 2, or 3 underlines for each of unvisited and previously
visited anchor types.
o Solid or dashed underlines for each of unvisited and
previously visited anchor types.
o Application exits when all windows are closed.
o Support for <menu> and <dir>.
o Better support for nested lists (filled bullets, empty bullets, empty
o Better selection capabilities:
o Select by character.
o New resource, fancySelections: if true, selections will be
"pretty-printed" when pasted into a normal X window (with
underlined headers, bullets for lists, etc.). This is modifiable
per-window from the menubar also.
o Additional command-line argument: free-standing URL will be used
as home document, and overrides all other specifications (including
WWW_HOME, X resource homeDocument, and -home flag). Is that
enough ways to specify the home document??? :-)
o Additional command-line flag -mono, for getting black&white
fallback X defaults... you mono people out there are gonna have to let
me know if I'm providing a decent set of mono resources. Should
there be a distinction between -mono and -greyscale??
o Middle button button in scrolled lists is now equivalent of
double-clicking with left button.
o Performance enhancement for history window's future list.
o Fix for gopher connection port usage.
o Fix for proper gopher and WAIS document titles.
o Temporary fix to access Supreme Court documents on Cornell Law
School server (if manager of that server is out there, please contact me
-- you have a problem).
o Option menu for document title/url display at top of window.
o Cute icons in upper right-hand corner of windows for quick window
o Previous search keyword is trimmed correctly.
o Search keyword remains in text field until search is complete.
o New 'Clear Global History' option (to revert all anchors back to the
unvisited color).
o Fixed bug in hotlist geometry layout.
o Lots of new resources:
o confirmExit
o ghostviewCommand
o mailCommand
o printCommand
o xtermCommand
o globalHistoryFile
o defaultHotlistFile
o personalAnnotationDirectory
o Tabs now behave absolutely properly in preformatted text.
o Fixed premature signal setup causing coredump when ctrl-c was hit
during startup.
o Hotlist is saved every time it's changed, to avoid losing information.
o Busy cursor is used more often, as it should be.
o Better handling of telnet/xterm functions (forked into background;
browser never lands on 'telnet' document).
o Ghostview runs in background now.
o Changed application class name to 'XMosaic' for consistency.
o Minor bugfixes and cleanups.

Many many thanks to all the users who have sent in comments, bug
reports, and suggestions... I hope 0.7 lives up to the promises I've
made as a result :-).