[LON-CAPA-dev] lonc/lond

Gerd Kortemeyer lon-capa-dev@mail.lon-capa.org
Fri, 08 Mar 2002 11:27:06 -0500

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Well ... so I am working hard to get unlimited resources.

For now, we more or less need a feature freeze, and a big Spring Cleaning
effort. We jumped some big hurdles based on coolness (so the Nightmare was
worth it, so to say - now wake up to reality).

BTW, I don't think the architecture of LON-CAPA is quite as bad as your email
makes it sound. lonc, for example, as messy as it was, has a very well defined
function and a very clean interface to the other components of the system.
There is nothing wrong with that. Ron could replace it by another lonc.

lond also has a very clean function to the outside, and should now be cleaned
up inside (for example, in the long command section, the "print $client"
should be replaced by "$output.=", and then a routine &sendreply($output)
called, which makes sure that there is one and only one "\n" in the
concatinated $output. Repeated code should go into subroutines. Stuff like
that - needs a lot of testing when done, since lonc and lond are so vital.

In summary, I am still confident that concerted effort of stabilization and
documentation can be highly successful, especially if a wider community of
programmers and developers starts to address this. We just have to resist the
temptation to implement the next cool feature.

JoshBrunskole@aol.com wrote:

> >>There is actually only one question: why did this ever work at all?
> Here's one possible answer:  it was debugged to life.  Since the system is
> so gargantuan I'm sure when it exhibited "correct" behavior it was assumed
> working; though never actually proven (mathematically or otherwise) to work
> correctly.  When competing for financial resources it's no surprise to see
> something thrown together at first to prove how beneficial it could be so as
> to keep funding.  If unlimited resources were available I'm sure parts of
> the project would be considered "throw-away" code or just a prototype of
> actual functionality and re-done later.  However, this is obviously not
> possible at this stage of production.  This is what one of my CSE profs
> would call a "Software Engineering Nightmare".  I'm happy to be a part of it
> anyway though :)
> -Josh

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