CE - Technical Info

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  CE has been developed for the
specific purpose of providing a simple, easy to use text editor to those people
who are forced to use unix, or like using unix, but dislike editors like
EMACS/VI.  To edit files that require lines greater than 80 columns, you will
need to invoke ce with the -w command line switch.

Backup files.  CE just loves backup files, and leaves them laying around
everywhere.  Keep in mind, the purpose of this editor is for beginners, and
these backup files may come in handy for some poor person who just erased
their entire document, and saved as well!  You can turn off this behavior via
the personal defaults file .cerc

CE requires a special keymap for each terminal type that will be using CE, the
reason I chose to use my own keymapping code, instead of using terminfo is that
simply, I found terminfo to be woefully inadequate for the task.  CE makes use
of many special keys on the keyboard, and this was the only way I could get
some modest guarantee of CE working on most terminals out there.

Scrollmode.  With the -s switch (or noscroll in your .cerc turned on) CE will
"page" scroll, intead of "smooth" scroll, for those of you who like page
scrolling, or for those terminals on which smooth scrolling fails.

USING CE with NN/RN:  (Okay I dont know how RN/Pnews works so maybe this only
applies to NN).  In the aux script NN uses for posting, change the line:
ded )       to:   ce | ded )
this will cause CE to jump to the end of the header's when using ce with NN.
Im sure something similar applies to RN/Pnews, but I dont know what :)

If you place a cerc file in CONFIGPATH CE will try and read that upon
invocation, to allow a "site" customization.  CE can also be given a command
line parameter of -h which will force CE to load  and use
that for its help screens.  This will allow you to provide somewhat
context-sensitive help if the need arises.  If you have any questions just drop
me a note and Ill see what I can do!


The meaning of existance [1.2 goes out tonight!] (Part III)

Well it has been over a month since I typed what lies below, so much for
intentions eh?  CE has been tested by many 'o' thousand students at MSU in the
email system now, and I havent seen a bug arise out of that, thank god.  It
looks really really stable, rock stable.  If not, well send me a note *sigh*

The meaning of existence (for CE) [A brief history] (Part II)

Welp,  the  time  has  come  again to bring  a new release of CE out into the
world, I have added numerous features, and enhancements, as well as squashing a
few more bugs that popped up in 1.1e after its release.  I would like to thank
Dave Beedle (dbeedle@rs6000.cmp.ilstu.edu) for supporting and testing Beta
versions of CE.  I would also like to thank Chadd Knowlton
(knowlto2@student.msu.edu) for finding many evil bugs in 1.2 Beta.  Thanks
Guys, most appreciated!  Id also like to thank everyone who has sent me email
about CE, with bug reports, and suggestions.  Many of your suggestions have
been implemented in this release.  Version 1.2 of CE has taken awhile longer
than I had originally hoped, but I think the resulting product is all the
better for it.  Large portions of the code from 1.1e have been long re-written
or replaced by newer functions.  I also added documentation to (some) of the
code in this release, maybe by next release it will all be fully documented :)
I am quite grateful (again) to Charles Severance who has at times given me the
needed push to get things done in this release.  By the time you have read
this, several thousand students at Michigan State University should have had
the (pleasure?) of using CE for the campus wide email system that has just
begun to go into effect.  And consequently, I expect that nearly all the bugs
in CE will be eradicated before this release is finally out.  One worthy note
here is that CE has been entirely coded with CE since just before the 1.1e
release, and I find myself more and more getting attached to the way it works.
(Its painful for me to have to go back and use VI!)  There hasnt been a case of
CE losing someone's document since sometime before the 1.0 version, if that
gives you any feeling of safety.  Anyhow enough rambling, I hope you enjoy CE,
and please mail me with any suggestions / comments / bug fixes that you'd like
to see fixed, or implemented.

9-19-92 -Charles Henrich

The meaning of existence (for CE) [A brief history]

    CE was first conceptualized by Charles Severance, my Prof and mentor of
sorts.  He saw a great need to have a very simple, easy to use editor for his
FORTRAN and C programming classes, and out of great wisdom (heh) he talked to
me about it.  I found myself quite crazily saying, "sure Ill write it for ya
Chuck" (I had to have been out of my mind). Needless to say here it is.  Many
many moons later.  There is probably not a single line of original code still
in this beast, as I went through and stomped bugs over and over again, all the
while forcing Severance's poor students to endure such wonderful bugs that
existed in the beginning.  Many of the nifty features were proposed by Chuck,
and several of his students, Thanks guys!  I must say though, I have to place
blame for the 80 column limit squarely on Chucks shoulders, who constantly
replied to my concerns with "Anyone who writes code over 80 columns in length
is fundamentally flawed!".  Due to this, CE has a really messed up notion of a
line.  Perhaps someday if enough interest is generated in CE I will go back and
re-write all of the text handling routines to work with lines greater than 80
columns. This editor has been in use by well over 100 of Chuck's beginner
(whats a computer?) students for the past 6 months and has stood up rather
solidly.  I myself have been writing a good portion of my code in CE as of late
just to be sure of its reliability.  On top of this, I have used CE in
conjunction with ELM from the start.  I must say I havent found any thing that
I would classify as a real bug in probably three months now.  Its looking very
rock solid.

5-27-92 -Charles Henrich

home | atlanta | pkd | fusion | recipes | email