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* [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
@ 2003-07-24  4:20 Matt Gushee
  2003-07-24 12:03 ` Richard Jones
  2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
  0 siblings, 2 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: Matt Gushee @ 2003-07-24  4:20 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: caml-list

Hello, all--

I have been working on an application which will generate on-the-fly
graphics for the Web, but I have become very frustrated by the
limitations of the available graphics libraries for OCaml. If anyone
reading this thinks there are solutions I have overlooked, I would be
happy to discuss details. Right now, though, my purpose is to find out
whether others share my concerns, and how much interest there is in
developing better graphics libraries.

What I would like to see is a single library with at least the
following capabilities:

  * drawing primitives: line, rectangle, ellipse and/or arc, perhaps
    bezier curves

  * rendering text with arbitrary Type 1 and/or TrueType fonts

  * antialiasing

  * basic image manipulation functions such as transformations,
    contrast adjustment, cropping, etc.

  * saving to common bitmap formats such as JPEG and PNG

  * cross-platform

taking the various graphics packages together, all these capabilities
exist, but as far as I can tell there is no single package that combines
them all. So, in developing my application, I started out with
OCamlPlot, but discovered that it

  - doesn't do antialiasing

  - uses only 2 or 3 built-in fonts for PNG output

  - has a rather rigid and idiosyncratic API

  - doesn't run on Windows

Then I decided to try MLgraph + Camlimages, which is an improvement, but
still falls short: MLgraph is excellent for drawing, but saves only to
PostScript--and I find the final result, converted to PNG with
CamlImages, rather unsatisfactory (the main problem is that antialiasing
doesn't work very well, which may actually be a Ghostscript issue).
Performance with this combination is also markedly poorer than with
OCamlPlot.

Then there's OCamlGD, which seems quite promising. When complete, it
will probably satisfy all my requirements; but there hasn't been a
relesase in quite a while.

So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
works?

I am happy, by the way, to put some effort into developing something
better. My contribution would be limited, though (I'm not a C
programmer, for example, so I wouldn't be able to create a wrapper for
an existing C library.).

Comments?

-- 
Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
                            Horses bear soldiers through
                                its streets.
                                
                            --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)

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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
  2003-07-24  4:20 [Caml-list] Graphics frustration Matt Gushee
@ 2003-07-24 12:03 ` Richard Jones
  2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
  1 sibling, 0 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: Richard Jones @ 2003-07-24 12:03 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: caml-list

I did something like this in C++ an eon ago. The program generated
Postscript directly and piped it into Ghostscript to render it into
the appropriate format. Postscript is a very powerful language for
this sort of thing once you get used to it.

Rich.

-- 
Richard Jones. http://www.annexia.org/ http://freshmeat.net/users/rwmj
Merjis Ltd. http://www.merjis.com/ - all your business data are belong to you.
 All new technology is irrelevant until it is taken up by the public.

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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
  2003-07-24  4:20 [Caml-list] Graphics frustration Matt Gushee
  2003-07-24 12:03 ` Richard Jones
@ 2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
  2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
                     ` (2 more replies)
  1 sibling, 3 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: SooHyoung Oh @ 2003-07-26  1:37 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: Matt Gushee, caml-list


What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?
It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
OCaml for SVG.
If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.

---
SooHyoung Oh
----- Original Message -----
From: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>
To: <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
Sent: Thursday, July 24, 2003 1:20 PM
Subject: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration


> Hello, all--
>
> I have been working on an application which will generate on-the-fly
> graphics for the Web, but I have become very frustrated by the
> limitations of the available graphics libraries for OCaml. If anyone
> reading this thinks there are solutions I have overlooked, I would be
> happy to discuss details. Right now, though, my purpose is to find out
> whether others share my concerns, and how much interest there is in
> developing better graphics libraries.
>
> What I would like to see is a single library with at least the
> following capabilities:
>
>   * drawing primitives: line, rectangle, ellipse and/or arc, perhaps
>     bezier curves
>
>   * rendering text with arbitrary Type 1 and/or TrueType fonts
>
>   * antialiasing
>
>   * basic image manipulation functions such as transformations,
>     contrast adjustment, cropping, etc.
>
>   * saving to common bitmap formats such as JPEG and PNG
>
>   * cross-platform
>
> taking the various graphics packages together, all these capabilities
> exist, but as far as I can tell there is no single package that combines
> them all. So, in developing my application, I started out with
> OCamlPlot, but discovered that it
>
>   - doesn't do antialiasing
>
>   - uses only 2 or 3 built-in fonts for PNG output
>
>   - has a rather rigid and idiosyncratic API
>
>   - doesn't run on Windows
>
> Then I decided to try MLgraph + Camlimages, which is an improvement, but
> still falls short: MLgraph is excellent for drawing, but saves only to
> PostScript--and I find the final result, converted to PNG with
> CamlImages, rather unsatisfactory (the main problem is that antialiasing
> doesn't work very well, which may actually be a Ghostscript issue).
> Performance with this combination is also markedly poorer than with
> OCamlPlot.
>
> Then there's OCamlGD, which seems quite promising. When complete, it
> will probably satisfy all my requirements; but there hasn't been a
> relesase in quite a while.
>
> So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
> this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
> works?
>
> I am happy, by the way, to put some effort into developing something
> better. My contribution would be limited, though (I'm not a C
> programmer, for example, so I wouldn't be able to create a wrapper for
> an existing C library.).
>
> Comments?
>
> --
> Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
> Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
> mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
> http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
>                             Horses bear soldiers through
>                                 its streets.
>
>                             --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)
>
> -------------------
> To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
http://caml.inria.fr
> Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
>

-------------------
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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
  2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
@ 2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
  2003-07-26  4:21     ` Matt Gushee
  2003-07-26  8:45   ` [Caml-list] Re: Graphic frustration Nicolas Janin
  2003-07-26  8:58   ` [Caml-list] Nicolas Janin
  2 siblings, 1 reply; 8+ messages in thread
From: SooHyoung Oh @ 2003-07-26  1:55 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: SooHyoung Oh, Matt Gushee, caml-list


SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics)

sorry...

---
SooHyoung Oh
----- Original Message -----
From: "SooHyoung Oh" <shoh@duonix.com>
To: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>; <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2003 10:37 AM
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration


>
> What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?
> It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
> OCaml for SVG.
> If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.
>
> ---
> SooHyoung Oh
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>
> To: <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
> Sent: Thursday, July 24, 2003 1:20 PM
> Subject: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
>
>
> > Hello, all--
> >
> > I have been working on an application which will generate on-the-fly
> > graphics for the Web, but I have become very frustrated by the
> > limitations of the available graphics libraries for OCaml. If anyone
> > reading this thinks there are solutions I have overlooked, I would be
> > happy to discuss details. Right now, though, my purpose is to find out
> > whether others share my concerns, and how much interest there is in
> > developing better graphics libraries.
> >
> > What I would like to see is a single library with at least the
> > following capabilities:
> >
> >   * drawing primitives: line, rectangle, ellipse and/or arc, perhaps
> >     bezier curves
> >
> >   * rendering text with arbitrary Type 1 and/or TrueType fonts
> >
> >   * antialiasing
> >
> >   * basic image manipulation functions such as transformations,
> >     contrast adjustment, cropping, etc.
> >
> >   * saving to common bitmap formats such as JPEG and PNG
> >
> >   * cross-platform
> >
> > taking the various graphics packages together, all these capabilities
> > exist, but as far as I can tell there is no single package that combines
> > them all. So, in developing my application, I started out with
> > OCamlPlot, but discovered that it
> >
> >   - doesn't do antialiasing
> >
> >   - uses only 2 or 3 built-in fonts for PNG output
> >
> >   - has a rather rigid and idiosyncratic API
> >
> >   - doesn't run on Windows
> >
> > Then I decided to try MLgraph + Camlimages, which is an improvement, but
> > still falls short: MLgraph is excellent for drawing, but saves only to
> > PostScript--and I find the final result, converted to PNG with
> > CamlImages, rather unsatisfactory (the main problem is that antialiasing
> > doesn't work very well, which may actually be a Ghostscript issue).
> > Performance with this combination is also markedly poorer than with
> > OCamlPlot.
> >
> > Then there's OCamlGD, which seems quite promising. When complete, it
> > will probably satisfy all my requirements; but there hasn't been a
> > relesase in quite a while.
> >
> > So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
> > this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
> > works?
> >
> > I am happy, by the way, to put some effort into developing something
> > better. My contribution would be limited, though (I'm not a C
> > programmer, for example, so I wouldn't be able to create a wrapper for
> > an existing C library.).
> >
> > Comments?
> >
> > --
> > Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
> > Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
> > mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
> > http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
> >                             Horses bear soldiers through
> >                                 its streets.
> >
> >                             --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)
> >
> > -------------------
> > To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
> http://caml.inria.fr
> > Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
> http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> > Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
> >
>
> -------------------
> To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
http://caml.inria.fr
> Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
>

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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
  2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
@ 2003-07-26  4:21     ` Matt Gushee
  2003-07-26  4:34       ` Alexander V. Voinov
  0 siblings, 1 reply; 8+ messages in thread
From: Matt Gushee @ 2003-07-26  4:21 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: caml-list

First of all, thanks to all who responded. And I have a few responses
for the respondents. First, though, one general remark: although I am
certainly interested in practical solutions to my current problem, in
this instance I was trying to draw attention to what I see as a weak
point in the selection of available libraries. Graphics are a common
need, and I think better graphics libraries would help the popularity of
OCaml.


On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 11:22:03AM +0200, Olivier Andrieu wrote:
>  Matt Gushee [Wednesday 23 July 2003] :
>  > So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
>  > this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
>  > works?
> 
> I agree with you that libplot isn't fully satisfactory. I haven't much
> to suggest, though. GD seems to have all the features you need 

I agree. However ...

> (but I
> don't know the state of the ocaml wrapper).

That's the problem. It's far from being a complete GD interface. And
I've contacted its author, and he doesn't expect to continue developing
it. I may see if I can hack in the remaining functionality myself, but
with my minimal C knowledge I'm not optimistic about that.

> One solution I've been
> thinking about is using libart together with Camlimages. Libart is a
> library for rendering vector graphics (e.g. bezier paths) in
> anti-aliased pixel buffers. It's written by the Ghostscipt maintainer
> I think. It seems very good but it doesn't handle text rendering nor
> saving pixel buffers to file. But I think it should be possible to
> interface it with Camlimages : libart would do the primitives
> rendering and camlimages the text rendering and saving.

Interesting idea. I'd like to know if you do that. By the way, what in
particular do you like about libart?

> Writing a C wrapper seems the easiest and quicker way to do what you
> want though ...

I agree, and I actually would like to learn C. But there is so much to
learn, and so little time to learn it ...


On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 01:03:01PM +0100, Richard Jones wrote:
> I did something like this in C++ an eon ago. The program generated
> Postscript directly and piped it into Ghostscript to render it into
> the appropriate format. Postscript is a very powerful language for
> this sort of thing once you get used to it.

Well, I'm reasonably comfortable with PS, and that's pretty much the
approach I'm taking already: as I explained, draw with MLgraph, convert
with Camlimages (which uses Ghostscript to load PS). But the problem I'm
having there is that the antialiasing in the output is unsatisfactory.
If I use Camlimages out-of-the-box, there is no antialiasing, and curves
come out looking horribly jagged. On the other hand, if I hack the
Camlimages source such that Ghostscript is called with
-dGraphicsAlphaBits=4, curves look fine, but vertical and horizontal
lines look blurred and semi-transparent. I've also tried converting the
Postscript with ImageMagick, with results very similar to the latter. So
I'm afraid the root cause may be a limitation of Ghostscript, though I
haven't thoroughly investigated yet.


On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 02:25:38PM +0200, Daniel Bünzli wrote:
> Dear Matt,
> 
> Did you consider using OpenGL ?

What an appalling thought!

:-)

Seriously, though, I might end up doing this--when push comes to shove I
care more about making things work than about doing them 'correctly.'
Still, as a general solution to the problem of generating 2D raster
graphics, OpenGL strikes me as being an ugly (and perhaps inefficient?)
approach. But I don't understand OpenGL very well, and perhaps I'd
change my mind if I did.

> But it seems that the FreeType library can give you antialiased pixmaps 
> of given fonts and that CamlImages provides an inteface to the FreeType 
> library (never used that however). So maybe you can make both of them 
> interact smoothly. So I suggest you (though I'm completly misinformed) 
> CamlImages+lablGL.

May be worth trying. How mature and stable is lablGL? I would have to
learn OpenGL, and since I don't have much interest in OpenGL per se,
before I take the time to learn it, I'd like to have some assurance that
it is in fact a reliable means for producing high-quality 2D bitmaps.


On Sat, Jul 26, 2003 at 10:37:20AM +0900, SooHyoung Oh wrote:
> 
> What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?

I'm very interested in SVG, but it's not an appropriate solution in this
case. This is a front-end Web application, and I specifically intend it
to render graphics in a form that is viewable with any mainstream
browser--i.e., PNG, JPEG, and/or GIF. I think it will be several years
before we can reasonably expect clients to have built-in SVG support.

> It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
> OCaml for SVG.
> If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.

If you mean examples of SVG images, I probably have enough already. But
if you have written code for generating or processing SVG, I would be
interested in seeing what you've done.


On Sat, Jul 26, 2003 at 10:55:19AM +0900, SooHyoung Oh wrote:
> 
> SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics)
> 
> sorry...

No worries. There are so many acronyms floating around these days, I
would be a little scared of someone who could remember them all
correctly.

-- 
Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
                            Horses bear soldiers through
                                its streets.
                                
                            --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)

-------------------
To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives: http://caml.inria.fr
Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ: http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners


^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
  2003-07-26  4:21     ` Matt Gushee
@ 2003-07-26  4:34       ` Alexander V. Voinov
  0 siblings, 0 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: Alexander V. Voinov @ 2003-07-26  4:34 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: Matt Gushee; +Cc: caml-list

Hi Matt,

I don't see ploticus in the list. But it is a good plot maker. However I use it 
from Python, not from OCaml, and the reflection capability of the former makes 
the interface tiny. But in all other respects there should not be any difference.

Alexander

Matt Gushee wrote:

> First of all, thanks to all who responded. And I have a few responses
> for the respondents. First, though, one general remark: although I am
> certainly interested in practical solutions to my current problem, in
> this instance I was trying to draw attention to what I see as a weak
> point in the selection of available libraries. Graphics are a common
> need, and I think better graphics libraries would help the popularity of
> OCaml.
> 
> 
> On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 11:22:03AM +0200, Olivier Andrieu wrote:
> 
>> Matt Gushee [Wednesday 23 July 2003] :
>> > So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
>> > this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
>> > works?
>>
>>I agree with you that libplot isn't fully satisfactory. I haven't much
>>to suggest, though. GD seems to have all the features you need 
> 
> 
> I agree. However ...
> 
> 
>>(but I
>>don't know the state of the ocaml wrapper).
> 
> 
> That's the problem. It's far from being a complete GD interface. And
> I've contacted its author, and he doesn't expect to continue developing
> it. I may see if I can hack in the remaining functionality myself, but
> with my minimal C knowledge I'm not optimistic about that.
> 
> 
>>One solution I've been
>>thinking about is using libart together with Camlimages. Libart is a
>>library for rendering vector graphics (e.g. bezier paths) in
>>anti-aliased pixel buffers. It's written by the Ghostscipt maintainer
>>I think. It seems very good but it doesn't handle text rendering nor
>>saving pixel buffers to file. But I think it should be possible to
>>interface it with Camlimages : libart would do the primitives
>>rendering and camlimages the text rendering and saving.
> 
> 
> Interesting idea. I'd like to know if you do that. By the way, what in
> particular do you like about libart?
> 
> 
>>Writing a C wrapper seems the easiest and quicker way to do what you
>>want though ...
> 
> 
> I agree, and I actually would like to learn C. But there is so much to
> learn, and so little time to learn it ...
> 
> 
> On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 01:03:01PM +0100, Richard Jones wrote:
> 
>>I did something like this in C++ an eon ago. The program generated
>>Postscript directly and piped it into Ghostscript to render it into
>>the appropriate format. Postscript is a very powerful language for
>>this sort of thing once you get used to it.
> 
> 
> Well, I'm reasonably comfortable with PS, and that's pretty much the
> approach I'm taking already: as I explained, draw with MLgraph, convert
> with Camlimages (which uses Ghostscript to load PS). But the problem I'm
> having there is that the antialiasing in the output is unsatisfactory.
> If I use Camlimages out-of-the-box, there is no antialiasing, and curves
> come out looking horribly jagged. On the other hand, if I hack the
> Camlimages source such that Ghostscript is called with
> -dGraphicsAlphaBits=4, curves look fine, but vertical and horizontal
> lines look blurred and semi-transparent. I've also tried converting the
> Postscript with ImageMagick, with results very similar to the latter. So
> I'm afraid the root cause may be a limitation of Ghostscript, though I
> haven't thoroughly investigated yet.
> 
> 
> On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 02:25:38PM +0200, Daniel Bünzli wrote:
> 
>>Dear Matt,
>>
>>Did you consider using OpenGL ?
> 
> 
> What an appalling thought!
> 
> :-)
> 
> Seriously, though, I might end up doing this--when push comes to shove I
> care more about making things work than about doing them 'correctly.'
> Still, as a general solution to the problem of generating 2D raster
> graphics, OpenGL strikes me as being an ugly (and perhaps inefficient?)
> approach. But I don't understand OpenGL very well, and perhaps I'd
> change my mind if I did.
> 
> 
>>But it seems that the FreeType library can give you antialiased pixmaps 
>>of given fonts and that CamlImages provides an inteface to the FreeType 
>>library (never used that however). So maybe you can make both of them 
>>interact smoothly. So I suggest you (though I'm completly misinformed) 
>>CamlImages+lablGL.
> 
> 
> May be worth trying. How mature and stable is lablGL? I would have to
> learn OpenGL, and since I don't have much interest in OpenGL per se,
> before I take the time to learn it, I'd like to have some assurance that
> it is in fact a reliable means for producing high-quality 2D bitmaps.
> 
> 
> On Sat, Jul 26, 2003 at 10:37:20AM +0900, SooHyoung Oh wrote:
> 
>>What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?
> 
> 
> I'm very interested in SVG, but it's not an appropriate solution in this
> case. This is a front-end Web application, and I specifically intend it
> to render graphics in a form that is viewable with any mainstream
> browser--i.e., PNG, JPEG, and/or GIF. I think it will be several years
> before we can reasonably expect clients to have built-in SVG support.
> 
> 
>>It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
>>OCaml for SVG.
>>If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.
> 
> 
> If you mean examples of SVG images, I probably have enough already. But
> if you have written code for generating or processing SVG, I would be
> interested in seeing what you've done.
> 
> 
> On Sat, Jul 26, 2003 at 10:55:19AM +0900, SooHyoung Oh wrote:
> 
>>SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics)
>>
>>sorry...
> 
> 
> No worries. There are so many acronyms floating around these days, I
> would be a little scared of someone who could remember them all
> correctly.
> 



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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* [Caml-list] Re: Graphic frustration
  2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
  2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
@ 2003-07-26  8:45   ` Nicolas Janin
  2003-07-26  8:58   ` [Caml-list] Nicolas Janin
  2 siblings, 0 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: Nicolas Janin @ 2003-07-26  8:45 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: SooHyoung Oh, caml-list

I think what  Matt Gushee's concern is, and  it is clear he isn't alone in
this case (see for example the thread "Roadplan for world domination"
07/25/2003), that now that Ocaml is a mature language, its major drawback
lies in the display and drawing area. There exists several bindings for
different usages in the graphical area but they are all developed in a
different manner, without any integration with existing components. Using
the libraries that exist currently here and there can only be short term
solutions for the serious user.
My feeling is that they are inadequate for corporate users and most
individuals, who don't want to spend twice as much time reading the
documentation (or the code itself !) of each and every library they need for
their projects. Also, since these are small projects by single individuals,
one doesn't know whether they are still maintained or not, so one may have
concerns using them.

Since Ocaml is a powerful language, it needs to show it can handle an
ambitious project :

1. Ocaml needs a comprehensive graphic library that encompasses all the
users needs, so that they won't have to reinvent the wheel each time they
need to do graphics : there exists bindings for SDL and Open GL, but it's a
pain to have to learn each and every library, and have to write again and
again all the code that lacks between the two. This is not practical at all.

What the serious user really wants is a SINGLE large, modular, fast &
extensible library that allows in a consistent manner  to do just about
everything graphical :

 - real time vizualisation for 3D games and 3D softwares with accelerated
Open GL,

 - raster image display (JPEG, PNG formats) in bitmap, B&W and true color,
and some basic image treatments algorithms,

 - 2D vectorized drawing primitives and vectorized text (Display Postscript
or Scalable Vector Graphics support, whichever),

 - a system for displaying and manipulating objects of all the predefined
graphical types on screen (a system of layers, for example),

 - output to the screen (anti-aliasing), Postscript and PDF formats for
printing (and optionnally XML for portable description).

 - an architecture that allows to extend the library fairly easily (with,
optionnally, an embedded interpreted language like Lua or Guile that would
allow applications written with the library, to add some graphical
fuctionalities for their specific uses),

 - a complete ocamldoc documentation.

2. Ocaml lacks a multiplatform native code GUI system, GTK is ok and a
wxwindows should help making GUIs multiplatform, but ideally, a modern
native Ocaml GUI based on the above library would be much better.
Of course, the better and more comprehensive the graphic library is, the
easier to develop and more powerful the GUI. The GUI could also be piloted
or extended in some ways by the scripting language of the graphic library.

Hopefully, by its sheer size and ambitious, provided that it eventually
exists, such a project would attract many volunteers, and a consistent
support throughout the years. Eventually, it could become the centerpiece of
a whole lot of software libraries.

Nicolas

----- Original Message -----
From: "SooHyoung Oh" <shoh@duonix.com>
To: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>; <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2003 3:41 AM


> Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
> Date: Sat, 26 Jul 2003 10:37:20 +0900
> MIME-Version: 1.0
> Content-Type: text/plain;
> charset="iso-8859-1"
> Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
> X-Priority: 3
> X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
> X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2600.0000
> X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2600.0000
> X-Loop: caml-list@inria.fr
> X-Spam: no; 0.00; caml-list:01 gushee:01 mgushee:01 havenrock:01 all--:01
arc:99 ocamlplot:01 api:01 camlimages:01 englewood:01 manure:01
ignores:01 --lao:01 merel:01 bug:01
> Sender: owner-caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr
> Precedence: bulk
>
>
> What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?
> It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
> OCaml for SVG.
> If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.
>
> ---
> SooHyoung Oh
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>
> To: <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
> Sent: Thursday, July 24, 2003 1:20 PM
> Subject: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
>
>
> > Hello, all--
> >
> > I have been working on an application which will generate on-the-fly
> > graphics for the Web, but I have become very frustrated by the
> > limitations of the available graphics libraries for OCaml. If anyone
> > reading this thinks there are solutions I have overlooked, I would be
> > happy to discuss details. Right now, though, my purpose is to find out
> > whether others share my concerns, and how much interest there is in
> > developing better graphics libraries.
> >
> > What I would like to see is a single library with at least the
> > following capabilities:
> >
> >   * drawing primitives: line, rectangle, ellipse and/or arc, perhaps
> >     bezier curves
> >
> >   * rendering text with arbitrary Type 1 and/or TrueType fonts
> >
> >   * antialiasing
> >
> >   * basic image manipulation functions such as transformations,
> >     contrast adjustment, cropping, etc.
> >
> >   * saving to common bitmap formats such as JPEG and PNG
> >
> >   * cross-platform
> >
> > taking the various graphics packages together, all these capabilities
> > exist, but as far as I can tell there is no single package that combines
> > them all. So, in developing my application, I started out with
> > OCamlPlot, but discovered that it
> >
> >   - doesn't do antialiasing
> >
> >   - uses only 2 or 3 built-in fonts for PNG output
> >
> >   - has a rather rigid and idiosyncratic API
> >
> >   - doesn't run on Windows
> >
> > Then I decided to try MLgraph + Camlimages, which is an improvement, but
> > still falls short: MLgraph is excellent for drawing, but saves only to
> > PostScript--and I find the final result, converted to PNG with
> > CamlImages, rather unsatisfactory (the main problem is that antialiasing
> > doesn't work very well, which may actually be a Ghostscript issue).
> > Performance with this combination is also markedly poorer than with
> > OCamlPlot.
> >
> > Then there's OCamlGD, which seems quite promising. When complete, it
> > will probably satisfy all my requirements; but there hasn't been a
> > relesase in quite a while.
> >
> > So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
> > this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
> > works?
> >
> > I am happy, by the way, to put some effort into developing something
> > better. My contribution would be limited, though (I'm not a C
> > programmer, for example, so I wouldn't be able to create a wrapper for
> > an existing C library.).
> >
> > Comments?
> >
> > --
> > Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
> > Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
> > mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
> > http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
> >                             Horses bear soldiers through
> >                                 its streets.
> >
> >                             --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)
> >
> > -------------------
> > To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
> http://caml.inria.fr
> > Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
> http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> > Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
> >
>
> -------------------
> To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
http://caml.inria.fr
> Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
> _____________________________________________________________________
> Envie de discuter en "live" avec vos amis ? Télécharger MSN Messenger
> http://www.ifrance.com/_reloc/m la 1ère messagerie instantanée de France

_____________________________________________________________________
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-------------------
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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

* [Caml-list] Re: 
  2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
  2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
  2003-07-26  8:45   ` [Caml-list] Re: Graphic frustration Nicolas Janin
@ 2003-07-26  8:58   ` Nicolas Janin
  2 siblings, 0 replies; 8+ messages in thread
From: Nicolas Janin @ 2003-07-26  8:58 UTC (permalink / raw)
  To: SooHyoung Oh, Matt Gushee, caml-list

It would be interesting to know how many people are directly interested by
such a project (provided that many people won't say they are interested, but
will eventually use such a library when it is in a mature state).

----- Original Message -----
From: "SooHyoung Oh" <shoh@duonix.com>
To: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>; <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2003 3:41 AM


> Subject: Re: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
> Date: Sat, 26 Jul 2003 10:37:20 +0900
> MIME-Version: 1.0
> Content-Type: text/plain;
> charset="iso-8859-1"
> Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
> X-Priority: 3
> X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
> X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2600.0000
> X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V6.00.2600.0000
> X-Loop: caml-list@inria.fr
> X-Spam: no; 0.00; caml-list:01 gushee:01 mgushee:01 havenrock:01 all--:01
arc:99 ocamlplot:01 api:01 camlimages:01 englewood:01 manure:01
ignores:01 --lao:01 merel:01 bug:01
> Sender: owner-caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr
> Precedence: bulk
>
>
> What do you think about SVG (Selective Vector Graphics)?
> It uses only text for graphics as postscript so it's not difficult to use
> OCaml for SVG.
> If you interested about that, I'll send you a few examples.
>
> ---
> SooHyoung Oh
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Matt Gushee" <mgushee@havenrock.com>
> To: <caml-list@pauillac.inria.fr>
> Sent: Thursday, July 24, 2003 1:20 PM
> Subject: [Caml-list] Graphics frustration
>
>
> > Hello, all--
> >
> > I have been working on an application which will generate on-the-fly
> > graphics for the Web, but I have become very frustrated by the
> > limitations of the available graphics libraries for OCaml. If anyone
> > reading this thinks there are solutions I have overlooked, I would be
> > happy to discuss details. Right now, though, my purpose is to find out
> > whether others share my concerns, and how much interest there is in
> > developing better graphics libraries.
> >
> > What I would like to see is a single library with at least the
> > following capabilities:
> >
> >   * drawing primitives: line, rectangle, ellipse and/or arc, perhaps
> >     bezier curves
> >
> >   * rendering text with arbitrary Type 1 and/or TrueType fonts
> >
> >   * antialiasing
> >
> >   * basic image manipulation functions such as transformations,
> >     contrast adjustment, cropping, etc.
> >
> >   * saving to common bitmap formats such as JPEG and PNG
> >
> >   * cross-platform
> >
> > taking the various graphics packages together, all these capabilities
> > exist, but as far as I can tell there is no single package that combines
> > them all. So, in developing my application, I started out with
> > OCamlPlot, but discovered that it
> >
> >   - doesn't do antialiasing
> >
> >   - uses only 2 or 3 built-in fonts for PNG output
> >
> >   - has a rather rigid and idiosyncratic API
> >
> >   - doesn't run on Windows
> >
> > Then I decided to try MLgraph + Camlimages, which is an improvement, but
> > still falls short: MLgraph is excellent for drawing, but saves only to
> > PostScript--and I find the final result, converted to PNG with
> > CamlImages, rather unsatisfactory (the main problem is that antialiasing
> > doesn't work very well, which may actually be a Ghostscript issue).
> > Performance with this combination is also markedly poorer than with
> > OCamlPlot.
> >
> > Then there's OCamlGD, which seems quite promising. When complete, it
> > will probably satisfy all my requirements; but there hasn't been a
> > relesase in quite a while.
> >
> > So that's a quick summary of my situation. Do others agree with me that
> > this is a significant problem? Are there any good solutions in the
> > works?
> >
> > I am happy, by the way, to put some effort into developing something
> > better. My contribution would be limited, though (I'm not a C
> > programmer, for example, so I wouldn't be able to create a wrapper for
> > an existing C library.).
> >
> > Comments?
> >
> > --
> > Matt Gushee                 When a nation follows the Way,
> > Englewood, Colorado, USA    Horses bear manure through
> > mgushee@havenrock.com           its fields;
> > http://www.havenrock.com/   When a nation ignores the Way,
> >                             Horses bear soldiers through
> >                                 its streets.
> >
> >                             --Lao Tzu (Peter Merel, trans.)
> >
> > -------------------
> > To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
> http://caml.inria.fr
> > Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
> http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> > Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
> >
>
> -------------------
> To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives:
http://caml.inria.fr
> Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ:
http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
> Beginner's list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ocaml_beginners
> _____________________________________________________________________
> Envie de discuter en "live" avec vos amis ? Télécharger MSN Messenger
> http://www.ifrance.com/_reloc/m la 1ère messagerie instantanée de France

_____________________________________________________________________
Envie de discuter en "live" avec vos amis ? Télécharger MSN Messenger
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-------------------
To unsubscribe, mail caml-list-request@inria.fr Archives: http://caml.inria.fr
Bug reports: http://caml.inria.fr/bin/caml-bugs FAQ: http://caml.inria.fr/FAQ/
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^ permalink raw reply	[flat|nested] 8+ messages in thread

end of thread, back to index

Thread overview: 8+ messages (download: mbox.gz / follow: Atom feed)
-- links below jump to the message on this page --
2003-07-24  4:20 [Caml-list] Graphics frustration Matt Gushee
2003-07-24 12:03 ` Richard Jones
2003-07-26  1:37 ` SooHyoung Oh
2003-07-26  1:55   ` SooHyoung Oh
2003-07-26  4:21     ` Matt Gushee
2003-07-26  4:34       ` Alexander V. Voinov
2003-07-26  8:45   ` [Caml-list] Re: Graphic frustration Nicolas Janin
2003-07-26  8:58   ` [Caml-list] Nicolas Janin

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