Re: [dev] Minimalist software. Should I care?

From: Miles Rout <>
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2023 16:04:23 +1200

On 6 July 2023 3:04:47 am NZST, Dave Blanchard <> wrote:
>On Thu, 06 Jul 2023 00:01:43 +1200
>Miles Rout <> wrote:
>> There is a page on the website advertising all the many patches available to improve st and dwm.
>> Few if any other software projects provide that these days, and are offended by forks.
>Actually few if any other software projects NEED to be patched to provide basic ass functionality, like you know, SCROLLBACK BUFFERS IN A TERMINAL.

Then why do they get new releases adding new features?

Personally I don't use terminal emulator scrollback. It gets too confusing to have scrolling inside vim, AND in the terminal multiplexer, AND in the terminal emulator. Too many layers of scrollbacks with unintuitive interactions. It is like having workspaces AND windows AND tabs in your terminal emulator AND tabs in tmux AND tabs in vim. Too many layers of the same functionality with their own keybindings.

> That patch is an absolute joke, BTW--again, it calls malloc() for EVERY LINE of the scrollback buffer! It takes like a second just to open the terminal with a large scrollback buffer, vs sanely-designed Xterm which starts instantly!

Don't use it then? Maybe that is why it is a patch.

>There's also few software packages out there (in the sane real world) that actually require you to EDIT THE SOURCE CODE AND RECOMPILE just to change basic options!

More's the pity! I wish more software were configurable with a config.h. Configuration file parsing is annoying, as there is no standard. It is annoying for the programmer, but also for the user. What syntax is required in Postfix? Can you generate configuration values using a function? (You can in a C header using simple macros.) Why reinvent the wheel? And it is the source of many security issues.

>Want to use a different font in different terminals for different purposes? Sorry, st doesn't support that feature, or ANY other features, AT ALL, unless you personally write a patch to do it. Garbage.

I have never needed to do that. Why would I want that misfeature in there, causing bugs and issues for me, when 99.9% of people will not do that? If you have some very specialist requirements, you should make them happen.

BTW you can easily just compile multiple copies of the binary with different configurations.

>> The suckless philosophy embraces forks and patches:
>Bzzt--WRONG. I suggested a fork of st on this list one time and was violently assaulted as if I was the enemy of mankind.

How do you get violently assaulted via email?

Kind regards,
Received on Thu Jul 06 2023 - 06:04:23 CEST

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