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IDL 5.3

I was encouraged to place this to the discussion group.  It was written
to a group of users at work in response to discussion about the ppt
slides documenting the IDL 5.3 product.  I'm tentative about posting
this, for obvious reasons, but maybe someone at RSI will shed some light
about what drives IDL development.


so how long have RSI had since bringing out 5?  2-3 years or something

People may aggressively disagree with me here, but I was expecting
something a
little more to stay in the running with MatLab.  It seems they've just
added on
a few components here and there, improved the documentation/help and
misused the term applet, and there you have it, 5.3 without addressing
any real

Granted, the development environment should be interesting, and the
reader/applets/etc too, but these things are all just add-ons imho and
nothing more than what 3rd party developers could have written.  I say
that stuff to the 3rd party developers, because usually they'll do it
(and it's better that way for the end user too), and if RSI are going to
limit development, they should concentrate on the core IDL-machine
aspects of better GUI's/visualization, including a real object language
and getting the maths right.

BTW - Anyone notice they've dropped the Objects / Object Graphics manual
5.3?  Does this mean they've abandoned the concept altogether? :(

sorry 'bout this - IDL is useful, and i'd be lost without it, but there
are many things about it that i hate with a passion, many of the reasons
made obvious by the 5.3 release.



Nick Bower
Space Science and Engineering Center
University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA
Phone: (608) 265 8007
Email: nick.bower@ssec.wisc.edu
Web: http://arm1.ssec.wisc.edu/~nickb