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Textual Blog

So you're looking for a wee bit of Textual help...



Patience, Highlander. You have done well. But it'll take time. You are generations being born and dying. You are at one with all living things. Each man's thoughts and dreams are yours to know. You have power beyond imagination. Use it well, my friend. Don't lose your head.

Juan Sánchez Villalobos Ramírez, Chief metallurgist to King Charles V of Spain

As of the time of writing, I'm a couple or so days off having been with Textualize for 3 months. It's been fun, and educational, and every bit as engaging as I'd hoped, and more. One thing I hadn't quite prepared for though, but which I really love, is how so many other people are learning Textual along with me.

A year of building for the terminal

I joined Textualize back in January 2022, and since then have been hard at work with the team on both Rich and Textual. Over the course of the year, I’ve been able to work on a lot of really cool things. In this post, I’ll review a subset of the more interesting and visual stuff I’ve built. If you’re into terminals and command line tooling, you’ll hopefully see at least one thing of interest!

Be the Keymaster!

That didn't go to plan

So... yeah... the blog. When I wrote my previous (and first) post I had wanted to try and do a post towards the end of each week, highlighting what I'd done on the "dogfooding" front. Life kinda had other plans. Not in a terrible way, but it turns out that getting both flu and Covid jabs (AKA "jags" as they tend to say in my adopted home) on the same day doesn't really agree with me too well.

I have been working, but there's been some odd moments in the past week and a bit and, last week, once I got to the end, I was glad for it to end. So no blog post happened.


Letting your cook multitask while bringing water to a boil

Whenever you are cooking a time-consuming meal, you want to multitask as much as possible. For example, you do not want to stand still while you wait for a pot of water to start boiling. Similarly, you want your applications to remain responsive (i.e., you want the cook to “multitask”) while they do some time-consuming operations in the background (e.g., while the water heats up).

The animation below shows an example of an application that remains responsive (colours on the left still change on click) even while doing a bunch of time-consuming operations (shown on the right).

In this blog post, I will teach you how to multitask like a good cook.

On dog food, the (original) Metaverse, and (not) being bored



Cutler, armed with a schedule, was urging the team to "eat its own dog food". Part macho stunt and part common sense, the "dog food diet" was the cornerstone of Cutler’s philosophy.

G. Pascal Zachary — Show-Stopper!

I can't remember exactly when it was -- it was likely late in 1994 or some time in 1995 -- when I first came across the concept of, or rather the name for the concept of, "eating your own dog food". The idea and the name played a huge part in the book Show-Stopper! by G. Pascal Zachary. The idea wasn't new to me of course; I'd been writing code for over a decade by then and plenty of times I'd built things and then used those things to do things, but it was fascinating to a mostly-self-taught 20-something me to be reading this (excellent -- go read it if you care about the history of your craft) book and to see the idea written down and named.

Spinners and progress bars in Textual

One of the things I love about mathematics is that you can solve a problem just by guessing the correct answer. That is a perfectly valid strategy for solving a problem. The only thing you need to do after guessing the answer is to prove that your guess is correct.

I used this strategy, to some success, to display spinners and indeterminate progress bars from Rich in Textual.