Announcing WINTERP 2.0 - Motif Widget INTERPreter w/Graphics/Animation

Niels P. Mayer (
Sat, 11 Jun 1994 20:07:56 GMT

I just released WINTERP 2.0 for the X Consortium X11r6 "contrib"
distribution. Previous releases of WINTERP were distributed on the X11r4
and X11r5 distributions -- 2.0 is a significant update over previously
released versions (1.0-1.13). This software is now available for free via
anonymous ftp from


WINTERP: An object-oriented rapid prototyping, development and delivery
environment for building extensible applications with the OSF/Motif UI
Toolkit and Xtango-based graphics/animation.

by Niels Mayer
WINTERP Version 2.01
June 6, 1994
WINTERP is a Widget INTERPreter, an application development environment
enabling rapid prototyping of graphical user-interfaces (GUI) through the
interactive programmatic manipulation of user interface objects and their
attached actions. The interpreter, based on David Betz, Tom Almy, et al's
XLISP-PLUS, provides an interface to the X11 toolkit Intrinsics, the
OSF/Motif widget set, primitives for collecting data from UN*X processes,
and facilities for interacting with other UN*X processes. WINTERP thus
supports rapid prototyping of GUI-based applications by allowing the user
to interactively change both the UI appearance and application
functionality. These features make WINTERP a good tool for learning and
experimenting with the capabilities of the OSF/Motif UI toolkit, allowing
UI designers to more easily play "what if" games with different interface

WINTERP is also an excellent platform for delivering extensible or
customizable applications. By embedding a small, efficient language
interpreter with UI primitives within the delivered application, users and
system integrators can tailor the static and dynamic layout of the UI,
UI-to-application dialogue, and application functionality. WINTERP's use of
a real programming language for customization allows WINTERP-based
applications to be much more flexible than applications using customization
schemes provided by the X resource database, OSF/Motif's UIL (user
interface language), and resource-based languages such as WCL.

An environment similar to WINTERP's already exists in the Gnu-Emacs text
editor -- WINTERP was strongly influenced by Gnu-Emacs' successful design.
In Gnu-Emacs, a mini-Lisp interpreter is used to extend the editor to
provide text-browser style interfaces to a number of UN*X applications
(e.g. e-mail user agents, directory browsers, debuggers, etc). Whereas
Emacs-Lisp enables the creation of new applications by tying together
C-implemented primitives operating on text-buffer UI objects, WINTERP-Lisp
ties together operations on graphical UI objects implemented by the Motif
widgets. Both achieve a high degree of customizability that is common for
systems implemented in Lisp, while still attaining the speed of execution
and (relatively) small size associated with C-implemented applications.

Other features:
* WINTERP is free software -- available via anonymous ftp from
* Portable -- runs without porting on many Unix systems.
* Interface to GNU Emacs' lisp-mode allows code to be developed
and tested without leaving the editor.
* Interactive programing also available in the "WINTERP Control Panel",
with editing taking place in a Motif text widget controlled by
* Built-in RPC mechanism for inter-application communications.
* XLISP provides a simple Smalltalk-like object system.
* OSF/Motif widgets are real XLISP objects -- widgets can be
specialized via subclassing, methods added or altered, etc.
* Automatic storage management of all Motif/Xt/X data.
* Contains facilities for "direct manipulation" of UI components.

The WINTERP 2.0 release includes the following new features:
* High-level, object-oriented 2.5D graphics/animation package featuring
pixel-independent/resizeable/scalable rendering, path-transition
animation, and high-level animation operators. This is based on
Stasko&Hayes' Xtango system.
* Using Xtango, the ability to easily create new widget classes
employing arbitary graphical behavior without the tedium of
programming in the Xt instrinsics and Xlib.
* Asynchronous subprocess facility enables non-blocking GUI interfaces
to existing interactive unix commands and interactive network
services. Enables use of multiple asynchronous subprocesses.
* XmGraph widget for creating directed acyclic graphs, trees, and
direct-manipulation displays.
* Table widget allows constraint-based GUI static layout
using tbl(1)-style specifications.
* Uses XLISP-PLUS version 2.1c -- more functionality, better subset of
Common Lisp, e.g. good support for sequence operators.
* Support for OSF/Motif 1.2.*
* GIF Image Support.
* Many new examples, improved example WINTERP applications.
* Major code cleanups, bugfixes, etc.

You may obtain the latest released version of the WINTERP source,
documentation, and examples via anonymous ftp from internet host
in directory /contrib/devel_tools, file winterp-2.xx.tar.gz, where 'xx'
represents the revision number. Directory /contrib/devel_tools/winterp
contains slides, papers, further documentation, contributed code, etc.

An automated reply indicating the locations and status of the latest
WINTERP source may be obtained by sending an e-mail message to is the mailing list for WINTERP-related announcements
and discussions. To get added/removed from the list, send mail to Please do not send junk mail or subscribe/
unsubscribe messages to the mailing list

For discussions about XLISP, see the USENET newsgroup comp.lang.lisp.x.


Niels P. Mayer
Enterprise Integration Technologies
800 El Camino Real, Fourth Floor
Menlo Park, CA 94025 or



WINTERP is portable software, and should run on any machine that
supports Motif versions 1.0, 1.1, or 1.2 and Berkeley
sockets. WINTERP will not build directly from the X11r6 distribution.

WINTERP 2.0 has been tested on the following platforms:
* Sun SunOS 4.1.3 and OSF Motif 1.2.3
* Sun Solaris 2.3 with Motif/X11/cc provided by Sun's 2.3 SDK
* HPUX 9.0 on HP9000s300 HP9000s400, HP9000s700
* HPUX 8.0. on HP9000s300 and HP9000s800
* SGI Irix 5.1 and 5.2 w/ Motif/X11/cc from Irix IDO.
* DEC Ultrix 4.3 and its built-in Motif 1.1
* DEC OSF1, v2.0 and its built-in Motif 1.2
* NeXT NeXT-Step 3.0 with Pencom Co-Xist X/Motif

The WINTERP distribution contains Makefiles specific to the above
machines and OSs, and also provides Imakefiles for compiling WINTERP
on other systems.



Here's how to ftp WINTERP 2.01: (your input denoted by ^^^^^^^^^^)

jhvh-1-16-~> cd /tmp
jhvh-1-17-/tmp> ftp
Name ( anonymous
Password ( <anypassword you want here>
331 Guest login ok, send ident as password.
230 Guest login ok, access restrictions apply.
ftp> cd contrib/devel_tools
200 CWD command okay.

ftp> binary
200 Type set to I.

ftp> get winterp-2.01.tar.gz
200 PORT command okay.
150 Opening data connection for winterp-2.01.tar.gz (,3988) (2303809 bytes).
226 Transfer complete.
2303809 bytes received in 690.63 seconds (1.96 Kbytes/sec)

ftp> quit
221 Goodbye.

jhvh-1-18-/tmp> su ## become superuser to install in /usr/local/winterp
jhvh-1-ROOT-1-/tmp> cd /usr/local/

jhvh-1-ROOT-2-/usr/local> gunzip -c /tmp/winterp-2.01.tar.gz | tar xvf -
[... lengthy list of files output by tar ...]

jhvh-1-ROOT-3-/usr/local/> rm /tmp/winterp-2.01.tar.gz

<< If you don't have GNU zip (gzip(1) gunzip(1), retrieve the >>
<< winterp-2.01.tar.Z instead of the winterp-2.01.tar.gz file and use "zcat">>
<< in place of "gunzip -c" above.... >>



* For compilation tips, see winterp/doc/winterp.doc sections:
<<Compiling and installing WINTERP via Imakefile and 'xmkmf':>>
or <<Compiling and installing WINTERP via Makefile.* and 'make':>>.

* For configuration and running hints, see winterp/doc/winterp.doc
sections: <<Set up X resources and application defaults files:>>,
<<~/.winterp -- WINTERP session startup file:>>,
<<~/.winterpapp -- WINTERP development session startup file.>>,
and finally, <<Run WINTERP!:>>

* For known bugs, see winterp/doc/BUGS