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Re: Bug#856033: ITP: brailleimg -- produce text images and graphs abusing Braille glyphs

Control: retitle -1 ITP: braillegraph -- simple histogram tool producing text dot-matrix graphs

On Sat, Feb 25, 2017 at 02:46:57PM +0100, Samuel Thibault wrote:
> Indeed, apparently I forgot to add documentation. I have submitted
> patch, thanks.

Awesome, thanks!
> > I wonder about the histogram tool.
> Actually I was thinking that it could be part of gnuplot (it has "set
> terminal dumb", but it could have a "set terminal braille")

Alas, it won't work: I see that, while alignment of the graph itself works
well, anything but terminals (which force a char-cell grid) fails to give
Braille and ASCII characters the same width, despite requesting fixed-width

You can see how bad it is on https://angband.pl/doc/alluni.txt -- you should
get an aligned grid with right edge of every full block forming an even
vertical line, yet most blocks fail to align even within themselves.

gnuplot relies on being able to place labels within the image, which works
for ASCII and maybe Latin/Greek/Cyrillic but, except for most terminals, not
for anything else.  Too many people use in-browser webmails or GUI clients
(a heresy, mutt is the way to go!), or read list archives via WWW.

> but a very simple script that emits histograms from basic data makes sense
> to me too.  I was wondering whether such simple tool already exist, using
> just ASCII to produce the histograms, but couldn't find one with a quick
> search.

That's what we have ITPs for -- thanks for pointing out my image converter
is redundant.  It looks like no one made a histogram tool using
high-resolution Braille yet, thus I'll add some features (like auto-scaling
Y axis -- doing it manually is tedious, horizontal mode, etc) and package
this part.
> It would probably be useful to make such tool have an optional ASCII
> mode.

Meh, I don't think mail clients, terminals and web browsers without Unicode
support deserve much thought.  There's a problem in jessie-'s FreeMono where
it produces a grayish block for Braille (both legitimate use and our abuse)
but since the fix comes a release cycle before this graphing tool, it might
be good enough.

> It should also not assume UTF-8 output, but use something like "|
> iconv -f utf-8", since chinese people have their own way of encoding
> unicode.

I'm about to raise a thread about dropping ancient locale support in buster,
almost no one uses them anymore, GUI stuff hardly pays lip service to
non-Unicode, and it seriously burdens i18n efforts.

In any case, there wasn't a single bug report filed with such an old Chinese
locale since 2012; 2013-2017 stats are:

 ISO-8859-1     |   736
 ISO-8859-15    |   187
 ISO-8859-2     |    46
 KOI8-R         |    39
 EUC-JP         |    14
 TIS-620        |     2

Unrelated: perhaps some other name than "braillegraph" would be better?  The
glyphs used belonging to the Braille range is an implementation detail,
users probably won't care other than for requiring Unicode.

Autotools hint: to do a zx-spectrum build on a pdp11 host, type:
  ./configure --host=zx-spectrum --build=pdp11