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Re: gEDA-user: Reinventing the wheel

On Wed, 18 May 2011 18:39:43 -0600
John Doty <jpd@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> On May 18, 2011, at 6:31 PM, Kai-Martin Knaak wrote:
> > Examples 
> > are the next to unusable default library of geda
> As has been discussed many times, this cannot be fixed, since there is no
> narrow, common use case for gEDA. Even the big $$ tools can't get this
> right, so how can we? A narrowly targeted, inflexible tool like Eagle can
> maybe, kind of, but that's not gEDA.

KMK didn't say what he means by "unusable", but if I had to suggest:

My use of the suite is always the same - draw up a schematic in GSchem and import it into PCB when it comes time to do so.

The first thing that comes to mind is that, for both Gschem and PCB, the libraries need recategorized.  

Start by getting rid of PCB categories "newlib", "pcblib" and "pcblib-newlib",  and subcategories within such as "geda", "generic", and "not_vetted_ingo" need to go as well - all of these are completely vague and really aren't helpful.  Recombine everything into one big monolithic library, then divide it back out by component type (IC, electromechanical, interconnects, resistors, capacitors, ...), and perhaps by brand after that.    Think of how Digi-Key lays out their Product Index on their website, but simplify it.

GSchem's library is already reasonably well categorized in this regard.

Then, add a new level above all of that, in both programs, to categorize according to use case.  Gschem might include such things as PCB design, ASIC, even plumbing.  PCB might include categories for PCB design, floorplans, I could even see it being used to lay out something big like a University campus.

Each program would need an "Unsorted" category to catch what doesn't fit into the defaults.   One should add an "All" category to both programs to bypass this mechanism, as inevitably some footprints and symbols will be misfiled.

Then there is the previously discussed idea of setting default PCB footprints on various symbols in gschem.

Such changes wouldn't break an existing workflow, just as the recent addition of PCB's schematic import facility (which works pretty well) doesn't stop people from using gsch2pcb and similar tools.

"There are some things in life worth obsessing over. ÂMost
things aren't, and when you learn that, life improves."
Vanessa Ezekowitz <vanessaezekowitz@xxxxxxxxx>

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