ACD suggestion

José R. Valverde jrvalverde at
Wed May 11 14:26:42 UTC 2005

This is to suggest an addition to ACD datatypes:

	I'm looking for an easy way to allow users select among a list of
choices that may vary across different versions of the program (for an
embassy package) but the same happens for options that may change from
installation to installation (like, e.g. the list of available blast or
fasta datasets) and even time to time.

	The idea I come up with is a 'dynlist' datatype: it would work
much like a list, but would obtain the choices from a directory listing
somewhere or from a file. This way, one would define e.g.

dynlist: params [
	required: Y
	min: 1
	max: 1
	header: "Select Force Field"
	values: "/somewhere/params/*.prm"
	showpath: Y
	info: "Force Field parameters to use in the computation"

	values: "@/somewhere/params/FILE"
to use the contents of FILE as the options listing...

Then, on running the user would get a listing of options, possibly stripped
of the path (e.g. with basename(3)) and choose whichever he wanted. ACD would
return the selection to the program (possibly with the pathname stripped if
so requested).

This is akin to GUI OpenFile routines which list a series of files and let
the user choose, hence it may have more applications than suggested. But,
at any rate, it simplifies handling of these kind of datafiles that may 
experience high variation.

Alternately, it might be nice to have a way to plug-in to emboss.defaults,
allowing programmers to retrieve preferences/option lists from it. But this
I find more problematic.

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