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Re: Winbuilder Nanometer support


On 10/11/2012 05:27 AM, Brian Sidebotham wrote:
> Hi Guys,
> Would it be beneficial if I changed KicadWinbuilder to build with the
> new nanometer units?
> It should get more people testing the nanometer support and provide
> some feedback. I think quite a few people use Winbuilder to get access
> to the latest versions, but don't change anything in the setup. This
> way it will gradually get you some more nanometer beta testers and
> feedback.
> Let me know as I will only take a few minutes to change.
> Best Regards, Brian.

I am using the nanometer build without issue. 

(My only suspicion is with respect to grabbing zone borders with the mouse pointer.  I
have felt for some time that the hit testing there should use pixels to measure acceptable
distance, not IU which are subject to variances on zoom factor.  Pixels are not subject to
zoom factor.  Its in the TODO.txt file.  It is painfully hard to select a zone boarder
reliably in the nanometer build.)

I like the idea of forcing folks to smoke out problems.  Because it has to happen
sometime.  There are no beta testers on some kind of payroll.

Pcbnew files (even legacy format files) created from that point forward are not compatible
with the deci-mils build.  So it is a bridge which is difficult to traverse backwards across.

I've found that the Eagle plugin needs the nanometer build to avoid rounding errors,
because coming from metric to deci-mils is and has been a problem regardless of plugin. 
This was the whole impetus to move to nanometers as a means of avoiding rounding errors
even within legacy files in the first place.

The fork in the road looks like this:

a) change now, generate a bunch of new mm based footprint libraries and mm based legacy
board files, which are not compatible with deci-mil builds.

b) wait until the *.kicad_pcb files and s-expression footprints are fully supported, those
will only ever be in mm, meaning this is mandatorily the nanometer build.  Legacy files
generated from this build are also not compatible with deci-meter builds.

a) and b) both have the same disadvantage.

I have personally chosen to go the a) route, because I can get more accurate footprints
and boards in play now.  I never have to use an older version of the software anyway.

I cannot speak for other users, only for myself, and for the benefits to the project.  

Mostly we might be speaking about new users being affected by your change to your script. 
For them I might be inclined to lean towards a) also. 

If there was a pause point in the script's execution, or a way you can explain how to
change from the default of nanometers to rebuild, that might be enough to make everyone
minimally grumpy.

On balance, I find your suggestion more positive than negative.

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