Find file
Fetching contributors…
Cannot retrieve contributors at this time
66 lines (51 sloc) 2.87 KB


There are two types of input events. The first type is simply the Character or Number returned by calling Vim's 'getchar()' function. These are called "character" events. A Viewer examine all such character events and map some of them into the second type of event supported by Forms, a Dictionary object or object event that must have a 'type' key whose value is one of a set of allowed names. As an example, a <LeftMouse> Number returned by 'getchar()' is converted into a Dictionary event object of type 'NewFocus' where the Dictionary also has entries for the line and column (v:mouse_line and v:mouse_column). Some object events are generated by the Forms runtime system. An example of such an object event is a ReSize event which is generated when a Glyph actually changes its size (normally, a very rare occurrence). More common runtime generated event objects are the Cancel and Submit events which are, generally, generated by a "close" and an "accept" button.

A user interacts with a form by sending events to the form. Such events are generated by the keyboard and mouse. Events are read by the Viewer with current focus, mapped by that Viewer and then forwarded to the Viewer's child Glyph that has focus. If a Viewer has no child Glyphs that accept focus, then all events are ignored (except the <Esc> character which will pop the user out of the current Viewer/Form).

If a Glyph consumes an input event, it might require redrawing (such as adding a character to an editor). In this case, the Glyph registers itself with a viewer-redraw-list and when control is returned to the Viewer, the Glyph is redrawn.

Sometimes a Glyph will consume an event and an action will be triggered. For example, a left mouse click or keyboard <CR> entry on a button will cause the action associated with that button to execute.


New Types of Events

A developer can create a new Event type, but the Glyphs that handle Events will simply ignore it.

Currently, any Glyph that handles Events does so in one of its methods; there is no notion of a pluggable, independent Event Handler.


I've thought about but never reached a design that I was happy with concerning the scripting of a Form interaction. That is, add Events to the Input Queue and then call a Form's 'run()' method. The issue is that of representing the Number and String that are returned by 'getchar()' and 'nr2char()' methods. And, in addition, some events have secondary data such as Mouse Events.

A companion problem is how to log and capture a user's 'getchar()' Character stream in some format that would allow for editing the resultant captured data and replay.

In both cases, I do not see a solution short of enumerating all possible Character/Event types.

I might add, a good Character/Event capture/edit/replay capability would allow for creating a suit of non-visual unit tests for the Forms library.