[Humanist] 26.140 open-source TUSTEP

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Mon Jul 9 22:38:31 CEST 2012

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 26, No. 140.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Mon, 9 Jul 2012 13:30:46 +0200 (CEST)
        From: Wilhelm Ott <wilhelm.ott at zdv.uni-tuebingen.de>
        Subject: TUSTEP is open source - with TXSTEP providing a new XML interface
        In-Reply-To: <20120611201840.6137014A99F at woodward.joyent.us>

We are pleased to announce that, starting with the release 2012,
TUSTEP is available as open source software. It is distributed
under the Revised BSD Licence and can be downloaded from

TUSTEP has a long tradition as a highly flexible, reliable,
efficient suite of programs for humanities computing. It started
in the early 70ies as a tool for supporting humanities projects
at the University of Tbingen, relying on own funds of the
University. From 1985 to 1989, a substantial grant from the Land
Baden-Wrttemberg officially opened its distribution beyond the
limits of the University and started its success as a highly
appreciated research tool for many projects at about a hundred
universities and academic institutions in the German speaking
part of the world, represented since 1993 in the International
TUSTEP User Group (ITUG). Reports on important projects relying
on TUSTEP and a list of publications (includig lexicograpic
works and critical editions) can be found on the tustep webpage.

From 2003, academic partner institutions from Germany, Austria
and Switzerland have contributed more than 300.000 EUR to support the
availability and further development of TUSTEP according to the needs
of research and of technical change in hardware and operating systems.
One of the conditions of the respective consortium agreement was that,
in the course of this cooperation, TUSTEP will be made available as an
open source product.

We are confident that TUSTEPs new status as an open source product
will help, with the aid of a larger interested community, to
overcome existing obstacles against its more widespread usability:
presently, both command language and documentation are available
in German only (work on an English version had to be stopped due
to lacking funds in the early 90ies).

TXSTEP, presently being developed in cooperation with Stuttgart
Media University, offers a new XML-based user interface to the
TUSTEP programs. Compared to the original TUSTEP commands,
we see important advantages:

- it will offer an up-to-date established syntax for scripting;
- it will show the typical benefits of working with
  an XML editor, like content completion, highlighting,
  showing annotations, and, of course, verifying the code;
- it will offer - to a certain degree - a self teaching
  environment by commenting on the scope of every step;
- it will help to avoid many syntactical errors, even compared
  to the original TUSTEP scripting environment;
- the syntax is in English, providing a more widespread usability
  than TUSTEP's German command language.

At the TEI conference last year in Würzburg, we presented a
first prototype to an international audience. We look forward
to DH2012 in Hamburg next week where, during the Poster Session,
a more enhanced version which already contains most of TUSTEPs
functions will be presented. A demonstration of TXSTEPs
functionality will include tasks which can not easily be
performed by existing XML tools.

After the demo, you are invited to download a test version of
TXSTEP to play with, to comment on it and to help make it a
great and flexible tool for everyday - and complex - questions.

Wilhelm Ott
Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Ott               phone: +49-7071-987656
Universitaet Tuebingen              fax:   +49-7071-987622
c/o Zentrum fuer Datenverarbeitung  e-mail: wilhelm.ott at uni-tuebingen.de
Waechterstrasse 76
D-72074 Tuebingen

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