How useful is GCG nowadays (vs Macs)

Gregory Quinn gquinn at COM1.MED.USF.EDU
Fri Mar 17 12:43:18 EST 1995

>        Let's all be clear about this.  You need explicit permission from
>Maggie Smith to put the GCG Help library and Manual on a public access
>http server, but I'm not aware of her having denied permission to anyone,
>and there's a mailto link for her in the above URL (so you can readily
>contact her and ask 8-).
>        You should *not* make execution of GCG *programs* accessible
>to WWW clients other than ones running on systems which have a valid
>GCG license.
>                                Fote

> Foteos Macrides           Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology
> MACRIDES at SCI.WFEB.EDU     222 Maple Avenue, Shrewsbury, MA 01545

I wasn't aware of anyone who was allowing public access to GCG via the
WEB.....which URL is this?!? (I really don't think anyone would be that

Individual sites running their own versions of a WEB interface to GCG for
site access is perfectly reasonable....it provides a convenient graphical
interface which allows the input of local data. Additionally, it makes
much less demands on the UNIX box....if you wan't to see a computer slow
down real fast try running 40 concurrent X-windows WPI sessions, with a lot
of that drain coming from the computer trying to generate a graphical
interface for you. To quote Don Gilbert in his note a few months back in 
this group "As long as GCG keeps the command line interface to their 
software, others can build the better client/server methods to use it."

In regard to WEB access to the manual, whilst I agree that copyright
must be upheld, GCG needs to make very clear where they stand on distributed
versions of their manual. I certainly encourage access to the
WEB manual, since it does the following: 

1) It cuts down the cost of aquiring and distributing the GCG manuals

2) It allows instant access to manual information to anyone at any place, 
any time, on site.

3) It's much faster to get to information through this interface, than via 
the 'genhelp' command and allows local printing of document pages (may be 
this is the sticking point).

4) It permits 'context sensitive' help in a WEB interface

GCG access is not about the manual, it's about the many useful programs that
people need to use in their molecular biology work, and this requires ready 
availability of information about how to use them. 

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