[PD] Preferred/best practice for loading external objects

IOhannes m zmölnig zmoelnig at iem.at
Wed May 4 23:01:58 CEST 2016

On 05/04/2016 03:27 PM, Winfried Ritsch wrote:
> a) Deken should not take just pathes from pd but try preferred ones and add 
> pathes to pd on startup

i strongly oppose.
it's Pd's job to use sensible default search paths, and deken should
follow the lead.
put otherwise: there should only be a single central place where the
default search paths are defined, and this ought to be within Pd-core
(since deken is just a GUI addon, that won't unfold it's power if there
was no gui)

> b) Pd suggest as first writeable pathes among others non user-writeable:
>   /var/lib/pd        (group puredata set)
>   /usr/local/share/pd,  (group puredata set)

i don't think that either of those places is the correct place.
- /var is for "variable files—files whose content is expected to
continually change during normal operation of the system—such as logs,
spool files, and temporary e-mail files." - this is definitely *not*
addon libraries.

- /usr/local/share or /usr/share is for "architecture-independent
(shared) data." and most Pd-libraries (installed via deken or otherwise)
are architecture dependent binaries.

>   $(HOME)/.local/lib/pd
>   $(HOME)/pd-external 
> and deken decides: if the parent dir is writeable it create it and uses it.

deken did this in the past. it ended up creating ${HOME}/pd-externals
(which we all hate), because ${HOME} is the only place of all your
proposals that is (almost always) guaranteed to exist *and* writable by
the user.

so now deken does something similar:
if the directory itself exists and is writeable, it uses it. else it
asks the user.

> so if no ./local it would not take it, but the next suggestion and if in the 
> puredata group which can write to /var/lib/pd take this or

well, you can already do this:
- create a group "puredata"
- add yourself to the "puredata" group
- create "/usr/local/lib/pd-externals/"
- make "/usr/local/lib/pd-externals/" writable by the "puredata" group
- use deken

apart from the last bit, nothing is related to Pd; i therefore think
that it is *not* Pd's task to do anything of it (*maybe* this can be
added to a puredata.deb or .rpm)

> c) deken at least ask where to write it

which is what it does.


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