An Idea...


  Didn't you see this: I have a cool new printer, I can
print very pretty documents even from wordpad from Windoze,
but I CANT print it from my UNIX :(

  Look to the StarOffice, ApplixWare, GIMP. They all
have own printers drivers. While in Windoze I can
simply draw any pictures/texts/etc as on screen, as on
printer! Any simple program can print on ANY PRINTER.
I don't need Postscript or knowledge about printer protocol.
If there is a DRIVER (which is written by printers producer),
then I can print on it. With any features (econofast/etc),
any resolution, etc...

  In UNIX... I didn't see a printer driver for UNIX.
  Then - idea:

  We need universal mechanism to convert text/graphics data
to file, which can be simply sent to MY CONCRETE PRINTER, and
my printer will print what I want.

  Lets write a simple server application, which will receive
requests and generate:
  1) information about printer(s), which are supported by it.
     Such as: paper sizes/resolutions/color-or-not/specials/etc,
     i.e. any parameters, which can be tuned before printing or/and
     which must be taken into account by application while generating
     a printed document.
     [request is the ask about it]
  2) the data, which can be sent to the printer.
     [request is the description of printed data]

  This server will load DRIVERS - simply modules, which will
generate printers data (see 2) from simple input language, and
supply information about printer!
  The server simply is a wrapper. But because of it


  Not for any UNIX, but one module can be compiled for
Linux-x86/Linux-Alpha/FreeBSD/etc... It's not a big trouble.

  The input language must be simple. I think it must provide:

  1) simple printing text (without using special font etc.)
  2) printing a picture in format, supported by server
     (server must provide information about supported
      formats, and must support gif, xpm and XImage
      in any cases, as I think)
     Picture can be printed with scaling (smooth or not -
     this must be a parameter) and/or rotation in any
     position on paper.

  Optionally server may support PostScript pictures or
whole documents and any printers languages (e.g. HPL).
If driver supports it, then server also supports it!

  Using this mechanism ANY X-Window application will
be capable to print on any printer - it simply will
generate a picture (as it generate while drawing on
screen) and send it to server!

  And printer producers will be capable to write drivers
not for only Windoze!

  The server can also supply a printers options dialog,
which can be integrated to GNOME, I think...

  If my idea is mad, tell me why...
  If good - tell me are you interested to write some
drivers for it?


PS: Sorry my English if you are shocked by it :)

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