Multi-line message reading (bug 441414 #1)

Kent James kent at
Fri Dec 26 19:57:26 UTC 2014

(This post is followup #1 to comments in bug *441414* 
<> -Treerows need a 
way to hold richer content)

(In reply to Ryan Yagatich from comment #202)

 > What would need to happen in order to get multi-line thread pane in 
place...? Is there an official markup that is authorized to
 > develop in, such that if there were other corporations interested in 
putting money into the pot, they'd at least have an idea as
 > to what type of resources would be necessary for the job?

For some reason, multi-line thread pane has not been a priority of 
existing core developers. Perhaps it should be?

In any case, there are clear technological alternatives, including 
several that were suggested within the bug. (There is a history of cases 
where a suggested replacement technology has proven to be inadequate to 
the task, so attempting any replacement is not without risk.)

As for "putting money into the pot" there are cases where someone has 
funded a specific improvement in Thunderbird, but that is usually done 
through private arrangements and not through any official channels. For 
a change of this magnitude, many would be shocked at the cost to fund 
this directly (think of the order of $100,000) so I find it hard to 
believe this is a viable approach unless done by a large organization 
that is heavily invested in Thunderbird. If those organizations even 
exist, they have been very quiet so far in interacting with the 
Thunderbird core team.

I suppose a better question here is, how can we make forward progress 
with modernizing the UI of Thunderbird to include a multi-line thread 
pane? Unfortunately this is probably wrapped up with a related "Real 
Soon Now" project of updating the message summary db to be async and 
non-mork. I am not a display or UI expert, but perhaps I could suggest 
that the next step forward would be a demonstration project that would 
attempt an HTML thread pane demo. That might even be a viable GSOC project.

Other thoughts?


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