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Re: Please do not use Qt (fwd)



On Sun, 24 Nov 1996, Martin Konold wrote:

> No the point is that Qt will be used to make the Unix Desktop
> Environement. There is no goal so far to port the kde to none unix
> environments. Portability is not the issue, but nice look&feel for the
> unix desktop users.
>
> Most kde people do not care about Winblows.

You are missing the point entirely.

Here it is:

MANY people (including many of the debian development team) will just
plain refuse to use, recommend, or support kde IF it is based on a
non-freeware library like Qt. This is true in the debian community, the
linux community, and also in the rest of the unix using community.

This being the case, the only noticeable result of kde will be further
fragmentation of the unix/X GUI "standards".

IMO, the goal of kde is well-meaning but severely flawed. For it to be
THE killer GUI for X it has to:

 a) be truly free in the Debian or FSF or BSD or Artistic license sense
    of the word "free". Qt automatically disqualifies kde from this.

 b) be *at least* as functional & complete as Motif, Tk, Athena, and fvwm.

 c) support or be mostly compatible with existing standards, allowing
    for trivially easy ports from old libraries to kde.

 d) be fast

 e) be significantly better and easier to program in that any of the
    alternatives.

 f) not get in the way of (or make arbitrarily difficult) the ability
    to install, use, and develop for non-kde environments. I sure as
    hell am not going to install kde if it means I have to give up
    fvwm95 or any of my tk/motif/athena based apps.

 g) have an enormous library of available applications.

In other words, it has to be a backwards-compatible upgrade rather than
a revolutionary, new, and incompatible change. I suspect that this is
close to impossible given the existing fragmentation and incompatibility
between the various x gui libraries.

If these points are not met by kde, then kde will go the way of all
other attempts to unify X GUI programming under one glorious scheme: it
will be just another one of the many available options. (this, btw, is
both the beauty AND the bane of X - it's wonderfully customisable and
configurable...the trouble is that you MUST customise & configure it)

in fact, even if kde DOES satisfy all of the above points it is extremely
likely that that will be the case anyway.  Just because something new and
wonderful exists doesn't mean that you should throw away stuff that is old
and wonderful or just old and useful.


There is a lot of time and effort and programming hours invested in
motif and athena (and other x library) based applications. The kde
people may want to think of these as "legacy applications" but to the
rest of the world, they are still very much alive and kicking.

the existence of this "legacy software" is one of the things that makes
unix and linux so attractive to so many people. free operating system,
free applications...all you have to do is download them off the net
and compile (or install a pre-compiled debian package). Windoze users
have their expensive off-the-shelf applications library. We have our
compile-it-yourself off-the-net applications library. (i know what i
prefer :-)


Craig


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