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Re: gnustep-make experiment

From: Alex Perez
Subject: Re: gnustep-make experiment
Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2007 14:36:33 -0800

On Feb 8, 2007, at 5:42 AM, Nicola Pero wrote:

Right, and also, frankly, there's a very important non-technical aspect
to this as well; Way more developers know what the heck .pc files and
pkg-config are, as well as how they work, than a funky GNUstep.conf
file, which, while somewhat self-explanatory, definitely is proprietary.
pkg-config is commonly used and makes things easier for us.

As we move towards a totally FHS-capable GNUstep, this is something
which should be taken into account, IMHO.

Thanks ... it's certainly an aspect. :-)

There is also another important non-technical aspect, which is the amount of dependencies that you have, and the robustness of your GNUstep configuration/ installation process.

If we had gnustep-make depend on pkg-config, then you wouldn't be able to use GNUstep
unless you installed pkg-config first.

That's not entirely correct. GNUstep can be taught how to read pkgconfig-format-file, such as GNUstep.pc, thus eliminating the need for GNUstep.conf entirely, and then pkgconfig is only a dependency for those who COMPILE or develop apps for GNUstep. Not end users who will likely be installing via a package in their favorite distribution.

That seems a step backwards to me; adding more dependencies makes it more difficult
to install things.  End users are adversely affected.

I do strongly believe this is an oversimplification. It is illogical to conclude that more dependencies = automatically a bad thing.

At the moment, gnustep-make depends on nothing, and doesn't even need building. You just configure it and install. That's very simple and very unlikely to break. :-)

That's key. We should keep trying to simplify our configure/build/ install process so that more people that try to try GNUstep actually manage to try it ... they are
much more likely to stay. :-)

It depends on what your definition of "simplification" is. Many would surely view some strange GNUstep.conf file as complex simply because it's foreign *to them*, while it's not to you because you played a crucial role in developing said mechanism.

So I don't want to add extra dependencies that provide nothing of value just because "way more developers know" about GNOME development tools than about GNUstep development tools. And if you go down that route, you'll end up using glade instead
of Gorm! ;-)

pkgconfig is a Freedesktop component. It is used by Xorg, openssl, and many, many other projects. It is not simply a part of gnome any longer. See . As such, I personally consider this statement to be rhetorical hyperbole, and I'd like to suggest that perhaps there's a bit of unconscious "Not Invented Here" syndrome playing a role.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts,
Alex Perez

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