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Re: Some thoughts about GS

From: Philippe C . D . Robert
Subject: Re: Some thoughts about GS
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 2001 08:39:10 +0100


I have slept now for a few hours...grin

Frederic <address@hidden> wrote (Tue, 02 Jan 2001 00:21:03 +0100):
> > - in the meantime other technologies became very popular *and* powerful, 
> > such as GNOME and KDE
> True for KDE, wrong for GNOME. IMHO GNOME is a definitive failure, from
> a technological point of view, as well as project management and
> end-user point of view. I spent a lot of time studying GNOME, KDE and of
> course GNUstep technologies and there is no doubt for me that GNOME is a
> mess. This may be a chance for GNUstep as GNOME disappoints more and
> more people that soon or late will have to find a replacement that
> *cannot* be KDE for *political* reasons...


> The GNUstep team is already reusing code where possible (libxml,
> configure scripts, etc...) but further integration does not make sense
> for me (eg: merging AppKit and Gtk)
> GNUstep is worth the investment for numerous reasons on its own and more
> and more people will understand this. Nevertheless, GNUstep probably
> needs more advertisements to speedup this movement.
> I understand the doubts you have but I think that GNUstep future is not
> bad at all. After all, GNOME and KDE are commercial projects (they are
> strongly supported by companies like IBM, RedHat, etc.), something which
> is not going to satisfy everyone in the *real* Free Software world.
> World domination is not my goal. I prefer a smaller but *better*
> community.

<and Dennis wrote>

>I think the benefit of opensource is that a technology that is superior can 
> exist while the whole world uses something else. We should not compare 
> ourselfs with efforts like GNOME or KDE. KDE was started because people 
> wanted a working solution on the desktop for Linux, GNOME was started to 
> compete with KDE, those two efforts will probably blend some time in the 
> future.

Well, first let me say: don't get wrong, I also believe that GNUstep is 
superior from a technical point of view and it has made great progress in the 
last months/year(s) (kudos to all of you, working on GNUstep!!!). Perhaps I was 
not very clear in my original posting (sorry for my bad English!), what I 
wanted to express is the fear that due to the success of GNOME and KDE the 
interests in GNUstep will fade, because those technologies will become better 
and better. The fact that companies like IBM do invest in a technology is not 
bad per se, after all, GNUstep also makes progress because some 'volunteers' 
are paid for it, no? 
And I do not talk about world domination at all, I just would like to see 
GNUstep play a more important role in the free software movement - with one 
goal in mind: more developers working on it! 
Personally I think KDE and GNOME are good, they deliver what they promise. 
Perhaps they are not as elegant as GNUstep, but they provide working solutions! 
Eg. you can install GNOME over the net using a graphical installer, you can use 
apps like Gimp, Abiword, dia, evolution, nautilus, mozilla/galeon and so forth 
(not to mention all the KDE solutions). Actually I am "forced" to use Sylpheed 
to write my mails because there is no GNUstep Mail.app... again, don't get me 
wrong, I don't blame anyone for not having all of that in GNUstep, I just think 
it would be better to 'share' instead of reinventing the wheel! After all, it 
is not about KDE vs. GNOME vs. GNUstep. vs. ... but free software vs. closed 
software (or should I say M$ ...grin). I still believe that it is better to 
have good software written with a not so good technology than no software at 

But to be more on topic:

- What would it take to write a 'gtk-backend' for GNUstep? Can anyone give some 
- What would it take to include/integrate bonobo into GNUstep? 
- How are we going to solve the problem that ObjC scares developers who do not 
know that language (believe me, it does, I have seen that a lot in the 
OPENSTEP/Mac OS X business)?
- How do we get more attention? I mean, now that MOSX is here (at least PB), we 
cannot have a better time to do marketing, no?
- What would it take to integrate rpm package creating in the makefiles? What 
would it take to build GNUstep snapshot rpm's? 
- In general, what integration would be useful, what should be avoided?

cheers, Phil
Philippe C.D. Robert | http://www.nice.ch/~phip/

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