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Re: GNUstep Window Manager (was RE: Idea)

From: Philippe C . D . Robert
Subject: Re: GNUstep Window Manager (was RE: Idea)
Date: Sun, 7 Jan 2001 01:39:32 +0100

Nicola Pero <address@hidden> wrote (Sun, 7 Jan 2001 02:53:09 +0100 (CET)):
> > - be fast
> > - have a small mem print
> > - be responsible only for drawing and handling windows
> > - offer virtual desktops
> > - *not* include extensions like a dock, config tools and so forth!
> If you configure window maker appropriately, it already does all this. 
> My main point is (I am repeating myself here) that it is much more useful
> to write new gnustep applications rather than spend time attempting to
> write a new window manager in Objective-C.  I'm under the suspicion that
> you don't realize that writing a good window manager is a completely non
> trivial task.  If you invest the same effort into producing an end user
> application, you will benefit the project much more and you will have much
> more success.

Your suspicion is certainly wrong, I do realise the complexity of writing a 
(good) window manager. And I also know that the applications are what the 
project needs most. But on the other side, I have my doubts that GNUstep will 
ever succeed (as an environment) if we do not provide sth the other desktop 
can't provide: a unique and *better* feel, even on X11. You mention it 
yourself, it's the existence of good applications that will drive the project 
forward, but what you do not mention is that the user does *not* care about how 
hard (or easy, elegant, ... you guess it) it was to write them - what I want to 
say is that from the user's point of view, the API or whatever technical stuff 
is involved is completely *irrelevant*. He/she simply does not care - as long 
as the application itself does what he/she expects it to do. Thus I dare to say 
that one of the most important 'killer apps' for GNUstep would be (or will 
be?!) a brilliant, extraordinary workspace, which can't IMHO be done w/o 

very tight integration with a special window manager, be it WM or whatever else.

>  * finish Gorm and Project Center.

Yes - more developers should jump in and help writing those apps.
> As you guess, IMO the real top priority now is simply producing end-user
> applications/products available in binary form; most of the tasks, if not
> all, are simply subprojects related to this.

Then we agree on that!...;-)
> After years on work concentrated on the framework, we really need to stop
> (for a while only :-) dreaming about rewriting all the system in
> Objective-C :-) and face the task of using our marvellous libraries to
> write end-user products running now on what is available now. 

IMHO it is not about having a 100% pure ObjC window manager, it is about having 
a '100% GNUstep aware' window manager!
cheers, Phil
Philippe C.D. Robert | http://www.nice.ch/~phip/

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