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Re: Which ObjC2.0 features are missing in the latest GCC?

From: Gregory Casamento
Subject: Re: Which ObjC2.0 features are missing in the latest GCC?
Date: Wed, 27 Nov 2019 05:42:32 -0500


On Wed, Nov 27, 2019 at 4:49 AM Johannes Brakensiek <address@hidden> wrote:

On 26 Nov 2019, at 23:43, Fred Kiefer wrote:

That could be said about all backward-compatibility. A follow up question
is, does it hold us back enough to justify breaking compatibility? It seems
some people think yes, and others think no. We're at a stalemate, where no
progress can be expected to take place. For things to move forward, either
one side has to give in, or both sides can compromise and agree to a middle

You described the dilemma very well. (And I also want to thank David and Ivan to their excellent contributions to this thread.) Some people are very conservative in this group. But others have a bit too much wishful thinking. I myself would not mind too much loosing gcc but loosing active developers and packagers. Sadly for some this doesn’t seem to be an argument.

I think for those who have to do the decision (who’s that anyways, the active contributors?)

Yes.  More open source and free software projects are generally "meritocracies."

this probably will be good reason („argument“ ;)) as this is a community of people working non-profit who seem to have strong feelings regarding some options. What I want to tell (being quite new to this community and not having these strong bindings) is there are some reasons that are mainly considered outside of this mailing list which should be important here as well, imho.

To name a few (just referring to what I’ve read, not meant as a personal insult at all):

  • the GNUstep project is largely considered dead
So was BSD at almost every writing since Linux was introduced.  As you relatively new allow me to re-educate you as to it's deadness:
  * GNUstep is used on millions of android devices.  Two companies were using it to port iOS games to android.  One was Apportable... the other is their licensee PocketGems.  (I assisted Apportable with it's work)
  * GNUstep has been being used by eggplant.io who has large customers all using the windows version of their software (which I helped to port there).
  * There is another company which uses GNUstep as part of it's data collection framework.  It was part of an aerospace company called XCOR....

So, in general, people who believe GNUstep is dead are misinformed.  Many of these facts are listed on our wiki site so it's not like they are not documented.   There are more examples I have only given the most relevant. 
  • the only bigger free software project relying on GNUstep which seems to be of greater relevance and extension is SOGo, which relies on Foundation and GNUstep web, but not on AppKit (any of the devs active here?)
Sure, yeah... right.
  • German companies that used GNUstep told me they already switched to using Foundation and GNUsteb web only as users did not accept the AppKit interface anymore
All German companies?  Maybe we should have you as a liaison to all of them (joking), because there is one, called Algoriddim, which is using GNUstep-base.  They don't use AppKit because they require UIKit, which we don't yet have... but they are still using GNUstep and they have been an immense help and a valuable contributor.

So, if people like the SOGo devs would say they need GCC because they are relying on it and Foundation/GNUstep web, I’d say it would be a very reasonable decision to keep Foundation and GNUstep web compatible to GCC.

Thus Far in my work with Algoriddim and other companies, not having support for some of these features is a huge issue.  For algoriddim alone I had to implement a number of APIs which required blocks.

But if there are no bigger projects depending on a GCC AppKit

There are... so the rest of this (your argument below is not relevant).  Also "GCC AppKit"?

it should be a first class aim of the project to develop it to a state that others would consider picking it up and using it for their projects - imo. Yes, that’s investing into future and it comes at the cost and risk of not being successful, of course. But please bear in mind that probably there are a lot more devs (here just being a few of them trying to give them a voice) that evaluate which platform to use for their apps and probably pass by and choose Qt or a web based platform.

This is part of what I'm working towards.  Many projects want UIKit as well.  AppKit is one focus of this project.

I think that’s a pity as GNUstep AppKit could be highly attractive for Cocoa ObjC devs wanting to port their apps to Linux and a free environment (and maybe don’t want switch to Swift yet). If you don’t want that target audience it’s your decision, but I’d be interested to know who’s your target audience then?

I am THOROUGHLY confused.  You think that AppKit isn't part of our goal?  By what do you draw that conclusion?   There is no "Switching to swift"... there is only supporting it. 

Of course you can do it just for yourself, but I think it’s unlikely others will join then.



Gregory Casamento
GNUstep Lead Developer / OLC, Principal Consultant
http://www.gnustep.org - http://heronsperch.blogspot.com

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