What's up in Gnome land ?


just out of interest, where is Gnome heading these days ?
I'm a bit confused.

There is Gnome2, which are applications written using libgtk2, mostly in C (also some Python and C#).

Then recently there was talk about Gnome3, and a stepwise process to get there by improving gtk. This sounds like it would be still mainly C.

Then in the last years I heard a lot about using Mono and C# in Gnome, since this should lead to faster development than using just C.

Then today I found something about Vala on the definitive source of information ;-)
http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1091547&cid=26455413 and http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1091547&cid=26450511.

Apparently Vala is an object-oriented C-like language, like C++, C# and Java.
Is this what they intend to use as their main development language for Gnome in the future ?

Now, I'm not sure this is a good idea. I mean, we in KDE have some experience with inventing our own stuff. We had arts, which was unsuccessful, we had DCOP, which lead to DBUS, for some time we had unsermake, which died. But even we didn't invent our own programming language. It seems the motivation for Vala is to make working with g_object easier ?

So, somebody who knows, what is the general trend in Gnome ?



The GObject introspection is interesting to me. The idea is to provide enough runtime metadata and introspection in the form of .gir files to make it possible for dynamic languages to not need statically generated bindings. Johan Dahlin has written about it in his blog and there is a Wiki page, which tells you where to check out the svn version.

I'm would like to see if it is possible to implement a dynamic bridge between the GObject and QMetaObject systems, so that a Qt based library would see a GObject based one as a Qt one, and vice versa. You would need to construct QMetaObjects from a .gir file, and generate and .gir file from QMetaObjects to be able to do that.

By Richard Dale at Fri, 01/16/2009 - 19:49

From what I can see Vala seems to be an implementation of 'C with Classes'. It even compiles down to C like the old CFront did. Give them a few years and they'll have C++...

By Richard Moore at Fri, 01/16/2009 - 20:47

I guess there is just no "the general trend" but multiple ones. What would be interesting is to see a trend, now where it's possible, to integrate e.g. the dlopen-code to optional pick up our KFileDialog :)

By Sebastian Sauer at Sat, 01/17/2009 - 15:59

I noticed that this blog doesn't appear on PlanetKDE.org. I think it would be cool if you were added to the list, so that more people will see what you write. I happen to share your apprehension about inventing another programming language.

By vladc at Tue, 01/20/2009 - 01:35