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Re: GNUstep roadmap (was Re: [Suggestion] GNUstep-test for quality contr

From: Helge Hess
Subject: Re: GNUstep roadmap (was Re: [Suggestion] GNUstep-test for quality control)
Date: Thu, 23 Oct 2003 21:31:23 +0200

On 23.10.2003, at 21:07, Philippe C.D.Robert wrote:
I don't want to hear a specific answer, because, as I already said twice, I do not expect anything to change after this discussion. Independendantly what answers I receive.
Well then, why discussing at all...

Good points by both of you ;-) Well, I guess, because discussing is fun and one always has some hope that the peer will understand what one is talking about.

I do not agree because you will not find many Mac OS X apps which only rely on Cocoa and this GNUstep cannot be used for porting. I am thinking of CoreFoundation, Carbon, Quicktime, WebCore, the security stuff, Apple Scripts and so on... Besides why would anyone be interested in a GS port if there is no real environment to run GS apps?

I absolutely agree. GNUstep might be good for *Linux* (or BSD or whatever free system) developers who sooner or later intend to port to MacOSX, but not for the reverse.

Yes, I see the intention of a NeXTstep remake. I would love that. The moment GS will have a decent ProjectBuilder (including Editor, Class-Browser and GDB integration) I will leave MOSX. For me then just EOModeler and WebObjectsBuilder would be missing.

Notably NeXTstep never had such a great ProjectBuilder, Class-Browser, etc. It was always pretty much bare bones. PBX is a bit better but still not comparable to "real" IDEs like Eclipse or (duck) VisualStudio.

So I personally think that it is possible to get with GNUstep what we had with NeXTstep 3.3 or something. Yet, NeXTstep 3.3 now *is* outdated. Its still a very nice system which I occasionally boot on my NeXTstation, but it has no practical value anymore.

is is one point where I do not agree. I seriously doubt that having a Windows port would have big impacts on the GS project. Windows programmers are definitely not waiting for GS and most of the current GS users are more "Unix oriented" anyway.

Well ... whether Windows is important basically comes down to what the "GS project" is. Philip sees GS as EOF+WO and in this case I fully agree, Windows is absolutely crucial. All successful Web development environment run and need to run on Windows, this is true for PHP, Zope, MySQL, J2EE, etc. This does not necessarily mean that deployed applications run on Windows, but a lot of people have Windows on their desktop and will try on that machine first.

Eg one of the two major reasons why I consider gstep-base "interesting" for OGo is that it might provide a Windows port of OGo which is not mission critical, yet very important. So if you translate "GS project" with gnustep-base library a port of it to Windows and a port of OGo to gstep-base would certainly increase the user community of GS with at least a factor of 10. Probably much more.

Even if it was possible to port let's say excellent Cocoa apps to Windows using GS they would probably not succeed on Windows, because AppKit/Mac OS X paradigms do not match the Windows experience and thus won't be accepted by Windows users - OPENSTEP Enterprise is the proof for this I'd say.

I absolutely agree. It doesn't make a lot of sense for GUI applications - just watch the tremendous success of Java on the desktop ;-). But right now the "working" GNUstep is gstep-base + gstep-make + gcc-objc and this does provide some advantage in some contexts (eg web applications).

But if we go directly to for the distribution, we will never have the manpower to achieve it.
Does it really take that many more men to reach this goal?

Thats an interesting point. Personally I do not think that it takes *more* men to achieve GNUstep goals - on the contrary, we have quite good people at GNUstep and the absolute amount of developers is IMHO also sufficient. But it certainly takes more *time* to reach the goals - that is, the developers would need to work fulltime on the project.

Well, they did not succeed selling enough versions of OPENSTEP Mach or OPENSTEP Enterprises, also they did not attract enough programmers/companies to use their APIs, so they failed in this respect, no?!

Of course. AFAIK WO as a product did never sell very well, but of course a few very good consulting projects brought a very good revenue on the service side. I think that this is still very true even with WO being Java now.

The experience of NEXTSTEP, or better phrased, some parts of the philosophy which made this NEXTSTEP experience so brilliant. This includes APIs like the IndexerKit, DBKit, 3DKit plus QuickRenderMan and so on which were killed by moving to OpenStep.

On the other side we got NSObject (retain counting) with OpenStep (or actually with EOF 1.0 which was also available on NeXTstep 3.3), so this also had some positive things on the developers side.

I especially don't think so. The moment, we can concince companies, all your goals will be achieved in no time at all.
I heavily doubt that...



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