K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by Oleg Duli » Tue, 15 Apr 1997 04:00:00



I am writing an article for my Linux column in "Knights of the System
Table" (http://www.clarkson.edu/~dulino/knights/) and in the next issue
I would like to try to break the stereotype of Linux as being an
unfriendly and hard to learn UNIX-like operating system. I think it is
time for Linux to be adopted as a desktop operating system. Anyway, here
are some questions I would like you to answer:

For users:

1. Keeping in mind that KDE is at Alpha stager right now, what can you
say about the user interface ? How does it compare with commercial GUIs,
like Windows and Mac ? Other X Window Managers ?
2. How well are KDE components integrated with each other ?
3. What do you think of the File Manager - Web Browser - FTP Client
hybrid ? Would you rather use conventional tools ?
4. Do you think you will be using KDE as your primary X Window Manager

For programmers:

1. How hard is Qt toolkit to learn ?
2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?
3. Are KDE specifications stated clearly enough for you to be able to
succesfully integrate your software with the Desktop ?
4. Are you considering converting your X-Window applications to Qt and
KDE ?

Thanks a lot !
Oleg Dulin

 
 
 

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by John Steve » Thu, 17 Apr 1997 04:00:00



>For programmers:

>1. How hard is Qt toolkit to learn ?

Not to hard.

Quote:>2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
>OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?

Motif is much better.  Note that Qt doesn't yet have generalized
'manager' widgets, for one.

Quote:>3. Are KDE specifications stated clearly enough for you to be able to
>succesfully integrate your software with the Desktop ?

Not yet.  I assume further work will be done on this.

Quote:>4. Are you considering converting your X-Window applications to Qt and
>KDE ?

Nope.  I am an advocate of the GNUStep project.

John S.

 
 
 

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by Arnt Gulbrandse » Fri, 18 Apr 1997 04:00:00



Quote:> >2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
> >OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?

> Motif is much better.  Note that Qt doesn't yet have generalized
> 'manager' widgets, for one.

Look at the QLayout, QBoxLayout and QGridLayout classes.

--Arnt

 
 
 

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by John Steve » Fri, 18 Apr 1997 04:00:00






>>>2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
>>>OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?

>> Motif is much better.  Note that Qt doesn't yet have generalized
>> 'manager' widgets, for one.

>I've got to take issue with that.  Motif does have more in the way of
>manager widgets, but Qt does now have 2 built-in managers: BoxLayout
>and GridLayout classes.

Yah?  Good deal!  Let me check my Qt documentation here. . . sorry,
I'm not impressed.  Take a look at Xmt (a shareware Motif add-on) and
the Layout widget.  Now *THAT* is impressive.

Quote:>Qt is also several orders of magnitude more elegant in it design than
>Motif.

And my opinion is the exact opposite, I consider Qt to be
(currently, anyway) hacky and rough.  X+Xt+Motif have had just way more
time to mature.

Quote:>Qt is free for X11, as long as you're writing free software.

Note all of the restrictions.

Quote:>Qt is written in C++ (though there's an alpha-level Perl binding now
>as well), and as such doesn't suffer from the horrendous complexity
>of Motif, which attempts to implement an object-oriented system in a
>non-OO language.

The 'horrendous complexity' of Motif isn't based in C, it is based in
the extreme flexibility of the product.

Quote:>Ever tried subclassing a Motif widget?

Yup.

Quote:>Ouch.

No big deal for me.

Quote:>Qt applications feel decidedly faster than Motif applications.

Not for me.  A Qt application that is as flexible and configurable
as the equivalent Motif program is, in fact, much slower.  Note
that Qt applications that do *NOT* implement the level of flexibility
that Xt+Motif gives are going to be faster, but if you do that, you
aren't making a fair comparison.

Quote:>Qt is easier to learn than Motif

I disagree.  Qt with such primitive managers is very difficult to
use, compared to Motif.  And requires much more coding.  Manager
widgets are not an option, nor are they really an add-on.  They
are a requirement.

Quote:>(as long as you're happy with C++).

Snort!  Different argument.  I'll let it go with: I'm *NOT* happy
with C++!

Quote:>Qt provides a richer set of classes than Motif, including non-visual
>components such as strings, containers like lists, queues & stacks,
>and a very useful Painter class, which gives much more powerful drawing
>capabilities than plain Xlib.

Because Qt is designed to be a cross platform *APPLICATIONS* development
enviroment.  Motif is a GUI system, nothing more.

If what you are looking for is a portable APPLICATIONS development
enviroment, then Qt *REALLY* sucks!  OPENStep is the much better
choice, having much more, much better support for 'non-visual' classes.

Quote:>Qt is portable to Windows (though some might not consider that to be an
>advantage :-)

So?  OPENStep is also portable to Windows.  And you get to use Objective C
instead of (shudder!) C++.

Quote:>Note: I don't hold shares in TrollTech, I'm just very impressed with Qt.
>Their web page is http://www.troll.no

For a restricted class of problems, Qt makes sense.  But for the most
powerful and most flexible GUI development under X, Motif is much
better.

For the most portable and powerful application development enviroment,
go OPENStep.

Note that the original poster asked for opinions.  Opinion isn't really
arguable.  It just is.

John S.

 
 
 

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by John Steve » Fri, 18 Apr 1997 04:00:00




>> >2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
>> >OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?

>> Motif is much better.  Note that Qt doesn't yet have generalized
>> 'manager' widgets, for one.

>Look at the QLayout, QBoxLayout and QGridLayout classes.

Look at the Xmt tool kit, most notably the Layout Manager Widget.

Then you'll see what I mean.  What little management Qt can do,
is extremely primitive.

And Qt can in no way do RUID, while with Xmt and Motif, you can.

John S.

 
 
 

K-Desktop Environment -- Opinions Needed!

Post by Matthias Ettri » Fri, 18 Apr 1997 04:00:00


: I am writing an article for my Linux column in "Knights of the System
: Table" (http://www.clarkson.edu/~dulino/knights/) and in the next issue
: I would like to try to break the stereotype of Linux as being an
: unfriendly and hard to learn UNIX-like operating system. I think it is
: time for Linux to be adopted as a desktop operating system. Anyway, here
: are some questions I would like you to answer:

: For users:

: 1. Keeping in mind that KDE is at Alpha stager right now, what can you
: say about the user interface ? How does it compare with commercial GUIs,
: like Windows and Mac ? Other X Window Managers ?
: 2. How well are KDE components integrated with each other ?
: 3. What do you think of the File Manager - Web Browser - FTP Client
: hybrid ? Would you rather use conventional tools ?
: 4. Do you think you will be using KDE as your primary X Window Manager

I'm certainly the wrong person to answer your questions in an objective
way. I just want to ask you, not to repeat the popular mistake and
confuse "windowmanager" with "graphical user interface" or "desktop
environment"

A windowmanager like fvwm, twm or mwm is not a GUI, as well as the
Common Desktop Environment (CDE) is not a windowmanager. It contains
for example a mwm-derivate as windowmanager.

The KDE contains a windowmanager named kwm which will work best with
the other KDE components in the future.

So it is definitly not possible to use KDE as primary X Window Manager,
since it is not a  windowmanager.

More technically: A windowmanager is just a more or less usual X-client
that is responsible for stuff like window-decorations and basic windows
functionality like moving windows around or resizing them.
Although some windowmanagers are blown up with modules they are far away
of being labeled as GUI.

\begin{offtopic}
Also it is funny when people claim that the CDE uses more memory than
fvwm , and then replace CDE for that reason with fvwm.
How can a graphical user interface with lots of tools like calendar,
mail-client , editor, configuration applications, and and and
be compared with a simple windowmanager in repect of memory usage?
If you only run the CDE windowmanager and no other process like
the desktop-panel or the filemanager you have exactly the same
memory consumption. Maybe a bit more because of the loaded
shared motif lib, but this changes as soon as you start one
single motif application (for example StarOffice). In this
case fvwm+motif will problably need almost the same amount
of memory.
\end{offtopic}

Also I ask you to clearify that this project is only half a year old
and in a very very alpha state (although there are heavy hard-core
alpha-users who already use most of the components), please.
Otherwise we probably suffer from too many dissapointed users
who will claim on the list that the stuff isn't really read-to-run.
And that is defintely a bug we already know ;-)

BTW: Although we are a bit later then planned, there WILL be a first
release in the very near future (yet the KDE isn't even released
as alpha to the public, although the sources-in-development are
available via anonymous ftp)

Best regards,

  Matthias

: For programmers:

: 1. How hard is Qt toolkit to learn ?
: 2. How does the Qt toolkit compare to Microsoft's MFC, Borland's OWL,
: OSF/Motif and Sun OpenLook ?
: 3. Are KDE specifications stated clearly enough for you to be able to
: succesfully integrate your software with the Desktop ?
: 4. Are you considering converting your X-Window applications to Qt and
: KDE ?

: Thanks a lot !
: Oleg Dulin

 
 
 

1. Pmw color scheme and K-desktop environment color scheme....

My python/Tk project uses the command

   Pmw.setscheme(root,background=bgcolor)

with different (pastel) bgcolors for each invocations. This way, all
dialog and status windows can be easily associated with a project.

Unfortunately, I have noticed, the "color scheme" of the K Desktop
environment (KDE) seems to have priority over my own background color,
even though my application is not a KDE application. What can I do to
force my own background colors under KDE?

Regards,
--

=====   R&D, Nonius BV, Delft  http://www.nonius.nl/             =====
===== PGPid 0xFA19277D ========================== Use Linux! =========

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