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ZDNet: Evan Leibovitch: When opposites attract

Jun 28, 2000, 20:55 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Evan Leibovitch)

"While Linux has been an unquestioned success, most of that success has come on the server. Success for the Linux desktop, despite significant advances, is still a long, long way from challenging Microsoft Windows on the desktop."

"Part of the problem, no doubt, is Linux's desktop diversity. The same broad range of choices that Linux users find so valuable among their server products and suppliers looms as a weakness as Linux seeks approval by the world's non-techies. Most of the computerphobes I know want as little decision-making as possible -- they just want tools that work and they don't mind entrusting Microsoft or Apple or anyone else to make the decision for them. Which choice to make is less important than the fact that a viable (and supported) choice exists...."

"In what may be (we can hope) one of the most significant events to happen in the history of Linux desktops, folks in the GNOME and KDE camps are talking to each other about integrating some of the low-level modular functions. These subsystems -- called KParts on the KDE side and Bonobo in the GNOME world -- have different underlying technologies, but they serve generally the same purpose. They allow developers to make components that are highly re-usable between applications, similar to Microsoft's Component Object Model (COM) architecture. The good news is that Kparts and Bonobo developers are being encouraged to combine their efforts -- or at least provide some framework that lets apps written in one system maintain all their component functionality on the other."

"It all started when a troller entered GNOME and KDE developer areas and goaded them all for not doing more to interoperate. This resulted in GNOME developers joining a KDE chat area where the discussions started. From there, enthusiast Casey Allen Shobe (who prefers to be known as "Rivyn") started a publicity campaign to encourage the talks to continue. He started collecting names for an online petition of sorts, to show parties on both sides how much support exists."

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