Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 14th Feb 2009 12:55 UTC
Google A major complaint about Google's Chrome web browser has been that so far, it is still not available on anything other than Windows. Google promised to deliver Chrome to Mac OS X and Linux as well, but as it turns out, this is a little harder than they anticipated, Ben Goodger, Google's Chrome interface lead, has explained in an email. It has also been revealed what toolkit the Linux version of Chrome will use: Gtk+.
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Why not QT?
by AnXa on Sat 14th Feb 2009 13:44 UTC
AnXa
Member since:
2008-02-10

Qt "limits what you can do to a lowest common denominator subset of what's supported by that framework on each platform."

The way I see this is an extremely bad excuse for not using QT for Chrome linux variant. I would have accepted them using GTK+ if they would have just said that QT licensing was confusing or something...

QT is a lot better toolkit than GTK+ and it's a lot more advanced and it's faster too. Take a look Opera and Skype for example. They use QT on GNU/Linux and are one of the best examples of porting Windows application to our favorite platform.

Besides Nokia who now owns TrollTech is making QT work under LGPL license...

Better talk about subject here under topic "Qt now a possibility?":

http://groups.google.com/group/chromium-dev/browse_thread/thread/1d...

Reply Score: 12

RE: Why not QT?
by averycfay on Sat 14th Feb 2009 13:50 in reply to "Why not QT?"
averycfay Member since:
2005-08-29

They didn't say that QT was bad... they said they wanted to use the native toolkit. So the question is: what is the native toolkit on Linux? While it's not as clearcut as windows or mac os x, gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde, so it makes sense to use that as "native".

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by sbergman27 on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:45 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

While it's not as clearcut as windows or mac os x, gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde, so it makes sense to use that as "native".

Well, that ought to upset a number of people here. :-)

I'm wondering how many of them will show up to "debunk" your assertion, and "prove" it's just a dirty rotten lie spread by Gnome fans. I suspect that there are at least ten essays under construction even as I write this. So you might want to inspect your asbestos underwear for any imperfections, and maybe borrow a few shuttle tiles from NASA.

Edited 2009-02-14 14:46 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by kragil on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:47 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde


Citation needed.


I think Google coders want job security as much as anybody. So using Qt just wouldn't have made sense.

What is better? A bit more native speed and being a bit leaner or having the browser develop at much great speed with a much better and consistent code base and simultanous releases. (Qt 4.5 is fast on every platform.)

The way I see it, Chrome was meant for windows and then after the fact they decided to go x-platform.

Great strategy.

Reply Parent Score: 13

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by mtzmtulivu on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:51 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
mtzmtulivu Member since:
2006-11-14

(...) gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde, so it makes sense to use that as "native".


is that a fact? where did you get your numbers from?

it would have been "gtk has a better license" couple of weeks ago ..now that both QT and gtk will be using the same licence, the reason is now "more people use gtk therefore its the better toolkit"? .."more usage" means better these days?

it may make sense to you, but it doesnt to me and i suspect to most kde users

Reply Parent Score: 10

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by segedunum on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:56 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

They didn't say that QT was bad... they said they wanted to use the native toolkit.

What native toolkit would this be, as Chrome by definition doesn't have one as a cross-platform application?

While it's not as clearcut as windows or mac os x, gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde, so it makes sense to use that as "native".

While I won't debate the number of users thing (not really at issue here), it doesn't get away from the fact that porting a cross-platform application to specific native platforms, and have it work in the same way, is a world of hurt and pain we have already been through with Firefox and SWT on Linux.

You end up being a third class citizen behind the platforms and operating systems that have the most users ;-).

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by silix on Sat 14th Feb 2009 15:15 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
silix Member since:
2006-03-01

They didn't say that QT was bad... they said they wanted to use the native toolkit. So the question is: what is the native toolkit on Linux?
interestingly, the answer is none, since unix' (and then linux') gui system has been designed the way it is (i.e. as modular as it can be, with widget look and feel implemented at the toolkit level) just to avoid being tied to a single toolkit, thus to have no "native", privileged, toolkit

if there's a native toolkit on unix/linux, that may have been AWT, but nobody has used it for ages and it has afaik been deprecated in 7.x Xorg releases -
apart from that, the next layer in the stack, ie the X11 protocol binding (Xlib or XCB )used to be considered the native gui library
but at a time high level widget libraries are designed to be crossplatform, and are given non-X11 rendering backends even on linux, that doesnt hold true any longer

Edited 2009-02-14 15:22 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by puelocesar on Mon 16th Feb 2009 11:52 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
puelocesar Member since:
2008-10-30

Actually Qt looks "native" on KDE and on Gnome/Xfce, while Gtk+ looks native on Gnome/Xfce but looks like trash on KDE, so I still believe Qt should be a better option.

By the way, just compare how gtk emulates Qt looks, on how Qt emulates gtk looks:

gtk-qt-engine:
http://i293.photobucket.com/albums/mm56/GithzeraiKDE/OOo.png

QGtkStyle from Trolltech:
http://arstechnica.com/open-source/news/2008/05/qgtkstyle-makes-kde...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by pixel8r on Tue 17th Feb 2009 04:17 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
pixel8r Member since:
2007-08-11

They didn't say that QT was bad... they said they wanted to use the native toolkit. So the question is: what is the native toolkit on Linux? While it's not as clearcut as windows or mac os x, gtk/gnome has more users than qt/kde, so it makes sense to use that as "native".


Qt is the native toolkit every bit as much as GTK is.
The number of users is irrelevant since both KDE and GNOME have millions of users.

Not that it matters which one is used, but the obvious choice would have been Qt. And since they are now doing more work to port to GTK, the question of "why not Qt" is a very valid one IMO.

No big deal really - and should be easy for folks to port it regardless.

Reply Parent Score: 3

v RE: Why not QT?
by deb2006 on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:03 in reply to "Why not QT?"
RE[2]: Why not QT?
by danieldk on Sat 14th Feb 2009 14:13 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
danieldk Member since:
2005-11-18

That's gonna be one major obstacle for Qt in the future. Do you trust Nokia? Well, I don't. Not a bit. And therefore I'd advise anyone to use GTK+ when it comes to new open source software projects. It's basically the same situation before GTK+ appeared - now with Nokia only worse. Sorry.


Right, and what harm could they possibly do? When Qt 4.5 is under the LGPL, anyone could take the LGPLed source and continue the efforts if Qt would somehow stagnate under Nokia.

In reality I see the opposite happening: Qt seems to have accelerated over the past year.

Reply Parent Score: 12

RE[2]: Why not QT?
by segedunum on Sat 14th Feb 2009 15:06 in reply to "RE: Why not QT?"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

That's gonna be one major obstacle for Qt in the future. Do you trust Nokia? Well, I don't. Not a bit.

Hmmmmmm. But it was OK when Nokia were contributing, and still are, to GTK and you have the main GTK repository pretty much dominated by Red Hat with a bottleneck of bugs going back years that aren't personally interesting to them?

I really was curious as to what people would get off the bottom of the barrel, and now I know. "We don't trust Nokia, and, ermmm, it's not native!"

And therefore I'd advise anyone to use GTK+ when it comes to new open source software projects. It's basically the same situation before GTK+ appeared - now with Nokia only worse. Sorry.

Except that Nokia is making their repositories more open to external contributions now, and like GTK, if a situation gets untenable you fork it. It's also licensed under the LGPL now like GTK is, so you can get to do the exact same things with a fork and appease the 'develop for free' brigade.

Where do we go from here I wonder?

Reply Parent Score: 11

Why QT? Why not GTK+?
by Kwitschibo on Sat 14th Feb 2009 20:09 in reply to "Why not QT?"
Kwitschibo Member since:
2006-01-17

So? Show me the point.

Qt is not the better Toolkit. It is just another Toolkit. And for all the functions Qt brings besides QT GUI there are also solutions on GTK side.

Edited 2009-02-14 20:12 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Why QT? Why not GTK+?
by vivainio on Sat 14th Feb 2009 20:23 in reply to "Why QT? Why not GTK+?"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26


Qt is not the better Toolkit. It is just another Toolkit. And for all the functions Qt brings besides QT GUI there are also solutions on GTK side.


There has got to be *some* reason companies were willing to pay thousands of dollars PER DEVELOPER for Qt licenses, when Gtk (& C++ bindings) and Wx were free, don't you think?

Still, I'm not arguing that google should have used Qt to develop this. If the coders want to do it Gtk, they can probably get best results with Gtk (especially when they know it inside out). And it's not like they will convert all of their existing code to GObject mess - just add parts that directly need to interface with toolkit, or use GTkmm.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Why QT? Why not GTK+?
by l3v1 on Sat 14th Feb 2009 20:31 in reply to "Why QT? Why not GTK+?"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Qt is not the better Toolkit. It is just another Toolkit. And for all the functions Qt brings besides QT GUI there are also solutions on GTK side.


It's not just the existance of a functionality that counts, it's how it's implemented and how it can be accessed and used, and how well it's documented. What you say can't be enough to base a decision on, you have to try coding for both to see why quite a number of people prefer QT/KDE. Well, you might not see it, or see it the other way around, so what ? Be happy there's the other(s) you can use.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Why QT? Why not GTK+?
by ardor on Sun 15th Feb 2009 11:58 in reply to "Why QT? Why not GTK+?"
ardor Member since:
2009-02-15

Show a Gtk counterpart to QGraphicsView. One that actually matches its functionality. Also, show me how to something like WolfenQt (google for it) using Gtk.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Why not QT?
by aent on Sun 15th Feb 2009 20:52 in reply to "Why not QT?"
aent Member since:
2006-01-25

QT and GTK now have the same licensing since Nokia bought it out.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Why not QT?
by steogede2 on Mon 16th Feb 2009 15:27 in reply to "Why not QT?"
steogede2 Member since:
2007-08-17

Qt "limits what you can do to a lowest common denominator subset of what's supported by that framework on each platform."

The way I see this is an extremely bad excuse for not using QT for Chrome linux variant.


I think you have taken that out of context a little. The bit you have quoted was Ben Goodger's reason for not using Qt for everything (Win, Mac and Linux), not his reason for not using it on Linux. He never gave a reason for not to using for the Linux version.

He did give a reason for GTK - his reason was that the dev team didn't want to make a clone of the Windows version (presumably using Wine-lib), but rather they wanted to use GTK. Presumably GTK is what the dev team are more experienced and comfortable using.

ps. I can't believe how much time I have wasted commenting on this article, considering I couldn't care less about Google Chrome.

Reply Parent Score: 3