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GTK 2.4.0 Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:09PM (#8583623)
    ...I'll be really happy that it's finally released.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:14PM (#8583680)
      FTFA:

      GTK+ is a multi-platform toolkit for creating graphical user interfaces. Offering a complete set of widgets, GTK+ is suitable for projects ranging from small one-off projects to complete application suites.

      GTK+ is free software and part of the GNU Project. However, the licensing terms for GTK+, the GNU LGPL, allow it to be used by all developers, including those developing proprietary software, without any license fees or royalties.

      GTK+ is based on three libraries developed by the GTK+ team:

      GLib is the low-level core library that forms the basis of GTK+ and GNOME. It provides data structure handling for C, portability wrappers, and interfaces for such runtime functionality as an event loop, threads, dynamic loading, and an object system.

      Pango is a library for layout and rendering of text, with an emphasis on internationalization. It forms the core of text and font handling for GTK+-2.0.

      The ATK library provides a set of interfaces for accessibility. By supporting the ATK interfaces, an application or toolkit can be used with such tools as screen readers, magnifiers, and alternative input devices.

      GTK+ has been designed from the ground up to support a range of languages, not only C/C++. Using GTK+ from languages such as Perl and Python (especially in combination with the Glade GUI builder) provides an effective method of rapid application development.

  • How long? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rwiedower (572254) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:10PM (#8583632) Homepage
    Until this makes it into the win32 version of the GIMP? Or will this make any difference?
  • by klipsch_gmx (737375) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:11PM (#8583645)
    ... like glib, gnet, gtk+ (hah! little! and now, brand new!) but you know what I mean - these were things that people needed, so they wrote. We all benefit, and so does linux and unix.

    I guess one of the strengths of the unix development model is that my SGI and Sun boxes have all the linux libraries on them, and I don't think that's at all strange...

    Unix (before linux became mainstream) didn't have as much work in the class libraries (which like it or loath it, VC++ provided quite well).... Now it does.
    • by sydb (176695) * <michael@w d 2 1 . c o .uk> on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:40PM (#8583926)
      All hail Lord Stallman; praise to St Ignucius.

      Those "linux libraries" are not "linux" libraries, they are GNU libraries.

      That's why they run on things that aren't linux.
    • by leandrod (17766) <l&dutras,org> on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:42PM (#8583941) Homepage Journal
      >
      my SGI and Sun boxes have all the linux libraries

      Only these aren't Linux libraries, but GNU ones.

      No matter how do you call the GNU/Linux OS, these libraries are under the GNU Project umbrella, they have little to do with Linus Torvalds.

      Moreover since they've been adopted by the BSDs and Unices as well, and even run on CygWin, they could also be properly called POSIX-based libraries.

  • Just in time for... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bonch (38532) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:11PM (#8583653)
    ...Gnome 2.6, due out March 22nd [gnome.org].
    • Sorry, Linux desktops still have godawful, retina-burning, headache-inducing font-rendering, even with all options on.

      Compared to what? TT Text fonts with Xft are certainly much easier on the eyes under linux/gtk/x11/gnome than they are under Windows XP.

      • Letters have different thicknesses, some things, like the Times New Roman number "2" at about 10pt has a middle part that almost completely disappears. I always hear constantly about how "better" the font rendering is supposed to be from guys like you, but I have never, ever seen it.

        I have tried various distros, even compiling things myself with the interpeter turned on, etc. It still looks flat-out awful, particularly italics.

        Sorry, they are NOT easier on the eyes than Windows XP. That's absurd and a
        • Re:Not at all (Score:4, Insightful)

          by be-fan (61476) on Wednesday March 17, 2004 @01:38AM (#8586584)
          It really depends on your setup. I've got a 133 dpi LCD, and I can definitely say it looks better. Cleartype hints far too aggressively for a display that has that many pixels to play with. For a medium-res CRT, I'd rather have non-anti-aliased, hinted output anyway. If you've got that bytecode hinter on, you'll get identical output (pixel-for-pixel) in that case. Screenshot of my desktop [gatech.edu] Note, unless you've got a 133 dpi display or higher, the fonts will look unusually large.

          In any case, I think FreeType's anti-aliased output at medium resolutions is actually quite good. Read one of my rants on OSNews [osnews.com] (search for title "Font comparo thread"). Note the attached screenshot, taken at a more sane resolution.
    • Your sig (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mrogers (85392)
      I thought the same thing about Linux font rendering until I installed Microsoft's core fonts and a TrueType font server on my Linux box (apt-get install msttcorefonts xfstt right now if you're running Debian). The font rendering in Linux is absolutely fine, it's just the shortage of good manually-hinted fonts that makes things look awful. Anti-aliasing is not the solution - GTK+1.2 looks better than GTK+2 with decent fonts installed, because the fonts have nice sharp outlines.
      • Re:Your sig (Score:3, Informative)

        by salimma (115327) *
        Anti-aliasing is not the solution

        The problem is that the freetype font rendering library for Linux is unable to use font hints because the required algorithms are patented (by Apple, which seems to like FOSS products unless they encroach on its desktop turf).

        The patented hinting algorithms are in the source but #def'ed out by default, you could recompile if you want to. Most people are fine with the replacement auto-hinting though.

  • New File Dialog (Score:5, Insightful)

    by koh (124962) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:13PM (#8583668) Journal
    This release should clear the most litigious point against GTK+ : the file dialog.

    Recent screenshots on gnomedesktop.org seem to prove they did the job right.

    However, anyone knows if the WIN32 is far behind or up to date with this release ?

    • I still have no clue what the hell is wrong with the file dialog. I love it. Please, someone tell me what's wrong with it.
      • Re:New File Dialog (Score:2, Informative)

        by after (669640)
        It [gnome.org] does not allow one to navigate as they would be with somthing like the KDE file dialog.

        Fortunetely, there is an alternative [chello.nl]
      • Re:New File Dialog (Score:3, Insightful)

        by koh (124962)
        Please use the new one for one week, then try reverting to the old one ;)

        More seriously, GTK file dialog has always been click-intensive if you want to go higher the filesystem (and focus-input-clear-selection-type-slash-tab-and-use -completion is not an option for most users ;)

        • Re:New File Dialog (Score:3, Insightful)

          by juhaz (110830)
          Please use the new one for one week, then try reverting to the old one ;)

          I kind of doubt that. The bastards have destroyed the keyboard usability for click-click-click obsessed idiots. Oh well.

          More seriously, GTK file dialog has always been click-intensive if you want to go higher the filesystem

          Click once on drop-down box, another click on the level you want to go to (alternatively, drag, you'll make it in one). To the other way, it's one double click per level, both are, well, just like every other f
      • Re:New File Dialog (Score:5, Informative)

        by niiler (716140) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:30PM (#8583841) Journal
        The problem is that if you want users to only be able to select a single package type, say *.tgz, you have to spin your own dialog. The current filtering is virtually non-existant. If you do try to use it, it can hide directories that don't have the correct extension.

        From the release notice: "The new GtkFileChooser widgets provide a radically simplified and improved way for users to select files. Application writers now are provided with such capabilities such as customizable filters and previews. The filesystem access is encapsulated as a dynamically loaded module; as an example of what this allows, libgnomeui now provides a gnome-vfs backend for GtkFileChooser so that it has the same view of remote filesystems as applications such Nautilus."

        This is cool stuff as it will certainly improve the perception and use of GTK.

        • Re:New File Dialog (Score:3, Interesting)

          by prockcore (543967)
          libgnomeui now provides a gnome-vfs backend for GtkFileChooser so that it has the same view of remote filesystems as applications such Nautilus

          That rules, and it's about time. This means you can say file open, and then select a smb:// share

          A while ago I was working on a gnome-vfs module that added support for itunes shares. This would mean that you could use xmms (assuming it ever gets updated for 2.0) and browse and play songs shared in itunes.

          Now I think I've got some incentive to finish that modul
    • by BHearsum (325814)
      Please don't tell me your talking about this screenshot [gnome.org]. That thing is more horrid than the QT file selector.
      • Re:New File Dialog (Score:3, Interesting)

        by macshit (157376)
        My god.

        Please tell me that isn't really the `new file selector'.

        The old selector was pretty basic, but also pretty straight-forward, and super-fast to use with the keyboard because of the great completion functionality.

        This new dialog is not only much more confusing looking, but seems bloated, rather ugly, and doesn't have the text entry box -- i.e, they removed the one great feature they used to have!

        I know they're attempting to appeal to inexperienced users, but they always seem to (1) do so in a way
        • No text entry box?! I hope to god debian doesn't 'upgrade' to 2.4.0 anytime soon.
        • Re:New File Dialog (Score:5, Informative)

          by Lussarn (105276) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:54PM (#8584051)
          If you press ctrl-l with the fileselector open you get a textentry box with tab-completion.
          • If you press ctrl-l with the fileselector open you get a textentry box with tab-completion.

            Is there any way to make this a permanent feature?? (i.e. not have to press ctrl-l all the time) The tab-completion text box was the only decent thing about the old gtk file selector dialogue - I can't believe they removed it!
          • Re:New File Dialog (Score:4, Insightful)

            by .com b4 .storm (581701) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @09:03PM (#8585037)

            If you press ctrl-l with the fileselector open you get a textentry box with tab-completion.

            Why can't they have it work similarly to the (new in Panther, I believe) file dialogs in OS X? In most apps now, when you have an open dialog box open, and you start typing with a / or ~ character, a little prompt pops up allowing you to type the path. This, to me, seems a bit more pleasant than having to bother with a separate key combo when I could just start typing the path and let the dialog box figure it out.

        • Re:New File Dialog (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Tack (4642) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @07:07PM (#8584171) Homepage
          I know they're attempting to appeal to inexperienced users, but they always seem to (1) do so in a way that pisses off experienced users, and (2) botch things up in the inexperienced-user case anyway.

          I'm sure you like to pretend to think you know what you're talking about, but the design of this new file selector was not haphazard. There were long, arduous debates on the various, related lists about the UI and API and various use-cases for both beginner and advanced users.

          Please set aside your righteous indignation and consider reading the list archives on desktop-devel-list, gtk-list, and others, and read the issues that the developers and designers have weighed and addressed in the design of the new file selector.

          I'm sure nobody would say it's perfect, but you're grossly mistaken if you think it was blindly hacked together without regard to usability and API.

          Jason.

          • There were long, arduous debates on the various, related lists about the UI and API and various use-cases for both beginner and advanced users.

            Well, I'll reserve judgement until gtk 2.4 hits the streets.

            However long and arduous debates are not a guarantee of anything. The gtk/gnome hackers have never shown any particularly great judgement at UI design though, so I'm not really all that optimistic.
          • Re:New File Dialog (Score:4, Insightful)

            by Skjellifetti (561341) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @07:56PM (#8584547) Journal
            I'm sure you like to pretend to think you know what you're talking about, but the design of this new file selector was not haphazard. There were long, arduous debates on the various, related lists about the UI and API and various use-cases for both beginner and advanced users.

            Remember, though, that a camel is a horse designed by committee. Long, arduous debates do not guarantee a successful design.
        • Re:New File Dialog (Score:5, Informative)

          by steveha (103154) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @07:33PM (#8584369) Homepage
          This new dialog is not only much more confusing looking, but seems bloated

          I disagree. It has many new features compared to the old dialog, and they are cleanly laid out. You have bookmarks now, to quickly go to a folder you use often; there is a preview available now; and there are many different ways to quickly get to the folder you want (e.g. you can go up two folders with one click; you can go to your home directory with one click; etc.)

          rather ugly

          Matter of taste. That screenshot is using a theme I don't personally like, but in a more soothing theme, the new dialogs look just fine.

          and doesn't have the text entry box -- i.e, they removed the one great feature they used to have!

          Calm down. The text-entry box is still there if you want it. If it's not showing, as in that screenshot, Ctrl+L will make it appear. If you are a keyboard fan, you shouldn't have much trouble hitting one extra keystroke.

          For a Save dialog, you don't even have to hit Ctrl+L; it's only the Open dialog that defaults to mouse-only operation.

          I know they're attempting to appeal to inexperienced users, but they always seem to (1) do so in a way that pisses off experienced users, and (2) botch things up in the inexperienced-user case anyway.

          During the months of discussion and testing before this release, did you provide any feedback to help them? If not, then perhaps you might want to hold back a bit on the abuse directed towards the GTK developers.

          Hopefully someone will come up with a less crappy file-selector and all the major distros (at least debian) will use it.

          Hey, it's free software. Fire up your favorite image editor, and start mocking up how it should look. I'm sure OSNews would publish an article [osnews.com] about your new design, and I'm sure that someone, somewhere in the world, would code up a prototype for you. Or you could even code it yourself!

          As for me, I am content with the new dialog and I'm looking forward to its arrival in Debian Unstable.

          steveha
    • This release should clear the most litigious point against GTK+ : the file dialog.

      Oh really? How many people have been sued over the old file dialog? Or maybe you meant contentious [m-w.com].
      • not so (Score:4, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:31PM (#8583854)
        From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
        (via Gnome Dictionary, incendentally)

        Litigious Li*ti"gious, a. L. litigiosus, fr. litigium dispute, quarrel, fr. litigare: cf. F. litigieux. See Litigation. ...
        2. Subject to contention; disputable; controvertible; debatable; doubtful; precarious.

        I'd say that definition fits. Try using a dictionary next time, smartass.
  • Fileselector (Score:3, Insightful)

    by RichiP (18379) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:14PM (#8583684) Homepage
    Woohoo! Let's pound on that new fileselector and see if we can break it or make suggestions (to improve it).

    Congratulations to the Gtk2 developers! How's the API documentation coming along? Last time I tried learning to program with gtk2, the API reference manual was soo incomplete (incomplete function description, calling semantics, etc.)
    • Last time I tried learning to program with gtk2, the API reference manual was soo incomplete (incomplete function description, calling semantics, etc.)

      I had little trouble picking up GTK+ 2.0 and bits of GLlib. The reference manual is not "soo incomplete" - a few widgets are poorly documented, and you'll need to go digging elsewhere for info, but for most part it's not too horrendous.

      Look into the tutorial anyway.

      http://www.gtk.org/tutorial/
      http://www.gtk.org /api/
    • Re:Fileselector (Score:3, Informative)

      by 0x0d0a (568518)
      I didn't have any problems with GTK per se -- though I did find insufficient documentation on auxilary projects like pango.

      A quick glance indicates that the pango documentation has fleshed out nicely.
  • file selector (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pyros (61399) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:15PM (#8583694) Journal
    They have been using the new file selector in the Fedora Core 2 test1 [kernel.org] release, which was supposed to freeze today for the test2 release. Very nice. Hopefully this means GNOME 2.6 will stabilize and be release in time to include them both in Fedora Core 2 [redhat.com].

  • Not an expert, not a GTK regular, but a while back when I checked things out it looked like you had to use something like GTK-- or something to get a nice convenient C++ interface.

    Is that still true, or have things changed significantly?

    [No, I don't want to start a flamewar, either. Just curious.]

  • n00b (Score:5, Funny)

    by potpie (706881) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:27PM (#8583812) Journal
    says the n00b: "it's good to see that GTK is catching up with the kernel version."
    says the 1337: "..."
    • Re:n00b (Score:3, Insightful)

      by John Hurliman (152784)
      I'd say it's nice that GTK is catching up with some of the QT/KDE features.

      Unified dropdown box (editable and non-editable), file selection dialog with custom URLs (think KDE's fish:// samba:// webdav:// etc), menus and toolbars sharing common actions, enhanced right-to-left language support. This is an excellent example of open source software at work. One competitor has cool features, the other competitor integrates those features and noone is crying about patents, copyrighted interfaces, intellectual pr
  • Glade2 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by RichiP (18379) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:38PM (#8583910) Homepage
    From the Gtk2 Release announcement:

    GTK+ has been designed from the ground up to support a range of languages, not only C/C++. Using GTK+ from languages such as Perl and Python (especially in combination with the
    Glade GUI builder) provides an effective method of rapid application development.


    How is Glade2 development coming along in terms of supporting Gtk2 2.4? I visited their website [gnome.org] and there doesn't seem to be any mention of it.
  • I always here people theorize that the liscences that the GTK ( and QT ) are under will keep private comapanies from developing with these libraries. Has anyone else noticed differently?
  • GTK release of 2.4 (Score:5, Informative)

    by Mr Thinly Sliced (73041) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:49PM (#8584004) Homepage Journal
    It's a great release. It is something that finally the gnome-ers can get their teeth into. And it's not before time.

    For anyone who has been following the good work that the gnome developers have been doing, its starting to look like vindication.

    Ok, enough of the back slapping, lets see whats on offer: (PS - release notes for GTK at Gnome 2.6 update release notes [gnome.org]

    Font Changes:
    • Xft and fontconfig use the same backends - whats that mean to you? - better fonts - everything GTK now plays the same game.
    • Fonts and character shapes can take a scripts 'hints' about a font into account - we win, the font creator wins - its about the best of everyones world.
    • Using bi-directional text is not forced by the application - it can be extracted or 'hinted' from the original source file itself.
    GLIB:
    • GLIB update to use unicode 4.0 - many, many people benefit.
    • GLIB correctly recovers children processes.
    • GRandom is better at seeding. But not cryptographically secure. Yet.
    • The threading library with GLIB is now "operation or not" on integers and pointers.
    • There is a way to specify an OO 'singleton' or 'once initialisation'
    • Extra macros for GObject type writers
    • Properties can be added to interfaces (verbatim copied)
    • Private data within an instance can contain private data/references within and object (its not clean what this means in a C context, but I think they mean that it's not exposed).
    GTK takes all of the above features, and uses those to make a fantastic release. Lets give these people time, They need it.
    • by IamTheRealMike (537420) * <mike@plan99.net> on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @06:55PM (#8584065) Homepage
      The threading library with GLIB is now "operation or not" on integers and pointers.

      I think you mean the threading library now supports atomic operations - ie you can do some simple integer/pointer manipulation without needing a mutex in a thread safe fasion. They've introduced equivalents to InterlockedIncrement, InterlockedCompareExchange etc in Win32 and very useful they are too.

  • gyah.... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ShadowRage (678728) on Tuesday March 16, 2004 @07:27PM (#8584335) Homepage Journal
    now I gotta update all that mess again...

    gah.. a linux user's work is never done.

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