Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?

Adam Fedor of GNUstep Says Stuff 166

JgiSaw writes "GNUstep provides an Object-Oriented application development framework and tool set for use on a wide variety of computer platforms. It is based on the original OpenStep specification provided by NeXT, Inc. (now owned by Apple and endorced into MacOSX). OSNews is hosting an interview with Adam Fedor, of the GNUstep project, where Adam mentions among others that GnuStep has support for the MacOSX API too, which will make porting MacOSX applications to Linux much easier."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Adam Fedor of GNUstep Says Stuff

Comments Filter:
  • Re:macos x api (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:07PM (#2290301)
    maybe the idea is to be ahead of the game instead of playing the typical open source catch up game.
  • Re:macos x api (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:10PM (#2290313)
    It looks as if 95% of the stuff that has or will ship for OS X will be using the Carbon API, not the OpenStep/Cocoa API.

    There used to be a small base of NeXT development houses, but my understanding is that most of them have folded, been bought up, or switched focus. Too bad Apple didn't buy NeXT back in 1993-4, they might have been able to save the developer base.
  • by Ffakr ( 468921 ) on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:47PM (#2290451) Homepage
    Well, I'd have to take issue with the claim that there are no native cocoa apps.

    This may be technically true, there are some very nice Mac OSX only apps that although not 'big name' are none the less quite nice. The products at Omnigroup [] are all nice. Stone Studios products are nice but they could use a nice how to book.

    On the near horizon, Adobe Illustrator 10 and Quark 5 are nearing release (both demonstrated at MWNY in July) and they are both, to the best of my knowledge, Cocoa native. They both look VERY, VERY cool.

    Office for OSX will also be Cocoa native... not that MS will want to empower Linux, but I believe that MS departments will go for profit where ever it is found... Just look at the Mac market back around 96 when every was SURE that the Mac was dead... MS releases a PPC native Office, mainly because Office was pulling in about 400 Million a year on the Mac way back then.

    I think the could only be good for Linux... it will hopefully be good for the Mac OSX community. Tools written here will be very portable to the Mac.

    Now if Apple was REALLY smart (hey, they could be once or twice a decade), they would support this project in a big way and they would fund the porting of their _very_ nice free development enviornment to Linux... perhaps built on this foundation.

    Apple, you could gain HUGE amounts of respect in the linux community by doing this. You will also gain access to more industrial strength Linux tools for OSX, an OS that will be sound at release 10.1 but which will still be in desperate need of diverse apps.

    Steven (stupid Ffakr)

  • Question (Score:2, Interesting)

    by infiniti99 ( 219973 ) <> on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:53PM (#2290467) Homepage
    Why would I want to develop crossplatform applications with GNUStep, when I can use Qt 3.0 []? Qt supports Windows, MacOS X, Unix/X11, and Embedded. Apps have the look and feel of the native platform (unlike GTK), and no power/speed is sacrificed because the look is emulated, not wrapped (unlike wxWindows). All this using the proven C++ language. This is not vaporware folks. Each supported platform is just that: fully supported and stable.

    I can't compare it to the OS X API's, since I have never programmed for a Mac, but doing Qt programming has been easier than anything else I've tried. Check out this page [], where customers, some from high-profile companies, sing praise about why they prefer Qt to other alternatives / native toolkits.

    Besides the obvious cost of using Qt for commercial development (which should only be a financial issue for individual developers, not companies), what good reason is there to use anything else?
  • by alexalexis ( 31082 ) <> on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:56PM (#2290480)
    ... Photoshop. Illustrator. Office. I consider that a very significant and useful feature. Wouldn't it be interesting if OpenStep provided the doorway for native versions of applications the rest of the computing universe depends on?
  • IP Issues? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 12, 2001 @11:59PM (#2290485)
    I would like to know if there are any IP issues the GNUStep have had, or will have to deal with?
  • by x mani x ( 21412 ) <mghase&cs,mcgill,ca> on Thursday September 13, 2001 @01:16AM (#2290668) Homepage
    I remember watching the development of GNUStep from back when I just started using Linux (95? 96?). It seems to be a project that has been slowly in development for years now, yet unfortunately hampered by a lack of support from the OSS community.

    I wouldn't blame anyone, though. Most people are not familiar or even interested in the NeXTStep/OpenStep platform. The technology is definately strange, based on Objective-C and a postscript-based rendering engine, but this platform was (is) years ahead of its time.

    I have OpenStep 4.2 for intel, and it is probably the coolest OS ever. At one point I got a copy of an early OS X beta for intel, and it was basically OpenStep 4.2 recompiled with a Macos-looking widget set and a menubar instead of the Wharf ("Dock" in WindowMaker land). The look and feel of OpenStep is far and beyond any UNIX or Windows desktop in terms of sheer quality and useability (many believe the Windows widget set is imitative of the NeXT look to the point that NeXT could have sued Microsoft).

    It is sad to think that if Redhat decided to throw its weight behind GNUStep instead of GNOME, we probably would have had a full-fledged, slick NeXTStep/OpenStep/Macos X clone right now layered on top of any UNIX kernel. This is just too bad. I think pretty soon I will reinstall OpenStep 4.2 on my Intel box, and I'm definately investing in one of those G4's to find out what those old NeXT developers (considered some of the most innovative and talented GUI developers in the world) have been up to.

  • Re:macos x api (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 13, 2001 @04:17AM (#2291000)
    > Its kind of cool that it supports the OS X API, but how useful is that in practice?

    Very usefull. Dev environments on linux sucks. GNUstep IB and PB are not on par with OSX ones. There are hardly any OPENSTEP or YB developers left. All the FoundationKit/AppKit developers are on OSX now, and dozen of wanabee developers discover ObjC every week.

    The OSX dev population outnumber the GNUstep one by a couple of orders of magnitude. Don't you think it is worthwhile to support OSX ?

    [of course, GNUstep should target _windows_, in addition to OSX. This would have tremendous interest. But, with the manpower they have, the GNUstep guys already did a very good job]


  • by TheInternet ( 35082 ) on Thursday September 13, 2001 @04:23AM (#2291014) Homepage Journal
    There aren't many at the moment, beacause they really became finalized in march, but there are some things like FileMaker Pro that are completely cocoa, and work impressively well. Oh, and Maya is completely Cocoa.

    This is the fifth post or so that has named Carbon apps, and claimed they were written in Cocoa. I wish I knew what the source of misinformation was.

    I have repeatedly been told from people that should know (Maya fanatics) that Maya is definitely a Carbon app. This was done because they needed to use C++ frameworks (Cocoa is currently ObjC and Java only). I don't know about FileMaker, but I would be pretty surprised if it was Cocoa. Who told you these were Cocoa apps?

    - Scott
  • Native apps (Score:2, Interesting)

    by TheInternet ( 35082 ) on Thursday September 13, 2001 @04:31AM (#2291023) Homepage Journal
    There's hardly any apps that use the OS X APIs

    There are actually quite a few brand name apps that have been ported to Mac OS X, and many more are in progress. Probably more than people outside the Mac community would guess. Corel is on the ball -- Bryce and Painter are ported, Microsoft has already released Explorer and Office 10 is almost ready. Macromedia already has Freehand out, and both it and Adobe are working furiously to port everything. Other stuff that's done: Quicken, Maya, quite a few games, and tons of other stuff that I'm forgetting.

    These have all been ported to Mac OS X APIs. The problem is (for GNUStep users, anyway), these apps use the Carbon APIs, not Cocoa. Cocoa is GNUStep's counterpart.

    - Scott
  • by thedrinuk ( 521391 ) on Thursday September 13, 2001 @05:05AM (#2291093)
    GOD! How I miss programming on the slab. I firmly believe the programming world has gonew backwards in the last decade. The AppKit was soooo far ahead of its time we're not even there yet.
  • by Ian Bicking ( 980 ) < minus language> on Thursday September 13, 2001 @02:45PM (#2293748) Homepage
    Introspection and runtime typing are built in, so funky code generators like QT's moc and MFC's crap are unnecessary.

    They are also unnecessary when you use templates. Templates have largely rendered macros (both C preprocessor macros and alternatives like MOC) unneccessary.

    I don't think templates can make up for introspection. Introspection allows for easy serialization and cross-network communication -- transparent distributed objects are an oft-touted feature. (admittedly, I haven't used Objective C seriously)

    Also, in my programming, collections are typically heterogeneous. With templates you'd have to have a common base class with virtual methods, and you'd no longer have much of an advantage over Objective C, while having none of the convenience.

    I think the dynamically-typed languages are more true to OO, because objects are defined only by their interfaces. Any object that implements a sufficient interface can be used in that context. You can do great things with that.

    Others might feel that message-passing is a more appropriate term for the type of OO in Objective C. However you say it, there's something there that Objective C does that C++ doesn't -- even if it might be possible under C++, people just don't.

    ObjC programs are almost always smaller (no templates to instantiate), and as fast as C++ programs.

    Are you kidding? Obj-C is notorious for being slow. As far as program size goes, I don't think you can compare the two. For one, there are few Obj-C applications of any appreciable size.

    Well, there are Objective C applications of appreciable size. There were lots of applications for NextStep -- web browsers, 3D rendering, etc. Not all of these applications are dead. They should provide significant fodder for comparison, should someone choose to do so.

    From a reductivist point of view, Objective C can be as efficient as C++ or C. With clever programming you can use dynamic typing to your advantage, because the method lookup can take the place of logic statements. I know this is very common in Smalltalk. But unlike Smalltalk (or Java), you can write Objective C with the inner loops (where performance matters) in C.

    I thought NextStep ran fairly well on the m68k workstations I used. It wasn't blindingly fast, but like I said, it was a m68k processor.

    Large systems can potentially be significantly faster in Objective C, because of the generality of the object model and the richness of the foundation library.

    "Greenspun's Tenth Rule of Programming: any sufficiently complicated C or Fortran program contains an ad hoc informally-specified bug-ridden slow implementation of half of Common Lisp."

    I think Objective C has a relation to Common Lisp there (if not quite as complete -- thankfully!), and C++ is still stuck with C or Fortran -- good base libraries have been very slow in coming (though they do appear to be coming along)

Do not underestimate the value of print statements for debugging.