elanthis at awesomeplay.com
Wed Apr 28 00:38:29 EEST 2004
On Tue, 2004-04-27 at 17:59 -0300, Avi Alkalay wrote:
> Maybe I get lost in translation, but I think I agree with your "configurable
> is the *wrong* way". It can't make everybody happy. Specially in the level
> discussed here (change notification, etc). And I think non-desktop software
> are also important for this subject.
Configurable is very important. Mandatory, in fact. Havoc's point (I
believe, he's probably better suited to clarify ~,^ ) is that having
this new theoretical API have a configurable backend that then layers
onto another API with configurable backend is just silly. Configurable
backends are needed because no one backend is ever, ever going to work
for everyone. A simple file backend may work great for your average
desktop or simple server, but something like an LDAP backend may be
necessary for large desktop deployments, and a cluster-oriented backend
may be useful for other specialized tasks. Small systems may not be
able to fit D-BUS and change notification features in, but apps may wish
to be portable between a hand held and a workstation with a minimal of
I also rather disagree with Havoc that GConf is "too complex." More
just that it has some implementation warts from being a first
attempt. ;-) There are some things that GConf _makes_ complex simply
because GConf itself doesn't have enough functionality, such as storing
more complex preference structures. The API is also a little more
complex than necessary for the common case. (I'm a strong believer of
one low-level powerful API and where necessary a second layer simpler
API that wraps the former both being standard to account for all needs.)
> I'd like to have the chance to have you explain me better this part, in
> private, if you have time.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Havoc Pennington" <hp at redhat.com>
> To: "Thomas Leonard" <tal00r at ecs.soton.ac.uk>
> Cc: <xdg at freedesktop.org>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 27, 2004 4:25 PM
> Subject: Re: Configuration API
> > On Tue, 2004-04-27 at 10:59, Thomas Leonard wrote:
> > > If we make an API, then people can get started writing backends for it.
> > > Eg, someone could make a gconf backend and all programs using the API
> > > would get their settings stored using gconf. Someone else could make a
> > > Linux Registry backend, or a D-BUS daemon, etc.
> > If gconf and the D-BUS daemon and so forth already have pluggable
> > backends, why would you layer an additional abstraction API on top?
> > Or put differently, if you had the abstraction API on top why would
> > gconf or the D-BUS thing be pluggable?
> > IMO the lesson from gconf is "slightly too complex" and the lesson from
> > straight to text files is "not quite complex enough" and the happy
> > medium is in between. But refusing to choose one is inherently more
> > complex than either alone. Making it configurable is the *wrong* way to
> > compromise, it's design-by-committee yuck.
> > Havoc
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