Current desktop detection / app access - take 2.

Mike Hearn mike at
Thu May 27 22:39:30 EEST 2004

On Thu, 27 May 2004 14:50:51 -0400, Havoc Pennington wrote:
> The reason I don't buy this is that in every case where the hackers
> involved have in fact just sat down and done the work, they've gotten it
> done and adopted pretty quickly. It's not like is a
> high-overhead process with a bunch of bureaucracy.

One problem it's worth considering is that desktops have bugs, and
desktops are fairly high-inertia type things that take time to implement
standards and be deployed. 

It's not as simple as (1) talk, (2) implement ... 
you forgot (3) wait for desktops to perhaps do a major version release and
integrate changes [when is kde 4 due again?] (4) wait for all users to
upgrade, (5) hope spec is good and won't change after being implemented.

Throw vendor-specific patches into the mix and you end up with a way to
find out exactly what the desktop does and does not have being quite

Otherwise, certain apps are going to do lots of magic poking and sniffing
to try and figure out what combination of technologies and bugs are
present on the users system. This already occurs today.

Now, I'm not saying having a DESKTOP=kde|gnome|xfce|whatever variable as a
replacement for standards is a good idea. Possibly an INTERFACES_SUPPORTED
variable would be useful though, and in the interim until somebody figures
out a way to map Qt/GDK theming to a central base x-gtk-themes/x-qt-themes
could be in the list as well.

thanks -mike

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