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Yann L

Release for Linux, or why I don't like GPL zealots

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The story started a couple of years ago, where I had a discussion with my boss about the bad quality of IDEs under Linux. We are good friends, so after ranting around for a while, we started to sketch out the basic features of a good Linux based IDE. It was of course heavily influenced by the MS Visual Studio IDE, but we brought in a couple of really neat new ideas. We even started coding a little in our free time, but we didn't go far, due to time constraints. Eventually, the project was forgotten. Until around two weeks ago. When I came back from South America, I met him to discuss some company related affairs. Discussion eventually turned to IDEs and Linux, and he was ranting about Eclipse and the new "release candidate" of CDT he tried, that was supposedly so bug ladden, that it made it totally unusable. Anyway, we came back to speak about our little project back then. And since we both didn't have to much to do over the holidays, we started coding again... So now, we have a functioning prototype. It looks nice, it feels nice, almost like a GTK+ version of MSVC. It's fast, not buggy, and has many interesting features such as support for many different languages and compilers, native support for cross compiling, autocompletion, source code folding, source sensitive help and reference system, support for custom build tools (such as a Cg compiler, for example), remote debugging, and other nice stuff never found in a Linux IDE before. Well, it's just a prototype, so there's not much eye candy, but it basically works. We wanted to release it for free, but it would not be open source (since it uses a ton of inhouse RAD libraries). We thought, no problem, we ask our lawyer to draft a custom license, making it basically free for everything, but you won't get the source. Everything is fine, don't you think ? Well, wrong. We contacted a few Linux groups we knew, since we needed some input, ideas for some a the more complex features, and maybe some help with the eye candy (icons, etc). I can't even describe you the flak we got. "WHAT, no source ?! We don't care if it's free. If there's no source, and if it's not under the GPL, it sucks, and we won't use it" "It doesn't use autotools ? Everything that doesn't work with autotools is crap. It won't even compile on my <insert exotic Unix variant here>" "Yeah, it looks OK, but emacs is sooo much better ! Why don't you use emacs ? See, I cannot even check my email inbox within your IDE, you should fix that" "But, it looks like MSVC ! Microsoft is evil, blah blah blah" Those were the type of response we got. Many of the people we sent our prototype didn't even try it, because they refused to support Linux software that wasn't GPL ! Unbelievable. It's this attitude that scare more commercially oriented developers off. And people still wonder, why there is more quality software on Windows than on Linux. [/rant] So, does anyone in here know a place on the net, where one can present closed source development related Linux software for constructive input, in a somewhat smaller context, without having to fear the Slashdot and GPL mob ? Something like GDNet, but for Linux would be perfect :)

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Little time now, so I'll be quick.

I know what you mean. I hate that attitude. Let it go, these people don't *choose* to be ignorant, they just are (assuming ignorance isn't entirely subjective since they'd say the same thing about you). Anyway, there are loads of people who appreciate a good tool for what it is.

You should submit a news story with your rant to slashdot. Lately they post anti-GNU stories as long as they're reasonable. I don't know if you should try to pitch your IDE in it though, as it may look like an ad.

Let GDNet take a look at the IDE? I am on Linux now using MinGW and I was just thinking that it's not nearly as good as I want it to be and how I'd love a nicer IDE. I am developing cross platform and using MSVC Express is a blast. I write most linux code in MSVC now, push it over the network to my linux box and compile because I can't stand using a linux tools. There are lots of people here (myself included) that would appreciate your work and would give much constructive criticism.

Will post more tomorrow.

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It's really too bad people are being that way... I suppose I can understand the GPL zealots, what with free and open-source being the Linux mantra nowadays.

That said, why not host it on your own space and post about it say... here? Though this isn't a Linux site per se, I'm sure lots of people here would really appreciate having access to a tool like that (like me [wink]) since I've read several threads here about the lack of quality IDEs for Linux. And it could serve as a nice way to gain support for it before trying to propose it to larger, more Linux-centric groups.

Just a thought (and some wishful thinking).

-Auron

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I'm sad to see you received replies like that. It doesn't do well to the community's image when people with hardly a clue about the real world spout their mouths off like that.

On the other hand, I probably wouldn't use your IDE either. It's significantly the share-and-share-alike philosophy that so permeates Linux et al, and I would much rather see work done to improve something like KDevelop than to create a new system that has little advantages in the majority of applications compared to what's already available, and the disadvantage that, by being closed-source, community involvement is significantly limited compared to some other systems. :/

I know I haven't tried you IDE, I'm just going by what you've posted. I'm sure I could appreciate a good tool. I'd appreciate a good open-source tool, more. But it's entirely your right to keep it closed.

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Personally, I've never been that obsessed with open source. If I download software, I plan to use it, not take it apart and steal it for my own projects which I'll then have to release for free, or change it. I can understand open source as being useful for preventing software from having hidden maliciousnesses, and for some kinds of things that are meant to be changed, but in reality, I tend to prefer software that does stuff for me, not the opposite.

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Quote:

"It doesn't use autotools ? Everything that doesn't work with autotools is crap. It won't even compile on my <insert exotic Unix variant here>"

"Yeah, it looks OK, but emacs is sooo much better ! Why don't you use emacs ? See, I cannot even check my email inbox within your IDE, you should fix that"


I am all for those 2 [smile], I even code with XEmacs and MSYS on Windows, to be entirelly honest the only thing I miss on XEmacs would have to be intelisence, and maybe the ClassView.

I think the issue is that Linux developers are fine with their IDE (command line, autotools, shell scripting), an IDE no matter how cool, would feel like its getting in their way, I think perhaps you went to the wrong crowd, you should have targeted Windows developers moving to Linux, rather than pure Linux devs.

On the bright side, I am sure many MinGW users would surelly like to try a Windows Version [smile]

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Meh. Forget those ignorant GPL zealots. They all spew the same ignorant things from their collective brain (or, perhaps a lack thereof). Personally,I used MinGW while coding on Linux (or just flat out gedit and konsole, but I prefer using an IDE). It's alright, but I'd be interested in trying something else. I hope you decide to give gdnet first dibs at trying it.

Also, I'm not exactly sure if this is what you're looking for, but linux.tucows.com has gpl, freeware, demos, and shareware. They don't seem to care what sort of license you use, they'll host it (sort of like the download.com of linux). I'm not really sure how much input you'll get from that site though.

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Yeah, don't let the GPL zealots discourage you. Like you said, Linux is in dire need of a quality IDE. I'm sure many linux users would quickly get over the fact that your IDE's source is proprietary if they used it.

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One time when I looked at the "Who's Online" tab, it showed nearly 10 Linux users online at once. I'm sure there's at least a handful of linux users on here that aren't GPL-or-nothing. I usually use Windows, but keep a copy of Linux if I need to boot from it.

After personally using KDevelop on Linux, I can say that there were some things that were left to be desired that turned me off from developing on it almost right away (such as a window without an 'x' box on it). Not trying to criticize any Linux tools, but more people are switching from Windows to Linux. If that switch was made easier by applications that looked similar to Windows, I think more people would actually switch.

I would agree with Coffee Mug and recommend that you post it on GDNet to get some constructive criticism. Many people know who you are, so we wouldn't think that you're some kind of person who wants to overthrow the free software community.

Btw, when you mentioned that it has "native support for cross compiling", is that feature implemented right now? And if so, what languages and OS's would that be for? I was just wondering.

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This topic is 4925 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

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