KDE Jabber Library

Martijn Klingens klingens at kde.org
Sun Aug 4 11:37:51 BST 2002

On Sunday 04 August 2002 02:20, Neil Stevens wrote:
> They can't communicate because they're not necessarily all using the same
> protocol.  Interoperability comes through standards, and a kopete-based
> library would dictate no standard means of communication.

It does. You pick someone from your address book and ask Kopete to send a 
message. Kopete will figure out what communications backend it should use to 
actually contact this person. If you want to send to, say, an ICQ contact 
directly, even if the address book states Jabber as preferred backend, then 
you have to explicitly state so. But at least you can always contact this 
person. If all else fails by sending an SMS message over a mobile phone 
(which btw is also an open standard AFAICS).

> Just specifying Jabber directly as the means of communication solves that
> interoperability problem by dictating a standard.

Dictating a standard is exactly what upset people about Microsoft. Leave the 
people choice. Not to mention that there are plenty of environments where 
Jabber is out of the question. Should I tell my boss to replace the Exchange 
server with a Jabber server? Currently Kopete can't talk to an Exchange 
server either, but at least the API allows it. With Psi you create a lock-in 
that doesn't allow it at all.

> But the more you expand, the less interoperable you are.  For communication
> to work, you need a guarantee that both sides are expecting the same
> protocol.  That means mandating one protocol, just in the same way KDE
> mandates a desktop file standard, a window manager standard, and a file
> hierarchy standard.

Interoperability is not only between people using the same platform, but also 
between people using a completely different platform.

If Kopete's standard protocol excludes ICQ, MSN, AIM and what more then 
basically Kopete will be rejected as IM platform because it might be a damn 
cool program, but if you can't actually contact your contacts that happen to 
use another IM application it's kind of moot to have a leet Jabber library, 

Of all people you should know most, being the maintainer of Kit.

> So you'd requre that all applications wanting to send messages or export
> presences to go through the *app*, rather than making direct connections?
> That's a terrible waste, and adds a needless dependency.  SMTP use doesn't
> require kmail, why should my app that wants Jabber have to go through
> Kopete?

Both KBugBuster and Konqueror ('send Link') require KMail to actually send out 
the mail AFAICS. Of course you can do your own communication using kio-smtp 
or direct socket connections, but that's beyond the point made. Besides, 
Kopete can be fixed if needed. Working around a problem is not quite the way 
KDE usually opeates.

> Yes, it's limiting.  That's *good*.  Being limited to standard internet
> protocols (which Jabber is trying to become, unlike nearly every other
> protocol Kopete attempts to support) means you'll be interoperable.  Did I
> mention that communication is only possible if everyone is using the same
> protocol?

Forget that. At least 75% of the current people using IM do not use Jabber. To 
communicate with them you need another protocol. Kopete offers exactly that.

I'm more than happy to make the free and open Jabber protocol the one and only 
protocol that's enabled when you start Kopete the first time, but a 
Jabber-only solution sounds like a terrible mistake to me.


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