kdelibs coding style

Maks Orlovich mo85 at cornell.edu
Sat Jul 22 20:25:32 BST 2006

On Saturday 22 July 2006 14:58, Olaf Jan Schmidt wrote:
> Am Samstag 22 Juli 2006 20:03 schrieb Maks Orlovich:
> > Well, thus far the number of known supporters seems to be miniscule
> > compared to a total body of KDE contributors.
> [...]
> > The choice of the mailing list is poor then. kde-core-devel is, after
> > all, a restricted list, and many of our contributors likely do not have
> > posting rights on it.
> This is about kdelibs only.

No, it's not. Yes, the proposed policy itself affects only kdelibs. But 
the /nature/ of the policy affects everyone. This sets a precedent that 
something that's merely a matter of preference and not technical merit can be 
legislated as a policy in the project. And in fact, even making kdelibs 
different in a way that's not technically neccessary (constract with e.g. 
BC), introduces a small but existing psychological barrier for contributors 
to jump into kdelibs from other modules.  (And don't bring up kdepim, please. 
kdepim also has a long-lasting reputation for being hostile to new 

> Since the rule "use the indentation preferred by the author" doesn't work
> for 90% of kdelibs code, I am not sure which alternative you suggest. Would
> it be OK for you if we simply exclude those parts of kdelibs from the
> policy that you are maintaining?

No, this isn't really about me; in fact I haven't actually read the exact 
style guide --- it might even be exactly what I prefer, I don't care; my 
complaint is about the nature of this policy, and it intefering with work of 
existing and potential contributors, including the case where there is 
absolutely nothing wrong with consistency of indentation of their code.

Speaking of stuff I hack on, to bring up Apple again, if you look at their 
fork of KJS, you'll see its indentation is a lot less consistent than it was 
in KJS for years. Why? Because KJS originally had 2-space indentation, and 
pretty much everyone stuck to it, but they declared that they'll use depth 4  
everywhere, so now it's often a mixture. You policy would have exact same 
effect in places like kwallet, khtml/ecma, etc, that are reasonably 


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