[patch] KdePrint::createPrintDialog() on non-X11

John Layt johnlayt at yahoo.com.au
Thu Jul 10 00:07:17 BST 2008

On Tuesday 08 July 2008, Harri Porten wrote:
> On Tue, 8 Jul 2008, John Layt wrote:
> > BUT:  I was having an e-mail conversation with Dirk Mueller about a month
> > ago (before everything went crazy) who wanted this all moved into a
> > separate library or dlopened plugin or something as he had concerns about
> > it affecting BC, especially if/when these features move upstream into Qt.
> >  It's all way above my head, [...]
> Hmm. I am a bit surprised to hear that as I remember you being one of the
> driving forces behind dumping the KDEPrint code for 4.0.

Then you remember wrong.  The decision that KDEPrint was too broken to make 
KDE4 in time was made by people with far more experience and knowledge than 
me, I was just the annoying guy asking lots of ignorant questions to try help 
find the best solution, and later the janitor cleaning up around the edges.  
Would you have preferred we shipped with non-functioning printing?

Having tried to work with the KDEPrint code base, I fully supported the 
decision, and the history since has bourne out the reasons for the decision.  
The fact that someone as ignorant as myself is the only person poking a stick 
at core printing issues should tell you something.  But don't take my word 
for it, feel free to take a look at the KDEPrint code base and you'll perhaps 
see why the decision was taken.

Yeah, I'm no uber C++ coder, I struggle with stuff like BC issues and the best 
way of structuring and building *nix libraries, but my day job is on 
mainframes so I don't get much exposure to this sort of thing.  I thought I 
had modified things in a way that would not cause BC issues later, but Dirk 
didn't agree, and I know who I'd believe in any such conversation.

> I understand that you probably just wanted to help out and I don't want to
> to target you personally or put you under pressure. Work on KDE should be
> fun and you private matters have absolutely priority.

Really?  Feels pretty personal and condescending from here, especially by 
replying to the list.  Yes, I did drop the ball on this issue and I feel bad 
enough already, but I hadn't planned to be 'homeless' for 4 weeks, nor did I 
plan to have both my laptops die on me when I was least equipped to sort them 
out, or for it all to happen just when I needed to ask Dirk to explain what 
needed changing and why, and to apply the last polish and bug-fixing.  Life 
happens, and there's always 4.1.1 for the bug fixes.

> I'm just trying to find an explanation of why KDE 4 is still in such a
> poor shape compared to KDE 3 after so many years and what we can learn
> from that. The KDEPrint "rework" is just one example for one of the main
> factors I recognize: brute force removal or deprecation of many classes
> ("clean design", "portability") without any suitable replacement being
> available in time. The time horizon that KDE was "made ready for" may well
> exceed the life time of KDE 4.x. Letting users wait for such a long time
> is just crazy. Both for them and application developers.

Poor shape?  After how long?  KDE doomed to die before it is 'ready', whatever 
that is?  You'll excuse me for disagreeing there.  If all the previous posts 
and blogs and debates can't convince you I doubt I can.

It seems to me you were just looking for an outlet for your frustrations and I 
was the first fool to stumble into your sights.  I'd expect better from 
someone who's been involved in the community as long as you have.  

If you have concerns about the fundamentals of KDE4 developement you want to 
raise and have debated with the aim of drawing some lessons for the future, 
then I'd suggest you do so in a separate thread with a clearly stated, well 
reasoned, and non-inflammatory post.  If you have specific questions to ask 
about the KDEPrint decision to see if there are lessons to be learned there, 
then please ask them in a clear and reasoned way and I'll do my best to 


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