The GNOME Project will 25 • The Registry

The two original developers behind the GNOME project started work 25 years ago, and the 43rd version of their idea is nearing completion.

The GNOME Project is celebrating its quarter centurynot long behind that of the KDE project, whose version 5.23 corresponded to it birthday last year. You’re close for a reason, but it’s old tale in Linux terms.

Like us previously discussed in detailKDE uses the Qt toolkit, which was written in C++ and developed for use with C++. When the KDE project started, Qt was not GPL. As a result, Red Hat refused to bundle KDE with its distribution (which is how Mandrake Linux started – it was Red Hat Linux but bundled with KDE).

A second problem is that Linux is largely written in C, just like Unix before it. Some traditional Unix types remain suspicious of C++ and prefer to avoid it. The result was GNOME – a desktop written in C using the all-GPL GTK toolkit. years after If you have Red Hat Linux installed, you have GNOME.

These days, the GNOME Shell itself is written in JavaScript, although its basics – like the Mother typesetter and window manager – are implemented in C.

Which brings us to the new announced GNOME 43 – the third iteration in the GNOME 40 generation or how it was is called, GNOME 4.0. GNOME 40 was quite a big change, especially in the topic sectionthe project is in a consolidation and integration phase.

The GNOME JavaScript engine, GJSused now spider monkey 102 – Mozilla’s current Javascript runtime environment ESR (Extended Support Release) from Firefox.

As always, the shell has received a lot of attention, with a quick settings panel replacing the combined system menu. The app launch grid, on-screen keyboard, and workspace switcher have also been refined. Shell has also received some performance improvements, as has the telephony app Calls and the relatively new text editor.

Several other components have been ported to GTK4, including the initial setup tool, the log file viewer, and the new terminal emulator, GNOME Console. The text editor app also has improved functionality, with better drag-and-drop and clipboard support, better handling of links such as URIs, local paths, and man Pages, among other changes.

The Software Center, Epiphany Web Browser, Nautilus File Manager, Cellular Connection Manager, Boxes Hypervisor, and Dconf Editor have all been updated. The same goes for Mutter, which now has high-resolution scroll wheel support, as well as better direct scanout handling – even across multiple monitors, which should improve the performance of full-screen apps like games or the full-screen Firefox browser.

Those are some highlights. If you want to know the essentials, there is a comprehensive one list of changes.

GNOME 43 promises to be another consolidation release, with many small improvements instead of big changes. It is very likely that it will be included in Ubuntu 22.10 “Kinetic Kudu” and Fedora 37 in the coming (northern) fall.

The organizers celebrate on the GNOME 25th birthday website “To the next 25 years.” This particular vulture has high hopes that by 2047, such primitive tools as Unix-like operating systems and desktop user interfaces will also be fading memories Computers of the 1970s with punched cards and punched tape are today. ®

https://www.theregister.com/2022/08/17/gnome_project_25/ The GNOME Project will 25 • The Registry

Laura Coffey

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