Re: GNOME Namespace Management - ARC & GNOME

On Wed, 15 Dec 2004 10:22:24 +0100, Murray Cumming wrote:
> >  Sun's idea
> >    of ABI compatible means something more like "you can take
> >    a GNOME 2.0 application package/rpm and install it on a
> >    system with GNOME 2.6 and it will work.
> That's the promise that we make about the Developer Platform. That's been
> fairly successful. Where it's not, a fuss should be made, ideally during
> the development cycle.

It's not, the promise is that the ABI as defined by things like symbol
naming, structure sizes, on disk formats etc are stable. However, changes
which break both applications and bindings, including GNOME itself, have
been made. A fuss was kicked up and ignored.

You're right, there's a lot that GNOME gets right about interface
stability. It's a leading light in the free software community in many
respects. But there's a middle ground here that people ignore: what
happens when changes are made that break software but fall outside the
maintainers definition of ABI stability?

In this case, it's possible to be both ABI stable (by the strict
definition of ABI) but not semantically stable, or to make changes that
are technically bugfixes but nonetheless break some significant (number
of) programs. 

What I've been trying to figure out is how far Suns
commitment extends: take the example of GObject construct only properties.
Would ARC have let this change through, if glib was written by

thanks -mike

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