development tools (was Re: gripes, etc.)

There are a few people working on a nice development environment for GNOME.
We're working on several components for specific subtasks instead of putting
a lot of work into the framework that puts it all together first.

Personally I'm not a fan of IDEs. Most things you can do with an IDE, you
can do with emacs or vim too. (yes, I'm aware there's a lot of people
uncomfortable with those, but there's apps like glimmer (formerly Code
Commander) for those people). I'm thoroughly unimpressed by KDevelop. The
only nice thing they have IMHO is the extensive help.

A good development environment consists of several key parts. An editor,
a gui designer, project management, and a debugger. IMHO reasonable
choices are available for the first two. Project management is where most
(all really) current IDEs are really bad. This is why I'm working on
a wrapper around auto*, which although it certainly has its deficiencies is
the best we've got. (most of both gnome's and kde's projects use it).

Dave Camp is working on a nice bonobo enabled wrapper around gdb, which
in the future will do away with parsing the output of gdb, thus allowing
for much better integration.

As a sort of bonus (I didn't mention this as one of the key things in an
IDE, although maybe I should have) Mark Slicker is working on gpf, which
will do actual parsing of source code, which will enable superior syntax
highlighting and stuff like class browsers, etc.

If you want to help out on any of the projects mentioned above, subscribe
to the gnome-devtools list
and check out the modules you're most interested in from cvs (gpf,
gnome-debug and gnome-build). Note that most of these aren't very
far along, so don't expect to see anything from building stuff yet.

If you think you can help out, please let us know what you plan on
working on, so we can help you on your way. And if you do the irc
thing, try #devel-apps on for our usual hangout.

Eventually all these components are going to be tied together in gIDE
(which sucks ATM, I agree, but it's being improved upon).


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