OfB Open Choice Awards 2002: KDE 3.0 Best Desktop

Open for Business has held its first annual

OfB Open Choice Awards
and KDE 3.0 has won in the category
Best Desktop Environment:
"If the KDE Project had been content to stick with KDE 2.x, this may very
well have been GNOME's year to shine. Unfortunately for the younger project, KDE
moved forward at such a rapid pace this year, some people thought the project's
development process might crumble under its own weight. It did not, and KDE 3.0
emerged as the most polished, professional desktop available for Unix and
Unix-like systems."

The KDE mail client KMail won in the category
Best E-mail Client and KDE's integrated development environment
KDevelop won in the category
Best Development Tool.
Kopete, KDE's multi-protocol messaging client, won an honourable mention in the category
Best Communications Software.

Dot Categories: 


by ac (not verified)

Have you read this:


Talk about bureaucracy.

by ac (not verified)

Anon Man:

1) Face up to the facts. GNOME 2 was unstable. So what that you installed it and got it running well, if lots of other people found it to be broken. Your machine is not the only one. The hard data is the people you see complaining... and there are quite a few. Read mailing lists, read articles like this one. Or you can stick your head in the sand and not hear any of it :-)

2) The GNOME 2 release was rushed by a long way... hardly any apps ported. Imagine if KDE 3 was released with just konqueror. LOL! Naturally the reason for the hurry has to be 'corporate pressures'.

3) GNOME has a history of hyping up its future technologies and failing to deliver. Witness Bonobo... even miguel says it is crap now. Just because something is 'in the works' doesn't mean it will be any good. And lets face it, with the problems in porting to GNOME 2, don't get your hopes up.

4) Why the hell are you even here hawking your GNOME shit? Sorry, but I suspect it is because of *sour grapes*. You can't believe than GNOME was passed up for enlightenment :-) Well, believe it!

I think you should try KDE cvs... you'll find it very illuminating ;-)

by Anon Man (not verified)

Very well both of you. We could stay up here all night, and accomplish not a single thing.

Take me up on my offer. Ask Mr. Butler on my tone in the discussion that we had.

I look forward to meeting you both again...

by Vadim Plessky (not verified)

Re: " 2) The GNOME 2 release was rushed by a long way... hardly any apps ported. Imagine if KDE 3 was released with just konqueror. LOL! Naturally the reason for the hurry has to be 'corporate pressures'."

I think that *just* new version of Konqueror worth new *release*.

Problem with GNOME (GNOME2) that they *do not have own browser technology*.
Mozilla is too heavy, and I doubt they can make it resonable light.
I have looked over Mozilla sources - it's well over 150MB!
You need to trim sources at least by half, to make them reasonable in size and *hackable*.

So, if GNOME2 *had* own browser - I think it worth separate reelase..
Without browser - it's doesn't worth new release!



by Bah me (not verified)

Hmm...I think the point is reusability

Why reinvent the wheel when there's a perfect one there?

by ac (not verified)

>Why reinvent the wheel when there's a perfect one there?

The point is, Mozilla is no where near perfect.

by Spark (not verified)

Besides of RAM usage (which is not good but not a big issue either) Mozilla is probably as close to perfect as free software can currently deliver. I'm talking about featureset.
It would take the GNOME guys years to create something that is on par with it and than it would still be in a disadvantage because Mozilla will continue to grow and unlike Mozilla, a Gnome-native browser wouldn't be cross plattform which would make compatibility issues even more of an headache than they already are.
There is really no point in doing that instead of improving Gecko.
For low RAM usage (for example to edit and show HTML mails in Evolution) there is still GtkHTML.

by Aaron J. Seigo (not verified)

by now you are probably right that it is probably too late (for a few reasons), but a small handful of hackers working over the past few years accomplished exactly what you said would be pointless because they didn't agree with this line of thought.

they've spent probably 1/40th the man power (based on # of people and # of years) and the resulting product is free software, it's stabile, the feature set is great and is keeping pace with other HTML renderers, it's quite fast, it is native to the platform it runs in, has decent RAM usage and allows a single HTML widget to be used acrossed their platform. you may have heard of it: KHTML.

the javascript engine it uses is also native (KJS), which means it can be used outside of the HTML widget itself and in other platform pieces.

by me (not verified)

They have not accomplished it - konqueror fails to support many of the standards that mozilla supports, and it renders more pages badly. Don't believe me? take a look at some of the demos on http://www.mozilla.org/start/1.0/demos.html - all standards compliant pages. Compare how well they work in mozilla and konqueror - then come back and tell me if they are equal (There are some cool demos there by the way, but even the complex spiral demo which is css1 only fails to display properly in IE or Opera, and didn't work properly in Konq last time i tried it.
Creating a web browser is no easy task, and kde developers have done pretty well with konqueror, but it doesn't come close to mozilla (except in terms of integration with kde)

by redtux (not verified)

I try to avoid flames, but jesus christ

1) Face up to the facts. GNOME 2 was unstable. So what that you installed it and got it running well, if lots of other people found it to be broken. Your machine is not the only one. The hard data is the people you see complaining... and there are quite a few. Read mailing lists, read articles like this one. Or you can stick your head in the sand and not hear any of it :-)

Unstable? - you have got to be joking
Articles like this one? - the comparison would be a gnome user installing from KDE cvs against garnome - not stable packages

I have seen the occasional person complaining about lack of configuration options and that is about it

2) The GNOME 2 release was rushed by a long way... hardly any apps ported. Imagine if KDE 3 was released with just konqueror. LOL! Naturally the reason for the hurry has to be 'corporate pressures'.

How rushed? - you just dont get it
Gnome is and always has been a framework which apps are built on top of
There is already a long list of apps ported - inc gnumeric,gaim,gftp,gnomedb
and several more in the process

3) GNOME has a history of hyping up its future technologies and failing to deliver. Witness Bonobo... even miguel says it is crap now. Just because something is 'in the works' doesn't mean it will be any good. And lets face it, with the problems in porting to GNOME 2, don't get your hopes up.

Hate to burst your bubble but Miquel!= to Gnome

4) Why the hell are you even here hawking your GNOME shit? Sorry, but I suspect it is because of *sour grapes*. You can't believe than GNOME was passed up for enlightenment :-) Well, believe it!

Like the KDE trolls pounce on any gnome story on Linux Today or Slashdot

On the Gnome User forum your message if reversed would be classed as flamebait

by ac (not verified)

This guy is a known anti-KDE troll from Linux Today. His name is Mike. If you find his website it's rather sad...

by Vadim Plessky (not verified)

Let me give you my reasoning - why Evolution is not ready for everyday use.
I am native Russian speaker, and Evolution ... doesn't support Russian.
I even filed bug report about this - but there is no help!
On the other hand - Michael Haeckel was fixing bugs in KMail's NLS support at light-speed, that's why KMail, since KDE 2.1 release, has so good Cyrillic (Russian) support.
I also recently tested it [KMail 1.4.2] with mails in Chineese - it also works very nice!

Don't get me wrong.
I guess Evolution for GNOME2 would be very good program. But GNOME2 should stabilize first. As Tim mentioned, it's still not ready at amoment...


Vadim Plessky

If it doesn't support your language then i guess that's a pretty good reason for using it! Like you said GNOME 2 provides really good language support, so i would suggest you take another look at evolution when it is ported (they're going to do another 1.x release first, so the GNOME 2 version will probably be next year)
(i'm not an evolution developer, but it looks like evolution _does_ support russian already - are you having problems with it?)

by Vadim Plessky (not verified)

well, if you mean that I should bugreport to Evolution developers about support for Russian language - I did it. Not to much help from developers, though.
Let me make things clear: I use KDE3, I use KMail exclusively, and I don't use GNOME and Evolution. But I am not going to bash GNOME or Evolution here.
It's fine with me if both develop further. And I hope NLS in GNOME/Evo will be fixed somewhere in the future.

My time is somewhat limited at a moment, so I can't spend much time on *testing* GNOME2 (like I did for KDE2 and do for KDE3). So, GNOME2 hackers should fix NLS in Evo and GNOME on their own...
Sorry if it sounds harsh - but that's it. I am not paid to fix GNOME bugs. :-)

No, what i meant is that from what i can tell (i don't speak russian..) Evolution _does_ support Russian now (in the stable 1.0x version). So i was wondering whether you had actually installed it and tried using it - if so what was the problem.

Evolution works fine with Russian, so I don't know what you are talking about. As long as your iconv() supports the charset, Evolution supports the language. The only languages which this is not necessarily the case for are asian and BiDi languages (because character layout isn't the same as other langauges).

Of course, the last 2 will magically be fixed when they port to GNOME2 and use Pango.

If text is displaying as dotted squares or something, then the problem is not evolution's fault - you just chose a font that doesn't contain the Russian glyphs. Use gnomecc to choose your font, or if you use the development version you can change the fonts used within Evolution itself. (all known issues with Russian messages has been traced to the user using the wrong font, usually an iso-8859-1 font or the like).

That's what i thought - sounds like the guy hasn't even tried evolution.

by A Ivarsson (not verified)

Why can't all the anti-kde looser gnomers like yourself just stop
posting boring comments at dot.kde?? This is a forum for
people who love KDE.

by Spark (not verified)

I complained about the article (which I found here), not about KDE.
Sometimes I read the dot because I'm interested in what KDE is doing, not because I want to argue.

by Compton (not verified)

I've used Evolution for everything from personal organiser to POP3, to IMAP and LDAP - and I've been using it since it's early alpha days. It crashed a lot at first (hardly suprising, it was an early alpha)... and then suddenly (approx 18 months ago) it stopped crashing. Since then I've had ONE, repeat ONE, unexplained crash 6 months ago. This is an app I hammer on regularly - it is extraordinarily reliable. OfB are simply talking the usual KDE zealot rubbish, as a quick read of the other stuff on their site confirms.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

I see, a quick read of... ? Certainly not the positive mention of Debian, a distro that prefers GNOME. Certainly not the short article "GNOME 2 Released, Presents Challenge to KDE."

I know you don't like this award, but lets be fair and not disqualify a news site because you simply don't agree with who got an award. Afterall, can you prove that OfB spreads KDE zealot rubbish? Please do.

Alternatively, we can discuss this rationally, as I did with Anon Man. Anon Man was certainly a good representitive of the GNOME community, rather then calling the executioner before the judge he was reasonable. You'll get a lot more information if you are reasonable too.

by Compton (not verified)

If there is one thing you can guarantee about KDE, it's that plenty of desperate dite admins will pop up and start slamming GNOME in an attempt to start a flame war and gain attention for their site.

So far, you've posted an awards piece slagging off Evolution for not integrating with KDE (duh!) - completely ignoring the fact that KMail is seriously nonfunctional for anyone not using a simple POP3 system; criticised GNOME for not running when you compiled it yourself (I suppose it never occured to you that you may have screwed something up yourself?) and starting a fuss over nothing by criticising RedHat (thereby inflaming the KDE zealort hordes into action) over something and NOTHING. And now you want to turn it around on to me... a representative of the GNOME community (which I most certainly am not). You've got a bloody cheek, I'll give you that much.

Your troll site, ad-revenue generating career is off to a stellar start. Unfortunately you are also making sure that no-one except KDE advocates believes a single word you say. Perhaps that doesn't bother you, but I must warn you that they are a fickle bunch.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Yup, that's true, and I'm not one of them. You'll notice the only things I said in the article about Evolution were positive. Certainly bashing GNOME does little to benefit me, and so I won't do it. Even if it did benefit me, I wouldn't bash it.

Now, if you would just listen to me - something I think is hopeless - you would have noticed that I said that the KDE integration thing was because we found KDE to be easier to use. Thus programs that benefit from this easy to use style gain a bit. As well, I have listed problems with GPG and crashing as two other things that lowered Evolution's chances. It's a GREAT client. It just didn't win. Get over it - KMail is an excellent client too, and many people prefer it, yes, prefer it. Awards aren't exact, they are based on opinion and analysis. Thus you might like Evolution, but that doesn't make it the only possiblity.

Now, about RedHat, if you would read all the comments you'd see most people agree with the assertion. RedHat's actions are definately note the way to treat a project the size of KDE or GNOME. Especially a project with major sponsorship from SuSE and Mandrake. And this was marked commentary, incase you didn't notice.

Finally, read this message: http://dot.kde.org/1027806378/1028061892/1028089117/ . Now, I've noted there several things I've said that aren't exactly pro-KDE by any sense of the word. I've even suggested the future may be for GNOME. Now, tell me, does a KDE zealot write this kind of thing?

by Anon Man (not verified)

You are giving the GNOME community a bad name. Yes we can choose to disagree with his opinions.

We do not do so by flaming him!

Please, let us act reasonably and keep in mind that GNOME 2.0 is acknowledged *by the developers* not to be completely ready for mass consumption. By GNOME 2.2 this should be rectified. Let us wait till until.

Please do calm down...

by Anon Man (not verified)

Hello Tim...the above post was *not* addressed at you - it was addressed at the post above. Sorry if there's a misunderstanding.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Hi Anon Man,
I had a feeling I knew who you were addressing it to. :-) Thanks for being the sensible voice from the GNOME community. I suspect there is no use trying to reason with Compton. *sigh*

BTW, if you ever feel the urge to write something, you are welcome to the soapbox at OfB.

BTW 2, I believe it was you who posted a screenshot of GTK's new file selector dialog. Thanks! That's always been one of my pet peeves with GTK... I can't wait to have a decent open/save dialog for the Gimp! :-)

Have a good evening Anon!


by Anon Man (not verified)

Hi Tim,

I suspect people on both sides are getting a bit...'agitated' over this. I did not expect this thread to mushroom like it did. Congrats on maintaining your cool!

We are like spoilt children fighting for control of a tiny apple, not thinking that if we 'work together' we will attract more that we can individually :) I think a lot of people have lost the cooperation viewpoint... It has become more of a 'my side should win' debate now, unfortunately.

It is for this reason that I am hoping for a good showing by GNOME 2.2 next year. I honestly believe that we *need* two full featured DE for Linux. At any rate, the initial GNOME 2.0.0 is (in my opinion only of course) a substantial improvement over GNOME 1.4

Thank you for the offer of the soapbox on OfB. You can rest assured that if I do end up writing - it will be a measured, reasonable article :)

One minor quibble though (on a different note) - I am waiting for your take on this:

You stated in your Redhat & KDE article that KDE had "over 50%" of Linux users while GNOME hovered around 20%. I'm not sure where your source is for this. Could you please point it out? Also, does this take into account that there are users who use KDE as a DE but a lot of GNOME apps?

Thanks! I await your response.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Howdy Anon,
The over 50% statistic (and accompanying stat for GNOME) was from OSNews. However, it can also be fairly reasonably figured (unscientifically this way):

1.) All the UnitedLinux *cought* distros prefer KDE. SuSE and Conectiva being the most notable desk top distros in the bunch - especially SuSE. SuSE is probably either second or third in desktop installations. I would imagine 90% of UL-distros users use KDE, based on my analysis.

2.) Mandrake, treats GNOME and KDE fairly equally, but as its heritage is as a KDE-friendly distro, it defaults to KDE. Mandrake is arguably the most popular desktop distribution. I'd think that at least 75-80% of Mandrake users probably use KDE based on my experiences.

3.) RedHat, I suspect, is probably second in desktops. Probably most RedHat users use GNOME, but many also use KDE. RedHat's announced disinterest in desktops, makes my suggestion that they are only second or less in desktop market share increasingly reasonable. I would imagine at least 30-50% of RedHat users use KDE.

4.) If we then consider various smaller distros like Lycoris and ELX, we end up with most of them using KDE as well. On these distros you probably have virtually 100% KDE users.

In the end, while GNOME may end up on more systems (even some sloppy server installs), I think most like KDE has a much larger portion of the actual desktop pie. This is most likely especially true now that Mandrake (presumably with a KDE default desktop) and Lindows are being sold preloaded at Wal-Mart.com.

Anyway, while I'm being fairly simplistic here, this coupled with polls on people's preferences, the fact that KDE was usable sooner then GNOME (fairly, I would say KDE 2.0 and GNOME 1.4 were when they both became somewhat usable), etc. make this case fairly convincing.

It might be interesting to do an actual analysis someday, although I'm not sure how you could ever make it actually accurate. Since distros don't know what their users use, and surveys are woefully inaccurate. :-(


by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Oh, one more bit - http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS3153607016.html . DL's poll - yes polls are woefully inaccurate - is probably the most accurate desktop survey so far. Based on over 2,500 responses, Mandrake and SuSE are on top.


by Dave (not verified)

btw have you tried ximian gnome (1.x not 2.x) - they replaced the standard gnome file selector with one which i think you'd prefer. I guess they'll do the same with 2.x when they do their release(although they hadn't last time i looked at the snapshots). While i'm talking about gnome 2.0 i'd really recommend that with something as large as a Desktop Environment (gnome or kde) you wait for it to be integrated into a decent distro (My preference is redhat - you might not like them, but i think they do gnome best ;-) or for ximian to add their polish and package a release. Why? - because this is what the vast majority of users do, so it will be more representative of the experience that they will get.
Thanks for reading this far... :-)

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Hi Dave,
Thanks for the advice. I haven't run Ximian GNOME, but Mandrake 8.1 (not 8.2) did come with Ximian's extentions to the GTK file selector (MDK removed them because apparently they caused problems with some apps). Anyway, I thought they were nice. Still not as nice as KDE 2.x/3.x's or apparently GTK 2.4's boxes either... but they were nice.


by Ralex (not verified)

But why do they release a 2.0 final version if it's still not ready for the masses. You know, this is meant honest and not as the usual flame against Gnome, but for my taste there are too much promises for future versions in the Gnome world. Every complaint will be fiexed, every feature added, in some far-off new Gnome version. But what about the current reality?

by Anon Man (not verified)

Hi Ralex:

The decision was made for a number of reasons. I have mentioned them earlier, but will do so again (because you have not flamed)

1) Developers needed something to work against. GNOME 2.0.0 was stated (by the core gnome developers themselves) to mean a general freezing of the API etc. It is not meant to be extremely full featured.

2) Some features had been stated (very far back) to be included only in later versions. It was felt that if too much was added in one lump, debugging, management would become hell.

Here are some promises GNOME has kept:

1) Nautlius is fast. You do not have to take my word on this - please try it for yourself

2) AA is there...

3) The API is stable - a lot of changes have been made under the hood. I think that is the most important point of this release. The under the hood changes have been made, now the apps have to move to it.

4) Usability has improved. Granted, this is difficult to quantify, but the mess of dialogs and lists of preferences has been pared down. You can still change stuff using gconf. Also, the gnome developers appear to be pushing for more conformance of the HIG.

None of this souns very sexy - but it is extremely important if you want to develop further. We would all love for the changes to come immediately, but that is unfortunately not the case Oh well...based on what I've seen, I'm *more* than willing to wait :)

Current reality is actually quite good :) If there's one thing to take away from this its "Try it for yourself". Do not assume that just because someone said something bad about GNOME it is so. Try it out! You can use GARNOME, your dist. packages, Mandrake beta, etc to see what the new GNOME will be like.

by DiCkE (not verified)

Well deserved I think that KMail is at times very underestimated and really deserves to win this award. I'm a former windows/Outlook user but I really don't see the greatness with Outlook. I want a stable functional Email client that handles my mail stable and secure and I have found that in KMail.

Of course if the criteria for winning is most Outlook a' like then Evolution should be the winner, but it wasn't was it ...

Congrats to the developers and keep up the good work!

by Murphy (not verified)

Again, congratulations !!!

by Ralex (not verified)

The KDE awars-page seems to need an update - the last award here ist from 2001!

by chris felton (not verified)

Tim Butler and the Open For Business website and these awards are a total sham! Tim is a devout KDE user and pretty much the only person who runs Open For Business. In fact he is the person who really started the embarrassing "jihad" against Red Hat today. So anyway I hope all of KDE enjoys the shameful awards bestowed upon you.

Christopher D. Felton

>So anyway I hope all of KDE enjoys the shameful awards bestowed upon you.

I'm certainly enjoying all the rabid GNOME supporters coming out of the Gnotices Ghost Town, desperately trying to find reasons other than that GNOME 2 was crap as to why GNOME did so poorly.

by chris felton (not verified)

You know Tim, he's on your mailing lists, he's on the dot, he's pro-KDE. He certainly not impartial. So he shouldn't try to pass off these awards as impartial. It is a tactic of the worst political campaigns. If you like winning fixed fights--good for you, but I respect integrity. It is not very Christian.

Christopher D. Felton

by Evan "JabberWok... (not verified)

:: It is not very Christian.




by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Am I pro KDE? Yes. Am I pro GNOME? Yes. :-) See the paradox here? Right now I don't think GNOME is quite ready for primetime, however Anon Man (who was here yesterday) as well as others have very encouraging reports about GNOME 2.2. I await anxiously, and will give GNOME 2.2 the fair review it deserves - whether that be postive (I hope) or negative.


by Spark (not verified)

It it just generally not a good idea to give official "rewards" if you are a user of one of those systems, especially if you are basically the only jury. It is completely impossible for a user of one system to be completely unbiased.
It was just a bit unlucky...

BTW, when you testdrive GNOME again next it would be nice from you if you would choose the Ximian version. Those are meant to be good even without decent knowledge of installation issues and those are especially meant for businesses so they should fit to your site. :) When you test a version of Mandrake of Redhat or even compile for yourself, always keep in mind that some problems might be installation specific (like the missing-helpfiles desaster that lead to a lot of anger in Eugenia's GNOME 2 review).
Beeing able to be easily installed by endusers is definetly one of the advantages of KDE but to be fair, GNOME shouldn't be tested under those conditions because this is prone to errors.

Also I suggest those to avoid trouble:
Don't "review" something that you just took a short look at. It always takes awhile before people get really used to something new, even if it's good. :) As an (maybe stupid looking but I think it fits) example when I eat something new, it often happens that I don't like it at first but when I eat more of it, suddenly I get used to it and even start to love it! Same with new homes. When moving, you might think your new home would be terrible but after a while you get used to it and learn about all the good things of your new home and start to like it. Of course if it's really a bad new home, this won't happen. :)
So if you can only do a short review (like an installation, followed by a maybe one day triage) then clearly mark it as that and avoid generalizing comments about the quality or the competence of the developers.

Also always avoid commentaries about market share and such. :) That has absolutely no place in a review.

My point basically just is, that I'm sick of "xyz sucks" reviews. We should have more "xyz rocks" reviews. If something is loved by millions of people, it just can't generally suck, no way. :) Yes, this also applies to MS Windows although many Windows users probably don't exactly love it.
I'm not saying that you would wrote such a "xyz sucks" review... Just want to make sure you don't. :) Constructive criticism and discussion is always welcome of course.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

Well, I'm not the only jury member I should note. :-) The other thing I should note is while I use KDE, I use KDE for the reasons we gave the award, rather then we gave the award because I use KDE. If GNOME 2 ever become more productive in my opinion then KDE, I would switch. I do have some loyalty to the community, but for the most part I'll use whatever product works best within my criterion (Free Software, mostly).

A/f/a Ximian. I wanted to get a test run of GNOME 2 last month, and since Ximian IIRC still hasn't released a GNOME2 package, that would have caused GNOME not to be in the desktop at all. :-( I will try Ximian GNOME2 once it comes out, however I do consider it a mark against either D.E. if one can not use it without lots/some/a few problems directly from a distro CD. I'm sure you can understand this. It's really ashame that Ximian GNOME is seperate, and thus the average user doesn't get to enjoy the benefits.

Anyway, you are right in the last part of your comments, as well. So far I haven't given any bad reviews of anything. Generally there is always something postive to highlight, which I try to do. On the other hand, I note the problems too, as my goal is to allow the reader to have the tools needed to make a fair judgement, and not just receive the rose colored glasses information. :-) Overall, I think that was indeed what you were suggesting - so we agree I suspect.


I would have believed your claim to being impartial, but then i read your Radhat article. The biggest load of Bullshit i have ever read - it deserves to be a comment on slashdot (modded down to -1 as a troll), not as a "News" article.
You just surrendered any credibility you had by publishing that.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

It was not a "News" article, it was marked commentary. Surely, one has a right to an opinion, doesn't he? Apparently RedHat saw the problem with its earlier position to, as they have now said that they are going to demo KDE during their regular RH demonstrations, and they will provide a machine to demo RedHat on at the KDE booth.

Further more, I await anyone able to prove that what was said in the article was not true. Is it not true that RedHat should not contact a project they don't help and ask (as if it was fair) that the said project demo their software, while in return the project only receives their name printed in a list of names? Is that really a fair offer by RedHat? Certainly that isn't want Mandrake and SuSE are doing to GNOME!

I'm not impartial about RedHat, I have never claimed to be. RedHat != GNOME.

Anyway the key thing is - anyone who says they are completely impartial shouldn't be believed. However, one can do a very good job of disconnecting their opinions from their writing. And, when I am unsure that I have, I contact others and ask for them to see if I let any bias in to the article. Take for instance my SuSE review. I have a number of qualms with SuSE, so when I did the review, I had one ex-SuSE user and one current (pro-)SuSE user take a look and advise me on whether they thought it was fair. Both confirmed it was indeed fair. Infact, many people read the review and were left with the impression that my favorite distro was SuSE, since I presented a number of flaws, but presented them in a fair way. Mission accomplished.

On the other hand, I do publish commentary. Commentary is ALWAYS biased. You can't make your opinion known and not be biased. Non-biased commentary, in reality, is news.


by Spark (not verified)

"Is it not true that RedHat should not contact a project they don't help and ask (as if it was fair) that the said project demo their software, while in return the project only receives their name printed in a list of names? Is that really a fair offer by RedHat? Certainly that isn't want Mandrake and SuSE are doing to GNOME!"

You put this in a way that sounds bad for Redhat.
If you state it simply like it is, it sounds completely different:
"A Redhat PR guy made KDE (and every other exhibitor) the offer to include their name in lists at their booths, their website and a newsletter, when in turn they run their presentation on a Redhat distribution (which they provide) and put a "Powered by Redhat" sticker on the system."

This is the complete truth, not "adjusted" in any way. Does it still sound like Redhat did something highly immoral? Not really, does it?
Flaws in your statement:
- They didn't ask KDE to demo their software, they just asked them to run at least one system on Redhat and place a sticker there. Big deal.
- It was just a simple PR exchange. Mentioning of KDE all over Redhat in lists against mentioning of Redhat on a sticker.

The offer of KDE in turn was that they wanted them to carry a system for them and demo KDE at their booth (and indeed KDE, not just have it running to demo something else). For a sticker! Also I could imagine that this was confused with KDE people asking to present KDE personally at Redhat booth, that's why the PR guy probably said that they are already full.

The only thing that Redhat did really wrong was offering KDE the same as every other smal exhibitor, as KDE is a damn big project and was probably pissed by this lack of respect. But wouldn't simply declining the offer have been _much_ simpler? Is this a reason to call Redhat a "Linux for idiots" (see the page title here: http://www.derkarl.org/rednot.phtml)?
The question is, who is acting immature here.

BTW, neither do I use any kind of Redhat system, nor do I plan to in the future and I'm not related to any Redhat developer. I would never think of defending them when they would really do something immoral.
Redhat's PR treating of KDE was definetly arrogant, but KDE answered with arrogance too, so what. :) And maybe it was just a clueless PR guy who didn't had deep insight of the problems between Redhat and KDE. Maybe none at all. The fact that Redhat now even agreed to carry them a computer and monitor KDE in their booth (as you say) is pretty cool IMO.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

The point of my phrasing is that RedHat was asking an awful lot from a project they publically attacked previously (admittedly before Qt with QPL'ed and then GPL'ed), have very little support for (security updates even fail to become available), and whom they pay no one TTBOMK to work on (Bero does KDE work on his own time). The really arrogant thing is, then, to ask this project - which is largly sponsored by SuSE and Mandrake - to use RedHat.

That would be, in effect, like going to the GNOME people with a similar offer from Lindows.com or Lycoris. These two distros have actually treated GNOME better then RedHat has treated KDE in the past (they just ignore GNOME), but it would be insane of them to ask GNOME developers to demo their system since they don't support GNOME.

Anyway, that, I see is the heart of the problem. RedHat was asking for at least one system to run RedHat w/ a Shadowman sticker on it - something KDE's sponsors probably don't appreciate much - and in exchange they got... mentioned just like every much smaller project that did the same. Certainly, as you suggest, a project that has more lines of code then any other Open Source/Free Software project (IIRC) deserves a bit more respect before it gets a Rodney Dangerfield complex.

Still, I don't think RedHat is evil. Infact many times I have considered them better then SuSE. UnitedLinux is much much more of a danger to the community then RedHat, IMO. RedHat also has some wonderful people such as Michael Tiemann who do a good job of presenting the GNU/Linux case. And, RedHat - like Mandrake - doesn't publish any of their software under non-free licenses, something I applaud them for. I just don't happen to like some of the actions of their Marketriods.


by Spark (not verified)

"RedHat was asking an awful lot"

Isn't this quite a far-stretched interpretation of running one system on RedHat and putting a small RedHat sticker on a screen?
It was a simple offer obviously sent to every ehibitor, I don't see how you can call this bad intentions. The marketing guy most probably had no clue about the difficult past and from the wording of his mail, he didn't intent to offend the project in anyway. I can completely understand that KDE didn't want to take this offer but it was KDE that offended RedHat first ("Linux for idiots"), not the other way around. Taking pride into a project is one thing, overreacting is another thing. I just read the mailinglist archive and was happy about Kurt Granoth's response, I think he put it very well.

by Timothy R. Butler (not verified)

I don't think it was a far-stretched interpretation. If your competitors are sponsoring a project, it is asking a lot of that project to use your distro on their *own* computer and display *your* sticker, at least if you have exactly ZERO paid developers working on that project at all (and that project is of the a stature of KDE, GNOME, X11, etc.). Its asking evening more, since you can't even use official RedHat packages to demo the machine...

Perhaps Mr. Mann didn't know about KDE's large size, however, surely he did some research before denying KDE's requests. If not he was stupid, and if he did, and still said they wouldn't demo KDE (even though they actually are), he wasn't so bright either. Either way, I think what speaks volumes is that Todd Burr of RedHat decided to contact KDE and resolve this - he wouldn't have given in if RedHat really felt the way it seems Tommy Mann did.

So now, if RedHat provides a system that has a well configured KDE setup they stand to gain a LOT - people may stop at the KDE booth, see the great working RedHat setup, and start using RedHat. That's a pretty good deal, needless to say. As someone else pointed out, RedHat is the only one that is going to make any money out of this deal. Certainly KDE won't, nor will Mandrake or SuSE (unless the RedHat system is terrible compared to the other two's systems ;-)).

Anyway Re Linux for Idiots, that did not appear until after RedHat's foible, so KDE hardly fired the first shot in this case. Was that called for? No, but Charles was quite reasonable until after the whole thing was over.

by Aaron J. Seigo (not verified)

> Redhat's PR treating of KDE was definetly arrogant,
> but KDE answered with arrogance too,

i take exception to this. the response from Charles was "sure, if you'll reciprocate by showing some KDE in your booth and provide us with a system to show Redhat on with the latest stable KDE as we don't have such a system available". the wording was a little different, but we're not all poets. it wasn't arrogant, however.

when redhat replied "no, we won't show kde and now we won't give you a demo system. but hey, you could STILL use redhat, right? right? media matrix!" that! was arrogance. well, actually, it was ignorance. because apparently the guy who wrote it was something of a marketing cluefuck who had no idea what KDE was.

tim wrote an article on the reaction (which was basically, "typical redhat. ask something of kde but give nothing back. still no support shown for kde. fine! i can just as easily steer clear of redhat as they can of kde.") when that reaction was picked up by people at redhat via tim, they realized the error that had been made and worked with some kde folks to get it resolved. and resolved it was.

if people had just sat there and shut up, redhat wouldn't be in the kde booth and kde wouldn't have gotten a public thumbs-up from redhat. in other words, the fact that some people found the guts and the brains to speak their mind affected actual, positive change. sometimes the status quo sucks. sometimes it needs to be messed with. as long as it is done with a measure of prudence and civility, it can result in good things.

but it is not arrogance to ask for reciprocity. it is not arrogance to promote your project, at least when you do so w/out request to abandon other "competing" projects in the process. it is not arrogance when one decides to use systems that support your project. it is not arrogance to expect that when a project does include your project, that they treat it well and don't botch it for the users with a half-hearted attempt.

arrogance is feeling you have the right to call someone else arrogant for having pride in and looking for fair treatment of their contributions.