Interesting KDE vs. Gnome Discussion

There’s an interesting discussion between Havoc Pennington (from RedHat) and Miguel de Icaza (from Ximian) on the issues of Gnome/KDE interoperability. Strangely, I find myself agreeing with both of them for the most part, although in the end I prefer KDE3 to Gnome 2 currently. One thing I don’t understand is that one of Havoc’s reasons for not liking KDE is the supposed duplication of code between Qt and KDE:

That said, we are on track to be *substantially* smaller and faster if
we kill the duplication of platform in gtk vs. libbonoboui, speed up
pixbuf handling, optimize fontconfig, and some stuff like
that. kdelibs is *huge*, as is Qt, and they heavily duplicate each
other.

It seems to me that this is an interesting point of view from someone who works on a framework that is entirely written in C. KDE makes very heavy use of subclassing, there is really not much duplication going on in the KDE codebase as far as I am aware (with some exceptions). If he were to point to issues of inefficiency in compilers’ implementations of C++ where vtable lookups induced by subclassing was a performance issue, I would understand. It seems to me, however, that he’s basically saying that KDE is doing specifically what it isn’t, and what subclassing was designed for — not having to duplicate code.

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