February 11, 2011

Qt, Nokia, and the Internet Rambling.....

So, most of you who read my blog know about Nokia's deal with Microsoft. To re-iterate the best image posting I've seen on planetkde via John Layt's blog: Keep Calm and Carry On.

Yes, Microsoft has been a major negative force on computing, especially with regards to the freedoms of end users. This however does not warrant the extreme and in many ways self-defeating knee-jerk reactions that have been permeating the Interwebs oft lately on the F/OSS blogs.

Lets rather, take a wait and see approach to this. There really isn't enough information on the ground at this point in the game to know what is or is not going to occur in the immediate or even long-term for Qt Development Frameworks at Nokia. Lets trust in our friends at Nokia to gather up the information that the community is craving to know and get it ready for public consumption.

Until then, Nothing to See Here, Move Along.


  1. Maths don't lie: 3 > 2

    It's funny, but with WP7 in the game I now see more choices on the market, not less.

  2. Don't forget that Microsoft have also done a lot of good for computing too!

  3. @Anonymous
    1. Maemo, MeeGo, Symbian, WebOS, …?
    And even without Nokia there would have been WP7.
    2. What?

    Well, but some statements can be made: The chances for “Qt everywhere” are now really small. Now the Android Lighthouse seems to be the most likely option to rescue it, and it is nothing more than a cousin of a stepchild of Nokia. And it has become unlikely that there will be a smartphone-system from the GNU/Linux-ecosystem used by many end-users. And Nokia does no longer appears as a honest supporter of FLOSS. We shouldn't say “fork Qt, now!”, but some things really changed.

  4. As somebody who was about to invest heavily on the Maemo platform after the N900 shipped (and I'm talking business here), I took a "wait-&-see approach" last year, when the MeeGo deal with Intel was announced. It felt like the world was crashing around me, but a lot of people said "trust us, it's gonna take a bit longer but it'll be worth it!". I decided to wait for the first shipped device before completely committing to the new platform. Boy, am I glad.

    So yeah, I'll "wait and see", as a hobbyist, but my money and development time will now go elsewhere. That means I won't hire Qt trainers; I won't buy Qt books; I won't go to Qt events; I won't help the Qt community. I bet a lot of people will do the same.

    No matter how you slice it, this is a big blow to the Qt "ecosystem". Regardless of whether Nokia will fail or succeed, the Qt world won't see the explosion people were hoping for. It will probably remain a niche; lovely to belong to, but still a very small niche.

  5. @GiacomoL: I agree with you, but I think there's still 1 chance, if we could get qt to android,meego,WP6(I think this is done),WP7(I heard it's not possible but I'm not sure) and maybe webos, qt could be like the next java, a multiplatform way of developing for all platforms.
    There won't be a single big platform based on qt but rather a lot of big and small platforms which support qt.
    Maybe then people like The User would invest in it, because apart from being good, it's a good inversion because of portability.

  6. I agree, with one small exception:

    "Lets trust in our friends at Nokia to gather up the information that the community"

    Let's do better than that: let's engage with our friends at Nokia actively to draw out that information and then actively build an action plan based on that. More action, less passivity.

    It's in KDE's best interests, imho, and will also help quiet down the chicken littles.

  7. @aseigo: I fully agree with you that we need not be passive, however, what I am pushing the idea of is that we don't need knee-jerking nor doomsaying at this point. Constructive, thoroug

  8. Sigh.... Konqueror chopped off part of what I said.... What I meant to say was:

    @aseigo: I fully agree with you that we need not be passive, however, what I am pushing the idea of is that we don't need knee-jerking nor doomsaying at this point. Constructive, thorough, and deliberate actions require far more information intellegence before anything meaningful *can* be done. If we don't wait and gather more data before acting, we (KDE and other Qt F/OSS communities) will be running around causing more harm than good.

  9. Nokia has the license to customize WP7. Actually, they claim they'll be working in partnership with MS to that purpose. So, I'm aready assuming that the WP7 OS we'll find on Nokia phones will be to some degree different (albait compatible, I really hope) from the one on other hardware producers. And yes, I too agree that the latter may quite dislike this.
    I also think it will be quite likely we'll see other features I can't really understand why are currently missing in WP7, such as thetering and Sync with Outlook.
    In other words, I think this degree of exclusivity may be enough to generate that uniqueness that is indeed needed to compete against the iPhone.
    In the long run, those events will actually be good for QT's future. QT's strenght is the desktop, but Nokia might have forced it to become a touch-UI toolkit for smartphones. Now that Nokia doesn't really need it any longer, it will probably sell it to a party that has better use for it, a party that cares more about PCs, the desktop, and of course desktop software developers.