Monday, November 2, 2009

Web Development and KDE4

KDE3 had pretty good applications for web development, the most prominent and useful Quanta3 (actually I'm still a power user of Quanta3). The KDE4 version of Quanta (Quanta4) will be a major rewrite, based on kdevplatform, the base of KDevelop4.
While KDevelop4 just will have it's Beta6 release soon and is usable for daily work, Quanta4 is unfortunately not.

Well, no problem, you might think - just use Quanta3. But for many people it's not:
  • Kde3 packages are considered as legacy by distributions and will be dropped sooner or later
  • some distributions don't ship all packages needed for a full featured Quanta3 (eg missing kio-slaves - no fish://)
  • a Kde3 application doesn't integrate that well - it's more like a Gtk application in a Kde4 session

Let's look ahead to the future of Quanta4:
As it's more or less a rewrite and not just porting the old code we have a lot of work to do. The major Quanta3 contributors Andras and Eric don't contribute anymore, so development is more or less on hold. But wait - Quanta4 is based on the same kdevplatform as KDevelop4 - right? That means any KDevelop4 plugin is a Quanta4 plugin. And a lot happed for those KDevelop4 plugins:
  • php language support (that one really rocks)
  • php documentation (very useful)
  • script executor (execute scripts within KDevelop; needed for debugger)
  • browser executor (open external browser; needed for debugger)
  • xdebug debugger support (upcoming plugin for debugging php)
So active development happens for Quanta4 - we just use all KDevelop4 for testing the plugins.

If you use Quanta3 for php development, give KDevelop4 a try! The first beta release will get released together with KDevelop4 Beta6 the next days.

75 comments:

  1. i never used any of these ?

    what did Quanta do that KDevelop4 doesn't ?
    Cant KDevelop4 be adusted to do this ?

    ReplyDelete
  2. First and foremost Quanta was polished for webdevelopmentm whereas KDevelop is still intended to be a highlevel programming IDE, currently for C++.

    Hence esp. the defaults are not that suitable.

    Other than that there are tons of plugins / features from Quanta that are simply missing from KDevelop4 yet.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is just what I think. I think it would be nice to just port Quanta and integrate it in to KDevelop4. Yeah, KDevelop4 is an IDE. But look at Visual Studio with it's ASP.NET integration. It should be the same eh?

    By doing it, you have PHP at your disposal. And Quanta4 will be based on the same libraries as KDevelop4. Just seems better to just merge the two.

    ReplyDelete
  4. It seems to me you're trying to build the same product (a bit more improved), with the same fundaments but also with a lot of the same work done twice.

    Why, if the two large Quanta contributers stopped working on it, aren't you improving KDevelop? I think a lot could be done to improve the IDE. I'm not really a Qt/KDE programmer, but it seems to me like Kontact: KDevelop might have the same structure, but when it's used for webdevelopment it has complete other menus and buttons (like Kontact with KMail or Korganizer).

    But still, if Quanta's functionality can be used in KDevelop (and the opposite) I see no problems :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I also think they should merge. Boundaries of Web and Desktop Development are fading (QtScript, phpQt4), so this seems reasonable to me.

    Example: Launch KDevelop, go to Settings > Load View Profile > Web Development, and it loads plugins and menus for web development (like Konqueror Views).

    ReplyDelete
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  6. You are all just reiterating what he already blogged about.

    The whole idea about the Quanta rewrite was to have it and KDevelop just as two different sets of plugins for the same base application

    ReplyDelete
  7. Quanta is a brand - even if the only difference to kdevelop is the binary name and the splash screen.

    ReplyDelete
  8. It's true that a Qt4 version of Quanta would be nice, yet just because KDE3 is not shipped does not mean that kdelibs3 etc. + quanta3 is not shipped. OpenSUSE 11.2 which is due in a few days has quanta3 on board although it's only full KDE version is 4.3.

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  9. please can you provide php plugin packages for testing with kdevelop4? I don't have the time an knowledge to do this.

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  10. @Anonymous: beta1 will release the next days. Distributions might pick it up and create packages.

    ReplyDelete
  11. i only need
    - syntax tools (complete and highlight) for js, html, php
    - a easy to use ftp client build in
    - and it must show me the tree of the code for easy jumping.
    i use aptana at the moment. but a native kde4 tool is cool

    ReplyDelete
  12. The bit I will most miss is the project support and ease of uploading files to a webserver.

    will KDevelop4 do this?

    ReplyDelete
  13. @Herring: Quanta4 has an upload plugin - never tested with KDevelop4 but it _should_ work.

    ReplyDelete
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  15. KDevelop and Quanta are TWO things completely differents: something about the Quanta4 roadmap?

    ReplyDelete
  16. There is a Quanta4 GsoC project by a kdevelop dev: http://milianw.de/blog/gsoc-revive-quanta-brand-for-kde-4

    ReplyDelete
  17. I disagree with the idea of Quanta 4 just being a brand, as well as the idea of merging the projects. I've tried doing web development in IDEs that are designed for compiled languages, they just lack the straightforwardness of webdev oriented IDEs. Sure, some of the features are overlapping, but a C+ developer would not like to see options or menus for server mappings/project uploads/tags and PHP stuff, nor would a web developer like to see options for breakpoints, hex editing and compiling. That's just too many options and too many things going on. Its better to develop something that is specific to one thing, then a jack of all master of none tool, and simply use libraries for things that overlap. Quanta is great for that, however it needs to be developed for KDE4 before KDE3 is completely phased out of the major distributions.

    ReplyDelete
  18. David, most features are implemented as plugins, and KDevelop/Quanta have a set of default plugins.

    If everything is done correctly you won't see web features in KDevelop or C++ features in Quanta.
    (Currently this is not everywhere the case yet)

    ReplyDelete
  19. What is brilliant in quanta +, it is the possibility of adding actions (HTML tags or scripts), in particular actions which allow to add of the text to the place that we want in the document on which we are working.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Hi

    Long time no more news. I love Quanta+ and my website has been developped partly using it. It started with KompoZer and Webexpression under XP and since I moved to Kubuntu I use Quanta+ and a bit of KompoZer. The latter has some nasty habits, so I really prefer Quanta (as it is now).

    There is however one feature I am missing: When I write a text, I want to attribute this text a known div or a class. In KompoZer, this is no problem, I can do that by marking the text and using two mouse clicks. In Quanta I need to remember the exact wording of the div or class and then type it in, which is prone to typos and errors.

    I think, if this feature could be added, Quanta would be the ideal application for easy webdesign with a valid code for many years to come.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Arran: are you talking about Quanta3? That's unsupported legacy software.

    Quanta4 (still in Alpha) will probably never have a WYSIWYG mode. Imho wysiwyg is wrong, use a proper cms instead. (But well that's just *my* opinion)

    ReplyDelete
  22. The absence of WYSIWYG's mode is not really a problem for me. Is the alpha version of quanta4 available? And, if yes, where and how can we get it ?
    Thank you

    ReplyDelete
  23. Geo: it's not a released version, but the code is available here: https://projects.kde.org/projects/playground/devtools/quanta/repository

    What *is* usable is kdevelop + kdev-php, in case you mainly develop php.

    ReplyDelete
  24. https://projects.kde.org/projects/playground/devtools/quanta/repository
    Sorry, I had no time to compile it. But i've tried during my Chrismast's holidays and I can't. I've errors when i run "make"

    ReplyDelete
  25. Geo: please post your problems to the kdevelop-devel mailing list, you will find help there.

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