Nokia taking over Trolltech/Qt.

In some interesting news, at least for cross-platform and Open-Source developers and particularly to Linux-KDE enthusiasts, Trolltech was acquired by Nokia. I have worked on 2 projects using Qt, but I generally find favour with wxWidgets since I find the moc-compiler thingie to be too much of a compile burden when it comes to complex UI, not to mention the really suspicious licenses for Qt. However that is besides the point. The question to ask is what does Nokia gain with having a framework like Qt under it’s belt? Very clearly Nokia is interested in Qtopia. I first remember reading about it 2 years ago when I was still working with Qt, and it looked pretty impressive at that time. It seems to be have all the bells and whistles for serious mobile development. However, the thing that bothers me is the future of the toolkit/framework in general and all the projects using Qt. Where does Nokia take the toolkit from here? Nokia isn’t a company that licenses toolkits or frameworks. So that is a question one is obviously tempted to ask. My strong suspicion is that fact that Nokia is feeling the pressure from platforms like Windows Mobile and iPhone, and if they want to have at least some semblance of a development environment over these obviously more developer friendly platforms, Qt was the obvious choice. But that still leaves me with one more question; Why aquire Trolltech when you could just use, well, the Qt framework?

In the above linked article they mention that they intend to continue working with the OSS community and intend to port Qt to their mobile devices. That is smart. It would obviously mean a myriad of already existing and upcoming Open-Source applications for Nokia devices at no cost. In any case, KDE itself is quite secure, no need to worry there, but the thing that strikes me as odd is the fact that most Nokia Linux devices (, and I myself didn’t know this until I read this), use Gnome and might well, continue to do so.

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