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De bewegingen op het Linux desktop front wijzen in de goede richting, met nieuwe GNOME features die het op OLE achtige wijze mogelijk maken om info tussen applicaties heen en weer te trekken. MSNBC heeft een artikeltje over de laatste GNOME ontwikkelingen:

ONE HISTORICAL BUGBEAR for Linux (and all Unix-related systems) is that it has traditionally lacked features for sharing information between applications. Although Mac and Windows users take clipboard and drag-and-drop file operations for granted, few desktop Unix applications can take advantage of such features. In fact, despite a 20-year head start, by the time a common Unix front-end, KDE, began to appear in commercial Unix releases, Windows 95 had already been released. (Windows is a product of Microsoft, which is a partner in MSNBC.)

This doesn’t please de Icaza much. “I want a system a five-year-old and my grandmother can just plug in and use. No Unix, no nothing,” he says.

But both the GNOME and KDE teams want to do more than just make Linux easy to use. They want business users to have applications as sophisticated as the office suites they are familiar with today. To get there, however, application developers need building blocks — and both parties are racing to producing their own.

Although he’s a late starter in the race to provide a desktop environment, de Icaza this week showed interoperability features similar to those found in Microsoft’s OLE 2.0 (Object Linking and Embedding) technology. It allows compound documents to be created — composed of, say, an illustration created by one program, nested inside a document created by another.

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