Openmoko dropped Gtk+? I hear a lot of people saying Openmoko dropped Gtk+ or that ASU will forbid to run their favorite Gtk+ or other X11 apps. So let us take a look.
The facts are that the ASU image has gtk+ installed, we even have a GPE application (gpe-scap) in the image, we have the OM2007.2 theme installed, we start the matchbox settings daemon so that Gtk+ application pick up the theme, fonts and sizes as used to from OM2007.2, gconfd is running as well. With our SDK people can write Gtk+ application, we are happy to include them in the community repository. Personally I wouldn't say that we dropped Gtk+. I'm a huge fan of GMAE (eds and various other technologies) and I hope we increase the use in future versions of our software stack(s).
Is everything fine then? Probably not. We have no API for external applications (be it Qt, Gtk+, EFL, FLTK...) to access the GSM functionality. We have some basic ad-hoc dbus interfaces to export some information but no complete API. The good thing is we know and this is where the Platform Initiative jumps in. So the issue will be solved but not for ASU.
In contrast to previous incarnations. We have an installer application. It is called assassin and it is using packagekit (another component from the GNOME universe). We have a community repository and the installer will help you to get your favorite apps installed (whatever language, toolkit or scm they use...). Currently only tangogps is contained but I hope we will offer more community software in the future.
So I'm quite happy with ASU. It will allow you/us to use the Freerunner as primary phone. You will be able to install any 3rd party application, we provide a graphical installer. So even when a lot of things are still missing, we don't have the bling bling we would like to have, we don't have the speed we would like to have. It is an important step for Openmoko. We will work on every single issue that annoys us engineers (boot speed, X performance, device management, bling bling....) and turn it into something we are proud of. Time will tell if we manage to do so.