How modular is GNUCash?

Derek Atkins warlord at MIT.EDU
Mon Mar 17 00:25:21 CST 2003

Fred <fmalabre at> writes:

> I would love to see a) happens.
> Would someone be interested in working on the RPC front-end for the Gnucash 
> engine?

Well, I think that you will find that once you get all the work for
the UI done, the rest of GnuCash just "falls out".  In other words,
you are not saving yourself any KDE porting effort by focusing on an
"RPC Frontend".  The reason I say this is that the work required to
build an "RPC Frontend" is exactly the same amount of work required to
build a full KDE GnuCash -- it's the exact same amount of KDE
programming work.

So you're not saving yourself any trouble by trying to go this route,
and in fact you're making it more difficult because you also need
to get the RPC Backend working again....

The engine and various Backends are UI agnostic and already work.
You will need to write the UI regardless of whether you're using
the RPC or any other interface.   It's still going to be a lot of


> I also bought a Zaurus, and I was thinking of Gnucash on the Zaurus as well, 
> but I don't think the KDE port will help for the multi-platform. As far as I 
> know, KDE doesn't work on MS Windows, even if Qt is fully multi-platform.
> I believe the way to go is with a client/server using RPC.
> Unfortunatly, I have no knowledge of the Gnucash engine, so I would have a 
> hard time working on a RPC front-end for the engine (furthermore, never used 
> RPC before, but this doesn't scare me).
> To go back on the Zaurus, I have some thoughts somewhere in my notepad, we can 
> talk about it if you're interested in starting such a project.
> Fred.
> On Sunday 16 March 2003 05:38 pm, Christopher Browne wrote:
> > > I just purchased a Zaurus (Linux based) PDA which uses Qt as it's base
> > > GUI library (as does KDE I believe).  I would love to use GnuCash on
> > > this device, but more importantly, I would like to be able to allow my
> > > family members to use GnuCash and they are stuck with MS windows for the
> > > foreseeable future.
> > >
> > > It would seem that a port to KDE (Qt) would be one way of solving both
> > > these issues with one move.
> > >
> > > Q) Seeing Qt as one way to solve the portability issue, has anyone
> > > looked at using the Mozilla framework (XUL)?
> >
> > Any of these options would represent a /massive/ amount of effort
> > involving a total rewrite of the front end.
> >
> > There are two ways that this would make sense:
> >
> >   a) Update the RPC back end and create a KDE application using RPC.
> >
> >      I don't think there's any common RPC scheme between GNOME and KDE,
> >      what with KDE having rejected CORBA, so this probably involves
> >      creating an RPC framework for KDE in addition to writing a front
> >      end.
> >
> >   b) Write a new application that behaves as a front end, using the
> >      PostgreSQL back end.
> >
> >      All the pieces are there to allow it, but I think this would
> >      mandate pushing more of the "engine" into PostgreSQL.  (Adding in
> >      triggers, stored procedures, and such...)  Not necessarily a bad
> >      thing...
> >
> > I wouldn't see XUL being /anything/ of an answer; that is an application
> > platform that frankly scares me, at least vis-a-vis taking it seriously
> > as a platform for important applications.
> > --
> > output = ("cbbrowne" "")
> >
> > "...once  can imagine the  government's problem.   This is  all pretty
> > magical stuff to  them.  If I were trying  to terminate the operations
> > of a witch coven, I'd probably seize everything in sight.  How would I
> > tell the ordinary household brooms from the getaway vehicles?"
> > -- John Perry Barlow
> > _______________________________________________
> > gnucash-devel mailing list
> > gnucash-devel at
> >
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       Derek Atkins, SB '93 MIT EE, SM '95 MIT Media Laboratory
       Member, MIT Student Information Processing Board  (SIPB)
       URL:    PP-ASEL-IA     N1NWH
       warlord at MIT.EDU                        PGP key available

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