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Gecko vs. webkit

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  • Gecko vs. webkit

    I'm not looking to start a flamewar. I've been trying to find out for a long time what the advantages and disadvantages over Gecko and webkit. I'm NOT referring to javascript performance because that's a separtate component. I've noticed a lot of developers seeeming to favor webkit over Gecko, including ones at Google, KDE, and Gnome, even though webkit is deveoloped by the evil Apple. Why? Is there something fundamentally wrong with Gecko? Is it harder to develop for? Is it inherrently slower because it's so much more powerful (instead of the more lightweight webkit)? I tried asking Mozilla and I got a political answer. I've asked elsewhere and they all talk about javascript performance, which is mostly unrelatted. Can someone give any real answers?

  • #2
    I can't promise that this is a "real" answer since I haven't worked directly with either engine, but I gather that Gecko is now designed predominantly as a component of Mozilla's XULRunner platform/core/environment, whereas WebKit's design is more friendly toward being embedded as a component in (relatively) arbitrary applications. The Mozilla concept is more that XULRunner handles all the heavy lifting and standards compliance minutiae while app developers primarily write XUL and JavaScript to define the user-facing functionality, which presumably doesn't confer enough power/control for the preferences/priorities of some developers/projects.

    I'd be happy to be corrected by people with more direct knowledge if I've somehow misconstrued the situation.

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    • #3
      I prefer WebKit because it's much easier to use. Qt has it integrated so I don't even need to do anything special to get it. Same goes for Gtk with its WebKitGtk module.

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      • #4
        Just by the way, WebKit is a fork of KHTML which is used in Konqueror. And it is open source, so it isn't only Apple that works on it.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by RealNC View Post
          I prefer WebKit because it's much easier to use. Qt has it integrated so I don't even need to do anything special to get it. Same goes for Gtk with its WebKitGtk module.
          That's part of what I don't understand though. Why did they choose to integrate webkit, but not Gecko?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Prescience500 View Post
            That's part of what I don't understand though. Why did they choose to integrate webkit, but not Gecko?
            Thats crystal clear, because Webkit is further development of KHTML, and KHTML was developed on KDE and used inside Qt for Konqueror web functionality.
            So the origin of the problem was - why invent KHTML, when they couldīve used Gecko in Firefox 1.x era.

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            • #7
              So basically, they've choses webkit over Gecko, not because of technical superiority, but because of it's history?

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