GTK4 Data Transfer APIs Being Modernized Around Wayland

Written by Michael Larabel in GNOME on 29 January 2020 at 08:49 AM EST. 18 Comments
Red Hat's Matthias Clasen has provided an update on one of the latest areas the GTK developers are working on finishing up with the forthcoming GTK 4.0 tool-kit... Improving the data transfer interfaces around handling for copy/paste and drag-and-drop.

With GTK4, the data transfer interfaces are being re-engineered with an emphasis on moving closer to the Wayland API where as with GTK3 the GDK API was modeled on the X11 interfaces.

Clasen explained as part of overhauling the data transfer code, "In GTK4, the Drag-and-Drop api has been reorganized around the concepts of content providers and event controllers. To initiate a Drag-and-Drop operation, you create a GtkDragSource event controller that reacts to drag gestures (you can also start ‘one-off’ Drag-and-Drop operations by just calling gdk_drag_begin yourself), and you give it a GdkContentProvider for the data that you want to transfer."

Those wanting to learn more about this topic can do so via the blog.

Other work that has been happening for GTK4 includes a Vulkan renderer, GPU-accelerated scrolling, renewed HTML5 back-end, various widget improvements, OpenGL renderer improvements, constraint-based layout support, Wayland improvements, and the GTK Scene Kit. As it stands right now the developers hope for GTK 4.0 to be released in autumn 2020, but we'll see if that happens as they are already running more than a year off their original release goals.
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