Hi everyone, and welcome to this new Qt blog on my behalf, too! Most of you have probably noticed that we recently released the Qt 4.6 beta release. As you would imagine, we look forward to the next iteration of the Qt framework with all the anticipation of a child on the night before Christmas. With this in mind, I hope it comes as no surprise then that we’ve also started laying down the initial blueprints for the version that will follow Qt 4.6. In the initial stages of planning, there was as much talk of the content as there was of what to name our new baby when it finally lands.
While logic and reason pointed us to a no-nonsense Qt 4.7 label for the new version, Thiago asked for ‘creative’ suggestions for a new moniker. While Qt Lobster Ultimate service pack 2 and Qt 9450 GTX Extreme Titanium Edition would certainly have caught the eye, they might have detracted from the hard-core augmentations and enhancements that Qt 4.7 will bring to the table. So thanks for the inspirational input, but I think the naming standard stays put guys!
Now under LGPL open source distribution, the next-generation of Qt will have all the trademarks of a more sophisticated platform with some changes representing a fine-tuning of existing functions. While many of Qt 4.7’s new features will be comparatively subtle, it is easy to identify the focal point of the new version’s functionality: it is the finalization of new features for declarative UI programming currently under development as part of the Qt Kinetic project. These developments will provide you as developers, and your graphics designer colleagues, with a new way of making more fluid user interfaces.
Although Qt 4.3 and subsequent versions have added new ports to operating systems including Windows CE, Mac OS X Cocoa, Symbian and Maemo, Qt 4.7 will not port further outward. Instead, development focus will center on "internal excellence" as guiding theme. We'll spend a lot of quality time with platforms we now support, including evergreens such as Embedded Linux. This approach will not only embrace quality assurance and software integration issues, it will also continue progress already made on performance and memory footprint. Again, all this is good news for you in terms of the way you use Qt in your daily development environment.
With a shared commitment to making Qt 4.7 “blazingly fast” and rock solid, we urge you to contribute, comment, enhance and, if necessary, even complain. The goal is to make Qt 4.7 better for everyone and better for every deployment scenario. The road ahead is fast, cross-platform and tightly integrated – whatever name you give it!