[Development] Proposing CMake as build tool for Qt 6

Joerg Bornemann Joerg.Bornemann at qt.io
Tue Jun 18 08:54:28 CEST 2019

On 6/17/19 6:46 PM, Matthew Woehlke wrote:
> On 17/06/2019 12.08, Bogdan Vatra via Development wrote:
>> Or use a buildsystem that doesn't take to the hell?
> Real world experience has shown that there is no such thing.
> As much as people like to bitch about how "convoluted" CMake is, CMake
> doesn't just set out to be obtuse. That complexity exists for a reason.
> Any build system that claims to eliminate that complexity *will* fail.
> Either it will end up growing that complexity *anyway*, because it *has*
> to, or it will only work in a small subset of possible environments.

This is very true. The problem build tools are solving is complex.
When designing a build tool you can choose between simple and powerful.
Qbs chose the latter.

However, one can design a powerful build tool with a front-end language 
that doesn't make you want to scratch your eyes out.

> The difference between QBS and CMake is like the difference between a
> bright-eyed recruit just out of school and a grizzled veteran. Do you
> want the one that looks pretty and knows the *theory* (however
> advanced), but gets confused when the real world doesn't conform to his
> classroom expectations, or the one that looks worn but has the
> *experience* and knows how to get things done?

I wouldn't know where qbs gets "confused".
Don't spread false information and let it die in peace, thanks.

On the topic of why build tools ignite such hot discussions I have my 
own theory: Experience shows that Jane Developer sees the build tool as 
necessary evil. She doesn't give a damn about details and grudgingly 
invests time in learning as much as is needed for the task at hand. Over 
time she gets a specialist - unwillingly - and defends this investment 
made with teeth and claws.



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