[webkit-dev] Announcing WebKit2

Maciej Stachowiak mjs at apple.com
Thu Apr 8 18:44:13 PDT 2010

Hey Adam,

A few clarifications...

On Apr 8, 2010, at 6:23 PM, Adam Treat wrote:

> Can someone please point to the bug report and the forum where this
> development was discussed by the greater WebKit community?

We picked the name "WebKit2" in the hopes of picking something really  
bland. Apparently that backfired, because it seems to make this  
project seem like a bigger deal than it is. Basically, you can think  
of this as a new port-specific API. But we're trying to put some  
general mechanisms in this API, so other ports can use it if they  
choose. We are also welcoming input from the whole WebKit community on  
the design, architecture and direction of this work. It is at a very  
early stage, barely enough that you can build a trivial demo browser  
on top of it. We decided that our proof of concept was far enough  
along at that point that we should make the code public for community  
review and input.

Nothing about the way existing ports work will go away, either  
immediately or in the foreseeable future. There will not even be any  
extra maintenance burden for anyone. WebCore will remain much as it  
is, there is imply a new WebKit layer on top now available. In fact,  
Apple's port for Mac OS X will continue to be maintained and will  
still be available as a system API.

I hope this addresses some of your concerns.


> Cheers,
> Adam
> On Thursday 08 April 2010 08:58:22 pm Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>> On Apr 8, 2010, at 5:47 PM, Xan Lopez wrote:
>>> I suppose I could wait until you land the patches and see by myself,
>>> but:
>>> - In the wiki you mention that one goal of the new framework is to
>>> provide a stable C-based API. Is this meant as a public API for
>>> WebKit, the same in all platforms (like JSC), or a stable internal  
>>> API
>>> for embedders to use in order to implement their native APIs on top?
>>>> From some lines in the wiki (like WKView wrapping native objects)  
>>>> it
>>> seems like you want to do the former, but that seems like quite a
>>> massive effort and the loss of an important selling port of the
>>> various WebKit ports.
>> It will be available as a public API, but as Darin explained, it's up
>> to individual ports whether to wrap this API, expose it directly, or
>> do some combination. For the Mac OS X API, we will be doing a
>> combination.
>>> - Does your new framework require any significant changes in  
>>> WebCore?
>>> Could you briefly summarize them?
>> No WebCore changes are required - it works with the existing WebCore.
>>> - Do you see valid usecases in the long term for the "traditional"
>>> ports or are your plans to quickly transition all code to the new
>>> system as soon as it's ready?
>> I think that would be up to the individual ports. We expect that on
>> Mac OS X, we will have to support the "classic" WebKit API for a long
>> time, perhaps indefinitely, in parallel with the new WebKit2-based  
>> API.
>> Regards,
>> Maciej
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