What is the difference between GTK and GNOME application?

I reading developer.gnome.org and I don’t understand, what is the difference between GTK and GNOME application? Yes, Gnome app implement Adwaita design (and the HIG) and typically use libadwaita for this, but what else makes Gnome app and “Gnome platform”? I think the services are the same regardless use Gnome or KDE or else.

A GNOME application:

  • follows the GNOME interface guidelines
  • integrates with the GNOME environment
  • uses the GNOME application development libraries

There is an interoperability layer defined by freedesktop.org specifications so that applications written for KDE/Xfce/Elementary/etc can also be used and GNOME, and vice versa. Nevertheless, there are things like settings, session services, and libraries that are specific to GNOME.

Yup, implement GNOME Human Interface Guidelinesa and Adwaita design.

What this mean technically? What kind of integration is needed?

Which libraries exactly? For example, libadwaita is not must have. You can implement Adwaita design without it if you want.

What services exactly?

Settings, D-Bus interfaces.

That’s nonsense. It’s like saying: “I can implement GTK by drawing directly on a windowing system surface”. Of course libadwaita is a must have, if you want to implement GNOME guidelines, and you want your UI to keep up with future changes.

Other libraries are things like libsoup; libsecret; gtksourceview; etc. Basically, anything that’s in the GNOME SDK.

Session management; the system’s keyring; the various portals that are not handled by GTK itself.

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