First I would like to thank Addison-Wesley for working so hard to do The Right Thing with regard to the free-software community. The folks at A-W have been very supportive and patient throughout this project, and have proven themselves willing to try new things. In particular, I'd like to thank my editor, Michael Slaughter, for trusting my instincts as this book matured from a grandiose, all-encompassing tome into the clearer, more focused volume you hold in your hands. GNOME has changed quite a lot over the past year, and I've had to revise my master plan many times to keep pace, all without a single word of complaint from Addison-Wesley.

Thanks also to Michael's assistants, Marisa Meltzer and Jenie Pak, for put- ting up with my silly questions and helping to guide me through the process of writing a book, and to Tyrrell Albaugh, Stephanie Hiebert, and the talented production staff for making sure this book made it to print in good shape.

I owe a great deal of the accuracy and focus of this book to the amazing technical reviewers who made time in their busy lives to comment on my evolving manuscript. Any remaining errors are the result of my ignoring their advice, or of last-minute revisions that they didn't have a chance to see. Thanks go to Havoc Pennington, a core GNOME developer and author of GTK+/GNOME Application Development, the first great book on GNOME. His insightful comments and his wonderful book were both invaluable to me. Also thanks to Jaka Mocnik-creator of the GNOME MDI interface, the GHex appli- cation, and many other GNOME essentials-for his critique of Chapter 8 ("Using GnomeMDI") and the rest of the book. And thanks to Mark Willey, for his encouraging words and top-notch advice; he caught quite a number of important oversights and inspired me to double the number of illustrations in the book.

My thanks also go to Raja R. Harinath, for taking time out of his hectic exam schedule to review Chapter 3 ("The Gnome Build Environment"), and to Karsten-Olaf Laux and Guillaume Laurent for translating my examples in Chapter 4 ("Internationalization") into German and French, saving me from the considerable task of learning those languages.

The Most Efficient Feedback award goes to Havoc Pennington, who some- how convinced me in two sentences to drop an entire chapter.

A quick pat on the back goes to the developers of the Enlightenment win- dow manager and to Daniel Erat, the designer of the BlueSteel theme, which I used for all the screen shots. I also used the Gimp to grab the screen captures and Dia to sketch out the line drawings.

I'd like to extend a special heartfelt thanks to the hundreds of hardworking volunteers who have spent innumerable hours designing and writing the GNOME source code and its many supporting libraries and applications, and writing the documentation that goes along with it. Without these generous, dedicated people, GNOME and free software in general would not exist today.

And finally, on a more personal note, I would like to thank Deb, my patient, forgiving wife who gave up countless evenings and weekends over the past year in support of this project, and also my adorable stepchildren, Katie and Eric, who put up with more "Sorry, I've gotta get some more work done first" than any kid should have to.