When I wrote about moving to PyQt (from wxPython) a few months ago, I cited the transition of Qt to a LGPL license as one of the reasons, and conjectured that in a short time PyQt will have no choice but follow suit.
I got quite a few criticism on that statement, but now it looks like things are moving this way after all.
PySide is a LGPL licensed Python binding to Qt, initiated and backed by Nokia.
Nokia will provide multiple developers working on the project, but contributions will be encouraged and the contributors need not transfer their copyright or accept a code reuse license
How long will PyQt be able to hold on to GPL and a closed development model? It’s hard to say – but my guess is – not long. PySide plan for API compatibility with PyQt, so I think that in a few months more we’ll just start seeing people move to PySide. They openly encourage a community-aided development, which will positively affect quality.
To be fair, PySide isn’t mature yet – no Windows support for now, for example. But they’ve only just started and there’s a roadmap at least a year forward. There’s a lot of interest in Python and Qt integration in the Python community, so I don’t think PySide will stay immature for long.
There’s no doubt that in the long run, there should be just a single Qt binding for Python. No matter which one it will be, it’s pretty certain at this point that it will be liberally licensed. This is great news!