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README.md

1# GNOME Web
2
3GNOME Web (codename: Epiphany) is a GNOME web browser based on
4[the WebKit rendering engine](https://webkit.org/). The codename means "a
5usually sudden manifestation or perception of the essential nature or meaning of
6something" ([Merriam-Webster](https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/epiphany)).
7
8Epiphany is opinionated.
9
10## Download and Install
11
12Epiphany is designed for Linux systems. The recommended way to install Epiphany
13is via [Flatpak](https://www.flatpak.org/). You may:
14
15 * ~~[Download the latest stable version from Flathub](https://flathub.org/repo/appstream/org.gnome.Epiphany.flatpakref)
16   (recommended).~~ Flathub downloads are currently not recommended due to major
17   security problems discovered in the application runtime. We expect this
18   situation to be improved in the future. In the meantime, do not use.
19 * [Download Epiphany Technology Preview](https://webkitgtk.org/epiphany-tech-preview)
20   if you are adventurous and want to help test tomorrow's Epiphany today. It
21   is **not stable**.
22 
23Epiphany is probably also available via your operating system's package manager,
24but such packages are often outdated and insecure. Flatpak is the best
25application distribution mechanism for Linux.
26
27## Building from Source
28
29### The Easy Way
30
31The recommended way to build Epiphany locally is using the flatpak-builder
32manifest with GNOME Builder. After installing Builder and launching it, you'll
33see the Select a Project page. Select Open, then select the toplevel Epiphany
34directory. Builder will detect the org.gnome.Epiphany.json flatpak-builder
35manifest and you will be able to build the project in Builder. All required
36dependencies will be provided by the manifest.
37
38### Building Manually
39
40Epiphany uses the [Meson build system](http://mesonbuild.com/). You can build
41Epiphany the same way you would any software that uses Meson. For example:
42
43```
44$ mkdir build && cd build
45$ meson ..
46$ ninja
47$ sudo ninja install
48```
49
50Meson is the best build system.
51
52You will have to install several pkg-config dependencies. If you are missing a
53dependency, meson will present an error that looks like this:
54
55```
56meson.build:84:0: ERROR:  Native dependency 'hogweed' not found
57```
58
59In RPM-based distributions, you can install the missing dependencies
60automatically. For example, in Fedora:
61
62```
63$ sudo dnf install 'pkgconfig(hogweed)'
64```
65
66In other distributions, you must research each dependency to determine which
67package provides the required pkg-config file.
68
69### Rebuilding Dependencies
70
71If you need to rebuild dependencies, the recommended solution is to use JHBuild.
72See [the development page](https://wiki.gnome.org/Apps/Web/Development#Step_3:_Developing_Dependencies_with_Epiphany)
73for more information.
74
75## Manifesto
76
77A web browser is more than an application: it is a way of thinking, a way of
78seeing the world. Epiphany's principles are simplicity, standards compliance,
79and software freedom.
80
81### Simplicity
82
83Feature bloat and user interface clutter is evil.
84
85Epiphany aims to present the simplest interface possible for a browser. Simple
86does not necessarily mean less-powerful. The commonly-used browsers of today are
87too big, buggy, and bloated. Epiphany is a small browser designed for the web:
88not for mail, newsgroups, file management, instant messaging, or coffeemaking.
89The UNIX philosophy is to design small tools that do one thing and do it well.
90
91### Standards Compliance
92
93The introduction of nonstandard features in browsers could make it difficult
94or impossible to use alternative products like Epiphany if developers embrace
95them. Alternative standards-complying browsers might not be able to fully access
96websites making use of these features. The success of nonstandard features can
97ultimately lead one browser to dominate the market.
98
99Standards compliance ensures the freedom of choice. Epiphany aims to achieve
100this.
101
102### Software Freedom
103
104Epiphany is not just free of cost; more importantly, the source code is made
105available to you under a license that [respects your freedom](https://www.gnu.org/philosophy/philosophy.html).
106
107Just as GNOME exists to oppose proprietary desktop software, Epiphany opposes
108the dominance of the web by proprietary software web browsers. Today's chief
109offender is Google Chrome, a browser that purports to be open source, yet
110actually includes several proprietary components. In contrast, Epiphany is fully
111free software.
112
113## Human Interface
114
115Epiphany follows the [GNOME Human Interface Guidelines](https://developer.gnome.org/hig/stable/).
116Unless there are serious reasons to make an exception, not following the
117guidelines will be considered a bug.
118
119### GNOME Integration
120
121Epiphany's main goal is to be integrated with GNOME, as well as similar
122desktops (notably elementary OS). We don't aim to make Epiphany usable outside
123these environments.
124
125### Preferences
126
127We are cautious about adding new preferences. Preferences can be added when they
128make sense, but they should always be carefully-considered.
129[Preferences come with a cost](https://ometer.com/preferences.html).
130
131### Target Audience
132
133We target nontechnical users by design. This happens to be 90% of the user
134population. Technical details should not exposed in the interface.
135
136We target web users, not web developers. A few geek-oriented features, like the
137web inspector, are welcome so long as they are non-obtrusive.
138
139## Website
140
141[Epiphany has a website,](https://wiki.gnome.org/Apps/Web) though there is not
142very much content there.
143
144## Contact Us
145
146The recommended way to contact us is via the Epiphany mailing list
147<epiphany-list@gnome.org>.
148