> In summary, I think a strong comparison can be made between Ruby and X,
> pre-KDE. There were numerous toolkits for X, but no standard, and for over
> a decade Unix suffered from this.  Windows and MacOS provided standard GUI
> APIs, and they have prospered.  With the proliferation of KDE/Qt on Linux,
> Unix too is moving to the desktop.  (Before this spins off into a Gnome
> vs. KDE argument, remember that Gnome was a direct result of KDE and the
> Qt
> license.)  Ruby deserves to be more than a server programming platform,
> and the only way this will happen is if a toolkit is chosen and included
> with every Ruby distribution.


I think you are completely right.
but I am not sure if there is one GUI toolkit right now which could be the 
standard one.

Python has Tkinter and also very stable and complete bindings to Gtk and Qt
and in addition there is wxpython.
but none of theme is considered standard.

so it will be difficult but maybe not impossible.
I think the standard GUI for Ruby should have the following characteristics

- portable between Unix (include Linux and Mac OS X) and Windows
- a rich widget library including suport for Internatiolization
- not to much extra stuff  like socket classes, threads 
   (Ruby already supports this)
- Fast (if it is as slowly as Swing in Linux it will not be used very much
- open source (this is in my opinion a must - I would never use it if it   
   would be closed source)

maybe the upcoming Gtk 2.0 would be worth considering because AFAIK it 
supports all the stuff I mentioned above.

just my thoughts

markus