WebCore is a framework developed by Apple, and licence under the LGPL, to provide an HTML layout engine for Mac OS X. It is one half of WebKit (the other being JavaScriptCore).

WebCore combines the open source KHTML layout engine developed by the KDE project, with an adapter library called KWQ (pronounced Quack). Apple created the KWQ adapter to replace KHTML's dependency on code from the Qt toolkit and other KDE modules. KWQ also presents an Objective-C application programming interface to the C++-based KHTML rendering engine, allowing it to easily be referenced by Cocoa-based applications.

Apple announced WebCore at the January 7, 2003 Macworld Expo with the release of the Safari web browser. Later that day the developers submitted their changes to the KHTML library to the KDE project [1].

Since then, a number of projects have built on the WebCore library, porting it to other platforms like Nokia mobile or the cross-platform GNUstep libraries, or adopting it for use in their own browsers like Omni Group's OmniWeb browser.

Although Mac developers can use WebCore to incorporate an HTML layout engine into their applications, Apple recommend the use of WebKit, which is included by default in Mac OS X 10.2.7 and later and whose interfaces are stable. Shiira is an example of a web browser that uses the WebKit framework.


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