they are only toolkits, and most of those other libs are useless, and only there to force you into the near full desktop environment. the "gnome" libs/apps are better at this, gnome is a loose nit set of programs/libs that arnt even "gnome", but use GTK. as such, very few "gnome" apps are gnome specific. A list of what not to use
- never use a VFS from gnome/kde , they just prove to confuse people, and off zero benefits.
- never use kde/gnome "base" libs. These usually just tangle the program for the DE only, if it can be avoided, do it.
thats basically it, just steer clear of those pesky DE death libs, and you'll be fine.