27 Aug 2014

feedPlanet KDE

KDE codesprint, Randa, Switzerland

Well, it's been quiet some days since I came back from the Randa meetings, and I have to admit that after staying there, I have had the single-most productive experience in my life so far. These Randa Meetings are an event, where KDE developers from all across the globe are invited to come and code away for a week, under one roof, with a common goal, and I am fortunate enough to be a part of this.

randa_group_pic_c_v1

I reached there on the 9th of August in the afternoon. Later that day, I have been able to meet with my mentors Dennis and Torsten. It was great to meet them face-to-face at last. In the next couple of days (after which they had to leave for work), I was able to clear out almost every doubt of mine, about my GSoC project from my mentors, which obviously led to some great progress in my work in one week. I also met my other GSoC colleague there, Calin (one great guy to hang out with).

10272580_503665129765015_7605533007785814273_o

I had a nice chat with the other KDE-edu folks David Guarez (his GSoC student Aniket is from my college :D ), and Andreas Cord-Landwehr as well, while sitting in the same table and hacking together, both awesome people to talk to, and some other guys from the other groups as well. I have also been able to have nice chats with Vishesh Handa, Rohan Garg, Kevin Funk, Nicolas Alvarez, David Edmundson, Myriam Schweingruber, Valorie Zimmerman, and many others.

IMG_1385

IMG-20140825-WA0000

Not to mention, the food there was too freaking delicious and also the freshest food I have had since my birth, thanks to every person involved with the kitchen for the great work! Also, the FreeBeer was pretty awesome, along with the loads of free chocolate given in the night. The everyday hikes outside, were a real tension-buster, especially since it was the beautiful Swiss landscapes you were hiking in. I had gone for three hikes, the first one being with the Marble folks Dennis, Torsten, and Calin, and the next two being with the rest of the guys, after Dennis and Torsten had left. There was another trip to Zermatt, in which, during the return trip, I had a great hangout with Myriam, Andreas, and Calin. Talked about culture and many other things. Myriam paid for all our drinks as well, so thanks for the treat! :D

eu_randa2

Overall, the Randa Meetings was an awesome experience, with loads of fun, and a whole lot of hacking and work done, and something to keep in my memories forever. Thanks to all the KDE developers out there, and most importantly, to Mario Fux, for organizing this amazing event, for inviting me there, and for providing the travel-pass on the 15th without which I couldn't have survived that day :D It was an amazing time spent, and I would love to come back here the next time, and the next, and the next! Thanks again :)


27 Aug 2014 6:21am GMT

26 Aug 2014

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Akademy 2014 - Come to my Profiling 101 Workshop!

Hello all!

I have the pleasure to attend Akademy this year again. From my past experience, I'm really looking forward to have a good time again. Lots of hacking, meeting known and unknown faces, drinking beer and socializing ahead! I also love that it's in a (to me) new country again, and wonder what I will see of the Czech Republic and Brno!

This year, the conference schedule is a bit different from the past years. Not only do we have the usual two days packed with interesting talks and keynotes. No - this year there will also be workshops on the third day! These are more in-depth talks which hopefully teach the audience some new skills, be it QML, mobile development, testing, or … profiling :) Your's truly has the honor to hold a one-hour Profiling 101 workshop.


I'm going to Akademy and will hold a Profiling 101 Workshop

I welcome all of you to attend my presentation. My plan, currently, is to do some life demoing of how I profile and optimize code. For that purpose, I just wrote a (really slow and badly written) word count test-app. I pushed the sources to kde:scratch/mwolff/akademy-2014.git. If you plan to join my workshop, I encourage you to download the sources and take a shot at optimizing it. I tried my best to write slow code this time, to leave plenty of opportunity for optimizations :) There are many low-hanging fruits in the code. I'm confident that I'll be able to teach you some more advanced tips and tricks on how you can improve a Qt application's performance. We'll see in the end who can come up with the fastest version :)

During my workshop, I'll investigate the performance of the wordcount app with various tools: On one hand this should teach you how to use the powerful existing opensource tools such as Linux perf and the valgrind suite. I will also show you Intel VTune though, as it is still unparalleled in many aspects and available free-of-charge for non-commercial usage on Linux. Then, I'll present a few of my own tools to you, such as heaptrack. If you never heard of some of these tools, go try them out before Akademy!

I'll see what else I'll fit in and maybe I'll extend my akademy-2014.git scratch repository with more examples over the next days.

Bye, hope to see you soon!

26 Aug 2014 5:08pm GMT

KMyMoney on Windows – Live installer

Here is a message from Cristian, our resident maintainer for the Windows version of KMyMoney.

I would like to ask all Windows users who wish to improve the quality of KMyMoney on Windows to try the first installer of the "live build" series and report any issues that you might encounter.

As you may know the development team decided a release schedule. There is still about a month until the next release will be out which gives us enough time to iron out any glitches the installer might contain.

It's also a good opportunity to take a look at the new features that were added (the most interesting should be transaction tags).

Notes about this package:
- it will only run on Windows 7 or newer version
- it uses KDE 4.12.5 and Qt 4.8.6
- it does not yet contain translations
- GPG works with gpg4win out of the box (this workaround is not longer needed)
- as with previous versions it does not contain the HBCI KBanking plugin because AqBanking's build system is autotools based making it hard to build using MSVC
- the OFX import plugin is available
- as with previous versions the Finance::Quote module will only work if you install perl (with the Finance::Quote module) separately
- it will be periodically updated as issues are fixed

If you currently use KMyMoney on Windows there is no need to uninstall your current version since this version will install in it's own folder and will have it's own shortcut by default. Just remember, the newer version extends the stored information in the data file (like tags) so when switching back to the old version this new extra
information (tags), that the old version knows nothing about, will be lost.

Make sure that you backup your data file (make a copy of it somewhere) more often while using this version (just in case). I actually expect this package to be better then the last one (4.6.4) but after all this is a call for testing.

I have tested the installer on Windows 7 32bits so feedback using newer versions would be welcomed.

26 Aug 2014 11:02am GMT

Intermediate results of the icon tests: Nuvola

With a series of icon tests we currently study effects on the usability of icon design. This article however does not focus on these general design effects but presents findings specific to the Nuvola icon set.

Keep on reading: Intermediate results of the icon tests: Nuvola

26 Aug 2014 8:37am GMT

25 Aug 2014

feedPlanet KDE

Running on Cheese and Chocolate

This is a big thank you, a thank you to all the people who made the Randa Meeting 2014 possible, the people who invested their time and their energy to go there and work on free software, and the people who made donations to support this.

Tons of things happened at Randa this year. Among other things there was lot of porting work to KDE Frameworks 5 done on kdevplatform, KMyMoney, Gwenview, KMix, Artikulate, and Kig. KDevelop got QML and Javascript support, the API docs got some love, Phonon 4.8 Beta was released, KStars tools got polishing, Kdenlive got a roadmap, and the first alpha of the Inqlude tool was released. We wrote a book, and made a movie:


It can't be overestimated what kind of magic place Mario created at Randa. It is such a focused and supportive environment, that it's hard to not be productive. It generates a sense of community which reaches way beyond the meeting itself, and fuels so much of future work. I have written about what makes this special spirit. But I suspect that the real secret is that Mario runs us on Swiss cheese and chocolate for a week.

So thanks again to the donors, to the sponsors, to the people who wrote code, or text, or took photos, or brought their kids, or organized, or simply provided happiness, or helped in any other way. It was an awesome event.

25 Aug 2014 10:37pm GMT

Apper 0.9.1 released!

Another mostly bugfix release to make packagers and users happy :)

Sadly I needed to change the direction of where I put most of my efforts, which means that I'm focusing more on getting some commercial products done to get bills payed (as fundraising campaigns doesn't work well all the time). For a long time I've been trying to polish everything I could to have the desktop I wanted, but recently I realized that the way I was doing it would never work, first because I'd need to convince people to think like I do, second because no one in free software writes stuff for free, and this took me a lot of time to realize.

Almost everyone writes stuffs for himself, otherwise there's no pleasure, so unlike companies you can't tell a free software developer to work on something he/she doesn't like, which is one explanation for why most of the projects I started received very little help, an important help (don't get offended) but still I don't have active developers in Apper*, print-manager, libudisks-qt, colord-kde, aptcc* (* Matthias and some Fedora dudes have added some nice features) and a few others. The KDE community has always been kind to notice my code mistakes or even fix the code by themselves but featurea are a different matter.

Don't worry I'm not moving to OSX :P

But for a long time I've been building in my mind the Workspace that I want, and with Wayland I realized It would be somehow easy to achieve what I want when speaking of a desktop shell, which would basically be a shell where all widgets are independent process, where a QML compositor just properly place it's surfaces, Aaron already covered the pros/cons of such approach however I'm stubborn …, I know it's a huge task to start a new workspace/DE whatever and I'm not going to do that right away (tho I have played with some Wayland code already), instead I'm trying to get my commercial software to pay for it, which might take quite some time :P

So I just would like to maybe catch someone that cares for some of these stuff I maintain and give a hand, specially on KF5. I don't yet have KF5 packages ready in my distro and as I said I'm focusing on other stuff, I'll still maintain them and eventually port them by myself but I'm mostly in bugfix mode :P except for Cutelyst which is a project I'm actively working on as I need it for the web stuff I've been doing :)

A good start is porting print-manager to KF5 which should be rather easy.

And here is hopefully the last Qt4/KDE4 based Apper :P

http://download.kde.org/stable/apper/0.9.1/src/apper-0.9.1.tar.xz.mirrorlist

Enjoy.


25 Aug 2014 8:44pm GMT

An Update on kwin_wayland

With the initial release of Plasma 5.0 behind us I also started to look more in the direction of Wayland again. Now I'm kind of in full flow on Wayland work and kwin_wayland is progressing nicely. Yes, KWin 5.1 will introduce a new binary called kwin_wayland to complement the kwin_x11 binary which got introduced in KWin 5.0.

Now I do not want to list all the changes as you can hardly express them all in a blog post, but I can point to my Akademy talk. I will provide a small overview of the current state, what is new in KWin 5.0, what will be new in KWin 5.1 and where the journey is going.

I'm going to Akademy 2014

Of course there is lots of work going on and help is always appreciated. We started to use a public available task tracker on todo.kde.org. Also I have to say that there are still quite some open tasks for kdecoration2. Please help as I cannot split myself and it would be super important to release KWin 5.1 with kdecoration2.

25 Aug 2014 2:04pm GMT

On normal people using Linux, part 2

This is the story of a girl named Elisa, and Elisa liked to do girlish things like hang out with her friends, sunbath at the beach, go to riots and protests against the world cup, support the feminism movement and study. Regarding study, she does Psicology class in the Fluminense Federal University ( UFF ) in Niterói, Rio de Janeiro. I'v met Elisa by a friend of a friend that wanted to introduce us beause of our common ideals:
protestagainst
One day she was laying around, half on the couch, half on the coffe table, half on the floor - just like a cat, while we were talking about Musicals and this history went as such:

"So, you understand a bit about computers, right?"
"hm…."
"My computer is so, so slow. Do you know what it can be?"
"hm…?"
"Well, Windows. but it's the new one, Windows 7″
"hm."
"No, tomaz, I'll not put linux, I'm not a programmer."
"hm hm…"
"No, and don't insist."
"hm."

A week later she was crying in despair and asked my help to dual-boot her windows installation with a linux of my choice, for her windows install was taking more than 5 minutes to be usable, and each program . I'v started talking about her about how many linuxes there are, her eyes were like ._. ,Then I started talking about what are desktop managers and related programs, and her eyes were like ._o, then I started talking about her about some assumptions that she needed to make before installing ( primary system? use cases? games? ) and her eyes were like o_o, finally I settled down for OpenSUSE because she liked the gecko. I'v installed and helped her thru the configuration, things were faster than windows and she was happy, but not as much - Netflix didn't really worked out of the box and some black magic should be done for it, and also evernote didn't had an official linux client and the one that existed was a java based application ( seriously guys, java's bad for the health. )
elisa
One day she calls me

"Linux doesn't boot"
"what?"
"my Linux is broken"
"what?"
"I didn't do anything, it now freezes at the gray screen with the clock"
- I had no idea what was the gray screen with the clock
"What clock? Gray? Gray clock? Grayjoy ironborn?"

With a bit of explanation I understood: KDM was not being shown, a bare X window with the clock-shaped mouse pointer was all that she got. What could be the issue? I'v searched, checked, searched, nothing that I could came up with. I removed her SUSE ( because this was not the first problem that occoured with her, and since I don't use suse myself I had to study every time she had questions ) and changed to my distribution, the one that takes almost a day to install - "Here, take this, it's pretty, it's faster than suse, and if anything happens I most probably already have dealed with that so it will be easier to fix your issue", she was afraid at first because on arch linux you must go to the terminal from now and then, but overall, happy.

"Your linux is slow as hell."
"hm?"
"Seriously, why did you removed suse?"
"hm…?"
"it takes ages to open a tab on firefox"
"…"
"something called pipelight is eating all my cpu"
"er… Dear, did you try to install something to watch netflix?"
"Yes. I'v followed up Arch's Wiki"
"Well, it seems that it's that that's letting your computer slow, please remove that, will ya?"
"No netflix for me then? I hate you."
"Sorry, but you can try the new version of Chrome, It's not 'free software' in the 'opensource vision' but it plays Netflix using the HTML5 stuff, on linux'
"Oh, really?"
"Yes."
"… worked, things are fast. love you again."

And I tougth things were going fine, ok and nice, when suddenly:

"Linux doesn't boot"
"what?"
"my Linux is broken"
"what?"
"I didn't do anything, it now freezes at the gray screen with the clock"
- I had no idea what was the gray screen with the clock
"What clock? Gray? Gray clock? Grayjoy ironborn?"

What should I do? This was my linux choice, I have never got this problem, she got this problem twice with two different distros. Could be the Stars Alignment? Could it be my breath? Could it be the promess of a brand new day in a clear blue sky? I started to search for answers for the question "What can make KDM halt like that?" And I found out "font-cache can be an issue"

"Dear, can you run on the terminal the command fc-cache?"
"What's a terminal?"
" the 'DOS', just hit Ctrl + Alt + F1″ ( now, I *know* that's not a dos, but normal people don't care about the differences about dos, bash, command.com or anything like that - enter code on a black screen in the mind of a windows user for his whole life? DOS. )
"ok, I'm here"
"write fc-cache -fv"



"How long this should take?"
"not much, why?"
"It's running for about 20 minutes."

Something was deep wrong with the font-cache. what could be the issue?

"Dear, what did you tried to do with in regard about fonts? did you installed anything?"
"Well, I'v tried to use the windows fonts because they are prettier."
"why would you do that?"
"Because they are prettier. And because my university asks the 'Times New Roman' font on the texts"
"Can you remove the windows fonts from the system? if you followed Arch Linux wiki, should be something similar to unlink /directory/where/fonts/are/windows_fonts"
"done."
"can you run the fc-cache again?"
"done."
"reboot" ( I could have told her to use systemctl to try to reestart KDM, but then I'd need to explain what was systemctl and a restart was faster. )
"worked. yey!"
"I assume that you did an windows update, right?"
"Yes, I didn't know it was going to kill my linux"
"Me neither, I need two aspirins, it's too much for me today. windows fonts on a windows install breaking linux… AAAAHHHHHHH"

Now, This was most likely the *same* problem that she had with her OpenSuse, and again if she didn't had a tech friend this would be a *real* pain to fix.


25 Aug 2014 12:43pm GMT

Understanding Icons: Participate in survey ‘Tango no. 5′

We start the next in our little test series of different icon sets. Please, again, participate in our little game and help us to learn more about the usability of icon design.

Keep on reading: Understanding Icons: Participate in survey 'Tango no. 5′

25 Aug 2014 8:39am GMT

what is "the desktop"?

Over the course of this series of blog entries, we've seen how laptops are gaining features commonly associated with tablets and vice versa. We've looked back at how KDE pivoted from being desktop-machine-centric to focusing on the laptop experience; this began before most of our users were using KDE software on laptops and in the process users with desktop machines were not left out, forgotten or treated as second-class citizens. Now let's look at the present and near future and take stock of what "the desktop" means today.

I was reading an article this morning written by a person from a company that specializes in email newsletters, the sort of thing every website you sign up on to order something tries to get you to subscribe to. Their data was derived from over 6 million campaigns, 22 billion recipients (obviously not unique :) which generated 1.8 billion click-throughs. What did they learn from that data set? Mobile devices are #1 for reading email; yes, email has survived everything and is still one of the "killer apps" of the Internet, and it has made the leap to mobile. In second place are native desktop clients. Third, and shrinking year over year, is using the web to read email; the web is not the savior for free software on the desktop and, wishful thinkers aside, it never was.

Native client software is kicking ass and taking names: you can deliver a better experience to more people with native software than you can with the web. The desktop is also holding its own very nicely, thank-you-very-much. Here, however, is the real kicker:



Their data shows that the most responsive people actually open the email more than once, and tend to do so on a different device. The most common path is to first glance at it on a mobile device and then, because they are interested, move to their "desktop" system and open it there.

This simply can not be repeated enough: people are using their devices in a context-sensitive, cooperative manner to achieve their goals. This is not the magical multi-device world of tomorrow, this is right now, right here, today.

Let all of that sink in for a moment. If you thought desktop software was about laptops and desktops, you have been asleep and the above is your wake-up call.


Where is KDE's software? Pretty much focused on laptop and desktop systems. Where are people's attention? Across all device form factors. For them, "the desktop" now means "my mobile phone, my tablet, my personal laptop, the office desktop and my media center at home". The things they used to do exclusively on a desktop system has been smeared out across all those devices. The "desktop" is now a wide and varied array of devices that you can arrange in a neat little spectrum from small and mobile to large and powerful. The small devices are powerful enough to be useful and always around and the big screen systems are simply still the most comfortable to accomplish more complex tasks on. This is a result of the human form factor which isn't changing very fast.

Along with this comes new challenges in the form of how software is distributed to the user, how the user and the developer interact and one's expectations in terms of feature set and data locality.

A Cautionary Tale

Can this trend be ignored? Yes, it can. KDE can happily go on pretending that "the desktop" is a laptop or desktop machine. There was another class of software that did something quite similar over a decade ago, and it is instructive to look and see what happened to them.

Window managers used to rule the Linux desktop world. Even after KDE broke on to the scene, desktop environments were the exception rather than the norm. The writing was on the wall, however: desktop environments brought features that people were starting to expect. The future was integrated environments with applications that worked together well and looked like they belonged together.

Most window managers blithely continued on with nary a desktop environment hook in sight. Some added XWMH support so they could be used with a desktop environment, but that was not really the priority. Today, as cool as WindowMaker and Blackbox were, those window managers are now all but irrelevant. Yes, they have users, but very very few. Yes, some are still developed, though most are dead. Yes, they exist, but they are irrelevant; they are not what is bringing free software to the millions upon millions who use it every day on their laptops and desktop systems.

People said they didn't need desktop environments, and those people were right, at least for themselves. Window manager developers felt they didn't need to compete in that space, and they were also right. This attitude had consequences, even if they were "right". It is one thing to say "this is what I want", but it is another to build something you want that will still be around and relevant in a decade.

Within the next decade, people will simply expect to use similar software across all their devices. It is already happening, and the free software projects that are adapted to that reality will be the winners. Those that aren't will be the new window managers.

Embracing the Desktop

KDE ought to embrace the desktop. The current desktop. That means not just laptops and desktop boxes, but also tablets and phones and media centers and .. the entire spectrum of devices.

Not only will this be a lot of straight-out fun, it will increase the attractiveness of KDE and free software in general to the computer using population. It will also prevent products like Plasma from becoming the Window Maker of 2024.

So how can this embracing be accomplished? Here's a simple 4 step proposal:

  1. Support those who are extending the reach of KDE software to other form factors. Too often people in KDE are unsupportive to outright hostile to such efforts. Stop it! Support the efforts that will ensure KDE remains relevant and vibrant.
  2. Build your applications for the multi-screen, multi-input-method reality we live in. Agressively separate business logic from user interface and build as few form factor assumptions as you can into the core of your application. Even if you never create a touch screen user interface for your application, make it ready for someone who might come along and want to do exactly that.
  3. Be adventurous and create a user interface for your application for a form factor other than the laptop/desktop systems you currently target. If you have done step #2 above, this is often much easier (and more fun!) than you might expect.
  4. Start talking about the device spectrum both with each other and people not part of KDE today. Look for the people who can help bring the amazing richness of KDE software to new form factors.
Of course, not every form factor will be relevant to every piece of KDE software. That's absolutely to be expected. At the same time, it is likely to be the exception for an application to focus on only one device form factor. Nearly all of KDE's offerings probably make sense on multiple form factors, and some have made the leap already. That'll be the topic for the next, and final, blog entry in this series.

25 Aug 2014 7:48am GMT

Update: OpenStack Summit Paris 2014 - CFS

An update on my talk submission for the OpenStack summit this year in Paris: my speech about Ceph performance analysis was not chosen by the committee for the official agenda.

But at least one piece of good news: Marc's talk will be part of the OpenStack QA track.

25 Aug 2014 7:37am GMT

How to contribute to the KDE Frameworks Cookbook

The annual KDE Randa Meeting, in itself already shock-ful of awesome, this year hosted the KDE Frameworks Cookbook sprint. Valorie, Cornelius and I already wrote a lot about it. Plenty of attention went into finding the place for the cookbook between the getting-started HOWTOs on KDE Techbase and the full-blown API documentation. Not surprisingly, there is a space and a good purpose for the book. Frameworks developers and maintainer have had to deal with the question of where to put introductions that segue newcomers into how to use the modules many times, and so far, the answer have been unsatisfactory. Newcomers only find the API documentation when they already know about a framework, and TechBase is a great resource for developers, but not necessarily a good introduction. What is missing is a good way to help and learn about what KDE Frameworks have to offer. So there is the purpose of the KDE Frameworks Cookbook - to help developers find and learn about the right tools for the problems they need to solve (and also, consumable on a e-book reader by the pool). For developers and maintainers, this means they need to know how to add sections to the book that cover this information about their frameworks. These tools and workflows will be explained in this post.

Im a way, the book will partly provide an alternative way to consume the content provided by KDE TechBase. Because of that, the HTML version of the book will integrate and cross-link with TechBase. The preferences of what kind of documentation should be in the book or on TechBase are not yet written in stone, and will probably develop over time. The beauty of Free Software is that it also does not matter much - the content is there and may be mixed and remixed as needed.

Two principles have been applied when setting up the tooling for the KDE Framworks Cookbook. The first is that content should stay in the individual frameworks repositories as much as possible. The second is that content taken from the frameworks, like code snippets, shall not be duplicated into the book, but rather referenced and extracted at build time.

KDE Frameworks Cookbook front cover

Keeping content that is part of the book in the frameworks repositories makes it easier for developers and maintainers to contribute to it. A book can grow to ginormous proportions, and keeping track of where its text is related to a specific framework or piece of code will be difficult if the two are separated into different places. However, content that is not specific to individual frameworks may as well be placed in the book repository. Considering that contributions of code and prose are voluntary and compete for the available time of the people working on it, it is important to keep the workflow simple, straightforward and integrated with that of development. Frameworks authors add sections to the book by placing Markdown formatted texts in the framework's repository. The repository for the book (kde:kf5book) references the frameworks repositories that provide content as Git submodules, and defines the order in which the content is included using a CMake based build system. The target formats of the book, currently PDF, HTML and ePub, are generated using pandoc. Pandoc can also be used by the contributors to preview the text they have written and check it for correct formatting. The book repository already contains various sections pulled in from the frameworks repositories this ways. Interested contributors will probably find it easiest to follow the existing examples for the submodule setup and the build instructions in the CMakeLists.txt file to add their content. The ThreadWeaver repository (kde:threadweaver) contains Markdown files that are part of the cookbook in it's examples/ folder which can serve as a reference. See below for why the file names end in .in.md.

Avoiding duplication by copy-pasting code into the book is achieved by using a special markup for code snippets and other examples and a separate tool to extract them. Especially example and unit test code that is shown in the book should always be part of the regular, CI tested build of the respective framework. This ensures that all code samples shown in the book actually compile and hopefully work for the reader. The snippetextractor tool processes the input files that only contain references to the code samples and produces complete Markdown files that include the samples verbatim. The input file names end in .in.md. The conversion of the input files is handled by the build system of the kf5book repository, not in the individual frameworks repositories. It is however possible to add steps to produce the final Markdown files to the CMake build files of the repository. This will catch markup errors of snippets during the frameworks build, but does require the snippetextractor tool to be installed.

Setting up continuous builds for the book target formats is currently being worked on. Producing the book will be integrated into KDE's Jenkins CI, and up-to-date version of it will be available on KDE TechBase. Until then, curious readers can self-produce the book:

Enjoy reading!


Filed under: Coding, CreativeDestruction, English, FLOSS, KDE, OSS, Qt Tagged: Akademy, FLOSS, free software communities, KDE, kde community

25 Aug 2014 7:00am GMT

24 Aug 2014

feedPlanet KDE

KDE Community plans for Releases in the Future

Long post about releases ahead, brace yourselves!

Last week we released KDE Applications and KDE Platform 4.14.

KDE Applications, KDE Platform and KDE Workspaces were sometimes collectively referred as the "KDE Software Compilation" or "KDE SC" in short form, which is arguably a bad name, but it is what it is.

The "Software Compilation" started dying a while ago and 4.14 marks its end.

KDE Platform was 'virtually frozen' a long time ago, but we kept increasing the version number for some reasons that are now not important, so KDE Platform 4.14.x will be the last version, of course we will go to very high 'x' if there is bugfixes to be done.

KDE Frameworks 5 is the successor of KDE Platform based on Qt5, it's already on 5.1 and the team plans to release a new 5.x version with both features and bugfixes every month.

KDE Workspaces was frozen at 4.11.x, in fact if you check your distro, you are probably using 4.11.somehighnumber, the plan is to keep doing releases for at least a year if there are bugfixes available.

Plasma 5 is the successor of KDE Workspaces based on KF5, it's currently at 5.0.1. The team plans releasing a stable 5.x.y version every month with bugfixes and a 5.x+1 feature release every three months.

That leaves us with the third component of the old releases, "KDE Applications", comprised of more than 100 applications. We want those to move to Qt5 and KF5 since it's simply a better world, but we're not going to do it all at once as we did in 4.0. We will give the maintainers the choice to move as they feel the quality of their KF5 port is good enough.

KDE Applications has been having feature releases every four months, with bugfix releases in the three months in between.

We don't plan changing that, but to highlight that applications can be used independently of the libraries used to build the desktop you are using, we're just going to use a time approach for version numbers, that is, next release will be "KDE Applications 14.12"

And that marks the end of the SC era since libraries, desktop and applications are now in a separate release schedule.

Also, if you are at akademy we're having a short session Sunday at 10:40, and I guess i'll schedule a BoF later in the week.

24 Aug 2014 7:08pm GMT

Release of libmygpo-qt 1.0.8 (Qt5 support inside :) )

Dear Blog Readers, Dear Planet KDE Readers,

I'm happy to announce the release of a new version of my project libmygpo-qt. It again has been a while, over one year since the last release. And although it took so long, this release doesn't include many new features, except one: support for building the library with Qt5.

Before I get into detail about this release, first let me tell you what libmygpo-qt is, because in my last post someone complained that it wasn't clear enough from the post. So if you already know what it is, you can skip the next two paragraphs. To be able to explain what libmygpo-qt is, I first have to tell you about gpodder.net.

What is gpodder.net?

Probably some of the people reading this post know the gPodder podcast client, a free and open-source podcast client available for Linux, Mac OS X, the Nokia N9, Sailfish OS and some more platforms. gpodder.net is a website and REST webservice that can be used to search for podcasts, get podcast toplists and data for podcasts & episodes. But it can do much more: if you register a free account (the software running the webservice is also open-source), you can synchronize your podcast subscriptions, playback status of episodes and even the playback position (although unfortunately this feature isn't yet support by many clients). There are also third-party podcast clients for Android that use gpodder.net.

What is libmygpo-qt?

libmygpo-qt started out as a project for an university course, to be used for gpodder.net integration in Amarok and is since then developed and maintained by me. It is a C++/Qt library wrapping the gpodder.net webservice and does everything from sending the request to the correct endpoint, authentication and parsing the returned JSON data into object, so that the developers using this library don't have to know the details of the webservice. Nowadays it is also used by Clementine.

What are the new feature in libmygpo-qt 1.0.8

The most important feature is the support for building the library with Qt5. Due to my work on Tomahawk & libechonest and learning how to building Tomahawk with Qt5 and how to adapt CMake build scripts to Qt5, I implemented this functionality also in libmygpo-qt. So now you can build it either with Qt4 or with Qt5. Both versions can be installed next to each other and the API of the library is the same for Qt4 & Qt5. If there are any unexpected problems with the Qt5 version, please let me know.

Where to get libmygpo-qt?

Tarball:
http://stefan.derkits.at/files/libmygpo-qt/libmygpo-qt.1.0.8.tar.gz
sha256sum:
83716ea5cd6c0010d4531dd2b0c4e83c12d67b738da6aa15c932fc5901902e81
md5sum:
cb67c86919171d6d2356dfb59c3b9571

Some more important Links for libmygpo-qt:

Project Website: http://wiki.gpodder.org/wiki/Libmygpo-qt
Git Repository: https://github.com/gpodder/libmygpo-qt
Doxygen Documentation: http://stefan.derkits.at/libmygpo-doc/
gpodder.net API: http://wiki.gpodder.org/wiki/Web_Services/API_2
Bug reports: http://bugs.gpodder.org
Contact: gpodder@freelists.org

I hope this blog post explained detailed enough what libmygpo-qt is and where it is used. Now I did my part on this library, if you are the developer of a C++/Qt library and it isn't yet ready for Qt5: Go ahead and port it, it is really easy :)

P.S.: I'm going to Akademy 2014, but more about that in a seperate post :)

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24 Aug 2014 2:03pm GMT

I am going to Akademy 2014

https://community.kde.org/images.community/2/22/Banner400.going.png

Akademy is one of the awesome conference which I always love to attend. This year, it will take place in Brno, Czech Republic from 6th to 12th of September. Schedule for conference is already available, which consists of 2 days of talks followed by workshops and BoFs.

Similar to previous years Akademy, I am pretty sure it will be rocking this year as well. It gives us chance to meet lots of kool, awesome, geeky, friendly and lovely people. You will find folks from different countries from all over continents with experience in different areas like development, usability, testing, user interface, marketing and yes users who love using KDE.

Akademy is always very useful for Plasma Media Center project as we organize BoF and discuss about project status, take feedback and discuss about its future. This year also, we have scheduled PMC BoF on 9th September. Usability discussion thread for PMC next UI is already in progress on KDE usability forum . Be there for BoF, if you have feedback and want to help us in making Plasma Media Center more awesome and reachable to more larger mass.


Looking forward to meet you all awesome people during Akademy!

24 Aug 2014 9:42am GMT

23 Aug 2014

feedPlanet KDE

Going to Akademy 2014

Akademy 2014

In two weeks I'm going to Akademy 2014, the annual summit of the KDE community.
This year it will take place in Brno, at the University of Technology, from September 6th to 12th. As usual, the main talks will be during the 2 first days (6th-7th), then we will have a week filled with Birds-of-feather, workshops and meetings. I'll present a workshop about "Creating interface mockups and textures with KDE software" on Monday 8th.

Akademy is a really important event for the KDE community and for Free Software more generally. That can happen thanks to the support from some generous sponsors. You can become one here, or make some donations to support KDE through out the year here.

See you @ Akademy 2014!

23 Aug 2014 11:51pm GMT