August 2, 2013

GUADEC 2013, Day 2

The temperature rose once again in Brno today. Thirsty hackers were seen sheltering in the shade, while the local conference team shipped in extra water for all the participants.

The day began with our second keynote of the conference, by Matt Dalio from Endless. Matt spoke passionately about bringing computers to the billions in the world who lack access to them, and his plans to utilize GNOME technologies to do so. It was an inspiring talk, which got an extremely positive response from the audience. During the talk, the stories of real people who currently don’t have access to computers and the internet were told, and Matt challenged the GNOME community to develop our software with their needs in mind.

After the keynote, we once again hit the track rooms for another day of talks.

First up, Emmanuele Bassi spoke about the future of Clutter, while in the other room, Tim-Phillip Müller talked about “What’s cooking in GStreamer”. Emmanuele talked about the current difficulties experienced by both Clutter and GTK+, and the plan to resolve these by merging them. The plan is to make Clutter internal an internal scene graph for GTK+. Emmanuele also issued a health warning for those searching for slide images on the internet. Since the GTK+ hackfest in April, some progress has been made here.

Tim-Phillip described progress within the GStreamer project. He announced that the 1.2 release will be on time for GNOME 3.10, and that 1.4 will bring fewer new features, but more cleanup, QA, polishing and documentation improvements.

GTK+ was a theme for today’s talks. After Emmanuele, Tristan van Berkom spoke about the UI developer experience with Glade/GTKBuilder. One of his key messages: “a good developer experience is one which reduces the steps involved in creating software.” He demonstrated his recent work with template widgets. We also heard about new work that will allow drag and drop repositioning of controls, and a demo of this raised a big round of applause. Matthias Clasen also gave a talk on GTK+, and showed the audience how to create a new application using GTK+3. This used the standard documentation which is supplied with GTK+, which provides a straightforward step-by-step tutorial

In one of the last sessions of the day, Benjamin Otte gave his talk, called “GTK: To Infinity and Beyond”. He talked more about the plans described in Emmanuele’s talk, and spoke about the plans for the future. According to Benjamin, our new GTK+ widgets have well thought out APIs and are well tested. He also spoke about plans to ensure stability in GTK+ in the future.

Wayland was another theme for the day. Robert Bradford gave a talk on Wayland, “the future of Linux graphics”. That was followed by a Wayland panel discussion, which included Robert, Owen Taylor and Kristian Høgsberg. Here there was much talk of the future and ongoing work to have GNOME 3 and applications running on the new display manager. Many of the details are being worked out, and GNOME is expected to be running on Wayland in the near future.

Finally, we had the annual GNOME Foundation Annual General Meeting. Karen Sandler (the GNOME Foundation Executive Director) opened by welcoming new Foundation members, and encouraged everyone to attend the question and answer session with the Board of Directors on Sunday.

Reports were given by each of the GNOME teams. Allan Day (design team), the Release Team (Andre Klapper), the Bugsquad (Andre Klapper) accessibility (by Juanjo Marin), localization (Petr Kovar), websites (Andreas Nilsson and Fabiana Simões), the membership committee (also Fabiana Simões), marketing (Emily Gonyere), outreach (Marina Zhurakhinskaya), system administration (Andrea Veri) and documentation (Sinhdu Sundar).

There was lots of interesting news during the presentations…

  • Jasper St Pierre filed the most patches again for another year.
  • Strasburg is the capital of Europe
  • Our outreach efforts are going from strength to strength. GNOME now offers internships for women on behalf of 16 organizations.
  • GNOME 3.8 supported a total of 52 languages, thanks to the work of our localization teams.
  • Andrea Veri, the GNOME sysadmin, is the web team’s favourite person in the whole world (and got a big round of applause).
  • In 2012 we received more donations from individuals than in any other year previously.

After that we had presentations from our new treasurer and Karen Sandler. And finally, the annual pants award was presented to Allan Day. We expect to see him wearing them for the rest of the conference.