Results of the App Installer Meeting
stormi at laposte.net
Wed Jan 26 05:21:19 PST 2011
Great. I just forwarded it to the mageia-discuss at mageia.org mailing list.
Le mercredi 26 janvier 2011 13:57:41, Vincent Untz a écrit :
> Hi all,
> The cross-distro App Installer Meeting that was announced a few weeks
> ago took place last week. It was a very productive meeting, with people
> from Debian, Fedora, Mageia, openSUSE and Ubuntu attending.
> We wanted to see how we can collaborate on the creation of a good user
> experience for installing applications, and we reached concrete
> results: we agreed on an architecture to achieve this, with specific
> technologies to be used.
> A quick foreword: with this project, the user experience is what matters
> to us. This means that our approach is application-centric instead of
> being package-centric. We do not want the end users we target here to
> have to learn about packages: they already know what an application is,
> and this is what they actually care about ("I want Inkscape"). It is in
> no way an attempt to kill packages; on the contrary, we'll build on top
> of them. But this application-centric focus has several impacts on the
> design of the architecture, from the user interface to metadata that we
> want to display to users.
> The overall architecture of the project is described at:
> We aim for getting a working implementation as soon as possible by
> tying together existing projects. The architecture allows different
> implementations, though. In particular, there is no reason why other
> client implementations shouldn't exist or the data shouldn't be accessed
> by the existing, distribution-specific tools.
> Here's a very high-level summary:
> + On the client side:
> - Use the Ubuntu Software Center as the reference UI (it should be
> possible to implement other UI since everything is open)
> - Access apps metadata through xapian
> - Access additional metadata through OCS (Open Collaboration
> - Access screenshots, possibly through screenshots.debian.net (using
> a per-distro proxy) or similar services
> + On the server side:
> - Generate apps metadata, based on information coming from upstream
> .desktop files
> - Make this metadata (as well as icons and more) available, ideally
> in the distribution repositories, on the mirrors
> + Per-distribution work:
> - The tool to generate the apps metadata will possibly be per-distro
> - Each distro can decide on some policy wrt OCS:
> . Use a distro-specific server or not
> . Display comments/ratings/screenshots from other distros or not
> . etc.
> While we do welcome comments, it's worth pointing out that it's easy to
> get stuck on trying to plan the best architecture ever, and we'll avoid
> this: this architecture is our plan, and we will implement it :-)
> Additional architectural bits
> There are additional bits that we looked at, but that did not fit into
> to overall architecture yet. It is our intention to integrate these
> bits, though.
> a) Matching packages between distributions
> This may become handy if we want to share data like screenshots,
> comments or ratings. The decision to use such data from other
> distributions should be up to each distribution, but we want to
> enable this possibility.
> This has other uses for the contributor communities, like easily
> browsing patches from other distributions.
> b) The Debian tagging system (debtags)
> Tagging applications can help users find the applications they look
> for. The meeting was too short to think about reaching a full
> agreement on this, but there was interest in the debtags system. If
> most distributions are interested in adopting this system, we will
> integrate debtags into the overall architecture.
> Where do we go now?
> To keep us moving, we established a schedule for the development of this
> Let me quickly summarize the timeline we're targetting (skipping some
> details from the wiki page):
> + April: "Publish metadata / Port UI"
> - Publish app metadata as part of the distros repos
> - Make this app metadata available via xapian in all distros
> - Port Ubuntu Software Center to non-Debian-based systems
> + July: "Integrate non-static metadata"
> - Setup OCS servers for distros
> - Use OCS from the Application Center
> + November: "Deliver to users"
> - Ship a working Application Center in distros releasing around this
> We'll work on this direction, and everybody is welcome to help!
> mailing list: http://lists.freedesktop.org/mailman/listinfo/distributions
> wiki: http://distributions.freedesktop.org/wiki/AppStream
> git: http://gitorious.org/appstream
> We decided that for further communication, the distributions mailing
> list would be the right place because our effort is cross-distributions.
> If it turns out we're generating too much traffic for
> distributions at lists.fd.o, we'll create a new mailing list.
> We will use the distributions wiki to document our work, and we've
> already put all the notes from the meeting there. Please keep in mind
> that those are raw notes and that they might lack context :-) So don't
> hesitate to ask for clarifications!
> A project was already created on gitorious to collect various resources.
> We know this is an important topic, and we believe we'll provide a good
> solution for it much more easily by working together. So don't hesitate
> to join the fun!
> Vincent, on behalf of all the participants to the meeting
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