GNOME online desktop - (some of the possible) next steps


Some thoughts on near-term goals and steps to get things rolling (for those who want to play):

 - to immediately have a "GNOME server" I am thinking we could take and create a version with a
   different theme and stick it at
   (same for a few of the related pages, like the login screen).
   For the theme I was thinking a clean black-and-white thing similar
   to my GUADEC slides - for the domain name, no good ideas yet.

   For now we could just point DNS to the same server hosting mugshot,
   which isn't too much work, and DNS can always be pointed elsewhere
   later if we move the hosting.

   The current hosting ia only a few servers but should be
   fine for development purposes.

 - Jeff said he would set up with mediawiki and we'll
   move there. (maybe should be
   the end user server for creating accounts and stuff, and we should
   put this on or something?)

 - Bryan Clark suggested we should start to dogfood nuking our homedir
   every week - so that would prioritize "do something about ssh keys
   and .emacs" - if we keep this simple and avoid syncing anything
   big to the server, I think we can get it done pretty quickly.

 - Owen suggested that we set an explicit policy of "no API/ABI
   stability for online desktop stuff" until we get things
   much more mature - i.e. put the new APIs here in a "pre-GNOME-1.0"
   state. Release team and others may need to advise us on how
   to make this clear.

 - we are thinking of just using desktop-devel-list for discussion,
   since this is really about "the desktop" proper, vs. a
   google group or another mailing list

 - another interesting short-term goal would be to get existing
   apps that do networking stuff to use the info from the GNOME
   server. So e.g. have AbiWord collab work with your name/avatar/etc.
   from the server, and have F-Spot automatically know your Flickr
   account if you've put it in already.

 - should sort out how to start making "releases" of the online
   mode of the desktop - I mean, say we want to have "GNOME Online
   Desktop 0.1" release - how would we go about that?

 - BigBoard is completely dogfood-capable already (and easy to
   hack on, since it's Python) - one goal would be to just keep
   improving it. For example, right now there's no way to move
   the "stocks" (the different widgets) around or configure
   which ones you have. That's the tip of the iceberg on what
   needs doing.

 - the application-install stuff at
   needs a bit of work to support non-Fedora distributions; it's
   written to allow that, but we really need volunteers to add Ubuntu
   These pages should be re-skinned and re-domained to be at or whatever instead of,
   but that should be orthogonal to adding multi-distribution support.
   It's primarily a CSS task to re-skin them.

 - one wild idea - say we use a very clean, mostly black-and-white
   theme for (I'm thinking along the lines of my
   guadec slides) - we could also do a similar crisp line-art looking
   theme for GTK perhaps? visually distinguishing the online mode
   by default might be sweet, and the more line-art less gray-3D-beveled
   look would be easier to match to CSS. just an idea.
   (I'm guessing this "what color to paint it?" question could generate
   more traffic than most of the substantive issues ;-)

 - we have some people diving into the "open service definition"/"free
   terms of use" question - Luis Villa and James Vasile for example -
   so that is moving forward

 - we would like to see the server side support OpenID. As a consumer,
   it could allow you to create an account with an OpenID rather than
   the current email or AIM account. Or as provider, be able to use your home page as OpenID provider. There are Java
   libraries available that do all the hard bits.


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