Re: Planning for GNOME 3.0

Hi Dave, Sandy,

Disclaimer: I am a late addition to the release team, I was not there
discussing 3.0 at GUADEC, I am speaking for myself, as part of the
team, but not as the team.

Sandy Armstrong wrote:

> I sympathize with the desire to compete and innovate, but Dave's  
> criticisms resonate with me: this doesn't feel like a community decision.

It may not have been clearly stated in the "Planning for GNOME 3.0"
email but of course the discussion is open, and welcome, in his blog
Andre for example started with the following paragraph:

  Today I have released a GNOME release schedule proposal for 2.27 and
  2.29 (please keep discussion streamlined on desktop-devel mailing list
  instead of e.g. the comments section of this blog).

So, the whole thing is not a community decision, it is just the result
of the release team thinking about 3.0, and *discussing* the plans
with other people, be it in real life, at GUADEC, at the user
experience hackfest, in other events, or in digital life.

Nevertheless, while the plan is final (but flexible), it doesn't sum
up 3.0 by itself, at the end it will be the community that will decide
what goes in, simply by focusing of areas of interest.

I nailed it, "areas of interest", the release team believes in
revamping the user experience through gnome-shell and a journal, and
publishing the plan could bring people to look at those projects, and
join them, participate in them, influence them.

Another area of interest (to me at least) would be "the collaborative
desktop", articulated around the Telepathy framework, I'd love to see
collaborative editing in gedit, easy sharing of screen via vino and
telepathy tubes, and so on.  The 3.0 email didn't focus on this, does
that mean it is out of question for 3.0 ?  No way.

The email was just a step towards 3.0, I want it interesting for all,
if you have doubts, it is great to discuss them.

> If this were a regular module proposal email, I'd have pointed out a few  
> things that concern me:
>  * What is the a11y story for gnome-shell and mutter?  Eiphany+Webkit  
> has blocked on this for several cycles now.

It has been repeated many times accessibility is important, it is a
great asset of GNOME, and I want to keep it that way.

The 3.0 schedule has this item for April 27th: "Clear a11y plan and
schedule MUST exist for 3.0 and must be in place for 2.29.5. Define
acceptable regressions." The plan is not yet clear, but we want it
to be, soon, because we care about a11y.

>  * What is the applet story for gnome-shell?  As the maintainer of a  
> GNOME applet (Tomboy), I accept that there may be significant work to  
> port our applet to a new infrastructure, but now I'm concerned that I  
> will also need to *create* that infrastructure (because gnome-shell is  
> basically being imposed upon us, and not going through the regular  
> process, I can only assume that if there's no applet infrastructure,  
> it's my fault for not caring enough to contribute one).

I expect gnome-shell people will have a proper answer here; I remember
a few exchanges going on about the i18n clock applet, but can't locate
them at the moment.

>  * People keep hand-waving the hardware requirements issues, but didn't  
> Federico's deployment survey [0] show that almost half of all GNOME  
> deployments are done via thin clients?  We can't just pretend that we're  
> not going to have to continue supporting these users.

Jason Clinton pointed somewhere else in this thread: "An approach
similar to what Dave Richards is using at City of Largo is actually
the right way to do this: the compositor and a few video-intensive
apps run locally on the hardware. There's no technical reason that
Shell couldn't do the same thing."

Aslo my current laptop, my development laptop, will be five years old
next week, and I really want to be able to run 3.0 on it. We have been
tackling performance problems in many places, for many cycles, this
won't go to a waste.

> And lastly, until all of these issues are resolved, I am very concerned  
> about the inevitable differences (and tensions) between distros and  
> upstream GNOME for the next few years.  Do we really want this to be  
> like KDE, where some distros ship 3.x, some ship 4.x, and some ship both  
> (then the user can only blame themselves for making the wrong choice,  
> right?)?

We definitely do not want, and it is noted in the 3.0 plan: "we should
be ready to diagnose early on during the 2.29 development cycle and we
should not be afraid of keeping GNOME 2.30 as 2.30 and waiting for
GNOME 2.32 for the 3.0 release"

> Perhaps I'm overly-conservative, but I am really quite worried about the  
> state of GNOME for the next few years.

I worried more about the future of GNOME *before* the plan for 3.0 :)



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