XDG StatusNotifier Specification: Feedback Invited


A while ago I posed a blog entry that talks a little about the work that
we're doing with what we've named "Application Indicators", based upon a
submitted XDG specification [2].  I realize that everyone doesn't read 
planet, and that it was before the holiday, so I wanted to repost here 
for information, and update folks on the status.


Basically our goal is to clean up the current systray and provide a 
consistent means of interacting with applications that choose to put 
items in there.  This means choosing a middle ground where we provide 
enough flexibility for applications to do something interesting while 
not allowing them to go crazy.  The middle ground we chose is a menu.
You can read the usability rationale and approach at [2].

The spec was written by the KDE guys a while back and I believe they're 
going into their third release supporting it.  We've worked with them
and the XDG list to get this into a FD.o spec so that we don't have
incompatibilities going forward.  We've suggested some changes with
adding menu support and have patches for KDE that implement these on the
KDE side of things.  We are planning to ship, in Ubuntu Lucid, both
GNOME and KDE applications that work cross desktop and we have committed
resources to providing upstream patches for many of these applications.

To make it simple to use for application developers we've built a small 
library called libappindicator [1] that makes it pretty easy to create 
and manage the icon and the menu an we've documented how to use it 
[2].  Hopefully this will become part of GTK/GNOME in the future, but 
obviously it won't be in the 2.30 cycle.  It will provide things like 
transparent fallback to GtkStatusIcon for support of people who choose 
not to run the applet (and have a notification area one).

Currently, the discussion has been happening on the XDG list regarding 
the spec and we've got a decent implementation of the spec integrating 
into the GNOME Panel.  The commentary by GNOME folks has been light, 
considering this your invitation to come over to XDG and give your 
suggestions.  The thread subject is 'Proposing the StatusNotifier 


[1] Code is at https://launchpad.net/indicator-application
[2] http://www.notmart.org/misc/statusnotifieritem/index.html
[3] https://wiki.ubuntu.com/DesktopExperienceTeam/ApplicationIndicators

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