[DRAFT] Modulesets Reorganization

Hi all,

Here's a first draft of the announcement of the reorganization of the
modulesets. I reused some of the wording from the r-t quarterly report whitten
by Vincent. We need to decide when the modulesets reorg is going to actually
take place. I'd say something like "The reorg will take place at some point
during the current development cycle". Comments are marked with "COMMENT"
inside the text.


Hi all,

he release team would like to propose some important changes in the way we
organize our modulesets. GNOME releases are currently organized into the
following modulesets: Desktop, Platform, Bindings, Mobile, Admin, and Dev
Tools. This model has served us well and has actually evolved through time - we
didn't have the Admin and Dev Tools modulesets initially. However, we feel that
this organization is reaching its limits, and we have explored several
potential changes.

Current issues

A set of issues makes it clear the need for an evolution here:

1. The arbitrary separation between Platform and Bindings can lead people to
think that the bindings are second-class citizens while this is certainly not
the case.

2.  The Desktop moduleset has expanded so much that it's now unclear which type
of application should go in and which shouldn't; it's also forcing us to choose
one application over another, or to avoid any decision - like in the famous
Rhythmbox vs Banshee case.

3. We strongly believe that we should encourage a strong ecosystem of apps
around GNOME, and integrating all applications in the GNOME Desktop moduleset
is not the best way to achieve this.

4. Some libraries should be used by developers even if the API/ABI guarantees
are not as strong as our GNOME 2 Platform (e.g. GStreamer, e-d-s, and others).
Such libraries should be labeled as such, obviously.

(COMMENT: Anything else?)

Proposed (re)organization

With that said, the release team would like to propose the following
reorganization of the modulesets:

1. The Desktop moduleset will be split into two modulesets: Desktop and
Applications. Desktop will contain the unbranded components needed to get a
desktop session running and provide core functionalities (e.g. gdm,
gnome-session, gnome-settings-daemon, nautilus, etc). The Applications
moduleset will contain all approved apps that provide extra relevant features
to the desktop (e.g. gedit, totem, etc). Our initial idea is that the Desktop
moduleset would ideally only contain components with reduced or no branding. On
the other hand, the Applications moduleset would contain apps with more clear
branding (e.g. Totem, Tomboy, Evolution, gedit, etc).

2. Bindings will be merged into the Platform moduleset and become first-class
citizens on the development Platform. The goal is to make the bindings more
prominent from a communication perspective.

3. Create a moduleset to hold our highly indicated libraries such GStreamer,
e-d-s, and others. This moduleset will be called Platform Extras (COMMENT: I
couldn't come up with a better name. Suggestions are welcome).

4. Admin and Dev Tools will be merged into the new Applications moduleset.
(COMMENT: Have we actually decided to do that? It seems to me that we should
leave this change out for now...)

In summary, this means that the GNOME releases would be composed by the
following modulesets:
  - Desktop
  - Applications
  - Platform
  - Platform Extras
  - Mobile

Extra information

We're planning to do the actual reorganization of the modulesets as soon as
possible during this development cycle. The idea is that GNOME 3 is released
using the modulesets.

You can find an initial split of modules into the modulesets here: (COMMENT: We
should probably have a wiki page with the list of modules split into each
new/old moduleset. Something based on what's in
http://live.gnome.org/AndreKlapper/RedefineDesktop now.)

The move to have an Applications moduleset will probably require some sort of
categorization of apps to keep things nicely organized. We think that doing
that based on the categories in the .desktop files could be a good approach.

Comments, ideas, and suggestions are welcome.


The Release Team

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