Adept 3.0 and Intrepid

October 15, 2008

RC freeze soon… today! oh noes!

Luckily, mornfall has scheduled a last beta release, beta3 for tonight last night. Then it was found that beta3 completely broke Adept Installer and they guy rewrote the offending widget in two hours this morning! Poor guy didn’t know that it was Ubuntu freeze time until yesterday. ;D The man deserves a medal. (Note, this is also why it looks like I wrote this blog post last night, because I did write it last night. :P) Barring accidents, beta4 should be released in a few hours.

New in Adept 3.0 beta 3 4

So, what’s new since the last beta? Plenty! You can also visit mornfall’s blog for more infos direct from the source.

Bugfixes

-By far the most annoying bug Adept had in beta2, searching by package name in Adept Manager now works! Huzzah! Only one thing to say, mornfall is the man. (LP: #263438)
-Scrolling has been fixed so that package descriptions don’t scroll per item, but per pixel. Now packages with huge descriptions don’t disappear when you scroll down. (LP: #275196)
-Adept Installer gains a rewritten paging implementatoin. It works much better now and is implemented in 50 less lines of code, also fixed a nasty resizing issue on blank searches.
-Fetching package lists no longer always enables the apply button since mornfall moved the code to a more sane location. (LP: #279204)
-Mornfall also fixed a crash when filtering search results that were already empty because of a tag was fixed. (LP: #279209)

Features

-Most of the pushbuttons now have nice Oxygen goodness. All I can say is, Oxygen ftw!



-Text from package descriptions are now copyable. This is a very handy feature that only took one line of code to add! (LP: #261775)
-If opening up a package description will cause the description to expand out of view, Adept will now automatically make sure as much of the package description is readable as possible by autoscrolling. Again, 1 line of code since Qt has this function built-in. Gotta love Qt. (LP: #52461)
-The Okular sidebar-graphics code patch introduced after Beta2 has been merged into Adept3 beta3 for all Adept users to enjoy, but Kubuntu users have had this for a while.
-kdesudo is now recommended if Adept isn’t launched with admin powers. If you only have gksu installed it will recommend that. ;-)
-The Kubuntu patch by Riddell for the button to launch software-properties-kde from Adept has been merged into the main branch for beta3. Unfortunately the version of s-p-kde in Debian is too old for the current implementation to work. :-(

All in all, I am very pleased about how Adept 3 is turning out for Intrepid. The most serious bugs have all been fixed, the bug page looks beautifully triaged, and the extra features that have been added on in this beta give Adept a nice polished feel.

Adept 3.0 beta3 should land in the main repos later tonight hopefully today before slangasek wakes up, once Riddell syncs it and libept (synced last nigh) from debian.

My hitlist for Adept 3.1

So I’ve found out that implementing your own features/fixing minor rough spots is actually quite fun, and C++ isn’t as scary as it looks. ;D So for Adept 3.1 I want to get more involved in bugfixing/polishing rather than making a few changes at the end of the cycle in the face of feature freeze… So, for 3.1 I want to:

-Improve the layouting for the buttons in general. The super-wide buttons don’t look that good imo…
-Uh, actually most of the features up there were going to be on my hitlist for 3.1, but we managed to get them in for 3.0. So I guess I’ll keep on trying to find byte-sized issues and rough spots to fix, hehe.

Out of town

I will be going away on a college visitation early tomorrow morning. I don’t expect to be back before Wednesday. Luckily, I’ve done just about all the Kubuntu things I’ve wanted too and it’s freeze time next week anyway.


Kubuntu, the Blue-headed Stepchild

October 9, 2008

This post is meant to be read in the context of this post.
I do not find fault with Canonical/Ubuntu does to invest in KDE/Kubuntu, but rather with what they (don’t) do in neglect of KDE.

So, Kubuntu and Ubuntu are treated equally, right? Unfortunately, the neglect is routine. The most recent case of which happened today. The recent upload of bluez 4.x breaks bluetooth in Kubuntu entirely. You can read about it for yourself here (Scroll down to near 15:00), though I will highlight especially important parts here.

15:01 pitti ScottK: does superm1 know about the KDE regression?
15:01 ScottK pitti: He does.
15:01 pitti he worked a lot with the packages recently
15:01 ScottK My impression was he pretty well shrugged.

Edit3: superm1 has been very nice and fixed kdebluetooth, and is looking at hal shortly. This is great, the below comments however, are really the problem. Bugs do usually eventually get fixed, but it’s the attitude that coutns.

15:02 pitti hmm
15:02 seb128 I don’t think anything went especially wrong there

So an untested upgrade breaks supposedly-equal Kubuntu, and nothing is wrong? Hmm…

15:02 ScottK The Kubuntu dev who’s mostly looked into bluetooth (Tonio) is mostly MIA at present.
15:02 seb128 it’s just a lack of manpower issue
15:02 persia It’s more about needing upstream to do something. None of the few people hacking the bluetooth stack now understand kdebluetooth
15:02 pitti http://launchpadlibrarian.net/18310466/Traceback.txt looks like an API change
15:02 MootBot LINK received: http://launchpadlibrarian.net/18310466/Traceback.txt looks like an API change
15:02 seb128 we can’t block ubuntu in a broken state because nobody tests other desktop variants
15:02 ScottK seb128: There’s nothing especially wrong with breaking Kubuntu just before release?
15:03 Riddell persia: it would be better not to do major foundation changes after beta

Also:

seb128 having ubuntu broken just in case a derivative would break is not a solution eithjer

I thought that Ubuntu and Kubuntu were equal… The main problem here is that API changes were made without testing with KDE and uploaded anyway. The resounding response we get here is that Kubuntu is merely a derivative, and uploading untested API changes is OK for that reason.

Continuing on, we arrive at bug 259436. Basically, wiki login was broken for every browser except Firefox, another lack of testing/act of neglect. Yes, it did get fixed today (thankfully), but for almost 2 months this bug was a severe impediment to Kubuntu development. Main Inclusion Reports couldn’t be written. Agenda points for meetings couldn’t be set. Release announcement wiki pages were writable only by those who used Firefox. (Such as myself) This bug has almost affected one third of the entire development cycle. (Short by a week or so)

The response here was basically “use Firefox”. So, great! The default browser of Kubuntu is rendered useless for all things ubuntu-wiki for a third of the development because of a lack of testing, the only alternative being to install Firefox. This brings me on to my third and final point, also involving Firefox and the neglect of Kubuntu on that front.

Say somebody wanted to use the wiki bad enough the last two months that they were willing to install Firefox in Kubuntu. The first thing that they would notice is that it would pull in half the Gnome software stack. Very not nice for Kubuntu users. But what has been done? Nothing. Apparently Kubuntu isn’t equal with Ubuntu to the Ubuntu Mozilla team either. Others have noted this too, along with similar issues with installing the java plugin for use with Kubuntu. No consideration is made for the KDE environment and craptons of unneeded packages are introduced and forced upon any Kubuntu user who wants to use Firefox.

Edit: I’ve been notified that this is actually fixed. I can give another example in it’s place, though.

Up until shortly Alpha 5 KNetworkManager was broken by NetworkManager 0.7, once again due to an API change. At one point it looked like Kubuntu was simply going to be overlooked and left with an non-working networkmanager. Luckily this was fixed in svn, and now we are currently running an svn snapshot of knetworkmanager, which isn’t ideal but at least it works…

I agree with Aaron Seigo. Ubuntu routinely neglects Kubuntu, not because of what it does to support it but because of what it does to neglect it. The Kubuntu Team tries hard to deliver the best KDE possible, but that becomes hard to do when the maintainers of other packages routinely neglect the needs of Kubuntu, the Blue-headed stepchild. If Canoncial/Ubuntu want to become serious about Kubuntu/Ubuntu equality major mindset changes will need to be made across the board. Otherwise the stereotype of Ubuntu neglecting KDE will continue, because so far the stereotype has proven to be true.


KDE 4.1.2 released

October 3, 2008

KDE 4.1.2 released, etc

KDE 4.1.2 has been released for both Kubuntu Intrepid Ibex and Hardy Heron. If you’re an astute Intrepid user you’ll notice that you’ve already received these updated a few days ago. You will also probably notice that I’m lazy and copied a lot of this from my KDE 4.1.1 post :P Don’t worry, I’ll throw in some new content at the end so stay tuned, I know you’ll like it. ;-)
Get it now!

The Kubuntu ninjas spent most of last week packaging KDE. We also had a new ninja join the fun.

So who are these guys providing Kubuntu users with the awesomest KDE 4 packages ever?

* JontheEchidna (aka Jonathan Thomas) Me! I was really lazy for backports this time around…
* vorian (aka Steve Stalcup) Has an iPhone
* smarter (aka Guillaume Martres) he finally applied for motu
* Arby (aka Richard Birnie) made up for not being able to join us last time by backporting most of the packages to Hardy, picking up the slack for my laziness.
* Riddell (aka jr or Jonathan Riddell), the almighty Kubuntu robot, who’s sponsoring the Intrepid uploads … he also can transform into an oracle if someone might have unanswerable questions
* apachelogger (aka Harald Sitter) He spent most of the time playing with his new rbot waiting for things to compile.
* rgreening (aka Roderick Greening) He’s the newcomer. Fixed a nice failure to build from source. This is really the only thing that can be said about him: [kubotu] fact #2 of 6: rgreening buries head in sand.
* ScottK (aka Scott Kitterman) He loves his tooltips. He helped sponsor things (Like a kate related kde4libs bugfix). See the second part of this post for some more of his indirect contributinos.

The 4.1.2 packages sport a number of improvements. It fixed about half a dozen issues in our bugtracker. :)

If you see a Kubuntu ninja around on IRC, give them a thanks. It was a good job all around.

Oh, and I promised you something, didn’t I? The following is a sub-blog entitled “How the Kubuntu team doesn’t know about feature freeze” or “We’ll probably kick ourselves later for this” :-P

Adept resexed

So, exciting new changes are coming to Intrepid soon. First off, we have an update to Adept. I’ll just give you two screenshots, since everybody knows a blog is nothing without them.

Compare old:

…with new:

Currently Adept 3.0 uses the sidebar code from Okular. From Okular 4.0. Egad, that’s old. Updating the code to what Okular has in KDE 4.1 makes Adept look much nicer and polished. Props to the Okular d00ds, or whomever coded that. (Kontact might be using it too) Intrepid should be getting this update quite soon.

Plasma tooltips for the taskmanager from 4.2 trunk

You guys better appreciate this. :P I know ScottK does ;-) I probably wouldn’t have done it if he didn’t ask.
It took me (with some very much appreciated assistance from rgreening) two and a half days to get the backport from trunk right for this. Expect this change to be available by tomorrow if all goes well.

KWin compositing goodness

… blatently stolen from SuSE :P


Riddell spent the time to make a patch of the SuSE KWin branch which has a lot of features from trunk. What this means for you: You will be able to have KWin cube by tomorrow if all goes well. ;-)

(Pic stolen from vorian.)
Great work all around. I really think that Intrepid is shaping up to be a great release. (and oh god I hope these new features don’t make us sorry. ;D


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