It’s never too late to meet again

I’m still here in Galicia visiting a friend in Santiago de Compostela, after spending the last few days in the excellent Guademy, which was a great opportunity to meet old friends and new people from both sides of the free software desktop. Here’s a minidiary I composed:

Thursday

Arrived at A Coruña in the evening, met some of the organizers, went to the conference place (The university of A Coruña) and witnessed the more wildest university party I’ve ever seen, 2 huge tents with concerts, lots of people drinking outside, in the corridors, in the classrooms… Street Fighter and Fifa ‘0X competitions in projectors, a DJ… It’s totally irrelevant for the conference, but was awesome enough to tell :)

Friday

First day of Guademy (which means GUAdemy DEstroys MYths), funnily
enough, there were two crossed laser sabers and the GNOME/KDE logos in
the posters. Missed the beginning of the inauguration (Some local politician talking about how good is collaboration and such, would like to see them apply this too :P), highlighted talks were about the QT Java and python bindings and two about GTK+, mine and one about using threads with it.

My talk finally turned a “How to use the latest APIs”, seemed more popular, and was indeed welcome by the public.

After that there was a talk about Kuiserver, a KDE oriented solution almost equal to Mathusalem, I absolutely think that Kuiserver and Mathusalem should join efforts and at least share the DBus spec, lots of users would be thankful.

After the talk finished, dinner in the same place (they brought pizzas and galician empanada) and after that the queimada, done with pretty strong alcohol, coffee, sugar, fire, and what could seem a satanic rite to strangers (at least, Aaron Seigo was looking quite puzzled)

Saturday

First talk was about developing applications in KDE4, the author was so excited about this that turned a 1h talk into a ~3h one, delaying the whole day. I was late that morning, but it seemed to me more about using KDevelop than about programming, but they have a great IDE for the environment indeed…

After lunch there was a football match, being the result GNOME 5 – KDE 2, go GNOME!

Other highlighted talks where about the build brigade, using valgrind (KDE oriented), system-tools-backends (mine, got good public response here), tinymail and the state of KDE (by Aaron Seigo)

That talk was about how exciting was KDE4 and all the new technologies it introduced. It’s fun how many of them are based in, or how do they resemble things that are already in GNOME (although they try to support native APIs somewhere):

  • Accessibility support: they’re shamelessly using ATK though DBus :P.
  • Okular: is it me or it looks like evince? maybe poppler is responsible…
  • Usability studies: a HIG!
  • Phonon: with a Gstreamer backend
  • Solid: with HAL backend
  • Decibel (VOIP service arquitecture)
  • Akonady (contacts and messaging store): e-d-s? it seems they’ll se it more widely, though
  • Sonnet (Spelling and grammar checking)
  • Kross (Application automation, scriptability)
  • ThreadWeaver (Easy multi-threading): easy to use worker thread
    pattern.

  • Strigi: like beagle and the useful-for-all tracker.
  • Plasma (workspace evolving): maybe I didn’t get it, or wasn’t attending properly, but after all the “it’s going to be
    incredible” speech, he showed a mixture of beagle and the “run
    application” dialog.

After that, an excellent dinner, featuring octopus and other regional dishes and lots of beer, and after that some more partying…

Sunday

Last day, woke up soonish to the conference place, rumors said that Aaron Seigo arrived at 9AM to the hotel, and some people was “wow, the KDE people likes party”, they don’t know us… :P

Seen the Buoh, Okular and “Freedesktop integration” talks. It’s curious how almost every feature highlighted in the Okular talk is already present in Evince, and the funniest phrase of that talk: “Yeah, I know it’s slow, but it’s KDE 4″ :P.

the “Freedesktop integration”, by Rodrigo Moya, was just an overview of what we have right now, some slides about why shouldn’t we be “fighting” between ourselves and aim to the other OSs share (rough numbers were Linux Desktop: 1%, MacOS:10%, Win: 89%), and the missing areas to make an user switch seamlessly from KDE to GNOME or vice versa, without any loss of relevant information.

Other conclusions

The KDE people was fun and friendly, and all the flaming was just for fun, but it’s easy to assume that the more involved people won’t spend their time flaming seriously. I’m really looking forward for the next Guademy :)

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