this week i’m at uds with vuntz and andreas.

there was obviously a big announcement yesterday. enough people are commenting on that already, and i don’t have anything that i really want to add to that conversation.

on a more positive note, i want to mention something that was agreed during one of the desktop sessions yesterday morning.

based on a promise made by jono bacon that gnome-shell would be an absolutely first class citizen in ubuntu (just not included on the CD) and in response to the lessons learnt from the failure of “stracciatella gnome”, we proposed the creation of an environment variable. if set, it disables the effects of any ubuntu vendor patch to upstream components when those effects are related to gnome-shell vs. unity integration.

what this means is that you will be able to login to a gnome-shell ubuntu experience that works properly, without all of the applications assuming that they are trying to interact with unity.

i like the name GNOME_ME_HARDER, but i guess they’ll probably want to do something a little more boring.

the specific parameters of the promise that was made are as follows:

1. for new vendor patches, this “works with shell” functionality will be required in order for the patch to be considered functionally complete for inclusion.

2. for existing vendor patches, missing GNOME_ME_HARDER functionality will be considered as a bug. this means that issue will receive the same treatment as other bugs — it will be fixed if there is time, patches welcome, etc.

5 thoughts on “GNOME_ME_HARDER”

  1. Just a quick note: “first class citizen” is a term that could have multiple interpretations, and I just want to be clear – even though we are not shipping GNOME Shell on the disc, I personally believe that the GNOME Shell experience in Ubuntu (installed from the archive) should work well and be simple to experience.

    To be clear, and as I clarified in the session, this is not something I can commit the Ubuntu Desktop Team or the wider community to – it is up to those folks to assess what resources are available and what decisions should be made to ensure that the GNOME Shell experience is as top-notch as possible.

  2. Jono,

    I don’t think anyone can realistically expect Canonical to do all the work to make it possible. The commitment to give people the ability to make a GNOME Shell compatibility mode posible is what is needed. But I think the catch will be (drum roll please)…. copyright assignment.

    If the patches to make Canonical built (and copyright controlled) functionality GNOME Shell compatible are going to require copyright assignment to Canonical..that’s going to be a problem that will significantly retard contributor involvement from some quarters of the GNOME ecosystem. Don’t make a half-hearted commitment to freedom of moment to implement the compatibility mode. Don’t brush-aside the copyright assignment issue as a non-issue.

    If you are really committed to making a space for external contributors to ensure the GNOME Shell experience in Ubuntu is up to the expectations of the GNOME Shell developers and users make absolutely sure these people can contribute without the unnecessary encumbrance of the blanket copyright assignment to Canonical.


  3. Love the idea, and double-plus-good love the name. On the practical side, “GNOME_ME_HARDER” is surely more memorable than “DISABLE_UNITY_ASSUMPTIONS_BLAH_BLAH_BORING”

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