The Linux App Summit took place May 13 – 15. Taking advantage of its virtual nature, the event had a long break in the middle of the proceedings in order to better accommodate attendees across time zones. Congratulations and thanks to the whole LAS team!
The call for GUADEC birds of a feather sessions, lightning talks, and workshops is now open. These will take place July 23 – 24, after the talks.
Birds of a Feather (BoF) sessions are up to two hours. These provide a time for people with shared interests to get together to talk about them. These can be working sessions and/or discussion sessions.
Lightning talks are ten minute talks. If you’re an inexperienced speaker or nervous on a stage, lightning talks are a great opportunity to try out speaking in a more relaxed setting. If you have an idea you want to try out, a narrower topic to explore, or you want to start a conversation, consider giving a lightning talk!
A workshop is a hands on session where people will be learning and working together.
Our Outreachy interns are Veena Nagar and Madds H. GSoC interns include Abanoub Ghadban, Maximiliano Sandoval, Manuel Genovés, Kai A. Hiller, Nishal Kulkarni, Alejandro Domínguez, Nishit Patel, zbrown, Ivan Molodetskikh, visvesh subramanian, Arijit Kundu, and Dhanuka Warusadura.
We might not be on the road, but Director of Operations Rosanna Yuen recently curated imakefoss. As part of this, she gave her perspective on things like her FOSS origin story and newcomers to the FOSS community. Check it out!
Events with GNOME and Friends
Linux App Summit is coming up. Join us and KDE from May 13 – 15 to learn and grow the Linux app ecosystem. Keynote speakers include GNOME Foundation member and former executive director Karen Sandler and Kathy Giori, who has built her own Linux powered private smart home. The schedule is online and registration is open.
Part of running the Challenge was building the infrastructure for it, which we now have set up and is ready to go. If you have ideas for future Challenges that match up well with the mission and work of GNOME, please email us!
We recently updated the GNOME web site with a new WordPress instance! Previously, we used a combination of WordPress pages and static pages, but the new site is all on WordPress. The project was started by Britt Yazel, and happened with the help of Evan Welsh and Claudio Wunder.
This summer we are participating in Google Summer of Code and Outreachy. Mentors have been working with potential interns on their applications and first contributions to GNOME. Accepted interns will be announced in the upcoming weeks.
Emmanuele Bassi, Core GTK Developer, works on a tool called gi-docgen, which generates API references from introspection data. He’s made some updates and documented them. Additionally, there have been a lot of updates to the GTK documentation.
Emmanuele is also working on fixing issues in the GTK4 accessibility infrastructure. He is replacing the shared accessibility bus with a peer-to-peer connection between GTK4 applications and assistive technologies.
Thank you for your support! Whether you’re a Friend of GNOME, contributor, users, or casually interested in our work, we appreciate your time and interest in building a great GNOME community!
Typically FOSDEM is a big deal for the GNOME Foundation. We have a booth, we give talks, we run hackfests, there is GNOME Beers, and we have lots and lots of meetings. This year FOSDEM was a little different.
While we didn’t give any talks or run a hackfest, we had a virtual stand. For us, the highlight of this was having scheduled hours in the chat, during which we talked with participants about different GNOME-related topics. It was great to meet people, and it’s always fun to talk about GNOME.
Our GNOME Beers event was also a lot of fun. Around 40 people joined Neil McGovern for a tour of three different Belgian beers. We learned more about beer than many of us expected to.
In March, Neil will be speaking at LibrePlanet 2021, the Free Software Foundation’s annual conference. LibrePlanet 2021 takes place online March 20-21.
Events Hosted By GNOME
We have four upcoming events we’d like to share with you.
GNOME Latino Event
With a goal to have a one day event to celebrate GNOME in Latin America, we’re supporting a GNOME event that will take place entirely in Spanish and Portuguese. This will take place on March 27th, and an event on events.gnome.org will be added soon.
Community Education Challenge Phase Three Winner Showcase
We co-organize the Linux App Summit with KDE. This year’s conference is taking place online, May 13 – 15. LAS is about building and sustaining a Linux application ecosystem. We believe that having many excellent apps is important to promote FOSS adoption, including GNOME.
The call for papers is open, so consider submitting a talk today! We’re looking for sessions on everything related to apps, including legal and licensing and community growth and care, in addition to more technical topics.
We have also announced GUADEC 2021! GUADEC will take place July 21 – 25, also online. GUADEC is the GNOME conference, covering everything GNOME and many general FOSS topics in talks, birds of a feather sessions, and workshops.
The call for abstracts it open. We’re looking for talks related to FOSS in general as well as GNOME specifically. Past talks I’ve personally enjoyed have been on growing the tech community in Kenya; the environmental impact of tech and what we can do about it; better communication with open, remote collaborative communities; how to have great meetings; and many GNOME specific topics.
Since GTK 4.0 released, we’ve put out several bug fixes. We’ve been working with the community on GTK 4.2, which should be ready in time for the GNOME 40 release. We’re also working on revamping the documentation, including using a new tool to generate references from the introspection data also consumed by the various language bindings.
GNOME has been doing a lot of work on GNOME Shell for GNOME 40. This includes numerous UX updates. You can read about them on the GNOME Shell & Mutter blog. Topics include multi-monitor development, the user resting and research that went into the design changes, and general status updates.
Outreachy provides paid internships in FOSS (and in this case in GNOME) for people who face systemic bias that historically has made it difficult for them to participate in FOSS and/or the technology industry.
GNOME uses a number of different communication tools: IRC, Matrix, Rocketchat, and Telegram. Kristi Progri is in the process of leading a chat evaluation. This is to determine which communication channels people are using, and how and why they are using those channels. Preliminary research has been completed, and we’ll be working on to surveying the community in March.
We try to highlight the most exciting things we’re working on in this Update, but we do a lot more, including infrastructure support, community work, and things like taxes. Your generosity helps us make sure we can get everything done. Thank you.
We’ll be at FOSDEM 2021! We will have a stand you can visit, which will include a Matrix chat. We’ll be scheduling themed discussion hours, which will be finalized and posted soon. We’re still looking for people to volunteer, so if you want to come and share your love of GNOME, please sign up today! You don’t have to be an expert in GNOME to volunteer at our virtual stand and it’s a great way to start learning more or get more involved.
We will also be hosting a GNOME Beers event on the Saturday evening of FOSDEM (February 6) in the evening, Central European Standard Time. We’ll share more details on the Engagement Blog and on social media. This event will be emceed by Neil McGovern, who will lead participants on a beer tasting journey.
In December we worked with the Universidad Catolica in Paraguay to host a GNOME event. This event featured four sessions to help people get started in contributing to GNOME and finding a place in the GNOME community. This was a project of the University Outreach Initiative. If you’re interested in seeing an event at your university or participating in one, please contact the University Outreach Initiative.
We Finished Our Fundraiser
Thank you to everyone who helped get the word out on our Fall Fundraiser, which ran from November 2020 until January 2021. Over the course of the fundraiser we raised over $7,000 (USD), which is more than twice as much as we raised last year. We’ll be having a wrap up meeting on February 4 at 17:00 UTC. You can register to attend if you’re interested in learning more about how the fundraiser went, what we learned, and what we’ll be doing moving forward.
Community Engagement Challenge
Phase Three of the Community Engagement Challenge is underway and our five teams are hard at work preparing their final presentations. Learn more about the BOSS, Leapcode, First Contributions, OpenUK Kids’s Courses and Associated Digital Camps, and Brooding Participation through Scaffolded Sustained FOSS Engagement projects at https://www.gnome.org/challenge/winners/ or follow @gnome for their social media takeovers! Join us on April 7, 2021 for our Winner’s Showcase. For more information about the Showcase, please visit: https://events.gnome.org/event/75/
Thank you for everything you do for GNOME. If you’re not already a Friend of GNOME, please consider becoming one today.
The Linux App Summit (LAS) is designed to accelerate the growth of the Linux application ecosystem by bringing together everyone involved in creating a great Linux application user experience. It is a three days conference organized jointly by GNOME and KDE. We had 310 people who joined and participated in the event. This event had 38 speakers and we had 7 Bofs organized. During the event we had 2 social events, the first one was the Amalfi Coast tour and the second one was a pub quiz.
It’s the biggest GNOME event organized in Asia. This year we had 23 talks and 20 speakers participating. It’s a three days event starting from 24th-26th of November. We are now processing the number of participants in the event. GNOME ASIA had 2 social events: one was the Guitar class and the other was the cooking class.
Social media team promoted the call for proposals, registration opening, schedule, and speakers on all channels. Illustration work was created by the GNOME Asia organizing team.
People are finishing and polishing their articles for the annual report. We are still in the process of gathering, with the hope that we will have all materials by December.
Claudio had been working with Gabriele on updating the Branding library. This is going to be used as a visual framework for all the websites of the GNOME Ecosystem.
Challenge and fundraising
We held a live event for the Community Engagement Challenge Phase Two winners announcement which we promoted over social and streamed live to Youtube: https://youtu.be/poTxMwKDq2g
We’ve promoted Molly’s fundraising efforts throughout all channels. She’s launched a new article every week which we share and developed additional social content around.
Welcome to the October and November 2020 Edition of the update series where we detail what our developers have been working on recently. Each change listed here is what developers on the project have merged and want to show the world.
GNOME Web & WebKit
GNOME Web and WebKit have seen some exciting new changes in October. To start off, WebKitGTK now has gamepad support implemented by ChangSeok Oh. Thanks to their work, you will be able to use your favorite gamepads to play games in WebKitGTK-based browsers such as GNOME Web starting next March.
GNOME Web has also received a new icon designed by Tobias Bernard that better fits in with GNOME’s icon set.
Julian Sparber polished off the responsive work for Geary which has landed on mainline. This means Geary now fits better on smaller screens, and this can be tested in the nightlies.
Adrien Plazas has added support for playing Dreamcast games to GNOME Games. It is powered by the Flycast Libretro core and it supports both the .gdi and .cdi formats.
You will be able to use it in the next stable version to be released in March 2021.
Christopher Davis has been working on a slight styling overhaul to be more in line with newer Adwaita styling and recent app designs.
A large merge request from Alejandro Dominguez changed Fractal’s backend to use matrix-rust-sdk instead of a custom API module. Alejandro is also working to refactor how Fractal handles all the UI and interactions between the UI and the internal machinery. The main target is to make Fractal snappier, and more flexible for future development.
Librsvg is a vectorial (SVG) rendering library. Its test suite is now in Rust, and the CI has been intensively optimised: it used to take an hour and a half to build the library, and now only takes 13 minutes!
GTK4 and GTK3 and Rust
The GTK team has been working hard this month again. GTK4 now talks nicely with assistive technologies thanks to the new AT-SPI backend. The Emoji chooser and other emoji handling related improvements have been performed.
macOS can now run GTK4 applications, thanks to the new GDK backend. GTK4 changed the way UIs are drawn and the existing backend for GTK3 could not be reused.
Bilal Elmoussaoui and Sophie Herold have been working on fixing the null-ability annotations in GTK4 before the 4.0 release. Bilal has also put in a large amount of work for subclassing support, further filling out the types gtk-rs users can subclass. Christopher Davis also added initial support for composite templates to the gtk4-rs and gtk-rs bindings.
If you want to get started with the GTK4 bindings, check out the GitHub repository. There you can find examples and links to API documentation.
A new initiative for third party apps has launched, called GNOME Circle. This initiative supports apps and libraries that use the GNOME platform. Circle is meant to showcase all the amazing third-party apps and libraries within the GNOME ecosystem, and support the independent developers creating them.
Developers who are using the GNOME platform can apply to have their projects included in GNOME Circle. When their project is approved, they qualify for benefits including:
Promotion and advertising
Contributors qualify for GNOME Foundation membership
Optional inclusion in the Circle Gitlab group
To learn more and see the apps included, you can visit https://circle.gnome.org/.
Starting this edition, we will be showcasing third-party applications, including those in GNOME Circle.
Rasmus Thomsen created an application to follow your weight and steps count! It accepts
both manual input and synchronisation with Google Fit devices.
If you’re interested in contributing to the project or using it, visit the GitLab repository.
Souk is a flatpak-based app store, written with GTK4 and Rust. It’s written from the ground up to be an app store that works both on desktop and on mobile devices like the PinePhone, PineTab, and Librem 5.
If you’re interested in contributing to the project or using it, visit the GitLab repository.
Welcome to the November 2020 Friends of GNOME Update
GNOME on the Road
The Seattle GNU/Linux Conference took place online this year and we were there. Executive Director Neil McGovern gave a presentation titled “Patently Obvious” about our legal case with a patent assertion entity and how the settlement impacts all of FOSS.
Strategic Initiatives Manager M. de Blanc gave a surprise talk that had nothing to do with GNOME, but discussed the Foundation nonetheless.
We also had talks at Linux Application Summit and GNOME.Asia, which you can read more about below.
We (co-) Hosted Great Events!
Linux App Summit (LAS) took place on November 12 – 14. Co-organized with KDE, LAS brought together attendees from over 80 countries. Videos are already online if you would like to catch up or share your favorite sessions with friends.
We had three GNOME Foundation staff speaking at LAS:
When discussing computing, “accessibility” refers to the technologies that make things like software and web sites work for people with disabilities or who otherwise need accommodations. This includes a range of permanent and temporary conditions, e.g. blind users and people who have broken an arm and are computing one handed while it heals. Accessibility matters to us at GNOME because we believe everyone should trust and be empowered by their technology, regardless of ability.
We’ve started up regular social media working group hours that anyone can join. The goal of these meetings will be to discuss and plan out news and social topics for the following week, and if there is time, to work on drafting the content. You can drop in on one to check it out (or one of the other Working Group or Team meetings). Information is on events.gnome.org.
Thank you for all the ways you support GNOME—the community, the Foundation, and the project. This has not been an easy year for many of us, and we appreciate that you have given your time and energy into making GNOME a place where people have found connection, fulfillment, and even joy.
There are two great conferences coming in November: the Linux App Summit on 12-14 and the GNOME Asia summit on 24-26!
Kristi Progri has been busy co-organizing it all.
The final Program of LAS with the schedule and speakers have been announced. You can find all the exciting talks given on the LAS schedule. Engagement also opened the call for BoF so people can hang out together and brainstorm on issues they face in the Linux App ecosystem.
The call for papers for GNOME Asia is now closed, but the registrations are open! It will take you only few minutes to reserve your seat in our biggest event in ASIA. The papers team committee is starting to review the papers.We will send out the emails to accepted speakers during the first mid of November.
Organizing conferences takes quite a bit of work, so Kristi has been working on a document as well to define the roles and responsibilities for events organization. The Events and Conferences team will meet again to keep improving the document, start putting together the GUADEC 2021 team and set up the agenda for the next meetings.
Social media working groups have started. These will take place weekly every Wednesday at 17:00 UTC. We’ll use the hour each week to talk about news or items we can post on the GNOME social media channels. Everyone is welcome to join and it’s not necessary to stay for the whole hour.
People can also contribute to social media by submitting topics or requesting posts on our GitLab project.
Caroline Henriksen is in the process of writing guidelines for people who manage our social media accounts. These guidelines will cover how we as GNOME sound on each channel, best practices, and tips for creating consistent content. They will also help us onboard new social media contributors.
Claudio Wunder has been monitoring and moderating our Discourse instance and the GNOME subreddit. He has also tweaked the AutoModeration bot to fight abuse and help reporting bugs properly. The subreddit statistics are now public.
Thibault Martin has been monitoring GNOME Planet to find pieces our community wants to share with the outside world and made summaries for the general public to be published on GNOME’s Twitter and Mastodon accounts. He also has been monitoring the Twitter and Mastodon accounts to boost and like the contributors’ posts, and interact with the community.
Our community is currently in an uncomfortable situation regarding instant messaging. We have three platforms running: IRC, Matrix, and Rocket.chat. IRC and Matrix are bridged together, and Rocket.chat is isolated from the other two. This confusing situation makes onboarding of newcomers particularly difficult.
Our Rocket.chat instance was primarily opened for the GNOME Foundation and Foundation Staff. It has been mistakenly advertised as the official GNOME IM platform, which led some confusion. Claudio has been working with our system administrators and the Foundation to determine if access to that instance can be restricted to Foundation members and special guests. He’s working on an action plan to move this initiative forward.
Since many people from IRC complained about the bridge between IRC and Matrix, and the chat evaluation initiative was stalled, Thibault has been trying to gather feedback from IRC users to understand their main gripes. The people from Element, who hosts our Matrix instance and bridge, have been tweaking the bridge to make the experience less painful. Now the infamous URL-instead-of-message should be over!
He also has been in touch with the Mozilla community to get feedback regarding how they handle abuse and moderation on a federated platform in the open.
Finally, with the help of people from Element he has been assisting our system administrators in fixing an issue that prevented users from using gnome.org in Fractal to log on GNOME’s Matrix instance. Fractal users don’t need to remember the odd gnome.modular.im URL anymore!
It is to be noted that despite a very Matrix-rich month, the chat evaluation is still running and we still haven’t decided which will be our recommended platform.
Claudio has been gathering feedback on the Faces of GNOME project and scheduled a meeting to decide on its direction.
Engagement Team has been busy this September. We’re working on several things we would like to share with you.
We have regular meetings to discuss our strategy and goals, under the impulsion of our Program Director Kristi Progri. We recently decided to set-up three working groups to structure our activities: a Social Media group, an Onboarding group, and a Fundraising group. As always, we will be happy to welcome you if you want to join us in any of those activities.
This month also had an important milestone: the release video project for GNOME 3.38 Orbis was completed! This project was led by Caroline with input and feedback from Foundation Staff, Engagement Team members, and other GNOME contributors. The video was created for us by Freehive. From this iteration we learnt how to smoothen the process for next releases with closer collaboration with the Release Team and the production of Release Notes.
The Fundraising Working Group has kicked off organizing the Fall Fundraiser. Our goal is to get 50 new Friends of GNOME this Fall. Initiatives like the Fall Fundraiser help provide the Foundation with the resources it needs to grow GNOME, through supporting events, infrastructure, internships, partnerships, and software development. If you’re interested in getting involved, email email@example.com.
Claudio Wunder is taking over the GNOME.org website update started by Britt Yazel and Evan Welsh. The update focuses on upgrades to the backend of the site and minor changes for visual consistency, but will also include migrating the Foundation content to a separate page. While no visual impact should be expected for this first milestone, it will ease our systems administrators’ work.
Claudio also is following-up on Clarissa Borges’ internship. That internship was about the creation of a CSS library to have a common UI on all of GNOME’s websites. That library will then be used for a second milestone in the GNOME.org website update, this time for visual improvements.
Sri Ramkrishna had been working on two exciting initiatives. Scalable Onboarding and Scalable Mentors are meant to attract more contributors to stay in the long run and turn them into mentors for a solid community.
Thibault Martin has been following our GSoC interns and their reports to help spread the knowledge about their great work on our social media, with the help of Caroline. Closer collaboration with Felipe Borges for next iterations of the GSoC and Outreachy should be expected so we can follow our interns earlier in their process and integration with the community.
Welcome to the start of a monthly series where we detail what our developers have been working on this past month. Each change listed here is what developers on the project have merged and want to show the world. September month was low volume due to the feature and UI freezes before release 3.38, but it still gives a small look into how much work is done each month.
Getting Ready For GTK4
With GTK4 approaching soon, the GTK team has been working on polishing the experience and tying up loose ends. The demo application has added new demos, showing off new features like layout managers and transformations.
Now is a good time to start using GTK4 for new apps, and to start ports of existing apps. Read more about the team’s work on their blog post for release 3.99.1.
Our web browser, Epiphany (AKA GNOME Web), has seen multiple improvements during the 3.38 development cycle. The biggest feature this release is making Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) enabled by default.
ITP applies a set of innovative restrictions to all webcontent, and a stricter set of restrictions is applied by detecting sites that can track you across the web. In addition, Epiphany can now optionally block websites from using localStorage and IndexedDB, preventing them from storing arbitrary data in your browser.
Epiphany now supports user scripts, blocks videos with sound from auto-playing by default, and allows you to mute individual tabs. Various dialogs have been refactored, and the preferences dialog has an all new look via libhandy‘s HdyPreferencesWindow.
Librsvg has a new contributor, John Ledbetter, who has been working to bring features from the SVG2 specification. These features include:
If you are interested in helping with librsvg, the project is looking for interns to participate in the next round of Outreachy. The deadline for initial contributions and project applications is October 31, 2020 at 16:00 UTC.
As devices like the PinePhone and Librem 5 bring convergent Linux phones closer to reality, developers have been working to make more applications usable on both desktop and phone environments.
Over the past few months, GNOME Weather has received a major redesign. This month, changes landed to ensure that redesign worked on mobile screens. The full redesign is not yet complete, but when it is users of GNOME apps on phones will have a fully-fledged Weather app.
Disks has also been changed to use HdyLeaflet, allowing the window to fold at small screensizes for use on phone. This will bring phone users a fully graphical interface to manage SD cards and internal storage.
GNOME Games has a few headlining features for the 3.38 release. Games now integrates Nintendo 64 emulation so you can play more of your favorite classic games.
The Games app now loads faster, and has a search provider so you can instantly find and launch games from within GNOME Shell’s search interface. Nintendo DS support has received improvements, with a screen gap being implemented for clearer viewing.