On the road to GNOME 3.0

Release team has gotten a few hard code freeze breaks. Overview of the requests (not going to specify if they’ve been approved; too much work):

March 22

March 23

March 24

March 25

March 26

March 27

March 28

March 29

Pretty huge amount. Incomparable to any other GNOME release. In total, I’ve reviewed 0 of above patches btw. There have been freeze breaks for today as well…

External dependencies

Correcting Marks statement:

He talks about App Indicators, saying that “They didn’t even propose changes to core GNOME components to support application indicators.” Actually, we did, and those changes required App Indicators to be an external dependency. So we proposed that, and it was rejected. Repeat ad absurdum.

This is not correct. Applications can depend on a library without it being an external dependency. If it is not an external dependency, the support must be optional. This so distributions do not have to deal with ever increasing dependencies. We have various optional dependencies.

Furthermore, the library was not accepted (the ‘rejected’ is often interpreted as permanent rejection, while this was never meant in this way) for GNOME 3.0.x. Not the whole idea. Not the spec. Also, something similar can be proposed again for 3.2. Though really really suggest to at least assume we mean well, and understand the feedback that was given.

Unfortunately, I’m repeating what has been stated before.

What I find most unfortunate: I saw no email to release-team asking for clarification. I fail to see what the point is of continuing this via blogposts. I find it fairly strange way if the purpose is to actually have a constructive conversation.

Suggest the ‘assume people mean well’ once again. And ehr.. people are working for a long time on releasing GNOME 3.0.


Hey Phil,

No need to be frustrated. Just talk to some people and you’ll notice that nobody is treated in any special way.

Do wonder what triggered this. Just the Canonical-Banshee thing?

Some comments:

For starters, some [2] people in the GNOME community moan about how Ubuntu doesn’t pull its weight upstream. They then make it difficult for Ubuntu-y folks to contribute things upstream.

Suggest to find better examples than Zeitgeist and app indicators. App indicators has already been discussed before. People already explained in on your blog, but in short: it was suddenly proposed, never noticed work on this being done, it went against the current heading of GNOME (gnome-shell and less libraries, integrating more into gtk+) plus (IIRC) it needed copyright assignment. Most importantly, I felt like almost all feedback was ignored. Feedback is very important, things can be addressed if communication happens. If not, I’ll probably vote against it as things have to be working in the long term (have to get the impression it will be supported for 5+ years). Zeitgeist: it isn’t developed upstream. Makes it difficult to follow progress. Really important for me to easily follow progress. Still, very cool technology, I’m just waiting for it to be used in a nice way across GNOME. And that is mainly why it isn’t in GNOME at the moment (the ‘cool technology’ vs ‘used nicely in GNOME’). This was given as feedback, so I don’t see why you’re using Zeitgeist as an example. Likely Zeitgeist will end up as an external dependency. I also don’t see Zeitgeist as Ubuntu-y. That’s actually a good thing. I don’t want anything which appears to be restrictive, don’t care which distribution/organization/company it is from. In practice of course most development might come from one organization.

I use Mandriva for many years. Over those years, they haven’t contributed significantly towards GNOME (KDE focussed, though a lot of their tools use Gtk+). Really does not matter how much is contributed. Though, this doesn’t mean people will not constantly ask for more contributions (the more contributors the merrier). That said, I don’t see Canonical doing much upstream, nor any limitations to not do that. Again, my view and I see it as something factual, not emotional.

Anyway, if you realize that things aren’t perfect I think it’ll be much easier. E.g. messages to release-team might be ignored for no reason. Doesn’t mean anything other than that it was not picked up. Some technology was propsosed and rejected for various reasons. Doesn’t mean it will always be rejected, or that there are reasons other than documented. Further, sometimes the reasons are explained in ways that what wasn’t intended (miscommunication).

Perhaps a cause is how the communication happens? E.g. avoid having any communication that not everyone in the world easily follow. Further, communicate in the places people expect. Might have avoided app indicators if everything started on desktop-devel-list and so on (though, ehr, not always the most productive mailing list).

I fully understand that Ubuntu and Canonical aren’t the same thing

From my perspective, whatever Canonical wants to do, will be done (e.g. Banshee thing). I don’t see this as negative, nor as positive. However, result of current situation is that direction of Ubuntu is strongly influenced by Canonical.

The method you use to make that money is subject to intense scrutiny

Just people voicing their opinions about what they think is right or wrong. It can be allowed by a licence, but you really don’t want everyone solely looking at what is exactly allowed by the small text / legal.

and insisting that all of their attempts to generate revenue fit into some warm, fuzzy picture of a benevolent cooperative for whom profit is incidental is unreasonable

This summary doesn’t reflect what feedback was given or what people don’t like. As such, I find it pretty disrespectful towards the people giving comments (talking about the posts on planet gnome).

start playing hard ball

Where I work (easy to find out, but in short: not a distribution), it won’t work long term. Sometimes you help your customer and/or vendor, sometimes they help you. Or as buzzwords: sustainability and cooperation.

chronic infighting

Chronic infighting? I don’t see any of that happening.

GNOME can understand and facilitate Canonical’s commercial goals

Ehrr… if Canonical wants to make money, go ahead. But don’t expect me to facilitate. I don’t even understand how it is meant when I think of the Canonical-Banshee incident (isn’t facilitating). Further, I work on things because I want to for various reasons.

I will be swallowing some of my pride by working on documentation for Unity and assigning the copyright to Canonical.

Talk to Michael Meeks how LibreOffice got *loads* more contributions immediately by not having copyright assignments (presentation @ FOSDEM).

Final comment

I probably said some stuff which probably will get explained in ways I didn’t intend, mean or expected.