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David

Another edition of the Ubuntu App Developer Week and another amazing knowledge sharing fest around everything related to application development in Ubuntu. Brought to you by a range of the best experts in the field, here’s just a sample of the topics they talked about: App Developer Strategy, Bazaar, Bazaar Explorer, Launchpad, Python, Internationalization, Launchpad Translations, Unity, Unity 2D, Gedit Developer Plugins, the MyApps Portal, the App Review Board, the UbuntuSoftware Centre, Unity Mail, Launchpad Daily Builds, Ubuntu One APIs, Rapid App Development, Quickly, GooCanvas, PyGame, Unity Launcher, Vala, the App Developer Site, Indicators, Python Desktop Integration, Libgrip, Multitouch, Unity Lenses, Ubuntu One Files Integration, The Business Side of Apps, Go, Qt Quick… and more. Oh my!

And a pick of what they had to say:

We believe that to get Ubuntu from 20 million to 200 million users, we need more and better apps on Ubuntu
Jonathan Lange on making Ubuntu a target for app developers

Bazaar is the world’s finest revision control system
Jonathan Riddell on Bazaar

So you’ve got your stuff, wherever you are, whichever device you’re on
Stuart Langridge on Ubuntu One

Oneiric’s EOG and Evince will be gesture-enabled out of the box
Jussi Pakkanen on multitouch in Ubuntu 11.10

I control the upper right corner of your screen ;-)
Ted Gould on Indicators

If you happened to miss any of the sessions, you’ll find the logs for all of them on the Ubuntu App Developer Week page, and the summaries for each day on the links below:

Ubuntu App Developer Week – Day 5 Summary

The last day came with a surprise: an extra session for all of those who wanted to know more about Qt Quick and QML. Here are the summaries:

Getting A Grip on Your Apps: Multitouch on GTK apps using Libgrip

By Jussi Pakkanen

In his session, Jussi talked about one of the most interesting technologies where Ubuntu is leading the way in the open source world: multitouch. Walking the audience through the Grip Tutorial, he described how to add gesture support to existing applications based on GTK+ 3. He chose to focus on the higher layer of the uTouch stack, where he explained the concepts on which libgrip, the gesture library, is built upon, such as device types and subscriptions. After having explored in detail the code examples, he then revealed that in Oneiric Eye Of GNOME and Evince, Ubuntu’s default image viewer and default PDF reader, will be gesture-enabled.

Check out the session log.

Creating a Google Docs Lens

By Neil Patel

Neil introduced his session explaining the background behind Lenses: a re-architecture effort of the now superseded Places concept to make them more powerful, provide more features and make it easier to add features through a re-engineered API. Lenses create its own instance, add categories, filters and leave the searching to Scopes. The Lenses/Scopes pairs are purely requests for data, independent of the type of UI, and being provided by the libunity library, they can be written in any of the programming languages supported by GObject Introspection (Python, Javascript, C/C++, Vala, etc.). To illustrate all of this concepts, Neil devoted the rest of the session to a real example of creating a Lens for Google Docs.

Check out the session log.

Practical Ubuntu One Files Integration

By Michael Terry

Another hands-on session from Michael, with a real world example on how to supercharge apps with cloud support. Using his experience in integrating the Ubuntu One Files API to Deja Dup, the default backup application in Ubuntu, he went in detail through the code of a simple program to talk to a user’s personal Ubuntu One file storage area. We liked Michael’s session so much that it will very soon be featured as a tutorial on developer.ubuntu.com!

Check out the session log and Michael’s awesome notes.

Publishing Your Apps in the Software Center: The Business Side

By John Pugh

Ubuntu directly benefits from Canonical becoming a sustainable business to support its development, and that’s exactly what John talked about. Being responsible for business development in the Ubuntu Software Centre, he’s got a privileged  insight on how to make it happen. He started off explaining that the main goal is to present Ubuntu users with a large catalog of apps available for purchase, and then continued concentrating on how to submit paid applications to be published in the Software Centre. A simple 5-step process, the behind-the-scenes work can be summarized in: Canonical helps packaging the app, it hosts the app and provides the payment via pay.ubuntu.com, in a 80%/20% split. Other highlights include the facts that only non-DRM, non-licensed apps cannot be submitted right now, but there is ongoing work to implement license key support, and that MyApps, the online app submission portal, can take any nearly any content: apps with adverts, “free” online game clients and HTML5 apps.

Check out the session log.

Writing an App with Go

By Gustavo Niemeyer

Gustavo’s enthusiasm for Go, the new programming language created by Google shows every time you start a conversation with him on that topic. And it showed as well on this session, in which he created yet another “Hello world” application in a new language -you guessed-: Go. Along the way, he had time to describe all of the features of this new addition of the extensive family of programming languages: statically compiled with good reflection capabilities, structural typing, interfaces and more.

Check out the session log.

Qt Quick At A Pace

By Donald Carr

Closing the week on the last -and surprise- session, we had the luxury of having Donald, from the Nokia Qt team, the makers of Qt itself, to talk about Qt Quick. Using a clear and concise definition, Qt Quick is an umbrella term used to refer to QML and its associated tooling; QML being a declarative markup language with tight bindings to Javascript. A technology equally suited to mobile or to the desktop, QML enables developers to rapidly create animation-rich, pixmap-oriented UIs. Through the qtmediahub and Qt tutorial examples, he explored QML’s capabilities and offered good practices for succesfully developing QML-based projects.

Check out the session log.

Wrapping Up

Finally, if you’ve got any feedback on UADW, on how to make it better, things you enjoyed or things you believe should be improved, your comments will be very appreciated and useful to tailor this event to your needs.

Thanks a lot for participating. I hope you enjoyed it  as much as I did, and see you again in 6 months time for another week full with app development goodness!


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David

Ubuntu App Developer Week – Day 4 Summary

Last day of UADW! While we’re watching the final sessions, here’s what happened yesterday:

Creating an App Developer Website: developer.ubuntu.com

By John Oxton and David Planella

Creating the concept and implementing a site for app developers is no easy task. The Ubuntu App Developer site is meant to be a place for app authors to get started with development, to find the information they need and to be able to publish their apps in the Software Centre. John explained all the research and user testing that happened behind the scenes, highlighting the key findings, while David focused on the purpose of the site, where it fits in the overall developer strategy for Ubuntu and the plans for the future.

Check out the session log here.

Rapid App Development with Quickly

By Michael Terry

Fitting nicely topicwise with the questions about the default choice of tools for Ubuntu development on the previous session, Michael gave an overview of what Quickly is and how to use it. Going through the workflow of creating your first app with Quickly, he demonstrated all the key commands and explained in detail all the bits in between.

Check out the session log here.

Developing with Freeform Design Surfaces: GooCanvas and PyGame

By Rick Spencer

Rick started off the session explaining what GooCanvas and PyGame were good for: providing a 2D surface on which to construct interactive GUIs for users. Beginning with GooCanvas, he showed with a very simple example how to get started playing with 2D composing surfaces, adding images, text and doing other operations such as resizing and calculating coordinates to determine clicks. Next up was PyGame, for the same purpose, but better suited for apps with lots of animation updates without user input. He then wrapped up with three samples of simple games to study.

Check out the session log here.

Making your app appear in the Indicators

By Ted Gould

Ted Gould, the man who controls the upper right corner of our screen, talked all about indicators. The idea was to illustrate how to get the information that comes from applications and handle it to the indicators. First up was the messaging menu, a menu to handle human-to-human communication, next the application indicators, which alllow long-running apps to put statuses on the panel consistently, and finally the sound indicator, taking care of all related to sound. Each one of them explained with code examples. Nice!

Check out the session log here.

Will it Blend? Python Libraries for Desktop Integration

By Marcelo Hashimoto

Marcelo shared his experience acquired with Polly, a Twitter client he developed, on using Python and libraries to let apps provide better integration to the desktop. First explaining the concept of desktop integration, stressing the fact that it’s not only about visuals. The rest of the session was structured around 3 main areas: how to send notifications to the user, where to place files read or written by an app and what to use to store sensitive information. A very clear and solid session, also with example code for easy learning.

Check out the session log here.

The Day Ahead: Upcoming Sessions for Day 4

Check out the first-class lineup for the last day of UADW:

16.00 UTCGetting A Grip on Your Apps: Multitouch on GTK apps using Libgrip

Multitouch is everywhere these days, and now on your desktop as well -brought to you by developers such as Jussi Pakkanen, who’ll guide through using libgrip to add  touch support to your GTK+ apps. Learn how to use this cool new library in your own software!

17:00 UTCCreating a Google Docs Lens

Lenses are ways of presenting data coming from different sources in Unity. Neil Patel knows Lenses inside out and will present a practical example of how to create a Google Docs one. Don’t miss this session on how to put two cool technologies together!

18:00 UTCPractical Ubuntu One Files Integration

Yet again the Deja-dup rockstar and UADW regular Michael Terry will be sharing his deep knowledge on developing apps. This time it’s about adding cloud support to applications: integrating with the Ubuntu One files API.

19:00 UTCPublishing Your Apps in the Software Center: The Business Side

Closing the series of sessions around publishing apps in the Software Centre, we’ll have the luxury of having John Pugh, from the team that brings you commercial apps into the Software Centre and who’ll be talking about the business side of things.

20:00 UTC – Writing an App with Go

Go is the coolest kid around in the world of programming languages. Gustavo Niemeyer is very excited about it and will be showing you how to write an app using this language from Google. Be warned, his enthusiasm is contagious!

20:00 UTC – Qt Quick At A Pace

A last minute and very welcome addition to the schedule. In his session Donald Carr will introduce you to Qt Quick to create applications with Qt Creator and QML, the new declarative language that brings together designers and developers.

Looking forward to seeing you all there!


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David

Ubuntu App Developer Week – Day 1 Summary

The first day of Ubuntu App Developer Week is over and we’re ramping up to day 2! A great start and lots of interest in the audience. Here is a small summary from yesterday’s schedule.

Making Ubuntu a Target for App Developers

By Jonathan Lange

Jono, who has recently started working on the Ubuntu developer programme after having been developing and defining the strategy on Launchpad for the last 5 years, started off explaining that to cross the chasm and to get our OS from 20 million to 200 million users, we need more and better apps on Ubuntu. There are some key aspects to this goal, coinciding with areas of ongoing work:

  • A place – making some place that app developers can go to in order to learn how to develop for Ubuntu (developer.ubuntu.com)
  • A definition – defining a platform for developers to target
  • A channel – a smooth, short, safe path from developers to their users and back again (the Ubuntu Software Centre and MyApps)

After expanding on the subjects of automatic packaging and security, the conclusion is that with all of these pieces in place -Software Centre, developer portal, a defined platform, automagic packaging, safe mechanisms for distributing new apps & paying developers- then Ubuntu becomes something that developers can seriously start to target

Check out the session log here.

Introducing Bazaar Explorer: Version Control for your Apps

By Jonathan Riddell

“Bazaar is the world’s finest revision control system” – an awesome quote to start an equally awesome session. With this, and with the idea that Bazaar needs to be available to anyone, not only to those already comfortable with the command line, Jonathan Riddell provided a tour of the most feature-rich GUI for Bazaar. Illustrating the most common commands for everyday use and with plenty of pictures, he provided an excellent overview of how this powerful, cross-platform, graphical interface for bzr can make life much easier to app developers.

Check out the session log here.

Your App & Launchpad best practices

By Jason DeRose

Jason’s session on how to make the best use of Launchpad, the online collaboration and hosting suite for your projects, was structured around 3 central points: 1. Why should you host your project in Launchpad? To which his answer was: because PPAs, daily builds and lots of users; 2. How to set up your app to use Launchpad, where he guided participants through the process of creating a Launchpad project and offering some insights on best practices. Finally, on 3. Using Launchpad to engage developers he wrapped up with a series of recommendations and tips to ease and foster contributions to your project. More on the session log :)

Check out the session log here.

Getting Started With Python: a Hello World App

By Alan Bell

As a grand finale to the day, Alan delivered a beginner-friendly session on the basics of the Python programming language. Assuming no prior knowledge, he walked participants through the classical “Hello world” example in Python, which universally greets programming novices on the terminal with a friendly welcome message. Along the way, he explained in detail all the extra bits to make this simple application run and be useful as a kickstart to becoming a full-blown Python programmer.

Check out the session log here.

The Day Ahead: Upcoming Sessions for Day 2

More app development goodness for fun and profit: here’s today’s schedule.

16.00 UTCMaking Your App Speak Languages with Launchpad Translations

Did you know that along with code hosting, release management, bug tracking and support, you can also use Launchpad to get your app translated?. David Planella will explain you how to set up your app in Launchpad for translations and give you some advice on building a translator community around it.

17:00 UTCThe Making of Unity 2D

Unity needs to run on every type of desktop, from those with powerful 3D graphics processors to those only able to run in 2D. Unity 2D was born out of the need to provide a near identical experience as its 3D counterpart on systems which cannot rely on 3D graphical processing, such as ARM computers. Florian Boucault will talk about what Unity 2D is, how it was designed, and the technologies used to implement it.

18:00 UTCMaking App Development Easy: Gedit Developer Plugins

Gedit is Ubuntu’s lightweight yet powerful default text editor. Its flexible plugin architecture means that it can easily be extended to meet any need. Curtis Hovey will guide you through his Gedit Developer Plugins to help you convert a general-purpose editor into the perfect programming editor.

19:00 UTCPublishing Your Apps in the Software Center: the MyApps Portal

Canonical is taking app developers very seriously,and one of the important aspects of ensuring a smooth workflow for submitting and publishing applications into the Ubuntu Software Centre is providing the right set of tools. Anthony Lenton will tell you the story behind the MyApps tool and how app authors can use it to submit their apps.

20:00 UTC – Publishing Your Apps in the Software Center: The App Review Board

If you are an open source developer and want to publish your libre + gratis app into the Ubuntu Software Centre, the App Review Board (ARB) will take care of reviewing it, ensuring it is up to the Ubuntu standards and help you publishing it for all users to install. Stéphane Graber is a member of the ARB and will explain how the Board works and the steps to successfully submit an app for review.

Looking forward to seeing you all there in a few hours!


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David

Ubuntu App Developer Week – Day 2 Summary

Wow, what a great follow-up to the first day! The second Ubuntu App Developer Week brought lots of awesome: great speakers and sessions, great participation, improvisation, Python, GTK, KDE, Qt, PyGI, Zeitgeist, Gstreamer, Introspection, Thunderbird, Unity, API Integration, hacking, fun… all the buzzwords you can associate when developing in your favourite Free Software Platform.

PyGTK is dead, long live PyGI! Using gobject-introspection in Python

By Martin Pitt

Martin’s complementary session to the GObject Introspection (GI) one on Monday was very popular. He started off with a recap of what GI is and the importance of the availability of several programming language bindings in any modern development platform. He provided an overview on how GI works in practice, and then delved into how it actually works in Python through the use of Pygobject and the gi.repository module, with lots of coding examples and comparison with traditiona GTK+ C code. After that he described other API differences, in particular the caveats with contructoirs, passing arrays, output arguments, GDestroyNotify and what to do with non-introspectable functions or methods. The next topic where overrides: how to provide custom code to override the introspected library’s objects. The second part of the session focused on explaining in detail how to migrate old PyGtk code to GTK3 and PyGI, in a series of easy guidelines: renaming, checking and repeating, and packaging changes. He wrapped up with a series of pointers on how to learn more and a Q+A session with lots of interesting questions from the audience.

Check out the session log here.

Zeitgeist API & Zeitgeist Application Integration

By Manish Sinha (???? ??????) and Seif Lotfy

For this session we had the luxury of having two key members of the Zeitgeist project to explain us all the details on how to integrate it to your own projects.  Manish, one of the Zeitgest developers, kicked off with an introduction on what Zeitgeist is: an automatic event logger which logs the events that happen on your computer. He then went on through the details of the Zeitgest terminology (events, manifestations, actors, timestamps…), architecture, and its interaction with D-Bus, with an overview of the API interface and the existing bindings: Python, C/Vala and C#. The session went on with examples of how real world applications and data providers use Zeitgeist, such as EOG plugins or Tomboy. Seif then chipped in with an example of  how Zeitgeist support was integrated into a GEdit plugin. Throughout the session lots of interesting questions were raised by the audience.

Check out the session log here.

GStreamer+Python: Multimedia Swiss Army Machete

By Jason DeRose

A very intersesting session indeed. In it, Jason explained all the points why GStreamer is the multimedia framework due to its economy of scale and why Python is the perfect complement with its simplicity and language clarity. According to him, together they provide the ultimative multimedia development tool, and this was why he chose to use them in hos own project: Novacut, the distributed video editor. From this point on, it was “Learning by doing”, and he then walked thorugh the code examples he’d set up for the session, showcasing how simple it is to work with multimedia streams with his swiss army machete :)

Check out the session log here.

KDE Development Intro: Q+A

By Harald Sitter and Jonathan Riddell

I’d especially like to mention this session due to a change of schedule. The original speaker, KDE/Kubuntu ninja Joathan Thomas could not make if due to last-minute commitments. But no worries, KDE/Kubuntu friends are always there to lend a hand, and in no time Harald and Jonathan stepped up to fill the gap and do an impromptu KDE Development Intro and Q+A session. In there they gave an overview on the essentials every prospective KDE developer should know and answered in detail the questions in the audience. All in all a great insight on how to get started developing KDE apps.

Check out the session log here.

Thunderbird + Unity = Awesome, and how JSCtypes lets you get to the candy

By Mike Conley

Mike has been working over the last 3 months at Mozilla on ways in which Thunderbird can integrate nicely into Ubuntu, in particular with Unity. He started explaining the main points he’s been focusing on: the messaging menu, the Unity launcher adn Ubuntu One, and for the rest of the session he covered the first two. Going straight to the subject, the next topic was to explain what a Thunderbird extension is, and how they are written using a mixture of Javascript, the XUL mark-up language and CSS, all executed by the Gecko engine. He then introduced JS-CTypes, which allow developers to access C libraries directly from Chrome-level Javascript code. and how he used them to write a Unity launcher add-on. the resto of the session focused on this subject, with plenty of code examples.

Check out the session log here.

STORY: Unity, hacking on a real-world app

By Marco Trevisan

The last session of the day was one of my favourite ones: an inspiring personal story. Marco is a community contributor to Unity who told us about his journey since he found an application itch to scratch and until his own feature was landed. He started with a very easy to understand overview of the Unity architecture and how all the pieces fit together, following with the story on how he found something that needed improvement and how he went about fixing it: indicator-sound not being precise when setting the volume with the mouse wheel. Do read it, as it is going to be a great help to all of you who are looking on how to get started contributing to Ubuntu development.

Check out the session log here.

The Day Ahead: Upcoming Sessions for Day 3

A quick look at today’s session lineup for your development pleasure:

16:00 UTC
Qt Quick: QML the Language – Jürgen Bocklage-Ryannel
Here’s a special treat for anyone interested in Qt development: Jürgen Bocklage-Ryannel, from Nokia, the maker of Qt, will be introducing Qt Quick and QML as the language used in Qt Quick. He’ll be showing some elements of the UI and the general process, and tell you the right places to go to to get more information.

17:00 UTC
Make your applications work in the cloud with Ubuntu OneStuart Langridge
Who else than the Ubuntu One mastermind himself could tell you better about supercharging your apps with cloud functionality? Join Stuart in this talk where he’ll be describing how to integrate Ubuntu One into your applications and bring your users to cloud 9 ;)

18:00 UTC
Take control of your desktop easily with DBusAlejandro J. Cura
D-Bus, the cross-desktop message bus system, is becoming more and more ubiquitous in any Free Software distribution. You can bring your applications to a whole new level letting them talk to other ones in a desktop session, and Alejandro can tell you exactly how to do that.

19:00 UTC
Touchégg: Bringing Multitouch Gestures to your DesktopJosé Expósito
It’s always great to see real-world examples of how the newest and coolest technologies are being used. José will be showcasing his multitouch-based application, Touchégg, introducing its features, describing how to add new multitouch gestures, the technologies used to develop it, and how it uses the uTouch-GEIS API. Check out the summary and the logs from the other Multitouch session on Monday to learn more.

20:00 UTC
Unity: Integrating with Launcher and PlacesMikkel Kamstrup Erlandsen
Do you want your application to seamlessly blend into the new Ubuntu user interface experience? Do you want it to provide all interaction capabilities that Unity provides? Then join Unity developer Mikkel Kamstrup in his walkthrough with examples on how to plug your app into the Launcher and Places API.

21:00 UTC
Tracking Source Code History with BazaarJelmer Vernooij
Learn how to control the history of your source code with a distributed and modern revision control system. Bazaar is powerful, fast, and most importantly, easy and fun to use. Jelmer has had a lot to do in developing Bazaar, so he knows well what he’s talking about. Join him in this session where he’ll tell you the basics and more sophisticated uses of the revision control system used to develop Ubuntu and thousands of other projects in Launchpad.

Looking forward to seeing you all there in a few hours!


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