Mobile Dev Camp Competition – Start coding!

Mobile Dev Camp is an event in Helsinki, which focuses on topics around the development of software for mobile devices. As announced before Nokia will be present there with a workshop and a competition. The idea of the competition is to implement an application on either a Symbian or a Maemo phone within 48 hours. From now on there are just 48 hours left and here are the rules:

To win the contest write an application in Qt for Maemo or Symbian, ideally for both, which:

  • integrates some aspect of the social web AND
  • the general topic is “OUTSIDE”

Be creative! Interprate the rules! And start coding now!

The best application will be announced by a jury. Looking forward to seeing you on Saturday!

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Helsinki: Mobile Dev Camp 2010

In less than week there will be the Mobile Dev Camp 2010 in Helsinki. The event is all about mobile devices and as well about Maemo. Planned activities from our side are:

Workshop:

People from Maemo Devices and Forum Nokia will be present in the Nokia workshop room during the entire event. Come around to ask questions, chat, ask for demonstrations and discuss about topics around the development environment. There won’t be a fixed schedule, but everything around your questions. Showing how to set-up the environment, small code-snippets, how to start developing for Nokia devices etc. The goal is to get the hands on Qt-development for mobile devices and have some fun. For the people who are working on applications for the competition, there will be support for all your questions.

Competition:

Around the event there will be a competition and Nokia will arrange one category. The basic idea of the competition is to implement a Qt application, which runs either on Maemo, on Symbian or on both and to do that in 48 hours. We offer basic support at the event. The topic about what you have to implement, we will be published on Thursday 17:00 (UTC) in the maemo.org wiki. Check out from there, where to sign up and what you can win.

We are looking forward to seeing you there. So if you can manage to be at the event, take the challenge and sign up for the competition!

Download-assistant for Extras-applications

After a complete renewal of the UI, which is designed by Andrew Zhilin (wazd), and a lot of improvements in the communication with the maemo.org servers, which could be implemented with the help of Henri Bergius, now the first version of the appdownloader is available in extras-devel (NOTE: Please be aware that this is just a first preview). If you want to avoid the activation of the extras-devel repository, please wait a bit until the software is stable enough and available in extras-testing. There are still some UI components missing, but it should give a general idea, about the look and feel of the application. At the moment the application includes,

  • listing applications by category, rating, number of downloads and date
  • search for applications
  • get a detailed description
  • launch the installation-process for an application
  • read the comments

Besides some missing icons, there are still some known issues:

  • Login and commenting not possible yet
  • slow scrolling in the comments view
  • no feedback at network error & if no items were found (e.g. search)
  • details view is not correct, if some screenshots are missing from the list

Your feedback is welcome, and if anybody wants to help, please let me know. Further details about the implementation you will find in the wiki. Bugs can be posted here. Again a big thanks to Andrew and Henri for their support and now some screenshots:

List of applications

Application details

List of comments

Extras testing, step by step

After some weeks using extras-testing and as the first people have the devices in their hands, one complain I heard is, that the documentation on how to use extras-testing might be not sufficient for some users. This is the reason for this little overview with questions and answers around the testing repository, hoping that this will help and promote the testing activity a bit.

Why testing the applications?
A nice description about the testing-process you can find in the wiki.

Which kind of places are there to get applications and what is the difference?

There exist three different community driven repositories:

  • extras:
    This is the place where the end-user can find applications, which are ready and tested.
  • extras-testing:
    Here are applications, which might have some issues and should not be for the real end-user usage. Applications you find here are meant to be proofed by experienced users, to ensure their quality or find possible blockers. This could be you, but be aware of possible risks.
  • extras-devel:
    Applications you find here are just meant for people who know what they are doing. They can be in pre-alpha status and should not be installed by normal end-users. You should know what you are doing by enabling this repository.

I’m aware of what I’m doing now, but what are the first steps, if I want to test an application?

After creating a backup, add the extras-testing repository. Therefore open the Application Manager and follow these steps:

1. Open the menu and click on “Application Catalogues”

2. Add the extras-testing repository (Web address: http://repository.maemo.org/extras-testing)

3. If you have the  extras-devel repository enabled, disable it with the “Disabled” checkbox to check possible dependency issues:

Now I can start testing, but what to look for?

Besides the obvious problems like battery drain, crashes, performance etc. you can find here a good summary of what you should look at, if you want to test applications.

I have reached an opinion about the application, but how to continue?

1. It is necessary to have an account on maemo.org. If you don’t have already one, you can register here.

2. You find the QA queue of applications, which are in extras-testing here. Find the application you just have tested and vote for it!

I hope this makes the testing-process a bit clearer and activates the people, who are able to help to join the group of testers ;)

Download client for applications

Some time ago I started a Qt based open source project, which is basically a download client for community applications in the extras-repository. The client should be used in addition to the native application manager and provide easily more information for the inexperienced user. The client will:

  • ease finding and sorting applications based on different criteria (ratings, number of downloads, categories, etc.)
  • search for applications with a free-text search
  • get basic information about the applications (like description, number of downloads, ratings, comments, screenshots, etc.)
  • send feedback (like ratings, comments)
  • download the installation file and pass it directly to the application manager, which handles the installation

Current Implementation

The current implementation is Qt based and uses a REST API, which is implemented by using the content part of the open collaboration services API. The idea is to request the data, and represent it in a similar manner as the web-interface of downloads.maemo.org. At the moment the following features are implemented:

  • getting the list of applications
  • search for applications
  • get application details (like comments, screenshot, description)
  • download the installation-file and open the application manager.

The implementation is still work in progress. The screenshots show a bit about the look and feel of the application. All source-code is available in a git repository in garage. In the next week I will concentrate my work to make the code more readable and polish it, so that if anybody is interested in contributing in the project they will have an easier start. Some changes to the back-end have to be done and some functionality has to be added (icons, filter, feedback). Please let me know if you are interested. I hope to receive further ideas and some feedback.

Screenshots

Screenshot-20091021-091717Screenshot-20091021-111540

Screenshot-20091021-112128Screenshot-20091021-112142

Maemo SSO Q&A / discussion WEDNESDAY 12:00 UTC

Hi all,

I’ve just updated the wiki and added some information regarding the Maemo SSO there, to let you know where we are right now. The status of the test-environment is not yet in a shape to make it public for testing for everyone, but as soon as we get there I will inform you. As there was some discussion about the concept and status and as there is a discussion needed about the Midgard integration, I set up a meeting in IRC (#maemo-meeting) and you are free to join if you have questions or ideas.


The test environment as such contains now the authentication service, based on CAS, the first integration of the mediawiki, and a first implementation of a user management system. Tomorrow I hope to get some feedback, ideas and give some more details, if there is interest.

Cu tomorrow then in IRC,

Cheers Daniel

SSO – Update I

As maemo.org is now in beta mode and the new style is adapted to almost all the different services of the community side, the need for a proper SSO solution increased. So I want to give a brief update, to show that the work on this solution is ongoing. Some weeks ago I proposed a possible way to adapt a SSO-concept to the set of services and after some discussion about that it will contain these components:

  • CAS as a centralised authentication server
  • The user-authentication will be realised against a LDAP directory in the first place, later by OpenID
  • Services will interact with the server by using provided client libraries

The reasons for this set up can be found here. At the moment I am working on building up a test environment and start to integrate the services, which are needed. I will keep you up-to date how the work is proceeding.

Hyvää vappua ;)

Daniel