"App" stores are all the rage these days, with everyone from Apple and
Amazon to mobile phone carriers and free software projects trying their
hand. KDE's Aaron Seigo recently announced
Bodega, which is a platform for publishing and distributing digital
content of various sorts. Bodega is initially targeted at
Plasma Active, KDE's touch-device-friendly mobile user interface, but
making it more widely applicable is definitely on the agenda. The first
version of Bodega actually shipped with Plasma Active 3 in mid-October "and people are, indeed, using
it", Seigo said.
Bodega goes beyond just serving up "apps", as it is meant to handle
anything that can be delivered over the network, including books, music,
artwork, services, and, yes, applications. Plasma Active's
"Add Ons" application uses the Bodega client code, which is based on lots
of KDE-specific libraries and frameworks. The server, on the other hand,
doesn't use KDE or even Qt, but instead uses node.js, PostgreSQL, and
Redis, none of which are particularly
KDE-related. One would not normally expect to see a program like that as
part of the KDE repository.
But the whole project—client and server—is being
proposed for inclusion into the KDE project. Seigo addresses questions
server side in a blog
post. He notes that the recently adopted KDE Manifesto makes it easier to see
why Bodega makes sense as a KDE project. In the past, it was more difficult:
Prior to the Manifesto, it was a lot harder to identify if something like
Bodega ought to belong under the KDE umbrella. Other server-side projects
struggled with this exact issue in the past, at times with rather
But, using the Manifesto and the related Principles of a KDE
Project, he makes a convincing case for bringing all of Bodega into
KDE. "Now it is quite straight-forward; we simply have to ask, 'Does it push forward KDE's technical agenda, and does it meet KDE's documented principles and commitments?'"
Bodega is organized around storefronts, each of which can give a different
view into a collective pile of content items, organized using tags. The
example Seigo uses is the KDE
project itself, which could run one Bodega instance that would allow each
sub-project to have its own "catalog" (i.e. storefront view). That catalog could contain items
from the common pool and items that are specific to the sub-project, along
with content from elsewhere on the net (e.g. free e-books from Project
Purchases are made using a points-based system, which is modeled on online video
game stores. Those points can be earned in a variety of ways, or
they can be purchased via credit card. Importantly, there is no
requirement for pricing the items at all. Free (as in beer) Bodegas
are definitely part of the plan.
The existing client integrates well with Plasma Workspaces, Seigo said, and
an HTML 5 version is likely. Right now, the client can install
applications (via PackageKit), Plasma packages, e-books, and wallpapers, but
it can be extended to install other kinds of content.
In addition to putting Bodega out for review, and possible inclusion into
KDE, Seigo is, of course, looking for more contributors. There is a fairly
extensive, if rough, "to do" list on the home page, which is one place to
start. He is also interested in feedback, naturally.
Since Bodega is free software, one of the first complaints heard was about
color name. In this case, though, the complaints may
be somewhat more than just bikeshedding. Evidently, depending on one's location,
"bodega" can mean anything from a small mini-market or grocery store
(likely in a Spanish-speaking area) to a winery to a cheap place to drink
and get drunk. The latter is an association some would rather avoid.
While that meaning is used in several places in Europe, there was not any
huge push to change the name—at least yet.
More substantively, Josef Spillner suggested two possibilities to add to Bodega:
physical goods. Basically the idea would be that Bodega could streamline
delivery and payment options for people to sell or share different
kinds of physical goods.
In addition, services like online storage or ownCloud synchronization
accounts could be integrated into Bodega.
Both of those ideas seemed plausible to
Seigo. In fact, work has already been done on integration with ownCloud.
Physical goods have requirements like shipping and inventory management
that certainly could be added, though they are likely to be further out, he
i won't exclude it as an idea for the future".
Overall, Bodega is an interesting vision of a free software marketplace. It
is clearly targeted at many different kinds of uses, for lots of different
projects and, perhaps eventually, companies. While it ticks the "app
store" checkbox for Plasma Active, it is aimed far beyond just that.
Comments (11 posted)
I personally believe LLVM is the latest shiny thing. It's not better
than gcc, it's just the new new new new cloud cloud cloud! equivalent of
compiler technology so everyone is falling over themselves to get on an
LLVM bandwagon in time to fragment the existing support we have, thus
requiring support for two compilers over just one. But that's a
digression. Suffice it to say, I'm not a fanboy.
— Jon Masters
public boolean isUserAGoat ()
Used to determine whether the user making this call is subject to
whether the user making this call is a goat
4.2 reference manual
Comments (7 posted)
the GNOME project will be dropping the GNOME 2-like fallback mode in
the 3.8 release. "We've come to the conclusion that we can't maintain
fallback mode in reasonable quality, and are better off dropping it.
Comments (130 posted)
1.2.0 has been released. It is the first version of the Python 2D plotting library to support Python 3. Beyond that, it adds support for PGF/TikZ output, 3D trisurface plots, streamplots, new features for Tripcolor, boxplot, colorbars, and contour plots, and more. "After months of hard work by a veritable army of contributors, I'm
pleased to announce the release of matplotlib 1.2.0.
This is the first time we've released without the assistance of John
Hunter, who is sorely missed. I hope this is at least a small way to
say thanks for all of his great work.
Full Story (comments: 3)
Tim Samoff has penned an open letter to Maemo and MeeGo community members on behalf of the Hildon Foundation Board, a new entity hoping to pick up the role vacated by Nokia when the company switched to the Windows Phone platform. "It is the Hildon Foundation that will oversee the transition of the Maemo Community away from Nokia and into the hands of the community. Of course, the Foundation is also
very concerned with ongoing development within both the Mer and Nemo
projects, so facilitating their future is also quite important."
Comments (3 posted)
The Mozilla Research blog introduces
, a new, open-source Flash runtime. "Mozilla’s mission is
to advance the Open Web. We believe that we can offer a positive experience
if we provide support for the SWF format that is still used on many web
sites, especially on mobile devices where the Adobe Flash Player is not
" Source is available on Github
Comments (30 posted)
Newsletters and articles
Comments (none posted)
At InfoWorld, Simon Phipps responded to Richard Stallman's WIRED essay on limiting the effects of software patents, via a counterproposal that he says will "adjust the system so that these patents cannot be used to harm the software industry, which to date hasn't needed patents to drive innovation." Phipps' proposal is to "make software patents only enforceable against implementations of standards where the patent was declared in the standards process. All other software contexts should become off-limits for patent enforcement." Nevertheless, he said, there will still need to be other measures to completely fix the software patent mess. (Thanks to Davide Del Vento)
Comments (51 posted)
On his blog, Aaron Seigo has a thoughtful
look at the role personality cults play in free software. Why should we worry about what Linus Torvalds runs on his desktop, he asks, as it is just one data point—one that gets hugely inflated because of who Torvalds is. "Let's step to the side and consider this from a different angle: Imagine that someone made Linus' perfect desktop environment. Something that satisfied him entirely and which he could happily talk about whenever he felt like it. Would that environment be interesting and useful for the general public, or would it be something great for kernel developers and grumpy-heads like Linus? It could go either way, really, because (once again) the fact that Linus liked it would not be useful information when held in isolation by itself.
Comments (71 posted)
Longtime GNOME hacker Federico Mena-Quintero reflects
on the kinds of complaints that occur frequently in and around free software communities. In a sharply worded blog post, complete with animated cat GIFs, he looks at some history, and adds a bit of ranting about complainers, bloggers, journalists, and so on. "We think, "good riddance" when someone threatens to stop using Gnome. (And our next thought is probably, poor people in the next project, who are going to suffer this person soon.)
All of those poisonous people are relatively easy to brush away. The crazies. The slashdot hordes, the peanut gallery. We make names for them — we encapsulate them, give them a name, go up one level of abstraction, take a gulp of Pepto, and move that named entity into a mental /dev/null. But they leave some residue.
Comments (235 posted)
Page editor: Nathan Willis
Next page: Announcements>>