foss-north – Schedule available

Just a short update on foss-north – the schedule is up. We have a whole list of speakers that I’m super excited about and tickets are selling well. I still don’t know what to expect, but more than 1/3 of the tickets are gone and the sales numbers are actually even better for the full priced tickets than the early birds.

Speakers will cover everything from design, methodology, licensing, embedded tech, networking, IoT, start-ups, innovation – a broad spectrum demonstrating the versatility of free and open source.

To sum things up – it looks like we might actually pull this off and I still can treat my family with a vacation instead of paying for unused catering ;-)

Vacation 2015

IMG_20150703_172538So, vacation has finally arrived in 2015. To the despair of some, and joy of others, the Swedish standard vacation is 3-5 weeks over the summer. I’ll be having five weeks of this year.

So, what do you do with five weeks? Generally, I start out ambitious and end up in reality after 3-4 weeks and then scramble to get something done. Here is my list for the summer 2015:

  • Hang out with the kids and wife and do fun stuff.
  • Do some work around the house (a shed for our bikes and some general painting are on the wish list).
  • Get the calendar for foss-gbg into place. It does look as if we will have an awesome autumn.
  • Work on a whole bunch of little Yocto projects that I’ve been planning for a while (meta-kf5 being one of the high priority ones, playing with various targets such as the Raspberry Pi 2, Beagle Bone Black and more another).
  • Getting my 3D printer back into shape and do something fun with it (if it rains a lot)

That summarizes my ambition pretty much – but first things first – lets spend a few days hanging out with the kids before they grow tired of me and think that I’m old and boring :-)

Ardour 4 on Debian Jessie

The Ardour project just announced version four of the digital audio workstation. Debian carries version 3, so I decided to build version 4 myself. Here is a summary from what I learned.

First of all, the Ardour people have written a building page and a list of dependencies. The do carry a set of patches towards some of the packages. These seems to be more or less small fixes, apart from the libsndfile that has a bug fix for handling BWF files.

In addition to the patches libs, the requirements list a whole range of gtk and corresponding -mm packages as well as boost, and varous codecs and such. I decided not to care too much about versions for these packages. Instead, I just took whatever I could find in Debian. The packages installed are:

  • libsndfile1-dev
  • libgnomecanvas2-dev
  • libsigc++-2.0-dev
  • libcairo2-dev
  • liblrdf0-dev
  • libfreetype6-dev
  • libboost1.55-all-dev
  • libfftw3-dev
  • libglibmm-2.4-dev
  • libcairomm-1.0-dev
  • libpangomm-1.4-dev
  • libatkmm-1.6-dev
  • libart2.0-cil-dev
  • libgnomecanvasmm-2.6-dev
  • liblo-dev
  • libraptor2-dev
  • librasqal3-dev
  • libogg-dev
  • libflac-dev
  • libvorbis-dev
  • libsamplerate0-dev
  • libaudio-dev
  • liblv2dynparam1-dev
  • libserd-dev
  • libsord-dev
  • libsratom-dev
  • liblilv-dev
  • libsuil-dev
  • librubberband-dev
  • vamp-plugin-sdk
  • libaubio-dev
  • libjack-dev
  • liblilv-dev

Then it is just a matter of configuring using waf.

./waf configure --with-backend=alsa --prefix=/wherever/you/want/it
make
./waf install

My plan is to use ALSA (i.e. not JACK) and installing libjack-dev meant that Skype got kicked out, so the system needed some love to restore the order.

apt-get autoremove
apt-get remove libjack-dev
apt-get remove libjack0
dpkg --install skype-debian_4.3.0.37-1_i386.deb
apt-get install -f

Despite this little hack, Ardour seems to work nicely and record and play back. I still need to test out some more features to see if everything is in place, but it looks hopeful.

Update! As pointed out in the comments, Debian not only carries a really old version but also version 3.

Saving code

As you probably know by now, Gitorious is shutting down. A lot of history sits on that site, and much of the code is no longer maintained. Browsing around, I ran into the maemo-tools that has not been touched since 2013. There are still some useful stuff there, so I decided to save it. All tool repositories has been cloned to the maemo-tools-old organization on github.

As I’m only a happy user, I would love to invite the original maintainers, or other interested developers to come work on it, so if you want an invite to the organization so that you can maintain the code, just drop me a mail at e8johan, gmail, com.

meta-kf5 usable

Finally I’ve had the time to work over the final issues in meta-kf5. Right now, I build most tier 1 and tier 2 components. I’ve packaged most functional modules and integration modules from these tiers.

When it comes to integration modules, there might be missing dependencies that need to be added – but that should not be too hard to add.

To be able to create useable cmake files, I had to employ a small hack modifying the cmake-files from KF5 before installing and packaging them. This seems to work (i.e. tier 2 builds), but there might be other sed-expressions that are needed.

Also, the autotests are not built as long at Qt5Test is left out form the build. If you would add Qt5Test, I believe that the unit tests will be included in the same package as the libs. I’ll address this as I integrate the autotests into ptest.

Summing up all of this, I’d say that the meta-kf5 layer now is usable!

That is all for now. As always, contributions are welcome! If you find a use for this, I’d be happy to add your project as a reference to the layer!

Another hacknight in Gothenburg

The following announcement is in Swedish. Please ignore it if it does not make sense to you!

foss-gbgVälkomna på foss-gbg hackafton!

Den 28/5 17:00 träffas vi för att lära oss om GNOME.

Andreas Nilsson och Mattias Bengtsson introducerar projektet, verktygen och hjälper er komma igång.

Vid åttasnåret drar vi vidare och umgås över en öl.

Pelagicore står för lokaler och bjuder på lättare tilltugg under tillställningen.

Inget inträde, men begränsat antal platser. Anmälan på eventbrite.

Welcome to another hack-night in Gothenburg

This post is in Swedish, please ignore if it does not make sense to you.

Välkomna till en hackafton den 23/4.

Vi träffas och hackar på våra projekt, samt lyssnar till två korta föredrag. Vi bjuder på lättare förtäring under hackandet och sedan
drar vi vidare till Biljardpalatset och umgås.

Spelar licensen någon roll?

Henrik o Rikard / Morus
Vi tittar på hur företag idag använder FOSS. Vilka möjligheter finns och vilka trender ser vi nu. Vi börjar och avslutar med ett licens-Quiz.

Introduktion till BeagleBone Black

Johan o Jeremiah / Pelagicore
Vi presenterar BeagleBone Black-plattformen – en perfekt utgångspunkt för Linux-baserade hårdvaruhack. Vi bygger en Yocto-baserad distro för den, men kör även en färdigbyggd Debian-distro.

Pelagicore sponsrar med mat och lokaler!

One week of Jolla

So I’ve enjoyed my first few days as a Jolla user. Before I start discussing Jolla and SailFishOS, something about my phone background. I’ve come from Symbian S60, to the N900, then N9 followed by various Androids before getting my Jolla just before Christmas (great timing – thanks!). This means that I came from a non-service oriented background to Android, and now I finally realize the strength of Android’s service lock-in first-hand. It is really inconvenient moving from Android and Google’s official clients for their services to a platform with third party clients to existing services.

My feelings regarding Jolla are mixed. I want them to succeed. I believe that they are right providing a platform based on Qt, native code and a more generic Linux stack and Android. Unfortunately, I think that this is a classic second system. All ideas have been taken a bit to far, and the end result is… not ideal.

When the N9 arrived it introduced swipes on a whole new level. The level was just right. Everything felt natural, and going to a Samsung S3 felt really clumsy. Since then, swipes have been established by most platforms. On Android you swipe from the top to reach the settings and notifications, in GMail you archive mails by swiping sideways, etc. On the Jolla, there are too many layers of swipeable surfaces, and the simpleness breaks as the user cannot predict what will happen. An example is the photo gallery. Tap to enters the camera photos, tap a photo to enter that photo, and now try to get back out. Swiping sideways moves you between the photos, so swiping back does not work. Instead, you have to tap the photo to get a header with sharing options. Now you can swipe back in that header. Not very intuitive.

Another interesting swipe experience is in the mail client when composing a mail. Then you can reach the top menu by swiping down, or up. Not really a problem, but confusing.

One of the parts of the platform that I was curious about was the Android integration. The Jolla comes with Yandex store. I added the HumbleBundle Android app as well. Compared to my Android devices, the experience is really good. Installations are quick, app performance is good. The only “glitch” is that the Android instance is treated as one app inside SailFishOS, so it is not possible to directly switch between Android apps without first picking the last used Android app and then swithing inside Android.

During my time as a Jolla user I’ve seen two software updates, so the platform is evolving. Right now it feels like a Nokia device. The hardware looks really great and really provides a good performance. Unfortunately, the software is lacking. I hope that the Jolla sailors will have the stamina and strength to take the platform all the way. I really want them to succeed.

Qt 5 Cadaques is Released!

Juergen Bocklage-Ryannel and myself are writing a book! As we’ve reached the point where we want to share our work with the workd, we are happy to open the doors to the book Qt 5 Cadaques – A Book about Qt 5! It all started a couple of years back, when two developers saw a need: there where no books approaching Qt from the QML side. We decided to solve the problem by writing a book.

During these years, lots has happened in the land of Qt. The ecosystem around the Qt Project has stabilized after the whole Microsoft-Nokia thing. Jolla has released a phone with Qt 5, as has Blackberry. Ubuntu Phone will be based on Qt 5. The Raspberry Pi has taken on the whole world with a great hardware that runs great with Qt 5. It is now possible to target both Android and iOS using Qt 5.

Looking at these changes, one can see that Qt really has grown towards mobile. Towards device user interfaces. User interfaces where the look and feel has to be integrated into the context of a physical device. This is where Qt Quick and QML really shines. Before I go on, it is worth pointing out that the Qt ecosystem has grown towards mobile, it has not moved there. The cross platform desktop support is still there and works just as great as it has for almost 20 years now!

For aspiring Qt developers, there is a plethora of documentation for using Qt from C++. There are multiple books on the topic. However, when targetting devices, C++ is only a part of the story. Here, Qt Quick and QML are equally important. That is why we are happy to make Qt 5 Cadaques available!

A final word of warning. The book is being written as you read it. We believe in the open source mantra release early, release often. This means that the text currently is in its early stages. We have setup a feedback system so that you as a reader can help us improve the material by pointing out issues. We are also looking for ways to grow the contents. We also keep a project blog on the site to announce our releases and to ask you about your opinion on the book. We would love for you to tell us what you want to read about!