Here's a low-barrier way to help improve FLOSS apps – AppStream metadata: Round 1

UPDATE: This program is full now! We are so excited that we’ve got the number of volunteers we needed to assign all of the developer-related packages we identified for this round! THANK YOU! Any further applications will be added to a wait list (in case any of the assignees need to drop any of their assigned packages.) Depending on how things go, we may open up another round in a couple of weeks or so, so we’ll keep you posted! Thanks again!! — Mo, Ryan, and Hughsie Do you love free and open source software? Would you like to help make it better, but don’t have the technical skills to know where you can jump in and help out? Here is a fantastic opportunity! The Problem There is an cross-desktop, cross-distro, Freedesktop.org project called AppStream. In a nutshell, AppStream is an effort to standardize metadata about free and open source applications. Rather than every distro have its own separate written description for Inkscape, for example, we’d have a shared and high-quality description of Inkscape that would be available to users of all distros. Why is this kind of data important? It helps free desktop users discover applications that might meet …

GIMP 2.7 for Photoshop Expatriates

Well, I got into a Photoshop vs. Gimp pissing match. Sigh. Lots of rich manure left behind in the aftermath. Why not try to plant a seed and grow a useful vegetable from it? So here’s a quick screencast (created using GNOME Shell’s built-in screen recorder with audio using a trick posted to GNOME bugzilla by my colleague Dan Allen) that shows how to do some of the things folks more used to Photoshop told me they wished they could do in Gimp. I also threw in a little demo of the Gimp Paint Studio plug-in that I’m in the process of packaging up for Fedora. Should you happen upon this and have questions about how to do other stuff you’re used to in Photoshop (or any bitmap tool) and can’t figure out in the Gimp, let me know and I’ll try to screencast it. With the new trick configured in my GNOME shell setup, it is so dead simple to do screencasts I’m looking for excuses to do more! UPDATE: Uh, the link to the video off of the thumbnail preview actually works now 🙂 Thanks to ‘k’ for pointing it out in the comments!

Gimp Cage Tool

I really love the cage transform tool in the GIMP. It was first developed by Google Summer of Code student Michael Muré in 2010 and finished by Gimp developer Alexia Death. It allows you to define an area within an image (in my case, the four corners of the whiteboard frame) and drag on those points to stretch the image out. For this whiteboard photo that was taken at an angle, this process resulted in a straightened-out image of the whiteboard. (I followed up with a Difference of Gaussians cleanup that Garrett taught me a while back 🙂 ) It’s a pretty magical tool. Give it a try!

Rough mountpoint mapping & cool x220 setup

Some scribbles from a discussion in #anaconda with dlehman where we pondered over the overall flow / navigation of the advanced partitioning screen mockups in Fedora’s installer after showing them to Spot and lmacken and uncovering some issues. Will this go anywhere? No idea. We’re working it. What might be more interesting to you at this point is how it was drawn. I have a Lenovo x220 tablet in the ultrabase 3 docking station there with an external Dell monitor, keyboard, and mouse hooked up. I spun the tablet screen into full-on tablet mode while it was in the dock. Then I used the following magical incantations to adjust the screen and tablet rotation (otherwise I’d be scribblin’ on the tablet upside-down): xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen stylus” MapToOutput LVDS1 xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Finger touch” MapToOutput LVDS1 xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen eraser” MapToOutput LVDS1 The above maps the Wacom tablet to the laptop screen, so the tablet doesn’t try to span both the external monitor AND the tablet screen. xrandr –output LVDS1 –rotate inverted The command above spin the screen 180 degrees so it’s facing the right way. xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen stylus” …

Rough mountpoint mapping & cool x220 setup

Some scribbles from a discussion in #anaconda with dlehman where we pondered over the overall flow / navigation of the advanced partitioning screen mockups in Fedora’s installer after showing them to Spot and lmacken and uncovering some issues. Will this go anywhere? No idea. We’re working it. What might be more interesting to you at this point is how it was drawn. I have a Lenovo x220 tablet in the ultrabase 3 docking station there with an external Dell monitor, keyboard, and mouse hooked up. I spun the tablet screen into full-on tablet mode while it was in the dock. Then I used the following magical incantations to adjust the screen and tablet rotation (otherwise I’d be scribblin’ on the tablet upside-down): xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen stylus” MapToOutput LVDS1 xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Finger touch” MapToOutput LVDS1 xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen eraser” MapToOutput LVDS1 The above maps the Wacom tablet to the laptop screen, so the tablet doesn’t try to span both the external monitor AND the tablet screen. xrandr –output LVDS1 –rotate inverted The command above spin the screen 180 degrees so it’s facing the right way. xsetwacom set “Wacom ISDv4 E6 Pen stylus” …

Adventures in recruiting new free software ninjas video

Chris Macken totally rocks. He’s in the process of posting the videos he filmed at Boston Software Freedom Day 2011, with some really nice editing and titling. Above is the video of my keynote he put together. (the slides are here.) In case the embedding doesn’t work on planet, click the screenshot below for the link: Chris also has talks from A. Richard Miller and Walter Bender posted; keep checking in with his website for more as he posts them!

Software Freedom Day Boston / Ninja Recruitment

IMG_6753
Deb Nicholson, Asheesh Laroia, and the OpenHatch project organized this year’s Software Freedom Day Boston.
I gave a keynote presentation on how design bounties have worked for the Fedora Design team, and the steps to create your own bounty. You may have noticed our newest bounty was posted the morning of Software Freedom Day, and we’ve already got a ninja recruit working on it!
bounty presentation thumbnail

  • Download LibreOffice ODP (14 M)
  • Download PDF (14 M)
  • The presentation is provided here under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 license. Please share and enjoy.
  • IMG_6746
    There were a lot of great talks by Boston-area community leaders. I was surprised to learn, for example, that the local python meetup in Boston is 1200+ members strong. I’m hoping to be able to make some time to get involved in the Boston python community in particular soon.

Interactive SVG Mockups with Inkscape & Javascript

Update: I have a much more efficient, awesome version of this almost ready to write up, thanks to the awesome help you gave me in the comments. Thanks so much! I’ll post it soon. Yes, it is clickable. Please click it! Can’t see the loveliness? Click here. The backstory So I’ve been working on non-Fedora projects for the past few weeks, and I just started digging back into the Anaconda mockups this morning. Coming back to UI design from a slight break seemed to magnify issues that I feel in 2011 there must exist a solution–like defining clickable areas within mockups and linking them together to make lightweight interactive prototypes. (Right? ….right?!) The Dark Side offers cookies After some failed attempts to embed JQuery into SVG (if you’ve achieved this or know it to be a nutty proposition, please school me!) I got really frustrated and signed up for a free-as-in-beer and proprietary site to see what was possible. I found a site that lets you upload flat PNG mockups and then drag out clickable areas. Per clickable area, you can define what mockup to load next via a dropdown of all uploaded mockups. It also lets you add people …