High-speed internet connection.

Got up early today after yesterday night’s Pearl Jam concert which totally rocked. Those guys definitely are not burnt out. Although they’re clearly still suffering from a feeling of guilt for the person who died during their act at Roskile festival in 2001 (I understand they stopped touring for about 3 years), they delivered a staggering concert in our backyard (no really, 300m from my house). Being able to make contact with the 50k people at this Open Air, having a good mixture between older and newer material and rocking with songs like Neil Young’s “Keep on Rocking in a Free World” made my day (night) yesterday. The megalomaniac in me would love those guys for the KDE4.0 Release Party, but this might be a bit hard to realise. :-)

4 hours after hitting the hay, the alarm clock went off, kicking me back into the real world. 45 minutes later, I’m at Nijmegen Central Station to commence a 13 hour trip to Glasgow where aKademy kicks off tomorrow. To my surprise, there’s wireless network available on this train. It’s not cheap, but being able to sync email once during the day and svn up on some stuff is, I think worth it. (Ok, admitted, getting online on a train is new to me, and excites the gearhead in me.) So got up early, had lunch in London, will have dinner tonight with the other board members in Glasgow (supposedly in the Livingston tower pub where other gearheads are meeting tonight.)

Tomorrow during lunch in Glasgow, I’m trying to get people together for a first press team meeting, we do have a press room for this kind of purposes, it’s L13.02 in Livingston tower. Does the 13 mean 13th floor (or just be damned?), having a nice panorama of Glasgow? Find out by coming by! 12.15 L13.02!

aKademy preps and swag.

Silken hand-made konqi pillow
So yeah, I’m obviously on a blogging spree. Meanwhile, aKademy is getting closer, 1.5 days and the
most important conference of the year (to me, that is) gets kicked off by Lars Knoll in Glasgow.
Tomorrow, I’ll spend most of the day on various trains between Nijmegen (NL) and Glasgow. There’s
flooding in Northern England reported, so it’s a bit unsure whether Adriaan and I will arrive in
time for a quick meeting of the board in Glasgow.

Today’s packing, charging batteries and printing stuff (I usually take a cheatsheet with me,
containing address of the hotel and other things I might need on the journey) is pretty much
the climax of the preparations last week. And some things aren’t solved yet. Such as the Indian
contributor who was late deciding that he’d actually want to go to aKademy, and who’s visa was
refused the first time he applied. This means a couple of phonecalls to India, faxing the same
document various times and crossing fingers. Tonight, he’ll hear if his visa finally is accepted
so het can get on his plane tomorrow. Close call, let’s all hope we’ll see him in Glasgow.

Then there’s lots of merchandising stuff that has been designed and ordered during the last weeks.
A couple of t-shirts which will change owner in Glasgow to travel on to Canada and the United States
and quite some other really cool swag. I’m sure you’ll see some of this on the blogs from
Glasgow in the course of next week. We’re seeking at making this stuff available online, but not
all the details have been sorted out yet. If you’re looking for something really special for a
gearhead,
have a look at this page.
I’ve got one of those silken pillow those, they’re really nice (and you know what you’ll be
dreaming of).

See you on Saturday!

Battery Plasmoid.

Battery plasmoid and engineexplorer showing the dataengine
Some weeks ago, I’ve started to learn a bit of C++. Trying something new once in a while
is fun and earlier programming experience didn’t make it too hard to learn some of the basics.

About two weeks ago, I’ve started hacking on a Plasma::DataEngine which works quite nicely
already although it has some smallish bugs I’ll need to look into. Now I’ve got the
Plasma::Applet that visualises the data mostly working. As basis, I’ve taken the battery SVG
Ken has made for me for powermanager. I needed to merge the different images. Ken had made
one for every frame, I’ve put them into layers. Plasma:Svg is quite nifty, parts of the SVG can
be rendered separately, so one only needs to decide which layers to render (and in what order,
of course), that’s it.

Right now, the applet does little more than showing the current status of the battery and
if the AC Adapter is plugged in. I’ve also basically implemented formfactors, so depending on
what one wants to use the plasmoid for, it changes its size.

I’ve put the code into playground
(dataengine,
applet)
for those who want to have a look at it and improve it. While
looking at it, please bear in mind that I’m fairly new to C++, so don’t bash me right away.
Comment is welcome (and ontopic on the
panel-devel list, but of course
I’ll also be at aKademy).

Talks.

Rainbow above Nijmegen
I just found an email in my inbox from Alasdair Kergan, who I met in Berlin and
who is also organising this year’s edition of LinuxConf
Europe
. I had sent in an abstract about KDE4 (what it’s about, frameworks, new
technologies, a pretty broad overview of the status and what to expect). So my talk
is accepted and I’ll be travelling to Cambridge in September. Kim told me the city is
very nice, so I’m looking forward to this.

Last week, I got two acceptance notice for another conference,
FrosCon, which is a very nice community event in
Bonn / Germany. I’ve been there last
year and enjoyed myself quite a lot.
Danimo (who happens to live near the conference venue) has kindly offered me to stay at
his place. For FrosCon, I had sent in two talks, one about KDE4 (see above) and another
one about CodeYard (also sponsoring the
KDE-EDU day at aKademy).
As I understood, there will be an Edu-track at FrosCon, so that’s definitely a good
opportunity to spread the CodeYard word some more across this country’s borders.

The photo of the rainbow was taken the day before yesterday, when this thing suddenly
turned up on the other side of the window. I think I’ve never seen a rainbow well-visible
like this. And I know exactly where the gold is (and so does the attentive reader).

We are out of whiteboard.

Today and tomorrow, Mirko Boehm, Giorgos Gousios, Adriaan de Groot have a
meeting of the SQO-OSS project here in the
(today) sunny Nijmegen / NL. Today, we filled a couple of whiteboards working on
the system architecture and trying to get some concepts straight. We agreed on
the basic use case that the system should provide information about the quality
of the code to developers, think defect count with attached information why
something is defect and possibly how to fix it.

For this purpose, the SQO-OSS system will mirror source code repositories, keep
mailinglist archives and have a copy of bugzilla databases (or other
issue-tracking systems ‘normalised’ to Bugzilla format). Metrics are done as
plugins to the system, those metrics can be simple things such as “count words
on a group of files”, but also compound metrics such as “show the development of
number of bugs per line of code over the last 36 months (with a certain
granularity)”.

The system will partly be implemented in Java, using the OSGI framework. Some
things such as job queueing will be implemented using good old UNIX tools, such
as cron.

During aKademy there will be a talk about
the SQO-OSS project given by Paul Adams of Sirius, another project partner. This
talk will also offer the possibility to provide feedback relatively early in the
process. If you’re interested in the field of software quality, don’t miss the
presentation. Paul is right now at DebConf, presenting the SQO-OSS project there
and gathering feedback so we make sure that the outcome of this project is
actually what the people would like to use it for.

The Radboud University of Nijmegen is kindly
hosting this meeting, providing infrastructure and a meeting room for us. Having
a meeting in Nijmegen is actually quite funny. On the one hand, it’s nice to be
able to sleep in your own bed. On the other hand, I’m pretty much removed from
the normal way things go. Being at home means distraction, although I’m trying
to not have too many things interfering with the meeting. It’s quality time.

Now let’s see what happens if we add beer to the design process. :-)

Keep in Contact!

Kar
Linuxtag was a very cool event, my second time at Linuxtag this year. KDE really was the project with
the highest profile — our booth looked slick (Oxygen-slick!) and we really had something to show — KDE4 in its current
(alpha) state. I met quite a lot of new and old KDE people, that shows that our community really is healthy
and growing. I gave a talk about KDE4 at Linuxtag, and it was very well received. People were excited that all the
improvements aren’t only eye-candy, but that there’s a profound improvement in pretty much every area of KDE
coming up.
For demoing KDE at this kind of events, one of the things we’ve missed in the past has been example data. For some
time already we have the kde-promo demo user in KDE’s SVN, a set of data that can be used to show application’s
coolness — think of photos for digikam and krita, free music to demo amarok and so on. One of the problematic
parts has been PIM data. You do need an address book with working email addresses, you want some emails in the inbox,
for being able to show kopete, you even need people that are online and can do a short chat. Enter
KeepInKontact.org. This site provides a Kolab server, for exactly this
kind of stuff. It’s a great way for people to contribute a bit of their time. So don’t hesitate and register
yourself!

One of the coolest things I saw in Berlin was Franz Keferbröck’s car — not sure if it’s a color from
the Oxygen palette, but it definitely impressed me (and others). There’s also a crate of beer in the trunk so
it has inner value.

Today, I spent most of the day on catching up on CodeYard things, it’s currently quite silent — summer
vacation is around the corner and students tend to go swimming, rather than coding. Oh well. My colleague
Donna has gone off to Brazil to promote techstuff and Free Software among the local women there.

Most of the afternoon, I spent working on the KDE e.V.’s
Supporting Membership Programme,
contacting companies (we have some announcements in the pipeline) for information and creating two folders
for advertising this programme. There’s also an extension to this, the Corporate Partnership Programme which
I’ll blog more about once I’ve got some things up in the air. Its purpose is to improve corporate access to
the KDE community and make it easier for companies to sell KDE-based solutions.

In the meantime, I’m keeping an eye on KDE development. I’ve got a couple talks about KDE4 coming up (if
they’re accepted, of course), and I’d like to demo the shiny and new stuff.