Montag, 26. Dezember 2011

Tedious fragmentation (maemo.org / meego.com)

Rant mode on. It's really tedious to hunt down information about Harmattan. It's not really MeeGo (and MeeGo Is Dead(tm), anyways) and it's not branded as Maemo, even though it's Maemo. Yeah. It's not really Maemo, but it is. And it's not really MeeGo, but it is branded as such.

Wiki. The Wiki pages are split between maemo.org and meego.com. For example, there's the ARM/N950 page on meego.com and the Nokia N950 page on maemo.org. Oh, and if two Wikis are not enough, have a look at the MeeGo 1.2 Harmattan category on Nokia Developer's very own Wiki. Add to that the Qt Developer Network Wiki content for N950 and you have information spread onto 4 different Wikis. So, where are YOU going to add information?

Forums. Next up are the forums. You know the drill. It's called Handset on forum.meego.com and MeeGo/Harmattan on talk.maemo.org. And if you feel more like a Nokia fanboy, discuss on developer.nokia.com. Or troll(tech) your Qt love on Qt's own Mobile and Embedded Forum.

Repositories. Writing apps is supposedly easy. Publishing them is hard. What will it be? Nokia Store Publish to reach the masses? Or the not-so-well-known Apps for MeeGo? And independent of where you publish your packages, if it's an open source package it's hard for users to track down the sources of your package (which you really should make easily accessible).

Hosting. The good old Maemo Garage still provides good service, the MeeGo Garage never materialized, but is still advertised on meego.com. Nokia Developer obviously also has an offering for you: projects.developer.nokia.com allows you to host stuff (but apparently has been down for a few weeks recently). The rest of the projects is spread between private web pages and Gitorious/Github.

Yes, choice is good. But right now, everything is more complicated than it should be. In the Good Old N900 Times(tm), we gathered information on wiki.maemo.org, discussed on TMO (which was Internet Tablet Talk merged into the maemo.org domain - while not without resistance, this was IMHO a good move) and had the Maemo Garage and the awesome Maemo Extras for all our repository/packaging needs. Granted, the OBS might be better suited for building packages than the Extras Autobuilder, but i'm missing a package interface a'la packages.debian.org for Harmattan which is available for Maemo 5.

The other question is: How long will meego.com hosting be funded, and how long will maemo.org hosting be funded? Wouldn't it make sense to deprecate one of them for Harmattan content and try to move content from the deprecated one to the preferred one?

We (as the Harmattan Community, which I would see as the collective of N950 and N9 users and developers) are a small community, so we should focus our energy on one collaboration place/domain instead of splitting everything between maemo.org and meego.com. I don't want to announce new things on two different pages/forums, don't want to check two different places for new content and publish packages to two different repositories.

Kommentare:

Jaffa hat gesagt…

+1.

meego.com feels like a better place, as new N9 owners may not be aware of the Maemo heritage. forum.meego.com also has the indispensible forum<->email bridge which makes following the forums so much easier than TMO.

But there does seem to be less activity there than TMO, but with limited time I can't spare the time to actively go trawling through hundreds of threads on TMO.

[R] hat gesagt…

Absolutely agree! I'd have preferred Mer discussions in meego.com and harmattan discussions in maemo.org.
But ultimately, I think its up to the Council to make a decisive action in this regard.

Jaffa hat gesagt…

The Council can't mandate a community form in any one place. They could leaf doscussions in trying to identify what is different which encourages different people to different places, but so could anyone elae (e.g. thp).

However, they *could* direct Nemein/Reggie to minimise those differences, e.g. forum<->email bridge for TMO, thread federation across TMO/FMC, ...

thp hat gesagt…

Jaffa: Yep, the Council could at least actively "endorse" a specific forum after some discussions / weighting pros and cons. I personally don't care which one it ends up being, as long as it's just one place ;)

SD69 hat gesagt…

To answer your questions, maemo.org has funding from Nokia through 2012. There have been preliminary discussions of Nokia funding or community self-funding for 2013, with nothing decided. Meego.com is not exactly open governance, so there is no answer. I suspect that it will be shut down when the Tizen machine ramps up, probably 1H2012.

SD69 hat gesagt…

People refer to maemo council in their comments. It is true as a council member, there is not much we can do. I tried to warn about fragmentation when apps.formeego.org was being set up - http://forum.meego.com/showthread.php?t=4051&page=4 - but to no avail. Nokia wanted to position the N9 as a Meego device rather than maemo so this is what we get. In a little time, after a consensus develops that meego.com won't be around and the open mode issue is solved, I think council may be able to say something to help consolidate the situation as you suggest.

Shmerl hat gesagt…

All this is the result of Nokia and Intel betraying the Meego project (i.e. it started the transition, but never finished it). I agree that it's very annoying and fragmented. Oh, and you of course forgot to mention Mer/Nemo wiki:

http://wiki.merproject.org/wiki
http://wiki.merproject.org/wiki/Nemo

I proposed several times to consolidate more around merproject resource, but that requires some manpower to maintain a forum and etc. (and you'll complain about the 3rd forum right?-) ) But I guess no one else was interested so far.

Shmerl hat gesagt…

Another point - in my perspective the community needs to center around the OS, not around the device (unless you are drivers author). Harmattan while being active now, doesn't look to me like way forward in the long run, since Nokia themselves aren't interested in it. Mer derivatives on the other hand have more potential, and that's a truly community effort.