GSoC 2009 – Winding up…

As Google Summer of Code 2009 draws to a formal close, its time to sum up all my work and the fun I had with my project, thank the people who have stood by me all this while and hopefully give some insights into the project.

Firstly, I would like to extend a BIG thank-you to all the following people – without their guidance and support, this project would have gone nowhere. Its a long list, since given the nature of my project – I had a chance to look closely at many of the finer aspects of both Maemo and Open Embedded and get inputs from a lot of people. (I hope I am not missing out on any names here.) πŸ™‚

  • Florian Boor – for being an amazingly patient and supporting mentor, for bearing with my cribbing about things not working and helping me get through the sticky parts, offering quick suggestions which worked wonders wherever/whenever I got stuck. He also played a big role in helping decide the roadmap further especially when we made significant changes in what we wanted to achieve next. Not to forget being always present whenever I needed him, juggling my rambling with his busy schedules.
  • Carsten Munk aka Stskeeps from the Mer project – who was always there to help me out with the minutest issues that I brought out. His experience with the Hildon environment and the many tiny vagaries of maemo glib/gtk helped me out a lot. The same holds true for David Greaves aka lbt also from Mer. The Mer project was a lifesaver in many ways, since I used patches from Mer extensively for my project and intend to continue doing so to maintain this project.
  • Valerio Valerio or VDVsx – our program co-ordinator for making the whole process go smoothly, making it a memorable experience for all us Maemo GSoC-ers, especially for promptly providing me any sort of help whenever I needed – like getting me in touch with Hildon developers. Robot101 and Gordon Williams for their inputs during my work with Hildon Desktop.
  • Texas Instruments for the cute and awesome Beagleboard I got from them to test my work on. πŸ™‚ Also, Mike Turquette from TI whom I asked for advice now and then.
  • Members from both the communities – Open Embedded and Maemo, whom I bugged on IRC channels and got insights from. Kergoth, Laibsch, Woglinde , Crofton, Pb__ , Khem and many others on #oe, discussions with whom gave me nice insights on OE features I was unaware of.
  • Fellow GSoC-ers and other mentors from the Maemo community – I completely second Zach’s views on this which he mentioned in his report πŸ™‚ Its really inspiring when your fellow-mates are upto such cool stuff and to have them to look upto for various skill-sets and abilities.

A little bit of discussion on my project-

I was working on Integrating Maemo in Open Embedded, the details of which can be seen here. As against creating a filesystem image for the tablets as mentioned in the initial proposal, we choose to get a maemo software stack running on another base, as suggested by many Maemo community members then, mainly due to issues with closed source components at the lower layers. The current status is that the Maemo platform from Maemo-Glib/Gtk onwards to Hildon desktop and Maemo apps can be ported on top of any distro as a base upto X11/Xorg.

What this means for developers-

The osso/hildon libraries of maemo5.0alpha versions are now integrated in OE, and also a few fremantle-extras applications as a proof of concept. So any hildonised application can now be integrated in Open Embedded, and used on top of an existing distro. My current testing is with Maemo applications on top of Angstrom. Devices which use Angstrom or OE-based distros should hopefully benefit from this. The arrnagement is in the form of an OE overlay which can be seen here:

What this means for end-users-

The current images have Hildon desktop (prealpha fremnantle since the later ones have closed dependencies) and a bunch of useful applications. The UI has some Ubuntu Mobile (UME) components too, but there is some way to go before this UI can meet end-user expectations. Screenshots and links to the recipes/filesystem images can be found in my previous blog posts.

The roadmap from here

This project shall continue after GSoC as maintainence in this case is as demanding as the actual project itslef – Maemo has moved from 5.0beta to beta2 and ahead in the course of this project – so a major chunk of the work will be updating the core components like glib etc to keep pace with actual Maemo development.

I would love to hear from you on suggestions on incorporating more features in the hildon UI (while staying away from closed source dependencies and also maintaining the looks as close to the actual one as possible) or if you have cool Maemo applications that you would like to be incorporated in OE and used on a larger range of devices. Work on Fremantle Stars,for instance, is in progress and some of them are already incorporated in the image.
To sign off, I need to thank Google for an awesome summer and the chance to make some really good friends in the two communities. πŸ™‚


6 thoughts on “GSoC 2009 – Winding up…

  1. Great work Kirtika! Sorry I wasn’t more active in your project during the later stages. I appreciate the shoutout.

    I’m still working internally to get some of the closed dependencies sorted out to make the transition towards the final version of Fremantle possible. It would be really great to be able to quickly reproduce the full Hildon UI on any OMAP device.

    I hope you enjoyed your project and I look forward to seeing it grow and mature.


  2. Congratulations…
    Though I couldn’t make out much, I can clearly see the amount of effort you have put this summer. Hats off to you ! ..

    Could you put a more detailed documentation on your project so that we would be able to gather some more information on your project ?


  3. @Arun Chaganty: About FOSS involvement, as I did mention, OE has tremendous potential for new developers to get in (well, it is already being thronged by new ones who use and contribute to OE, but I am referring to the work on the core – OE internals and Bitbake), so hope to make some contribution there. Seeing OE accepted in GSoC next year is a personal target, let’s see how it goes.

    @Mike Turquette:
    Firstly,thanks for blogging about my project πŸ™‚
    All the best with your efforts in getting the UI stuff to move ahead. Needless to say, I will keep you updated on the project πŸ™‚

    @Arun KJ: Thanks.
    Maybe this would help ?
    Though its only a compilation of my previous blog-posts πŸ™‚ where I used to log my work. The info is scattered on my blog, the wiki and my CSE site maemo-page right now. Hope to get this organised at one place soon.


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