Tuesday, July 29, 2014

GUADEC day 4

The final day of GUADEC saw eight general session presentations (four sessions, two presentations per session), a keynote presentation, lightning talks, and a preview of GUADEC 2015. A few highlights:

GNOME UX: the social dimension ~ Allan Day
Allan talked about user experience, which is tied to usability but distinctly different. In simple terms, the user experience (or "UX") reflects the user's overall emotional investment in using the software. Allan talked about software being "beautiful" as one element of the user experience, and he's right. Software needs to be both easy to use and pretty to look at, in order to attract and retain users. Allan also talked about keying into the social aspect of software to build a better picture of the user experience.
GNOME Outreach: a report from the war nobody is participating in ~ Sri Ramkrishna
Sri is part of the GNOME Outreach team, working on user engagement for GNOME. Part of Sri's job is to listen to what users are saying about GNOME, and bring them into a conversation. Eaching several "social" points from Allan's earlier presentation, Sri is doing the right things here. It's all too easy for anyone on the Internet to complain about change, but it's important to turn most of these "flames" into a discussion to learn how the user reacted to the change, and why, so we can feed that back into GNOME development. This continual feedback helps build the GNOME community and improves the functionality and usability of GNOME. And everyone benefits from that.
Builder, a new IDE for GNOME ~ Christian Hergert
I was particularly moved by Christian's presentation about creating a new integrated development environment ("IDE") for GNOME. Christian shared mockups and prototypes of Builder, and demonstrated how Builder will benefit developers to make them more efficient in creating GNOME projects. During his presentation, Christian also shared that he is taking the next year off from work, relying on his savings to let him work full-time on Builder. I don't write much code anymore, but I eagerly await to see what becomes of this project.
image: gnome.org

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