Plasma Media Center 1.2 Beta is here!

We are happy to announce the 1.2 Beta release for Plasma Media Center (PMC). This release comes with nifty new features and an improved media experience for your device!

New Features

  • Even easier to use All Music mode
  • Automatic Artist and Album cover download
  • Folder previews for Browse Pictures mode
  • Multiple Playlist support
  • Keyboard support for media controls [Mute, (Z)Prev, Next]
  • Refactored common components for media browsers (for developers)

In addition to these, there were bug fixes to ascertain consistency in behavior

Screenshots

    

Artist Image                                                                         Album cover

     

Folder previews                                                              Multiple Playlists

Install

Wiki

To know more about Plasma Media Center, check out the wiki http://community.kde.org/Plasma/Plasma_Media_Center

Bugs

Found any bug in PMC or want to have your favourite feature included in future release? file a bug to  https://bugs.kde.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=plasma-mediacenter&format=guided

We want you!

Please try out Plasma Media Center and let us know what can be improved or added in order to make final release more cool and awesome!

Cheers!

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Plasma Media Center 1.1 Beta Release

We are happy to announce the 1.1 Beta release for Plasma Media Center (PMC). The first release of the software received a lot of appreciation and feedback, some of which have been implemented in this release. If you find yourself using your computer (a laptop, a tablet, or a computer connected to a big display) for listening to music or watching your favorite videos and photos, you should definitely try PMC 🙂

New Features

  •  Complete keyboard/remote-like keys support
The first version of PMC had key navigation support in it, but it behaved weird at times. This was due to the way we were handling the different UI elements. This has now been changed to the standard PageStack way of putting UI pages on the current view, this made the keyboard navigation consistent.
  •  Better keyboard navigation for All Music mode
Unlike the other media modes in PMC, the All Music mode doesn’t share common components for browing music etc. For this reason, the keyboard navigation wasn’t able to take advantage of the common key bindings. Now, the All Music mode has its dedicated keyboard navigation workflow.
  •  More details in playlist
The playlist used to show only the media name in the list and that was it. In 1.1, we show the media title, artist and duration for each item.
  •  Youtube option to search for and watch videos from Youtube
You can now search for your favorite YouTube videos and watch them directly from your mediacenter.
  • Ability to associate PMC with music and videos
  •  Drag and drop support for removing and rearranging media from playlist
  •  Playlist shuffling
  • Dimming Videos when not viewed directly
  • Places integrated into browsing flow

                      https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/uvNfQZroZh3EpssCPzj3nrojBelOEYFG2UojLr0jQL0=w380-h213-p-no

Major bug fixes

  • Smoother handling of mode changes
  • Keyboard handling for Picasa
  • As a result of storing all the playlist information, the  playlist populates faster.
  • Way to return to the main media by clicking on Empty Home Screen

Videos and Screenshots

This is a video of PMC 1.1 beta running on a netbook with touch ( taken by Shantanu )
–Screenshots–

Install

Please follow install to install Plasma Media Center on your machine.

Wiki

To know more about Plasma Media Center, check out the wiki http://community.kde.org/Plasma/Plasma_Media_Center

Bugs

Found any bug in PMC or want to have your favourite feature included in future release? file a bug to  https://bugs.kde.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=plasma-mediacenter&format=guided

Coming Up

Settings screen (and options) for adding media collection for Indexing
Album covers and Artist images for All Music mode
Local File Browser Searching
Folder Preview  in File Browser
Thanks to PMC contributors Akshay, Shantanu  and Sujith for helping in writing this blog post and making 1.1 beta release happen.

Cheers!

BoFs at Akademy

Birds of a Feather sessions (BoFs) are one of the most important events at Akademy. Just like every year, there were BoFs related to different projects. These BoFs  are a good way to get live feedback from other people in community.

Usability BoF

This  BoF was organized by Björn Balazs and Jos Poortvliet.

– For this BoF developers volunteered for having usability test of their projects.

– Members of  KScreen, plasma-nm, Plasma Media Center and  KStars project participated in it.

– Each application was represented by one of the developers who had two users for testing

– Users  don’t know anything about that project

– Users were given  task (related to the application) one by one  and developers navigate the  user through some steps as mentioned in http://community.kde.org/Akademy/2013/UsabilityWorkshop

– Goal of this test was to get input from user about application like what they expected and what they actually saw, was UI confusing to understand, etc

After doing usability test of Plasma media Center, we got some important feedback in which we already implemented few and will implement rest soon.

https://i2.wp.com/farm6.staticflickr.com/5350/9350200266_84b0161fc6_z.jpg          https://i0.wp.com/farm4.staticflickr.com/3791/9350202578_fb30cbb312_z.jpg

Mentoring program (GSoC, Google Code-in, SoK, Outreach Program for Women)

This BoF was organized by Lydia Pintscher and Cornelius Schumacher

– It aims to share experiences, discuss how to improve the mentoring programs, and talk about any questions come up.

–  Participants introduced themselves what they have done in past related to mentoring program.

– Most of the people first participated as student and later became mentor of these mentoring programs.

– We also discussed some of the issues which mentors faced while selecting students in mentoring programs and how to improve mentoring programs.

–  We also did a group photograph in which attendees were wearing different mentoring program T-Shirts

https://i1.wp.com/farm8.staticflickr.com/7384/9370931700_57b41eec10_z.jpg

 Plasma Media Center (PMC) BoF

This BoF was organized by me

– Thanks to Marco Martin, Sebastian kugler, Shantanu Tushar, Thomas Pfeiffer and Vishesh Handa for being there and providing their valuable feedback

– Main aim of this BoF was to discuss future plans and implementation details for some of the  features in PMC.

–  One of the most important things were to consider plans for  improvements according to the Usability study done on Monday Usability BoF

– This study had highlighted issues with our UI that need fixing

– Other than fixing UI issues, Vishesh Handa from the Nepomuk  project pointed out that users should be able to add their media  collection to the nepomuk index straight from PMC without needing to go  to System Settings.

https://i0.wp.com/farm8.staticflickr.com/7358/9349940140_cc35226b49_z.jpg            https://i0.wp.com/farm4.staticflickr.com/3711/9347156857_549254e769_z.jpg

– Compare to last year BoF, this year we got good feedback for improvements we achieved in PMC. Thanks to all PMC contributors for their hard work and love for this project.

Cheers!

Awesome days during Akademy 2013

Awesome days during Akademy 2013

Hi all,

Being a part of KDE Akademy is one of the most awesome experiences ever. This was my second Akademy after the one in 2012 . Akademy 2013 was held in the beautiful city of Bilbao in Spain. Held from 13th July to 19 July, it had 2 days conference followed by 5 days of workshop, Birds of a Feather sessions (BoFs), lots of hacking, and of course lots of fun!

Day 0

I reached Bilbao on 12th July and went for pre-registration where I also met many KDE folks (some of them I already met during last Akademy and some new people). It was great to meet everyone again, we all had a fun time together with greeting each other, drinks and lovely music.

Day 1

The first day of the conference started with a keynote by Eva Galperin . A member of EFF, she talked about the NSA surveillance and how it affects people outside the US.

After keynote, Kevin Krammer gave talk on Declarative widgets where he explained and showed demo on how to create widgets based UI in QML. This approach enables non-C++ programmers to participate in UI development for traditional desktop applications.

Till Adam talked about KDE on Blackberry where he explained about Blackberry 10 architecture which is totally based on Qt with QNX kernel and discussed why KDE should be interested in another mobile platform.

We got a chance to hear the story about the Mer Project and the current status by David Greaves. Mer is used by Jolla for the Sailfish operating system and Plasma Active as the base distribution for creating tablet systems.  He talked about how the Sailfish SDK uses virtual machines for even the SDK (apart from the simulator) as it makes it easier to run the SDK on different platforms.

I always wanted to see a live demo of the Jolla Phone, based on Sailfish OS, and I got lucky! Along with a beautiful demo of the phone, Vesa-Matti Hartikainen  from Jolla talked about the history behind it, how Jolla’s team collaborates with various open source projects such as Qt, Mer, and Nemo Mobile to build the system.

Further Will Stephenson talked about LightWeight KDE which try to exploit KDE’s modularity and tweakability by cutting down a full feature desktop to the lightweight desktop size, while retaining the ability to use additional components from the full feature set as needed.

This time we had a new guest at Akademy, the Razor Project. Jerome Leclanche talked about the effort towards a lightweight, modular, Qt-based desktop. He discussed how Razor project collaborates with other desktop environments and various efforts towards compatibility with KDE Frameworks. And if this was not enough, he pointed out that even LXDE is moving to Qt (yay!).

I think this is probably one of the coolest things about the Free Software communities, that even projects that are technically competitors actually collaborate with each other.

Marco Martin talked about Plasma 2 where he talked about changes in the Plasma library from Plasma 1 to Plasma 2, how to use it from any application, and how a single workspace will now be used for all form factors, such as Plasma Desktop, Netbook and Active. We are planning to move Plasma Media Center too from Plasma 1 to Plasma 2 (and hence, to Qt5) once the libraries are stable enough.

Later, Shantanu Tushar gave talk on “Pair Programming”. He shared his experience on benefits of doing pair programming and how did in KDE projects like Calligra and Plasma Media Center with me, Sujith and Akshay.

At the end of the day, Thomas Pfeiffer and  Björn Balazs gave a talk together on Task-Centered UIs in Plasma Active . Plasma Active is one of the best example I know which is a tightly integrated system combining various components into it. UI workflow is in such a way  that optimal user intervention is required while achieving required task.

   

Jolla phone demo                                Thomas Pfeiffer

Day 2

Similar to last year, there were Lightning Talks by students. It was interesting to see that this year students were from GSoC as well as other mentoring programs like SoK, Google Code-in, OPFW. Students were from different KDE project like Telepathy, KDE connect, Keyboard layout, Digikam, Tomahawk. It was good to see the progress and experience of students while working on KDE projects.

Lydia Pintscher talked about Negotiation Theory for geeks. It was about conflicts which arise in free software projects and techniques to resolve them.

As per tradition of Akademy, we had a group photo 😀

After lunch, Kevin Ottens gave Keynote on KDE Democracy where he looked upon the democratic and meritocratic structure of communities and how KDE has changed over the past few years.

Later, Vishesh Handa and Martin Klapetek gave talk on Metacontacts Library which aims towards a system to aggregate all multiple contact sources into a manageable way. This is done by keeping all information in Nepomuk and providing library to developers called KPeople.

Simon is KDE’s speech recognition system which is maintained by Peter Grasch who gave an interesting talk on FLOSS Speech Recognition. He explained current status of this project and also gave demo on how nicely speech recognition works.

At the end of conference, there were  short presentations by various sponsors of Akademy  like Blue Systems, BlackBerry, Red Hat  etc.

Like every year, we had the awesome Akademy awards given to:

Eike Hein          –   Best Application award for his work on Konversation

Vishesh Handa –   Best Non-application award for work done in  Nepomuk

Timothée Giet   –   Jury’s Award for shaping the future and community of Krita

Kenny Duffus   –   Jury’s Award for for being the memory and soul of Akademy

Dani Gutiérrez  –  Organization Award for organizing wonderful Akademy

I had a great time during Akademy by meeting old friends again, making new friends, learning new stuff and lots of fun 😀 Thanks to my employer, RedHat for sponsoring my travel and KDE eV for taking care of my accommodation.

Links

Schedule  –    https://conf.kde.org/en/Akademy2013/public/schedule/

Videos      –    http://files.kde.org/akademy/2013/videos/

Photo       –    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49657487@N07/sets/72157634760964024/

KDE Meetup 2013

Hi all!

Last week, I attended KDE Meetup held in DA-IICT college. It was much more better than what I expected. Everything went so well from start till end.

Day 1 (23rd Feb 2013)

I reached venue in morning around 9:30 am, registration was still going on. It was quite amazing to see more than 300 people who came to attend this KDE meetup.
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-ISbpzBp9C-g/USxCjmQwS-I/AAAAAAAAAls/IYcJvxU-wZ4/s640/DSCN2172.JPG
After opening ceremony, Pradeepto Bhattacharya gave talk on Introduction to KDE, where he spoke on why, how, who should contribute to KDE and other general KDE stuff. People were so  interested and asked so many questions during his talk.

https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-N6ZdjQf6A40/USxCm8x1trI/AAAAAAAAAmU/LWmIsHDKPno/s640/DSCN2182.JPG
Later, Vishesh Handa gave talk on Introduction to Qt. He talked about various features available in Qt and showed some demo too. Participants were so interactive that this session was extended till lunch break and we postponed next talk to tomorrow which was supposed to be given by Shantanu Tushar.

Post lunch, there was workshop on Qt apps. Almost 300 people were there for this workshop. Most of the people have brought their own laptop. All of us helped them in installing Qt SDK. Workshop went  so well and all of them were able to follow it. All of us were running here and there to fix errors and issues if encountered by participants during workshop 😀

Later, Vishesh Handa took one session on version control mainly git. People were so smart here too and asked so many questions.

Post lunch, one more session was taken by Pradeepto Bhattacharya for around 50 people who came from Bardoli . These people were going back from conference due to some reasons like not able to follow first half day talk, hesitated in asking questions in crowd, language problem and many more reason. Pradeepto noticed and talked to all of them and tried to understand their problems. At the end, they promised to come tomorrow and we promised to take separate session for them in college lab.

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-7bkZWoumyv0/USxCyzUAbrI/AAAAAAAAAo0/5lEZv1jCN04/s640/DSCN2239.JPG
In evening we planned to celebrate KDE 4.10 release party 😀 Awesome cake was arranged by Yash Shah and volunteer. It was so kool celebrating release party together.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-tm-jvrPzR5U/USxC9JG945I/AAAAAAAAArU/fn8BCwVp710/s640/DSCN2297.JPG
Day 2 (24th Feb 2013)

I, Aditya Bhatt, Jigar Raisinghani, Yash Shah and some more (forgot name) of us went to lab to take sessions for Bardoli students. Aditya showed first kool KDE desktop and then yash talked his experience with KDE. All of them responded so well and asked questions without hesitating. After making them comfortable with KDE, we demoed them how to make Qt apps and told them to do same too.  At the end of this session, all of them were confident and inspired too.

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-41gAHaVro18/USxDN10A0bI/AAAAAAAAAvE/Lo3FdVaHEwI/s640/DSCN2362.JPG
Parallel to this session, in Main Hall talk was going on  Our Plasma workspaces – desktop, tablet etc by Shantanu Tushar , Contributing to KDE EduSuite by Rishab Arora and Understanding Nepomuk – Semantic Data by Vishesh Handa.

Post lunch, there was Workshop on hacking on KDE apps (opted rekonq). Initially, we faced little problem due to slow internet connection, after sometime this issue was fixed. People learnt to compile and build rekonq source. They played around source code and done changes in code.

At the end of Day 2, all participants got participation certificate. Many participants who asked questions got kool KDE t-shirts too 😀

This meetup was so awesome, we all had lot of fun helping them. We were able to motivate and inspire so many people from this KDE meetup.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-XCMZXDNc1pQ/USxCsbPcbrI/AAAAAAAAAnk/NWDKXHs1GUQ/s640/DSCN2211.JPG
Thanks to all who were there and participated actively in it.

More snaps are available at http://www.flickr.com/photos/49657487@N07/sets/72157632863576726/
Cheers!

foss.in 2012

Hello everybody!

Last week, I attended foss.in 2012 in Bangalore. It was three days conference consisting of various interesting talks, tutorials and mini confs. The Schedule was divided into three conference rooms. There were good arrangements for everything including registration, food, hacking area, sponsors stall, booth, etc.

Day 1:

Started with registration followed by opening ceremony with Atul Chitnis sharing his ideas, followed by lighting of the lamp.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-VHqGEUgqCqc/UMDb1KTuAiI/AAAAAAAAAS0/ECK7Hwy5Suc/s640/DSCN1900.JPG
First  talk I attended on Big Data by Gopal V where he talked about how to handle big amount of data, filtering, removing duplication. He also discussed about various challenges arises in handling big data like reliability, optimization, sharing, security, etc.

Further I attended talk on Wikidata where Lydia Pintscher explained the idea behind it. The Wikimedia aims Wikidata to become what Wikimedia commons is for images – a central repository for all the wikipedia content. Some of the advantages this will bring are easier localization, more machine readable content, sharing of content between wikis and so on. Wikidata will also provide a public API that developers can then consume to make it easy to access information.

After lunch, I attended C++ tutorial by Ulrich Drepper where he showed some demo programs on addition done in C++11 like auto, array, iota , slice, for_each, Functional Programming, Lambda Functions, etc. He also explained C++ processor specific programs which can improve performance.
https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-aRwkbgA4x2w/UMDb60jq6kI/AAAAAAAAATE/ufdus-EhQdw/s640/DSCN1931.JPG       https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-fdz7OJQ9YO8/UMDiO1qdpdI/AAAAAAAAAWA/EAWayYbvfn4/s640/DSCN1909.JPG
Day 2:

Next day, I attended talk on Scalable Parallel Programming Techniques by Ulrich Drepper. It started with history of how changes has occurred from uniprocessor to multiprocessor. Then, concept of parallelism, lock, thread, thread pool, c++ 11 interface, etc. Various possibilities to achieve parallelism like reuse of threads, automatic detection of dependencies, optimized thread pool implementation and so on.

Later, I attended talk on optimized thread pool implementation by Lennart Poettering. Systemd is  core of distributions like Fedora, OpenSUSE, Mageia, Tizen. He discussed how systemd is better than init daemon. He also discussed about sysvinit, initd, git as daemon, consolekit, syslog, watchdog, autofs, udev, cryptsetup and many more.

Post lunch, I attended talk on Calligra – productivity made easier by Shantanu Tushar where I learnt about some internals on how Calligra suite works and people can use it in their applications.

This was followed by KDE mini conf where Sebastian Kügler organized a workshop for writing device adaptive applications using QtQuick. It was exciting to see that in addition to students, seasoned professionals were interested.

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-R-ltRoAjXTU/UMDg5-Z3oZI/AAAAAAAAAVM/LCgv--uJ6Z8/s640/DSCN1952.JPG       https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-6UmR14O9TqI/UMDg-8LG8dI/AAAAAAAAAVg/gmtRB5_6kfU/s640/DSCN1954.JPG
Day 3:

Last day of conference, I attended talk on KGDB: Kernel Source Level Debugger by Swapnil Pimpale. kgdb is used with gdb to debug linux kernel. He told various advantages of using kgd like placing breakpoints in kernel code, stepping through the code, observing variables, inspecting memory and looking through call stack information. He also discussed how to setup kgdb, its usage, working and limitations.

Rest of the day, I was at the KDE booth where we were showing people Plasma Active demo on ExoPC tablet and Plasma Media Center  demo as well. People loved it and some of them were interested to contribute 🙂 We helped few of students in how to start contributing into Open Source Projects. We were happy to know that one of them was able to find one bug too 😀

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-SgiZh71vFLo/UMDcAg54iBI/AAAAAAAAATY/jeOqGwILV14/s640/DSCN1961.JPG    https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-Vpj48m8rF6I/UMDcFmG5QtI/AAAAAAAAATs/ZhmPOeB29uw/s640/DSCN1977.JPG

Some of talk’s videos are available at http://hasgeek.tv/fossdotin/ .

I enjoyed in being a  part of foss.in 2012, met old foss friends and made some new ones 😀 Thanks to Red Hat for sponsoring my attendance at foss.in 🙂

Cheers!

Running Plasma Media Center on Fedora, Ubuntu and openSUSE distro

Hi to all !

Good news for all PMC lovers and those who wanted to try it but haven’t yet. Anyone can easily install PMC on their system with little effort. Only you need to do is, follow the steps which are mentioned below.

Required packages
Fedora

– 17, 18 and 19

$ sudo yum groupinstall “Development Tools”

$ sudo yum install kde-workspace-devel kdelibs-devel

$ sudo yum install qt-mobility-devel

$ sudo yum install taglib-devel

$ sudo yum install nepomuk-core-devel

– 20 and higher versions

$ sudo yum groupinstall “Development Tools”

$ sudo yum install kde-workspace-devel kdelibs-devel

$ sudo yum install qt-mobility-devel

$ sudo yum install taglib-devel

$ sudo  yum install baloo-devel kfilemetadata-devel

Optional Package(kffmpegthumbnailer)

In order to install  kffmpegthumbnailer, enable rpmfusion free repo

$ sudo yum localinstall –nogpgcheck http://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/fedora/rpmfusion-free-release-$(rpm -E %fedora).noarch.rpm

$ sudo yum install kffmpegthumbnailer

Ubuntu

– 12.10, 13.04 and 13.10

$ sudo  apt-get install cmake kde-workspace-dev kdelibs5-dev build-essential

$ sudo  apt-get install libdeclarative-multimedia

$ sudo  apt-get install libtag1-dev

$ sudo  apt-get install kffmpegthumbnailer

$ sudo apt-get install nepomuk-core-dev

– 14.04 and higher versions

$ sudo  apt-get install cmake kde-workspace-dev kdelibs5-dev build-essential

$ sudo  apt-get install libdeclarative-multimedia

$ sudo  apt-get install libtag1-dev

$ sudo apt-get install baloo-dev libkfilemetadata-dev

Optional package (kffmpegthumbnailer)

In order to install kffmpegthumbnailer package in Ubuntu 14.04,  add ppa:mc3man/trusty-media

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mc3man/trusty-media

$ sudo apt-get update

$ sudo  apt-get install kffmpegthumbnailer

openSUSE (13.1 and higher versions)

– checkout blog http://sujithh.info/2013/12/plasma-media-center-on-opensuse-13-1/
Build Instructions

Common for all distro
$ git clone git://anongit.kde.org/plasma-mediacenter

$ cd plasma-mediacenter

$ git checkout  v1.4

$ mkdir build

$ cd build

$ cmake .. -DCMAKE_INSTALL_PREFIX=`kde4-config –prefix`

$ make

$ sudo make install

Note: If you find any error related to moccpp and don’t want to build test, pass -DKDE4_BUILD_TESTS=OFF to cmake

Screenshot

Cool! Now you are ready to try it . So, what are you waiting for? Give it a try and have fun.
Still facing any problem? Have suggestion, feedbacks? post as comment!

Cheers!