[Jaffa Software]

Sunday, 13 January 2008

Solving the lack of QA and muliple repositories problem

I've just sent an email to maemo-developers asking for feedback on an idea:

RFC: Proposal to solve multiple repository, poor QA situation

There is an increasingly acute problem with the Internet Tablets, the number of repositories a user has to install to correctly get some software is growing. It has been regularly discussed on maemo-dev that the best thing to have would be for all packages to be in extras - especially since in OS2008 it is now included by default (albeit disabled).

I fear that the gronmayer.com database of repositories - no matter how useful it is - will only exacerbate the situation.

What I'm suggesting is an easy way for developers to upload to extras, with a group of volunteers doing the legwork of signing and uploading the packages, doing quality assurance and so on.

This should make it easier for developers (no need to have their own repos any more), and easier for users since they'll only need to enable the extras repository and know that none of the software in there will brick their device, be uninstallable etc.

The QA will also allow users to use the categories of the Application Manager more, as the gatekeepers will strictly limit the categories that are used by the packages flowing through them.

Of course, this system will be voluntary: I'm in no position to dictate that everyone use it, but hopefully there'll be sufficient benefits to everyone to make it a viable scheme.