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  • Help me help Linux, tell me about Linux problems

    Hello, I am a student and I have to pick a project to do for my Bachelor of Science.
    I search for problems that Linux has and can be solved programmatically(no community stuff and this kind of things).
    No CPU Schedulers... Linux has to much of that.
    Proprietary software? Proprietary features? Features Windows has and Linux doesn't?
    Any ideas? May be features that don't exist yet but theoretically are possible to implement?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Alliancemd View Post
    Hello, I am a student and I have to pick a project to do for my Bachelor of Science.
    I search for problems that Linux has and can be solved programmatically(no community stuff and this kind of things).
    No CPU Schedulers... Linux has to much of that.
    Proprietary software? Proprietary features? Features Windows has and Linux doesn't?
    Any ideas? May be features that don't exist yet but theoretically are possible to implement?
    Implementation of KDE technologies in Unity interface. That's what I am going to do myself as well. First, to create "indicators" for Akonadi, Strigi etc. and hook up apps like Amarok or Kmail to existing indicators. Implement features like "cheat sheet" or the fancy window switching effect in KWin. Port Compiz plugins to KWin - no idea how exactly yet - maybe with help of KWin scripting? Integration of KDE semantic desktop inside of Unity. Port of Unity to Plasma interface with QML.

    How do you like it?

    Comment


    • #3
      Re

      Originally posted by Hirager View Post
      Implementation of KDE technologies in Unity interface. That's what I am going to do myself as well. First, to create "indicators" for Akonadi, Strigi etc. and hook up apps like Amarok or Kmail to existing indicators. Implement features like "cheat sheet" or the fancy window switching effect in KWin. Port Compiz plugins to KWin - no idea how exactly yet - maybe with help of KWin scripting? Integration of KDE semantic desktop inside of Unity. Port of Unity to Plasma interface with QML.

      How do you like it?
      My coordinator won't accept this. It sounds interesting, it reminded me that I was thinking if it is possible to make Unity run on KWin instead of compiz. I consider KWin way more advanced...
      Btw, that might be good for you: http://blog.martin-graesslin.com/blo...to-do-awesome/

      My coordinator(and me too) wants me to invent something or write an open source alternative to something proprietary which doesn't have an open source alternative(which I find VERY hard, every thing has an open source alternative). Or to write an application to solve hard solvable problems(computational) that will run on clusters...
      One guy that has him as coordinator proposed to make an open-source video/audio protocol(a la Skype), the coordinator allowed him to, even if there are some open-source protocols that do that, like XMPP.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Alliancemd View Post
        My coordinator won't accept this. It sounds interesting, it reminded me that I was thinking if it is possible to make Unity run on KWin instead of compiz. I consider KWin way more advanced...
        Btw, that might be good for you: http://blog.martin-graesslin.com/blo...to-do-awesome/

        My coordinator(and me too) wants me to invent something or write an open source alternative to something proprietary which doesn't have an open source alternative(which I find VERY hard, every thing has an open source alternative). Or to write an application to solve hard solvable problems(computational) that will run on clusters...
        One guy that has him as coordinator proposed to make an open-source video/audio protocol(a la Skype), the coordinator allowed him to, even if there are some open-source protocols that do that, like XMPP.
        I see. I think that enablement of next versions of OpenGL could fit into the "alternative" category. Or anything else of this kind. Also, I read a complaint on this forum about lack of OpenMAX support in Linux.
        What else... Sometimes I wish OwnCloud sync used GIT as way to resolve file conflicts (not sure if actually solved in recent release - didn't have time to read on that). Also, work on a Wine component could fit here.

        Comment


        • #5
          How about a proper SIP client? There doesn't seem to exist one that supports all the features at once.

          - ZRTP encryption, with integrated easy-to-use verification of the secret string (ie read aloud automatically by a speech engine, waiting for confirmation from the other side - button press)
          - encryption for the text messages too
          - various codecs, preferably easily extensible should opus etc be good
          - light and scalable, ie not in Java, interpreted language of the week, nor using bloated and unnecessary components (be it KDE libs, dbus, ...)
          - usable and fast GUI, preferably themeable
          - usable from CLI too
          - should handle group calls, file transfer

          Literally every existing SIP client, be it open source or closed, fails on at least two or more points. We do have many servers that work for almost everything in here.

          Comment


          • #6
            Maybe helping an existing project that has something missing would be a better idea. ie implement an State tracker for G3D -reaaallly important thing and it might benefit you in the future- or a protocol for one of the IM clients. Or polish a feature in an existing project. I think it will be better than a project that you might abandon after you finish with your studies.

            As for one thing thats really missing is a proper CAD/CAE suite but thats not something for a semester project.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Alliancemd View Post
              My coordinator won't accept this. It sounds interesting, it reminded me that I was thinking if it is possible to make Unity run on KWin instead of compiz. I consider KWin way more advanced...
              Btw, that might be good for you: http://blog.martin-graesslin.com/blo...to-do-awesome/

              My coordinator(and me too) wants me to invent something or write an open source alternative to something proprietary which doesn't have an open source alternative(which I find VERY hard, every thing has an open source alternative). Or to write an application to solve hard solvable problems(computational) that will run on clusters...
              One guy that has him as coordinator proposed to make an open-source video/audio protocol(a la Skype), the coordinator allowed him to, even if there are some open-source protocols that do that, like XMPP.
              That's the problem. We have a like 20 implementations of some things (don't mind the 0 implementations of other things just yet), but they all range from 10-90% complete. They lack polish. It's completely understandable - I'm a programmer myself and I like doing the "interesting work" but I hate putting on the polish. However, as a user, its very frustrating.

              I think we should take one of the 50 million existing projects and make it better.

              (note* all numbers are hyperbole, but they illustrate the point).

              Comment


              • #8
                Graphics card support for dual cards (specially ati)

                Linux lacks graphics support as in windows. Open source drive still fails to load a lot of applications that requires GPU. On the other hand catalyst driver with a tough installation process fails to load any application via wine. So I am stuck on waiting for applications to be natively ported to Linux or dual boot windows for those applications. In older hardware Desktops often freezes (due to compiz). I know windows have moved from xp to 7 and those applications are still slow on windows, but they don't freeze as they do on Linux. I have this problem while running java development environment. I am still on open-jdk-6. While I use maven and eclipse I get almost always freeze when I compile the application. Java's memory keeps on increasing whole day. So I have to shutdown eclipse before I go for launch. I think Desktops should have options to completely turn off compiz (without loggin in to different desktop environment). I even tried to use mint's new desktop environment and used the option to turn of effect, but the solution is still not there. I thought I could load lighter Desktop Environments, but what's the point of using default configuration.

                Comment


                • #9
                  First off, a disclaimer : I'm a hevy KDE user, so most(all) of these will be kde-related.
                  -Finish porting akregator to the akonadi framework (AFAIK the last ugly duckling in the PIM suite)
                  -Help the kde-telepathy guys with whatever interests you (contact agregation[my fav.], SIP, UI implementation...)
                  -Optimize akonadi SQL usage/fix it with SQLite

                  These are my personal pet peeves, the list of unfinished tasks is quite long.
                  I'd suggest you take a look through GSoC projects that weren't accepted, and take your pick from there.

                  Other than that an area that would interest everybody are graphics... I'm sure te mesa guys would find you something

                  I have to agree with 89c51 that creating a new project just for the sake of it is IMO a bad idea (well, you will certainly learn, but other than that it will be useless). You want to help the OSS landscape, join an existing project (unless you really find a part of the landscape missing).

                  Serafean

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 89c51 View Post
                    As for one thing thats really missing is a proper CAD/CAE suite but thats not something for a semester project.
                    This! There were a few attempts here and there, but nothing usable ever materialised. And the proprietary ones usually don't support Linux as well as cost way into thousands of dollars.

                    Blender showed that it's possible to make a good alternative to proprietary 3D modelling programs, so a proper CAD tool should also be possible to create.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re

                      Originally posted by GreatEmerald View Post
                      This! There were a few attempts here and there, but nothing usable ever materialised. And the proprietary ones usually don't support Linux as well as cost way into thousands of dollars.

                      Blender showed that it's possible to make a good alternative to proprietary 3D modelling programs, so a proper CAD tool should also be possible to create.
                      What do you think of DraftSight(Free but not Open-Source)?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        - Support for DirectX 10, 10.1 and 11 in wine:
                        I think this is still very much in its infancy, but will become more and more needed as the last DirectX 9-supporting games are released

                        - Improvements to the mesa software renderer (llvmpipe or other):
                        There are proprietary software rendering implementations that can just leave mesa in the dust. It would be nice to have an opensource implementation comparable to those.

                        - Hardware video decoding using graphics shaders / OpenCL:
                        For those graphics cards which have no built-in hardware support, or that we can't get it working for one reason or other (nouveau, radeon), it would be nice to have an alternative which does not rely on the CPU. Bonus points if it supports 10-bit h264, because no hardware decoder that I know of supports it. Also it would be interesting to accelerate WebM/VP8: there has been some work towards this, but no results yet, I think.

                        - Better opensource Flash:
                        Many projects out there have something, but all have missing stuff, and aren't really ready to replace adobe's version in day-to-day use.

                        - Improve libreoffice:
                        Use less resources, de-uglification, better support for m$ document formats (especially on calc and impress)

                        - Blu-ray player:
                        A fully-usable player (with menus, etc) for decrypted blu-ray video discs.

                        - Advanced PDF viewer:
                        Support for forms, javascript, animations, **DECENTLY ANNOTATING DOCUMENTS**, etc are still missing or very incomplete from poppler and other PDF engines.

                        - As long as I'm dreaming here, something like wine, but for OSX applications. If we can get windows apps to run in linux, why not Mac OS X apps? Especially games, they use OpenGL anyway, and it's unix underneath so I'll just say the cliché "how hard can it be", fully knowing that this is very hard.

                        Off the top of my head, that's it

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          not sure how offtopic is but it might be awesome if you will develop a driver that cable connects a smartphone to act as a webcam accessible for various programs such as IM's etc. Should not be related strictly to a program that uses it (on PC) and definitely crossplatform on mobile side (iOS + Android...)

                          Good luck with the exams and so on,
                          n.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ooooh where to begin.

                            There are numerous things wrong that can be fixed, so here's a short list:
                            • Politics among Open Source and Closed Source.

                              Seriously. When you get right down to it, you have extremists that want only closed source software, radicals who want only open source software, and you got everyone in the middle that just wants everything to work.

                              Yes, Alan Cox, I'm talking about you in the radical group. You, and both ends of the spectrum who bang on the tables "ONLY THIS NOTHING ELSE" will get no response out of me except for "SHUT UP YOU MORON, IT'S NOT WORKING!"

                              Why do I say that? I just want my Nvidia Optimus-running laptop to just work, and there's frameworks that will make it just work, but the radicals all the way down in the Linux kernel are repeatedly saying "NO!" even though there's too many good reasons to say yes. It makes me want to smack them with a rolled-up newspaper and say "BAD DOG NO COOKIE!"

                              (However, I would love Nvidia if they would start releasing specs like AMD does for way-old adapters like the pre-100 series, aka anything 9xxx and below, so that it can be picked up by the open source driver and made a lot better).

                              It's similar to how exFAT is being handled. Microsoft is doling out licenses, but only for folks who paid. It even has patents on FAT, but they're unenforcable because it's EVERYWHERE. exFAT can't be picked up by Linux due to threats of litigation, so it's read-only... if it's there in the first place. So we have to use FAT32... which i just knocked up an edge case as I was trying to move five, 9-gig MPG files off one ext4 partition onto a FAT32. "Nope! Over 2 gig, can't be done!" Thanks a lot, Balmer, you ape!
                            • Politics among desktop environments, or the Option Removal Syndrome

                              This goes back to Gnome 1.x switching to 2.x... and switching to 3.x as well. It also goes back to KDE 3.x switching to KDE 4.x, and is starting to infect MacOS X and Windows as well. It's something I call Option Removal Syndrome.

                              Symptoms of Option Removal Syndrome include cutting out of functionality, ignorance of user calls for restoration, lack of clarity over what a user really wants and needs, constant user churn, bloat in remaining features, and astonishment over other desktop environments that do things better.

                              KDE is recovering from acute Option Removal Syndrome as it progresses through the 4.x series and restores functionality.

                              Gnome, however, is terminal; it has contracted systemetic Option Removal Syndrome, giving rise to LXDE and XFDE. Compare all the features and functionality of Gnome 1.x with 2.x and then with 3.x, and you'll see a graph with the line going down over time. The Gnome team really needs a smack over the head as well.

                              If you really want to please everyone, hide options that you think aren't going to be used; give users the option to enable those "advanced" features, and give them the option of sending feedback about what they use. Engage the users, don't burn bridges.
                            • Make the tools small, then scale up

                              Seriously. I have an 2nd Gen Apple TV, a iMac, two Linux/Win7 dual-boot systems, an iPhone 4, and an iPad 2. I can send video to the Apple TV from the MacOS X and iOS devices; aka Airplay. There's stand-alone tools to make them receive Airplay as well. Why can't I do the same in Linux?!?

                              "Uh, why can't you run Totem..." BECAUSE I WANT TO SEND THEM TO THE APPLE TV IN ONE INSTANCE AND CAPTURE FROM ANOTHER DEVICE IN ANOTHER! Can I do that without having to install ANOTHER honking media player? I already got Mplayer/Mencoder and FFMPEG and I bet I have VLC already in here too...

                              Yes, part of this is Apple not releasing the specs to various things like Steve Jobs said they would (and it's on video). But then stuff gets broken and spec'ed out by third parties (thank you Erica Sadun!). Where's the Linux tools then?!? Don't make me have to write it myself!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              IMHO,the biggest problem of desktop linux is: lack of management.

                              In linux kernel development , there is Linus Torvalds who makes decisions for patches being adopted. what about desktop linux? Is there any formal management organization to lead desktop linux's evolutionary? freedesktop.org or LSB(Linux Standard Base)?No,both of them are inefficient compared with JCP to java or linux kernel team to linux kernel. Consequently, None of linux distros have consistent user experience by now . Also Fragmentation,too many choice but none of the choice is good enough.As a platform it is lack of enough attraction to the third party developers and even companies to develop apps for it. Why? Lack of well-organized and updated documentations and tookits, stable apis and relatively unified packages format for them to easily and quickly start developing apps on this platform. Because of lacking apps, users gradually lost interest in linux. We need satisfying and retaining users and developers. In my opinion,all of these problems are due to lack of management. We really really need work together to do only one big thing : move desktop linux forward.

                              In addition, Linux graphics sucks compared with windows and osx. Yep, wayland is our hope and wish it could come earlier.
                              Last edited by hooluupog; 06-10-2012, 12:38 PM.

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