XDG Config Folders

Scott Kitterman ubuntu at kitterman.com
Tue Aug 31 23:35:19 UTC 2010

"Martin Owens" <doctormo at gmail.com> wrote:

>On Wed, 2010-09-01 at 00:19 +0200, Krzysztof Klimonda wrote:
>> For example you are saying that emails should go to the directory
>> specified in user-dirs.[defaults,dirs] but that makes no sense uless
>> we
>> are thinking about $DOCUMENTS/.email_app/. Emails, while being
>> documents, aren't really suited for direct access. The same can be
>> said
>> for many other applications that doesn't fit into any of directory
>> listed in the user-dirs.[defaults,dirs].
>Direct access is a misdirection from the real problem of classification.
>Sure emails shouldn't be just files and rarely would I expect a user to
>use nautilus to manage their inbox, but the same can be said for most
>data sets whether they be photo galleries (i.e. cheese) or emails.
>What having them in user-dirs does is lay down a guarentee that the data
>will be in a narrower set of standard formats and will make developers
>think very carefully before they run away inventing new formats, new
>indexing and new storage mechanisms.
>Instead what it should promote is the sharing of data between
>Of course few programmers really want to tie themselves down to using
>standard formats in known locations with the possibility of having to
>track externally modified data. It's still not a good excuse to hide
>user data sets from both users and other developers.
>Emails, events, bookmarks and contacts are user data sets just like
>photos, documents and videos and it's a damn shame that we mis-classify
>them and save their contents in strange places. But this is a gnome
>problem and judging by that list of non-xdg projects to be converted it
>looks like only a legion of developers all working on this full time
>would be able to sort it out.
>Anyone got a few million quid?
>> XDG_DATA_HOKE is supposed to be basically a local, user-writable
>> equivalent of /usr/share. There are many things that fit neither this
>> requirement nor "user data" description. 
>Yes, and anything else in the XDG_DATA_DIRS list. But few things don't
>fit in my assessment of the problem. Perhaps we could do with a guide
>and maybe I can have a word with a few pipe devels about their
>experiences, requirements and thoughts on the whole thing of data
>classification and storage.

I think working to promote cross desktop adoption of technologies that make it easier to interact with data in a consistent, DE independent manner, (like Akonadi) will do more to solve this class of problems than specification work.

Scott K

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