Developers, developers, developers...

Krzysztof Klimonda kklimonda at
Sat Nov 13 20:02:52 UTC 2010

On Sat, 2010-11-13 at 19:37 +0000, Shane Fagan wrote:
> Hey Maciej,
> Well on the book thing we cant really make one. The apis change so much
> it would make any book obsolete after a year or so. Like currently we
> are moving very soon from GTK+ 2 - 3 so it would be a little insane to
> write a book on either since GTK 3 isnt ready yet and 2 is going out
> very soon. 
> Since things evolve so fast in the open source world its hard to
> document stuff in a stable way without the risk of obsolescence.


The fact that we can't write a book about our platform is an indication
that there is something terribly wrong with the platform itself. It's as
simple as that. Change is meaningless if you can't keep up with it. an
incomplete and terse library API reference is not enough to convince
anyone, but CS majors and freedom lovers, to write new applications.

Not only should a book be written but it's getting to the point where
such a book becomes a necessity - we provide dozens of libraries and
services that developers should be aware of in order to create amazing
applications for Ubuntu but we don't provide any documentation for them
- if you are lucky you will get an up-to-date API reference. If you
aren't you will have to spend hours browsing Google to find some
scattered informations, some of which may be relevant.

We are getting to the point when just saying "sorry, but it's to hard"
is not a good enough excuse. Yes, we can still use a "we do it for free"
excuse but Canonical can't - they obviously see the correlation between
getting developers onto Ubuntu wagon and crossing the chasm so it's time
to do something to make it easier for developers to start applications.
Quickly is nice but it doesn't really change much if there is no
documentation to speak of for the platform. Code samples are going to
take you only so far [1]

[1] sure, you can learn everything about platform just by reading code
but no one who makes living from writing applications is going to do

Krzysztof Klimonda <kklimonda at>

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