Call for testing empathy

Matthew Paul Thomas mpt at
Wed Aug 20 22:52:35 BST 2008

Hash: SHA1

Laurent Bigonville wrote on 08/08/08 21:12:
> Empathy[1] will be part of the upcoming GNOME 2.24 desktop.
> The ubuntu desktop team considers using it instead of Pidgin for
> intrepid as default IM client. If you are running intrepid, please give
> empathy a test and report bugs to launchpad[2].

To help in this decision, I have evaluated the usability of Empathy and
Pidgin, and written up my findings.
In summary, I suggest that Ubuntu continue using Pidgin by default for
Intrepid, and that we reconsider Empathy for Intrepid+1.

Empathy currently does a couple of big things Pidgin does not (audio and
video chat), and handles one big feature much better than Pidgin (chat
logging). But I found most features were more obvious in Pidgin,
especially account setup, which is important for anyone who will start
using IM in Intrepid. (And people who were already using either Empathy
or Pidgin in a previous version of Ubuntu will continue using the same
program in Intrepid anyway, regardless of our decision.)

I found dozens of small learnability and efficiency problems in both
programs, and I have not yet had time to report them all as bugs. If
anyone would like to help out with this, especially in finding bugs that
have already been reported, I'd greatly appreciate it. (Wherever the
wiki page says "()", it needs a link to a bug report.)

- --
Matthew Paul Thomas
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