[ubuntu-studio-devel] Next cycle

Len Ovens len at ovenwerks.net
Thu Apr 13 15:49:16 UTC 2017

Aside from having a new -controls (I hope) there are a few things I would 
like to hear about.

Auto mounting - we used to make sure there was no auto mounting of USB 
drives, cds or dvds. But since we have started borrowing xubuntu's 
desktop, that has come back in. IMO this is bad for audio use at least 
(anything auto is). However, I realize I am audio centric. How does this 
align with graphics/video use which are in general not real time or low 
latency tasks.

Auto updating - same as above. But to add to it, I noticed that 
autoupdating installs new kernels in background. However, there seems to 
be no background old kernel clean up. I don't use efi myself, but I 
understand that efi uses a separate boot partition of minimal size and 
could become full with no warning... perhaps making updates or booting 
broken. I would guess this not just a Studio problem... though if it is 
then the solution must be hanging around already. Needs study in any case.

whisker menu - I still hate it :) But if we are going to keep it (I always 
go back to the system menu on my systems) can we at least resize it so 
that the menu categories are all visible by default... and enable hover so 
that click on category is not needed. I understand that having the search 
window there is nice for some people... but I just don't seem to come up 
with valuable search terms ever... my brain and whoever sets seach data 
just don't match. (probably means I'm abnormal)

Can we change the default theme to Moheli or similar? There are two things 
I like in a theme:
 	The window with focus stands out - menu bar is a different colour
 	The border needs to be wide enough to be easy to grab

More than one workpace by default - I understand that I may work a bit 
different than others doing development on more than one project at a 
time. It is not unusual for me to have 30 or more windows open at one 
time. IDEs do try to make things so this is not needed... but my workflow 
is just that way. This is why being able to resize windows and see which 
is focused are important.

I understand that xubuntu is aimed at mainstream either browsing or one 
other app fullscreen use and so the desktop we end up with reflects that. 
As content creators, how do the rest of us set up their desktops? Should 
changes be made? or am I really the odd one out?

Also in the world of themes. Are there any high DPI or better variable DPI 
centric themes available? While I do not use a high DPI monitor (mine are 
only 1600X900), I would expect both graphics and video creators to use 
them... actually it would be very nice for mixbus-32c too. SO at least two 
themes one for low and one for high, but better one that can deal with 
making fonts visible at any dpi.

Normally artwork changes for LTS releases (next year) but as things move 
slow here... maybe now is a good time to start thinking about a new 
backdrop. It would be nice if there could be one that is extensible where 
a generic version could be used on the right monitor in a dual monitor 
configuration. I am sure that I have not been plain here :)

I am thinking of a left monitor BG that is complete in itself for single 
monitor users. Then a second BG that looks like an extension of the left 
but with no logo etc. It may even seem blank or just continue the right 
edge colours or something like that. Then build the ISO install for a dual 
monitor setup with those two BGs as default (I don't thnk this would be 
too hard). If started up in single monitor mode, the system will 
reconfigure using the left monitor's BG and look right in that 
configuration as well.

-controls will make some changes beyond what it does now and I want it 
complete and well tested for 17.10 so that we have time to make changes in 
it and the rest of the system for 18.04LTS. One of those changes will be 
to upgrade the pulse-jack bridge. The main thing being to allow pulse to 
run at a higher latency than jack so that the bridge will take less cpu 
and things like skype will continue to run even with jackd at 16/2. 
Basically, I want jackd to look like a sound card to pulse. I would like 
it to show up in pulse's configuration tab for example so people can set 
it up as more than stereo if they want. But the main thing is that the 
pa-jack bridge should never cause jack xruns... pa xruns are ok :P  pa 
hides it's xruns already (but not their artifacts) so go with the flow. A 
PA replacement would be ever so nice, but we don't have a team of coders 
and 10 years to do that.

My goal for -controls is to replace most of the aging qjackctl except the 
connections window (I may even be able to get -controls to open the 
qjackctl connections window) and to make it more like Cadence. I would use 
cadence if it was packaged and I totally agreed with the way it does 
things. (I am not saying cadence does things wrong... just that I can do 
better ;)  )

Len Ovens

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