[ubuntu-studio-devel] Next cycle

eylul eylul at ubuntustudio.org
Thu Apr 13 21:09:48 UTC 2017

Len thanks for this. A lot of interesting thoughts here. Opinions, etc
ahead. :)

> 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.
Yes, it is best for design/art people to have automount (its already
hard to bring design/art people to unfamiliar ground, more intuitive
behavior, the better), turning it off could be a good addition to the
-controls through if it is feasible? If not I think it is worth
discussing pros and cons and more details on what the problem is. If it
is seriously hindering audio creators, I'll take not hindering one side
in price of being a bit less intuitive to other side.
> 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.
considering autoupdates fixes security issues among other things I would
go with they need to stay. In terms of the kernel issue, I do use efi, I
never ran out of space in that manner until now, but still filing a bug
about this could be useful?
> 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)
My personal disagreement with this aside (I actually use the search bar
to launch a program often) :D I would caution against hover in
particular as it is a gesture that is inaccessible to touchscreens
(which are becoming more and more common on laptops). I assume this is
why whisker went with this approach actually.
> 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?
for me as an artists its usually only one, or two windows (e.g. drawing
+ reference image), and often 2 windows means 2 screens if possible. (at
least that has been my experience so far). I need the screen estate to
see what I am doing, more often than not. When doing creative coding it
ends up more of a mess with language references, and code and preview
window etc. :) Usually through if I have 20 windows up, it is because I
have been getting distracted and doing 3 things at once (for which now I
am trying to use workspaces and KDE activities) Window focus/menu bar
aspect is not critical for me in either direction but hard to grab
borders are an issue regardless of how many windows one work with tbh.
(I have been using my own window styling in XFCE for a while now so I
didn't realize this was still a problem) TLDR, wouldn't oppose switching
themes if it will improve usability.

I am going to side track here, and say, combined with the previous
point, it might be a good idea for us to discuss how EXACTLY we use our
desktop and share experiences at some point and even reach out to our
users if we get the chance. That way we can hopefully find out what are
bottlenecks for a lot of people in terms of efficiency and what are
diverging personal choices. :)
> 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.
I have been using a laptop with HiDPI screen for past few months and I
had to quit XFCE altogether, icons and themes aren't the only problem,
app scaling is also an issue and while some desktop environments are
better than others about this, none that I have seen has full support of
HiDPI, so this is somewhat of a difficult problem to solve. That being
said, a theme that doesn't require a magnifier to see the icons would
still be a nice step forward through :)

> 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.

this is something I can help with on design/art side (not that it
excludes anybody else from doing the same), :) its certainly more in my
area of focus than trying to learn packaging or do backend development
and have been already thinking on some background ideas. :D I like the
idea of an extended monitor layout.
> -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.
possibly silly question, would this still allow a change of settings
when it is needful to record the pulseaudio output? because it would be
nice to not lose that option?

in terms of controls, I'd like us to have time to take a very critical
look at the UI once you are done with the features, so that it is
polished and intuitive, beyond that I like your plan. (again, thanks so
much for working on this!)
> 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
> www.ovenwerks.net

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