screenshots.debian.net goes beta - Debian

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  1. screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    Fellow developers...

    it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched

    http://screenshots.debian.net

    after two weeks of programming fun.

    It is an effort to help users get an idea what a certain application does
    and how it looks like by offering screenshots. It was suggested by Roberto
    in January 2008 and I re-raised the discussion in July.

    Please take a look at the site, consider uploading screenshots of your
    favorite application and give some feedback. The approach is rather open.
    Everybody can upload screenshots. But they won't be visible until a member
    of the admin team approves them (to make sure we don't catch spam and
    porn). As soon as the application is stable I'd like to get 1-2 people on
    the admin team to watch the moderation queue. (If you see your own
    screenshots it's because I identify browsers by a cookie I send so that
    mistakenly uploaded images can be removed by the uploader.)

    Have fun and let me know what you think.

    Cheers
    Christoph

    P.S.: Bear with me if the service is down for a minute or two. I'm
    deploying a few minor updated to fix bugs I get reported.
    --
    ~
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  2. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:

    > it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched
    >
    > http://screenshots.debian.net

    [...]
    > Have fun and let me know what you think.


    Please do not reduce images in size. The screenshots of, for example, dilloand
    amiwm are horrible. If you have a guideline of having a maximum size of
    800x600 pixels, just give an error when someone uploads a screenshot that is
    larger than that.

    A link to packages.debian.org for every package would also be nice.

    --
    Met vriendelijke groet / with kind regards,
    Guus Sliepen

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  3. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Montag, 10. November 2008, Guus Sliepen wrote:
    > On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > > it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched
    > >
    > > http://screenshots.debian.net

    >
    > [...]
    >
    > > Have fun and let me know what you think.

    >
    > Please do not reduce images in size. The screenshots of, for example,
    > dillo and amiwm are horrible. If you have a guideline of having a
    > maximum size of 800x600 pixels, just give an error when someone uploads
    > a screenshot that is larger than that.


    In the "guidelines" I suggest not to upload screenshots larger than 800x600
    if the uploader doesn't want automatic reduction. Too large images cannot
    be viewed properly (e.g. I wouldn't be able to enjoy a 1600x1280 image on
    my screen) by most users. So I thought that 800x600 is a good compromise.

    > A link to packages.debian.org for every package would also be nice.


    Okay, will do. And I'll add proper URL routing so that packages.debian.org
    will be able to access screenshots directly, too.

    Christoph
    --
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  4. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, 2008-11-10 at 15:29 +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > On Montag, 10. November 2008, Guus Sliepen wrote:
    > > On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > > > it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched
    > > >
    > > > http://screenshots.debian.net

    > >
    > > [...]
    > >
    > > > Have fun and let me know what you think.

    > >
    > > Please do not reduce images in size. The screenshots of, for example,
    > > dillo and amiwm are horrible. If you have a guideline of having a
    > > maximum size of 800x600 pixels, just give an error when someone uploads
    > > a screenshot that is larger than that.

    >
    > In the "guidelines" I suggest not to upload screenshots larger than 800x600
    > if the uploader doesn't want automatic reduction. Too large images cannot
    > be viewed properly (e.g. I wouldn't be able to enjoy a 1600x1280 image on
    > my screen) by most users. So I thought that 800x600 is a good compromise.


    800x600 would be a good compromise provided that the original is
    available.

    William

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  5. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched
    > http://screenshots.debian.net


    First of all thanks a lot for the effort, the result is already really
    cool and in perspective it is amazingly useful!

    > Have fun and let me know what you think.


    On the guidelines:

    - You state that screenshot will be released under the same term of
    the screenshot-ed package, why so? It seems to me rather arbitrary
    and makes impossible to bundle all screenshot together on a media
    and distribute them under a consistent license.

    Suggestion: just name a license and stick to it.

    Then an usability comment: the only link under each screenshot is
    "request removal". IMO it is too "tempting", because it is the large
    and because it is the only link. Suggestion: replace it with the
    classical "X" icon with a tooltip, and make it "less important" by
    adding some other link, e.g., the suggested link to
    packages.debian.org.

    Out of curiosity, do you already have an API for accessing screenshot
    data externally? I guess the packages.d.o are interested in that, and
    for sure I'm interested in that to add a TODO item in the PTS for
    missing screenshots (probably just for some class of packages, we'll
    see).

    Cheers.

    --
    Stefano Zacchiroli -*- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
    zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
    Dietro un grande uomo c' sempre /oo\ All one has to do is hit the right
    uno zaino -- A.Bergonzoni \__/ keys at the right time -- J.S.Bach

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  6. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 12:11 AM, Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:

    > - You state that screenshot will be released under the same term of
    > the screenshot-ed package, why so? It seems to me rather arbitrary
    > and makes impossible to bundle all screenshot together on a media
    > and distribute them under a consistent license.
    >
    > Suggestion: just name a license and stick to it.


    screenshots are derivative works (according to SPI legal counsel):

    http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal.../msg00016.html

    --
    bye,
    pabs

    http://wiki.debian.org/PaulWise


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  7. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:16:06PM +0100, Guus Sliepen wrote:
    > Please do not reduce images in size. The screenshots of, for example, dillo and
    > amiwm are horrible. If you have a guideline of having a maximum size of
    > 800x600 pixels, just give an error when someone uploads a screenshot that is
    > larger than that.


    Why impose such a barrier to entry for contributers?

    I think resizing images is a fantastic thing to provide.

    I do think the page lengths, or result count per page, could be increased.

    --
    Noah Slater, http://tumbolia.org/nslater


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  8. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    Hi Christoph,

    many thanks for this effort - I admit I started dreaming of such a thing
    in the beginning of this year - it does not happen that often that dreams
    become true that fast. ;-)

    On Mon, 10 Nov 2008, Christoph Haas wrote:

    > Thanks to the framework used (Pylons) I can fully control which URL does
    > what. I intend to provide a URL that can be used for packages.debian.org
    > to display the screenshots. Possibly like:
    > http://screenshots.d.n/package/foobar/firstscreenshot
    >
    > I can even offer JSON, SOAP, XML, whatever if needed. Some URL that can be
    > used in an IMG/SRC tag should probably be sufficient for packages.d.o.


    Yes, this is exactly what I would need. A python API would be really great.
    I would like somethin like

    def GetScreenshotsURLS( ):
    ...
    return

    The entry of the dict should be 'None' / '' or something like that if there
    is no screenshot available and if a screenshot is available a string which
    enables to address icon and screenshot (of latest program version in case
    several versions are available).

    In addition to this I would love to get some information about languages the
    screenshot is available - in case you would like to implement screenshots in
    different languages.

    > I'll soon document the URL schema so everybody can use it. Just let me
    > know what information you need and I'll try providing a proper API.


    I would like to add screenshots to the entries on the Debian Pure Blends
    tasks pages like

    http://debian-med.alioth.debian.org/tasks/imaging.html

    I would like to put a link to "Upload screnshot for package foo here" in
    case there is no screenshot and an icon which links to the real image in
    case there is one. If we would have even an i18n screenshot I would link
    to the apropriate language or alternatively to the English default (and
    add a link "Upload screenshot for package foo in language bar").

    Thanks again for your effort

    Andreas.

    --
    http://fam-tille.de


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  9. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 04:46:10PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > Thanks. I love positive feedback. Developers often tend to point out
    > errors way more than enjoying what's already there.


    My pleasure

    > > Suggestion: just name a license and stick to it.


    Given the comment from pabs (which gave me a good WTF moment), I
    withdraw this request of mine.

    > > Then an usability comment: the only link under each screenshot is
    > > "request removal". IMO it is too "tempting", because it is the large
    > > and because it is the only link. Suggestion: replace it with the
    > > classical "X" icon with a tooltip, and make it "less important" by
    > > adding some other link, e.g., the suggested link to
    > > packages.debian.org.

    >
    > I'll think of something. Although clicking on it comes up with a
    > text entry field to the request isn't immediately filed. Previously
    > I had an "are you sure" popup instead.


    Note that I haven't said that users will request removals by mistake,
    I'm sure they will withdraw as soon as they see the popup (or whatever
    else). Still, if the link is "too tempting", people will click on it,
    just loosing time, while they can be directed to more useful
    targets. Maybe I'm drifting too much on HCI here

    > Thanks to the framework used (Pylons) I can fully control which URL does
    > what. I intend to provide a URL that can be used for packages.debian.org
    > to display the screenshots. Possibly like:
    > http://screenshots.d.n/package/foobar/firstscreenshot


    OK, REST interface would be nice.

    > I can even offer JSON, SOAP, XML, whatever if needed. Some URL that


    IMO the BTS has taught us that SOAP is the good way to go, on top of
    that we can have whatever programming language API we need.

    Additionally, the PTS needs kind of "all at once" listing, a place
    from which we can download at each PTS pulse a mapping
    package/screenshot(s), to avoid hammering screenshots.d.n with
    per-package requests.

    Cheers.

    --
    Stefano Zacchiroli -*- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
    zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
    Dietro un grande uomo c' sempre /oo\ All one has to do is hit the right
    uno zaino -- A.Bergonzoni \__/ keys at the right time -- J.S.Bach

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  10. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > Have fun and let me know what you think.


    Thank you for this; it looks very nice!

    Some quick comments:

    * don't list packages with only pending screenshots in the list of
    screenshots. There's a few packages at the moment listed as " 0
    (1 waiting for approval)" which just clutter the list, since there's
    nothing to see yet
    * There are 14 pages and the navigation is truncated to 'Page: 1 2 3 ..
    14 >'. Could you (optionally) display links to all pages? Or alter
    the number of results per page (increase, or make user configurable)?
    * an optional list of packages with screenshots which displayed the
    thumbnail would be nice.
    * It would be nice if the homepage column pointed at something more
    Debian specific, e.g. the packages page. I was going to suggest the
    PTS page, but of course that's developer-oriented and this is
    user-oriented. packages.debian.org/foo shows more useful info for
    existing Debian users, and includes the homepage from the control
    field where available.
    * what does the search field operate on? A search for 'games' shows up
    gridlock.app which contains 'games' in the short description, and is
    in category games. I'm not sure which it matched on. If only the
    short text, it would be nice to search on other criteria.


    --
    Jon Dowland


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  11. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 12:02:24AM +0100, Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:
    > IMO the BTS has taught us that SOAP is the good way to go, on top of
    > that we can have whatever programming language API we need.


    I'd agree that it's tought us the value of *an* API, but I (at least)
    have yet to love SOAP. Excerpt from debgtd:

    ...
    def reload_backend(self, bugs):
    model = self.model
    # fetch the details of all of these bugs
    # christ, someone point me at something which will make the
    # following clear.
    foo = self.server.get_status(bugs)[0]
    if 1 == len(bugs):
    # work around debbts unboxing "feature"
    hash = foo['value']._asdict()
    if hash['id'] in model.bugs:
    bug = model.bugs[hash['id']]
    model.update_bug(hash)
    ...

    I might just be being stupid, and one layer of boxing was conditional
    and is actually a design feature of BTS in particular, but I couldn't
    believe how many layers of dicts-inside-lists-inside-something-else
    there were for various queries.


    --
    Jon Dowland


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  12. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    Noah Slater wrote:
    [...]
    >
    > I do think the page lengths, or result count per page, could be increased.
    >


    +1


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  13. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Montag, 10. November 2008, Jon Dowland wrote:
    > On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > > Have fun and let me know what you think.

    >
    > Thank you for this; it looks very nice!
    >
    > Some quick comments:
    >
    > * don't list packages with only pending screenshots in the list of
    > screenshots. There's a few packages at the moment listed as " 0
    > (1 waiting for approval)" which just clutter the list, since there's
    > nothing to see yet


    Good idea. Put on the todo list.

    > * There are 14 pages and the navigation is truncated to 'Page: 1 2 3 ..
    > 14 >'. Could you (optionally) display links to all pages? Or alter
    > the number of results per page (increase, or make user configurable)?


    I'll change the pager radius to 10. Will be fixed in the next deployment.

    > * an optional list of packages with screenshots which displayed the
    > thumbnail would be nice.


    You mean a list where each package shows the screenshots right in the list?
    That's a nice idea. Minimizes clicking and loading. Put on the todo list.

    > * It would be nice if the homepage column pointed at something more
    > Debian specific, e.g. the packages page. I was going to suggest the
    > PTS page, but of course that's developer-oriented and this is
    > user-oriented. packages.debian.org/foo shows more useful info for
    > existing Debian users, and includes the homepage from the control
    > field where available.


    The version I'll deploy tomorrow contains a link to
    packages.d.o/PACKAGENAME. I loved the idea to point directly to the
    homepage though because that's likely where users search for more
    information before installing software.

    > * what does the search field operate on? A search for 'games' shows up
    > gridlock.app which contains 'games' in the short description, and is
    > in category games. I'm not sure which it matched on. If only the
    > short text, it would be nice to search on other criteria.


    Currently it's a case-insensitive search over the package name and short
    description. I'm open to suggestions.

    Thanks for your constructive feedback. I'm looking forward to the next
    version (which will even be faster because I'm moving to another VPS).

    Cheers
    Christoph
    --
    A guess is just a guess until you turn it into a pie chart.
    Then it's an analysis. (Scott Adams)

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  14. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    Christoph Haas wrote:

    > Fellow developers...
    >
    > it took a little longer than I expected but I finally launched
    >
    > http://screenshots.debian.net


    Great! thanks for your great job

    >
    > after two weeks of programming fun.

    [...]
    >
    > Please take a look at the site, consider uploading screenshots of your
    > favorite application and give some feedback. The approach is rather open.

    [...]
    >
    > Have fun and let me know what you think.


    * When browsing the packages list it would be great if you could also provide
    links to browse packages by name (e.g. A, B, C, etc, you get what I mean).
    * Have you considered storing more information together with the images? (the
    version of the package is what I believe is the most relevant missing
    information).
    * And what about letting the package uploaders upload the screenshots of their
    packages on their own without requiring any further moderation? all is needed
    is a maintainer-gpg key relationship and some sort of incoming queue where
    images are uploaded (packagename_version.ext) and then the output of md5sum
    foo_0.1.png bar_0.2.png | gpg --clearsign is uploaded (or sha1sum if you are
    paranoid). This has the following advantages: a) batch image uploads can be
    done, b) no interaction is required via the web interface, c) validating the
    incoming data is as simple as running gpg with the DDs and DMs --keyring,
    md5sum -c mybatchupload.asc, and then making sure the key owner has upload
    rights for those packages.



    >
    > Cheers
    > Christoph


    Cheers,
    Raphael Geissert



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  15. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 12:32 AM, Christoph Haas wrote:

    > So are we safe as long as we don't include non-free packages and claim that
    > the screenshots are licensed under the terms of the application itself?
    > IANAL and find that gibberish from your quoted posting pretty hard to
    > understand. (It's hard enough to understand legal texts in my native
    > language.)


    In theory, yeah just main/contrib should be safe. There could be
    issues with say, emulator screenshots showing non-free games or
    Microsoft Office in wine, BeOS in qemu or a game in contrib with
    non-free graphics or a game in main with a mod from outside Debian or
    something.

    The other thing is that for the purposes of screenshots.d.n the fair
    use provisions in some jurisdictions might be enough, the PDF produced
    by SPI legal counsel discusses this.

    --
    bye,
    pabs

    http://wiki.debian.org/PaulWise


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  16. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, 2008-11-11 at 00:20 +0900, Paul Wise wrote:
    > On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 12:11 AM, Stefano Zacchiroli wrote:
    >
    > > - You state that screenshot will be released under the same term of
    > > the screenshot-ed package, why so? It seems to me rather arbitrary
    > > and makes impossible to bundle all screenshot together on a media
    > > and distribute them under a consistent license.
    > >
    > > Suggestion: just name a license and stick to it.

    >
    > screenshots are derivative works (according to SPI legal counsel):
    >
    > http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal.../msg00016.html


    And yet reviewers don't ask for permission to make screenshots, but seem
    to be comfortable with assuming that this is fair use.

    Ben.


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  17. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 10:51 AM, Paul Wise wrote:

    > Also need lists of packages without screenshots for a given dist:
    >
    > s.d.n/needed/sid/a
    > s.d.n/needed/etch/b


    In a similar vein, it might be a good idea to have per-maintainer
    lists of packages with outdated screenshots or no screenshots, similar
    to the debtags todo pages:

    http://debtags.alioth.debian.org/tod...abs@debian.org

    --
    bye,
    pabs

    http://wiki.debian.org/PaulWise


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  18. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    Hi,

    Christoph Haas wrote:

    > On Montag, 10. November 2008, Jon Dowland wrote:
    > > On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 03:05:32PM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > > > Have fun and let me know what you think.

    > >
    > > Thank you for this; it looks very nice!


    +1

    > > * what does the search field operate on? A search for 'games' shows up
    > > gridlock.app which contains 'games' in the short description, and is
    > > in category games. I'm not sure which it matched on. If only the
    > > short text, it would be nice to search on other criteria.

    >
    > Currently it's a case-insensitive search over the package name and short
    > description. I'm open to suggestions.


    Browsing by section names (kde, games, mail, ...) or limiting the search to
    certain sections would be nice as well.


    Cheers,

    Wolf
    --
    Calculators are Weapons of Math Instruction. ('freitasm', seen on /.)


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  19. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Tue, Nov 11, 2008 at 01:02:42AM +0100, Christoph Haas wrote:
    > > * There are 14 pages and the navigation is truncated to 'Page: 1 2 3 ..
    > > 14 >'. Could you (optionally) display links to all pages? Or alter
    > > the number of results per page (increase, or make user configurable)?

    >
    > I'll change the pager radius to 10. Will be fixed in the next deployment.


    Actually, in the long run I don't think it will be a good idea of
    having all pages link, but a radius increase is good. Still, assuming
    we are going to have screenshot for all packages (which is quite
    exaggerated, I agree) a different way of navigating would be
    wonderful, perhaps the usual "by first letter", with the addition of
    "liba".."libz"? No idea how that should cooperate with page numbers
    though.

    But this brings me to another idea:

    Given how short the current package listing pages are, how about
    adding an extra column showing right away in the browsing table the
    "most popular" screenshot, with the same super-cool effect which is
    then used in the per-package page? That would add the benefit of
    browsing "visually" through packages. Of course the same could be
    done for the search result page.

    According to my understanding of the frameworks like Pylons, that
    would impact a bit on performances, as you'd have to pre-fetch some
    screenshots, but given the current size of lists it can be acceptable,
    can't it?


    Also, I fail to understand if the screenshots are indexed per
    binary-package or per source-package. Given you link to package.d.o I
    presume the former, but then have you thought about how to reconcile
    screenshots coming from different binary packages? Should they?

    > > * an optional list of packages with screenshots which displayed the
    > > thumbnail would be nice.

    >
    > You mean a list where each package shows the screenshots right in the list?
    > That's a nice idea. Minimizes clicking and loading. Put on the todo list.


    Erm, I believe that's the same discussed above, IOW +1.

    Cheers.

    --
    Stefano Zacchiroli -*- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
    zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
    Dietro un grande uomo c' sempre /oo\ All one has to do is hit the right
    uno zaino -- A.Bergonzoni \__/ keys at the right time -- J.S.Bach

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  20. Re: screenshots.debian.net goes beta

    On Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 05:49:40PM -0600, Raphael Geissert wrote:
    > > I do think the page lengths, or result count per page, could be increased.

    > +1


    AOL.

    ... and on the same subject, is there a restriction of one screenshot
    per package (I believe not), because currently the pages of the single
    packages feel a bit "empty" to the point that one wonders why the
    screenshot can't be shown right away when clicking on the package name
    in the result page.

    I believe the answer is that in the future there will be more
    screenshot, but what about giving the ability of seeing one (maybe the
    "most popular") screenshot directly from the result page?

    Cheers and thanks again.

    --
    Stefano Zacchiroli -*- PhD in Computer Science \ PostDoc @ Univ. Paris 7
    zack@{upsilon.cc,pps.jussieu.fr,debian.org} -<>- http://upsilon.cc/zack/
    Dietro un grande uomo c' sempre /oo\ All one has to do is hit the right
    uno zaino -- A.Bergonzoni \__/ keys at the right time -- J.S.Bach

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