Igalia


1
Oct 12

WebKitGTK+ accelerated composition on Wayland

As part of my work at Igalia browsers team, I am working on making WebKitGTK+ and Epiphany work on Wayland.

Just running non 3D websites on Wayland did not involve too much work. But running the OpenGL accelerated code in WebKit was a bit more complicated. Though, I’ve got a first working version.

Video: Epiphany on Wayland running WebGL and CSS-3D

On WebKitGTK+, we enable the use of hardware acceleration with OpenGL for:

  • WebGL: web pages with a canvas using WebGL are run using the 3D hardware available.
  • Accelerated composition of layers. With stuff like CSS-3D transformations, 3D hardware acceleration is handy to composite the layers of a webpage.
You can read more about accelerated compositing on these posts from Martin Robinson: WebKitGTK+ hackfest wrapup, and Accelerated compositing update.

On X11, we use XComposite, sharing a Window among the GTK+ widget (WebKitWebView) and the GL contexts for WebGL and accelerated composition. We have a tree of layers, each one rendering to a texture. Then these textures are composited rendering directly to the X11 window.

On Wayland, things are a bit different. Wayland protocol does not define a way to share a buffer among clients, nor a way to “insert” a window inside another window. My solution is just making the accelerated compositor render the layers to another texture. When the time comes for the WebKitWebView to be drawn (using Cairo), we render this texture too. If we build GTK+ for using EGL, then this process happens completely on GPU.

Next step will be adding support for accelerated composition in WebKit2GTK+. The main challenge here is that the WebKitWebView widget is on UI process and the WebGL contexts and layers rendering are in Web Process. So, if we want to avoid buffers going to/from GPU, we need to share them between the two processes. DRM authentication through EGL_mesa_drm extension could help here.


14
May 12

IwkMail, mixing WebKit Gtk+, Camel and JQuery Mobile

In the last few weeks, as part of my work here at Igalia, I’ve been playing a bit with the concept of hybrid applications. In this case, I’ve created a basic prototype of a mail application, with its user interface completely written using JQuery Mobile, and with backend code in C and GObject. The result is iwkmail.

Screencast of iwkmail in action

Though it’s a simple experiment, I’ve added some mail basic functionality, so I could try to catch as much as possible of real requirements for how  we could improve the developers WebKit+GNOME experience creating hybrid applications.

My first conclusion is that it’s surprisingly easy and fast to develop such applications. Second, I could reuse tons of source code and modules from my old projects. This approach surely provides a way to create cool GNOME applications, using the most fashionable web client technologies.

So, you’ll get:

  • Browsing messages
  • Read/unread flags
  • Deleting messages
  • Creating and deleting mail accounts.
  • Storage protocols supported: IMAP and POP.
  • For sending mails, we support SMTP. There’s support for an outbox holding the messages to be sent.
  • A plain text composer, allowing to add attachments.

The UI is completely written in Javascript + HTML, using JQuery Mobile.

The backend side is done using Camel library inside Evolution Data Server, so we rely on a library well tested for more than 10 years.  All the code related to this is implemented in C+GObject, and I reused a good set of code from Modest, the default mail client for Nokia N810 and N900. I’ve got involved on its development for 3 years, so that’s a bunch of code I know well enough.

For communication, I use the AJAX-like JSONP protocol, and custom SoupRequest URI scheme handlers. Basically I expose some methods as iwk:addAcccount, iwk:getMessage, etc, and arguments are passed as usual in a web request. The result I obtain from this calls is a JSON object with the results of the call. Simple, and works very well.

I’ve pushed the work on github: https://github.com/jdapena/iwkmail. Feel free to try it!

Oh, I guess it’s very obvious that I did not spend too much time thinking on the project name… So, anyone proposing something that matches the IM acronym (I don’t want to rewrite the class names!) would deserve a beer.

Last, lots of thanks to Igalia for giving me the opportunity to do this experiment. As usual, fun stuff to work with.


16
Mar 12

Epiphany meets the web app stores

In last weeks, I’ve been taking a look at the web applications standards support in Epiphany, as part of my work at Igalia. Xan wrote about the Save as web application feature present in Epiphany 3.2, that is a base for very simple (and userful) web applications support in Gnome desktop.

To continue with this work, I’ve been investigating on adding support for some web app stores. So I’ve done an experimental implementation for Mozilla Open Web Apps (as in 2011 tech preview), Chrome Web Store hosted and packaged apps, and Chrome CRX-less apps.


Screencast using Chrome Web Store.

This is an experiment. Not supported, and it may actually stay out of official Epiphany. So there are lots of things not working at all. This is first a way to have a big number of apps to play with our application mode, and improve it. So no permissions check, URL’s match may be broken, many apps will fail to even log in… Did I say it is an experiment? Most obvious issues are related with this external links handling bug.

But, if you just want to play with it, just try my branch webapp in my Epiphany Github repository. By default, support is disabled, so you’ll have to enable these keys:

$ gsettings set org.gnome.Epiphany.web enable-chrome-apps true
$ gsettings set org.gnome.Epiphany.web enable-open-web-apps true

You can try with Mozilla Labs Apps Dir from 2011 tech preview and Chrome Web Store.


27
Jul 10

Talk about Modest 4 for Guadec next Thursday. Challenges of portability between Hildon and GNOME.

Tomorrow I’m leaving to GUADEC 2010.  I’m goint to assist only on Thursday this time, when I’ll be doing this year GUADEC talk about Modest project.

This time the talk focus will be completely different, as I’ll be explaining the process towards Modest 4, where we’re focusing in intensive refactoring, with the goal of releasing a product quality in GNOME, Moblin and Hildon/Maemo5 platforms.

Also, I’ll talk about some differences between Maemo and GNOME platforms, and some bits I miss in GNOME platform:

  • IP hearbeat (data transferences done in bursts to save energy).
  • libosso-abook (evolution data server addressbook and telepathy integration).
  • libalarm/alarmd (events scheduler integrated with dbus, and with support for waking up device).
  • … etc, etc.

I won’t ellaborate too much, but I’m trying to point some weak points in GNOME platform we could improve (just taking free software Maemo components, or improving GNOME platform components).

The talk will be on Thursday, at 14:45 in Seville room.


12
Apr 10

Clutter Grilo Player 0.1.1

This week I’ve been working a bit more in the Clutter Grilo Player. And finally did release 0.1.1:

  • Fullscreen button.
  • Keyboard shortcuts.
  • Volume control.
  • Now we sort search results.
  • Translation support.
  • Style fixes (no more ugly red buttons in media library).
  • Speedup in YouTube access.

Thanks to Chris Lord for his patches in clutter code, and Iago Toral for his help improving YouTube speed.

As usual, I uploaded the packages to CGP Launchpad PPA. The code, in CGP  gitorious.


5
Apr 10

First release of Clutter Grilo Player

Last weeks I’ve been playing with Clutter and Mx libraries, with the idea of knowing them deeper while also trying to help a bit. Honestly, I believe that the best way to learn about such things is just creating something using them.

So, knowing the fantastic effort done by Grilo team at Igalia, to create a framework for accessing different multimedia sources across the internet, I came to the idea of creating a very simple media player that uses MX widgets, Gstreamer, and Grilo framework.

And here it is, the first release of Clutter Grilo Player. It’s still dirty, but the general idea of the interface is there. It supports browsing and searching some Grilo providers, including Youtube and others.

Some links:


15
Mar 10

Tinymail moved to gitorious.

After some migration work, now we have Tinymail repository completely migrated to gitorious.org:

http://gitorious.org/tinymail

I’ve rescued all the branches available in our svn and tried to keep the proper authorship attributions.

So, from now on, the development should happen in gitorious, and, if you want to keep updated with the latest changes, this is the source to get the information.

I’ve also updated as much as possible the tinymail wiki with proper references to the gitorious.

I know I’ve just announced moving modest to gitorious, but modest was already in git. This time the change in tinymail is bigger as we’re also moving to git from svn! Big change, bigger benefits.


26
Feb 10

Modest mail, now in gitorious.org

This week we’ve finally moved Modest to gitorious:

http://gitorious.org/modest/

The repository itself is called modest:
http://gitorious.org/modest/modest/
git://gitorious.org/modest/modest.git

Reasons are basically that gitorious is faster and better providing git services. So I hope the change is for good.

All the other services will still be in garage: mailing lists, wiki, and project web.

Implementation guide

Last weeks we’ve also been writing some information about how Modest has been implemented, in the wiki. You can find them in Modest architecture documentation. There you’ll find:

  • Description of the classes in Modest implementation, and how they work.
  • Sequence of events that implement some complex use cases.

24
Jan 10

Launchpad PPA for Modest 3.90 series (Gnome&Moblin port)

Gnome/Moblin Modest

As I told in previous post, we’re developing actively a port of Modest for Gnome and Moblin, trying to keep the user experience we created in Maemo Fremantle releases.

While the goal is having something working for Moblin, Modest way of handling mails (kept simple, and fast to browse) is something you may definitely want to try in y our desktop.

Launchpad PPA for Modest

So, last weeks we’ve started to create packages of Modest for Ubuntu Karmic using the unstable development for Gnome&Moblin. For this we’re using Launchpad PPA. You can get packages for Karmic here:

https://launchpad.net/~jdapena/+archive/modest/

Of course, we would be glad to prepare releases for other distributions. Just ask.

Modest 3.90.x vs 3.2.x

If you check the Modest git repository you’ll see that we’re actively developing in two branches: master and modest-3-2:

  • modest-3-2 branch is targetted for Fremantle releases, and is also the stable release path. If you want to install new releases of Modest in your N900 this is the branch you should use. The releases are happening often, and are numbered in 3.2.x series.
  • master branch is the unstable work. The main change happening here is the creation of a Gnome&Moblin version of Modest, without hildon/maemo dependencies. This is the branch used for Launchpad PPA releases.

So, Modest release 3.90.4

Today I’ve prepared release 3.90.4 of Modest. The main new feature is that it includes support for handling calendar invitation requests in plugins. So a protocol plugin would be able to handle the calendar invitations and add accept/tentative/decline buttons. Also some bugfixes.

In next hours this should be available in Modest PPA.


11
Dec 09

What’s going on in Modest: new Gnome/Moblin port.

As many of you know, Modest is the mail client of Nokia n810 and n900 devices. As that, there is a huge effort on it, to make a really good mail experience in those devices. But for last years, the effort was completely concentrated on Maemo platform.

Last months, Sergio Villar and me have been working on bringing the Modest user experience to both Gnome and Moblin, using our community projects time here at Igalia. The work was based on a very interesting effort from Javier Jardon this summer.

The main goal was trying to make the behavior of Modest in Gnome as similar as possible to the counterpart in Fremantle/Maemo5. It’s still unstable, a work in progress, but it’s already showing how it will look like:

List of folders in Modest Gnome

You’ll see a really big difference with other mail clients available in desktop. It’s really oriented to keep things really simple and straightforward, so Modest is not only light, but its user experience is kept light too following a similar style to the one used in Fremantle Modest.

Most use cases are already functional. We’ll try to do a new release next week, and, if possible, also offer some packages for easy testing. Stay tuned.