Translating the podcatcher

The Symbian Bugsquad is hosting test and fix days for the S^1 and S^3 podcast app: The podcatcher!

One type of contributions that is often overlook is localisation of applications to other languages.  So here is some simple instructions on how to translate the podcatcher:

  1. Clone and build the latest version of the podcatcher
  2. (optional) Apply my spanish translation patch for reference. You can find it attached to bug 2059
  3. Create a copy of \application\data\PodcastClient_english.rls and rename it to your chosen language.
  4. Translate the english strings into your language of choice (here is one I have did for Spanish)
  5. Next , update  language.rss with your translation. You will need to find what is the id number for your chosen language. For Spanish is 04. Continue reading “Translating the podcatcher”

PDK3.0.i: Qt and Symbian

PDK_3.0.i has now been released and contains pre-build QT4.6.2. QT is a graphical runtime that will become the main UI environment in Symbian^4. It makes writing applications for Symbian much simpler and also cross platform, as QT runs in many other OS environments.

This new Symbian^3 PDK contains a pre-integrated version of the Qt runtime environment. It also includes some Demo Application that show case easy is to build great user experience with a few lines of Qt code.

Here is a video demo of some of the things you can do with PDK_3.0.i and Qt:

Free Symbian App: Baby Countdown

I was recently reminded that it was not possible to find any apps for Symbian (Nokia, Samsung and SonyEricsson’s phones) to help pregnant woman!  This is a wrong I needed to set right 🙂

So today, I  would like to introduce you to a Free Symbian Web Runtime App that helps you countdown the arrival of your baby.  If you are pregnant in the UK and you are going into labour the hospital will ask you to monitor how frequent and long your contractions are before going in.  However, I always thought that the last thing a expecting mum (and the dad for that matter) want to do is fire up excel as the contractions are kicking in.

When you launch the Baby Countdown app,  you are presented with a simple screen with on button that says: START. Once you press it, the counter starts keeping track of time. The button changes to STOP.

As you can see from the snapshots below, the length of the current contraction is displayed under the title “This Contraction” as soon as STOP is pressed. Under the “Time Since Last:” title, the since the last contraction is displayed as soon as the next contraction has started and the START button is pressed. Continue reading “Free Symbian App: Baby Countdown”

Symbian^2 Success Story: 24 Contributions and Counting

If you have been following the Symbian world, the latest  hot news is the announcement of the first Symbian^3 phone by Nokia (the N8).

However, between Symbian^1 and Symbian^3 there is missing number –  so what is it going on with Symbian^2?  While Symbian^2 is not a revolutionary step in platform functionality, it is in terms of Open Source working practices.

Despite the fact that Symbian^2 remains SFL, and hence its source still open only to members, there are currently 24 contributions from non-Package Owner companies that have been accepted into the MCL, and another 50 still going through the review process.

So why is this important? Firstly, because it clearly signals the willingness of Symbian members to make source contributions and to improve the overall quality of the platform.

Secondly, because Symbian^2 is a foundation release and most of these quality improvements are still relevant for Symbian^3.

Kudos goes to DOCOMO as the main contributor and to all the package owners that are providing feedback and managing these contributions. To all of you: Thanks  and Keep up the good work!

My Package Dashboard – A Web Widget for Symbian about Symbian

You might have noticed how much Symbian is pushing the Web Run Time as an environment for application development, as it is thought to be really simple to do. I can confirm that it is!

After talking to some package owners, I had the realisation that we (Symbian) needed to offer an easy way for Package team members to track community activity. I do some of these tasks day to day, and it involves lots of pre-saved searches and so on…

Mix these thoughts with an ich to do some programming and what you get? “My Package” Dashboard WRT widget.

Continue reading “My Package Dashboard – A Web Widget for Symbian about Symbian”

There be Geckos here… arrggh!

I have previously blogged about the Bug Squad , but today I wanted to focus a bit more on the kudos aspect of the programme. Geckos and Gold!

The Kudo unit for the programme is a Gold Coin. We chose the Gold Coin as we felt it had an universal meaning representing a unit of value, and also because we can pretend to be pirates -Arrggh!

Coins are earned by performing several tasks related to the Bug Squad:

  • 1 piece for active participation on a test or bug day
  • 1 piece for finding and reporting a valid bug
  • 1 piece for adding information which lead to or pinpointing the cause of a bug correctly
  • 3 pieces for fixing a bug or implementing an enhancement (by providing a patch attached to bug or FCL changeset)
  • 1 piece for verifying a fix (you can not verify your own fixes)

Continue reading “There be Geckos here… arrggh!”

Improving Code Contributions

If you have been dowloanding code from the mercurial repos, you would have notice some spooky coincidences… most package MCLs update all at the same time!

Well you can relax, our repos are not posses. This is the result of Nokia’s package owners delivering contributions to our repos in a centralised manner.As you can imagine delivering updates to over 30 million lines of code every other week is a rather complexed operation.

We have been Working with Nokia to improve the contribution channel to make it reliable (we now consistently recieve contributions every 2 weeks). We are now moving towards the next big step, an automated package-base publishing system. You can now see the first live pilot on the access security package repo. Continue reading “Improving Code Contributions”

Update on the Bug Squad

One month on..

It is a month(ish) already since we started the Bug Squad (call to join the team through the Symbian Developer Forums).  I am pretty pleased with the participation so far and also with how much the Symbian team is learning from this programme.

I think the participation numbers tell an insightful story: The forum entry received 1,087 reads and we twittered our mailing list link to +1K followers. This resulted in 45 people subscribed to the mailing list (including about 5 symbian staff) .  Since then , 7 squad members have scored points for contributing to the bug squad efforts. Continue reading “Update on the Bug Squad”

Contributions: 130+ fixes and counting!

Trolling through Bugtracker this week , I was surprise to find out how many fixes are currently in the contributions pipeline.

I have been looking at tracking the large amount of defect fixes DoCoMo has contributed to S^2 (30+). Chris Dudding , the Package Owner for Persistent Data Services has been blogging about it.

I knew part of the pipeline, but I was pleasently surprise to see that the community elsewhere has been keeping busy.  A large part of the S^3 proposed enhancements comes from the Freedom Fighters project, that is focusing on compiling the Symbian platform using open source tools (namely GCCE). Peter Fordham is doing a great job in this initiative with more than 30 fixes under his belt.

From the BUG SQUAD part, we have already had our first patch integrated to the MCL, and anouther one in the pipeline.

Now the challenge for us is to improve the turn around time on feedback and integration of proposed contributions – (as the Zohan would say) So lets go!