Monday, January 11, 2010

Retrospective on 101

The first maintenance release is out. What you can see as the biggest news items is that application manager looks quite a bit different, and Ovi store is out. These two things go hand in hand. The work on application manager is on improving the user experience for installing applications from Ovi store. In addition to that, it's on improving the user experience of installing content from the community and nokia applications catalogues. Application manager is now fast enough to use - if only would be updated soon, then so would the community catalogues.

Ovi store content is not visible in the application manager installable applications. This is intentional, as we want the official Ovi store front-end to be the only place to browse for the great applications, backgrounds, ringtones and wallpapers. For this reason, the red pill mode was removed as well.

Here's a look at the application manager categories list (In finnish - it's time you all learned it ;) )
Great work from Vilja on the icons. Kudos! And for Gabriel for turning it to reality.

What you don't see immediately on the outside, is the work on preparation for the next big update. We have been working hard in making sure the OS update really works cleanly over the air and that it can be done with as little free space avaiable as possible. The end result is something to be proud of. I would like to thank especially Lokesh, Victor, Mario and David for the hard work, long days and tiresome weekends that resulted in the flawless update experience you guys are about to embark on. Without these guys raising to occasion when the going got tough, we would probably be pretty shaky about how the big updates will work. Now I'm content it will work great for all of you out there.

So, this is the step 1 only, you should be able to enjoy it and the Ovi store applications while waiting for the big update coming your way soon.

Hildon icon cache has been removed and update-icon-cache is now a no-op. Reason is that it was consuming vast amounts of space on rootfs and it was too slow to use on opt. Dropping has no human detectable differences in anything, so I'm sure it won't be missed by anyone. Computer measurable startup difference was within some percents give or take for most of the apps, but media player is 30 % faster without the cache, while maps is about 20% slower. Anyway, a good trade off.

Another thing that was removed is the red pill mode, as we didn't see any particular need for it anymore.

A word of warning: The next big update will require 45 megs of free space on the rootfs. This is pretty difficult for an end user to understand, so I'm calling all you developers who might have wasted end users rootfs space: please do what you can to optfy end users devices for every byte you can spare.

Read more detailed comments on the application manager work from here:

Sunday, January 03, 2010

Enhanced Calculator demo code

This is just a quick blog reply to requests to show the code of the Calculator of my previous blog post. I would gladly share the source in a nice zip as well, but wiki doesn't allow zip uploads (DOH!), so you'll have to accept badly commented wiki page.

Here be the WIKI.