October 24, 2014

Winners of Wiki Loves Romania 2014

Organizing Wiki Loves Monuments in Romania this year was the hardest so far. Why so? We had a bigger budget, which allowed us to be more ambitious, so on top of the free photography contest for Wikipedia we had to manage a photo exhibition, a 2 day field trip, an additional contest for juniors, a team of volunteering interns and more. But it was rewarding, the results are notable: over 8200 pictures from 216 contributors.

I will tease with the top 3 photos from the contest, you can see all of them on our website.

1st place: Bogdan Croitoru with Monumentul triumfal Tropaeum Traiani
006 MG 6430 Tropaeum Traiani Adamclisi 006
2nd place: Dragoș Pîrvulescu with Fortificație medievală
Cetatea Râșnov, văzută din șoseaua Cristian-Râșnov.
3rd place: Zsolt Deak pentru Ansamblul bisericii evanghelice fortificat-vedere aeriana
Ansamblul bisericii evanghelice fortificat-vedere aeriana

You can also see the winning pictures, along with highlights from the previous editions and winners of the section dedicated to younger contributors in a photo exhibition opened for 3 weeks at the National Library in Bucharest. After that, the expo will move for a couple more weeks at Universitatea de Vest in Timișoara.

expo

October 08, 2014

Software Freedom Day Hanoi: Fedora Report

I was in Hanoi last month to participate in the APAC ambassadors meeting, as well as the Software Freedom Day event. This post summarizes notes from the trip.

APAC Ambassadors Meeting

On the first day, we had a meeting set up, to go through the current year’s budget, and discuss concerns with our respective countries. Tuan, Thang, Alick, Somvannda and yours truly were physically present. Gnokii, Kushal and Ankur participated for significant portions of time, remotely over IRC.

Fedora Folks posing at the SFD banner Photo: Unknown

We started with a general discussion about the APAC situation. Some (not sic) moments:

Tuan:

We have a lack of physical meetups among APAC folks.

Tuan was my roomate in Prague (at Flock), and we had a brief discussion about this. For most APAC meetings, at least until a few weeks ago, there would be very few representatives from Asian countries. When the budget was to be made for the current FY, Tuan announced over the mailing lists, but nobody showed up.

We discussed how this situation is improving. In November this year, a FAD is planned where folks have been invited to help with the budget planning. The recent meetings have run over an hour and we regularly have irregular meetings these days ;) While that is indeed trouble, it indicates interest, which is a good thing.

Kushal:

We should stop people from treating Fedora as a travel agency.

For context, here’s a blogpost around the same concern. Many Indians just want to become ambassadors, because they think that warrants them funds to travel. It’s of course great if people have been contributing in volumes and want funds to travel and speak about it - in fact, that’s encouraged. But in the recent times, Kushal says he receives mentorship requests, where the person doesn’t want to go through the mentoring process and wants to gain ambassador status directly. Kushal quoted examples and how the mentors team in India dealt with it.

Us hard at work Photo: Somvannda

Next, we worked on the most important bit: the budget. Alick volunteered to review and update Q2 and I helped with Q1. Alick got lucky since most events planned in Q2 were cancelled and there wasn’t much to review. Thang helped me cross-check events, swag requests and travel tickets from Q1.

After a lunch break, we turned to discuss Ambassador Polos and FAD Phnom Penh. I had been working on cleaning up the entire APAC trac for two weeks, but was unable to complete it because people hardly respond. Finally, at the meeting, with help from everyone present, the APAC trac is now Sparkly!

Software Freedom Day at the Uni

This was my second SFD, first being the one I helped organize in school. The way this one was organized was definitely more colorful - it started off with a Tux dance!

Alick had some swag flown over from China, so we used them up at our booth - it disappeared quickly, even before we had a chance to grab some of the folks and do some Fedora preaching. Nonetheless, it was super fun. I think we managed to direct some of the students to our Fedora room for the afternoon sessions. With the swag all gone and not much agenda for the rest of the morning, we headed to the main hall.

Sponsors being felicitated Photo: Alick

I’m going to have to quote the following line from Alick’s report:

Alick:

Sarup, Somvannda, and I are honored to be introduced as special international guests to the event (in English).

It was funny (although exciting) to attend the first few talks in the regional language. Well, we even attended the “How to contribute to Fedora without programming skills” keynote by Tuan in Vietnamese ;)

Come afternoon, we moved to our Fedora room. While Trang and I went around gathering folks to attend our sessions, Thang introduced the attendees to the Fedora Project - who we are, what we do, our goals, and why bother. He did his session in Vietnamese, and the attendees were visibly glued.

Next was Alick’s session on FOSS Software Defined Radio. I think he did a great job introducing the topic - it was a topic unfamiliar to me, but now I get the basics. I liked his idea of motivating through examples.

Finally, I did my mini workshop on FOSS 101. Prior to the event, we had a little debate around what I should talk about - GSoC? Git? Rails? From my understanding of the audience, I decided to do a diluted version of my FOSSASIA workshop. I introduced attendees to the idea of FOSS, put up quotes sent to me by Sumanah and Tatica (who I’ve always felt are great examples of our awesome lady FOSS activists) and showed them around IRC & the idea of mailing lists. I wrapped up with a basic introduction to Git (for which I should thank Alick for his help with the demos and Trang for the translation).

Arrangements

Day 0 was 18 September 2014. I was put up at the Hanoi Legacy Hotel near the Hoan Kiem lake. My roomate was Alick, who arrived later in the evening. Somvannda was at the hotel a day in prior. Tuan and Thang being the locals, were our awesome hosts. For dinner on all but the last day, we had street food near the hotel. On the last day, we had dinner with the VFOSSA folks, other organizers and volunteers.

The meeting was held on the first day, 19 September, at the VAIP office. The SFD event was held on the second day, 20 September at Hanoi University of Engineering and Technology.

Fun Memories

As you would guess, we had fun along the way! On Day 0, Somvannda and I went around Hanoi’s streets hunting for Egg Coffee.

For dinner, Tuan and Thang took the rest of us to a nearby food joint, where we tried out some rather interesting Vietnamese food. I (kinda) picked up how to use a chopstick too.

Newly acquired chopstick skills Photo: Me

On Day 1, after the meeting was over, we headed to the Water Puppet Theater - a unique concept. For dinner, we roamed the street for local food, followed by a brief trip to the Night Market in the Hanoi Old Quarter. I wish we could have revisited the place on the final day as well, but we couldn’t as the events ended late.

On the final day, we were joined by the awesome (hopefully significant future contributors) Trang and Phuong. Trang made us try “Corn in Fish Sauce” and we wrapped up with the usual beer :-)

It was definitely a weekend well spent and I’d like to thank everyone for the fun and productive time!

October 04, 2014

Software Freedom Day Hanoi: Fedora Report

I was in Hanoi last month to participate in the APAC ambassadors meeting, as well as the Software Freedom Day event. This post summarizes notes from the trip.

APAC Ambassadors Meeting

On the first day, we had a meeting set up, to go through the current year’s budget, and discuss concerns with our respective countries. Tuan, Thang, Alick, Somvannda and yours truly were physically present. Gnokii, Kushal and Ankur participated for significant portions of time, remotely over IRC.

Fedora Folks posing at the SFD banner Photo: Unknown

We started with a general discussion about the APAC situation. Some (not sic) moments:

Tuan:

We have a lack of physical meetups among APAC folks.

Tuan was my roomate in Prague (at Flock), and we had a brief discussion about this. For most APAC meetings, at least until a few weeks ago, there would be very few representatives from Asian countries. When the budget was to be made for the current FY, Tuan announced over the mailing lists, but nobody showed up.

We discussed how this situation is improving. In November this year, a FAD is planned where folks have been invited to help with the budget planning. The recent meetings have run over an hour and we regularly have irregular meetings these days ;) While that is indeed trouble, it indicates interest, which is a good thing.

Kushal:

We should stop people from treating Fedora as a travel agency.

For context, here’s a blogpost around the same concern. Many Indians just want to become ambassadors, because they think that warrants them funds to travel. It’s of course great if people have been contributing in volumes and want funds to travel and speak about it - in fact, that’s encouraged. But in the recent times, Kushal says he receives mentorship requests, where the person doesn’t want to go through the mentoring process and wants to gain ambassador status directly. Kushal quoted examples and how the mentors team in India dealt with it.

Us hard at work Photo: Somvannda

Next, we worked on the most important bit: the budget. Alick volunteered to review and update Q2 and I helped with Q1. Alick got lucky since most events planned in Q2 were cancelled and there wasn’t much to review. Thang helped me cross-check events, swag requests and travel tickets from Q1.

After a lunch break, we turned to discuss Ambassador Polos and FAD Phnom Penh. I had been working on cleaning up the entire APAC trac for two weeks, but was unable to complete it because people hardly respond. Finally, at the meeting, with help from everyone present, the APAC trac is now Sparkly!

Software Freedom Day at the Uni

This was my second SFD, first being the one I helped organize in school. The way this one was organized was definitely more colorful - it started off with a Tux dance!

Alick had some swag flown over from China, so we used them up at our booth - it disappeared quickly, even before we had a chance to grab some of the folks and do some Fedora preaching. Nonetheless, it was super fun. I think we managed to direct some of the students to our Fedora room for the afternoon sessions. With the swag all gone and not much agenda for the rest of the morning, we headed to the main hall.

Sponsors being felicitated Photo: Alick

I’m going to have to quote the following line from Alick’s report:

Alick:

Sarup, Somvannda, and I are honored to be introduced as special international guests to the event (in English).

It was funny (although exciting) to attend the first few talks in the regional language. Well, we even attended the “How to contribute to Fedora without programming skills” keynote by Tuan in Vietnamese ;)

Come afternoon, we moved to our Fedora room. While Trang and I went around gathering folks to attend our sessions, Thang introduced the attendees to the Fedora Project - who we are, what we do, our goals, and why bother. He did his session in Vietnamese, and the attendees were visibly glued.

Next was Alick’s session on FOSS Software Defined Radio. I think he did a great job introducing the topic - it was a topic unfamiliar to me, but now I get the basics. I liked his idea of motivating through examples.

Finally, I did my mini workshop on FOSS 101. Prior to the event, we had a little debate around what I should talk about - GSoC? Git? Rails? From my understanding of the audience, I decided to do a diluted version of my FOSSASIA workshop. I introduced attendees to the idea of FOSS, put up quotes sent to me by Sumanah and Tatica (who I’ve always felt are great examples of our awesome lady FOSS activists) and showed them around IRC & the idea of mailing lists. I wrapped up with a basic introduction to Git (for which I should thank Alick for his help with the demos and Trang for the translation).

Arrangements

Day 0 was 18 September 2014. I was put up at the Hanoi Legacy Hotel near the Hoan Kiem lake. My roomate was Alick, who arrived later in the evening. Somvannda was at the hotel a day in prior. Tuan and Thang being the locals, were our awesome hosts. For dinner on all but the last day, we had street food near the hotel. On the last day, we had dinner with the VFOSSA folks, other organizers and volunteers.

The meeting was held on the first day, 19 September, at the VAIP office. The SFD event was held on the second day, 20 September at Hanoi University of Engineering and Technology.

Fun Memories

As you would guess, we had fun along the way! On Day 0, Somvannda and I went around Hanoi’s streets hunting for Egg Coffee.

For dinner, Tuan and Thang took the rest of us to a nearby food joint, where we tried out some rather interesting Vietnamese food. I (kinda) picked up how to use a chopstick too.

Newly acquired chopstick skills Photo: Me

On Day 1, after the meeting was over, we headed to the Water Puppet Theater - a unique concept. For dinner, we roamed the street for local food, followed by a brief trip to the Night Market in the Hanoi Old Quarter. I wish we could have revisited the place on the final day as well, but we couldn’t as the events ended late.

On the final day, we were joined by the awesome (hopefully significant future contributors) Trang and Phuong. Trang made us try “Corn in Fish Sauce” and we wrapped up with the usual beer :-)

It was definitely a weekend well spent and I’d like to thank everyone for the fun and productive time!

October 01, 2014

Inkscape: Donde cada elemento es una capa

¿Te has preguntado en que se diferencia Inkscape de GIMP? Una de las principales razones por las cuales Inkscape es más utilizada para elaborar publicidad, es porque trata a cada elemento como una capa individual, esto permite que al elaborar un arte central, puedas simplemente reorganizar los elementos que lo componen para realizar un nuevo diseño, por lo tienes que olvídate de borrar y parchar nada.

En Gimp, si dibujamos varias figuras y no colocamos cada una en una capa, cuando queramos separarlas, no podremos, ya que todos los componentes que hicimos forman parte de una misma capa, en cambio, si realizamos las mismas figuras en inkscape, la diferencia es que podremos separarlas y trabajar con ellas como elementos individuales ya que cada una de ellas se comporta como una capa.

Por ejemplo, el diseño de esta web fue hecho con inkscape, así que dale un vistazo, deja tu comentario y no olvides suscribirte a mi canal de youtube y a este portal para seguir aprendiendo de forma fácil y rápida!

<iframe class="youtube-player" frameborder="0" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/3BUtb7-xBwg?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

Y si te gusta mi contenido, no te olvides de votar por este blog como Mejor Blog de Software Libre, solo dale click al botón amarillo que dice “Votar” y confirma tu email! :D

flattr this!

September 25, 2014

Donde encontrar increibles Fotos Gratuitas

Uno de los retos mas grandes cuando nos toca realizar un website o una publicidad en general es encontrar fotografías geniales a un buen costo (o gratis dependiendo del cliente), y no es que sea malo pagar por fotografías, pero a veces el cliente es pequeño y pues el presupuesto no alcanza. En la red hay miles de servicios que proveen fotografías de alta calidad por un costo de suscripción mensual, por paquete o por fotografía, pero hay un mundo de sitios que ofrecen fotografías de forma gratuita bajo una licencia amigable para esas necesidades que tanto tenemos como diseñadores. Veamos algunos de mis favoritos:

dttsf

Death to Stock Photo es un servicio al cual te suscribes dejando tu email en su website, y mensualmente envía sets de 10 fotografías ambientadas usualmente en el tema del mes, con una calidad increíble y una variedad super útil. Cada vez que recibes un correo de ellos te emocionas solo al ver el titulo porque sabes que una explosión de creatividad ha llegado a tu correo.

pixabay

Pixabay es un excelente sitio donde el orden de sus etiquetas y categorías son la clave para encontrar lo que quieras, cuando quieras. No requiere registrarse y su interfaz es muy parecida a la de 500px, por lo que encontrar y descargar contenido es pan comido.

nos

New Old Stock es una colección de fotografías públicas antiguas que están libres de todo tipo de restricción de derechos de autor. Es muy a lo tumblr y es algo difícil ubicar fotos por categorías o etiquetas, sin embargo, la cantidad de fotografías referenciales a artículos y momentos históricos que tiene es simplemente hermosa.

littlevisuals

Little Visuals sigue el estilo de Death to StockPhoto pero cada 7 días. Tiene fotos hermosas bajo dominio público pero lo bueno es que en su web, tienen a disposición todo el histórico de packs, por lo que si te perdiste uno o apenas te estás uniendo, puedes revisar los packs anteriores y bajar lo que necesites.

picjumbo

PicJumbo es un sitio que disfruta de una variedad abismal de contenido, además de tener un excelente plugin para tu browser que te avisa cuando hay contenido nuevo. Se agregan fotos nuevas diariamente, así que nunca te quedarás sin contenido fresco para tus necesidades.

Y recuerda que las votaciones para Mejor Blog de SoftwareLibre aún están abiertas, vota si aún no lo has hecho!!!

flattr this!

September 24, 2014

DevAssistant Heuristic Review Part 2: Inventory of Issues

This is Part 2 of a 3-part blog series; this post builds on materials featured in an earlier post called DevAssistant Heuristic Review Part 1: Use Case Walkthroughs.

In this part of the DevAssistant heuristic review, we’ll walk through an itemized list of the issues uncovered by the use case-based walkthrough we did in part 1.

Since this is essentially just a list of issues, let me preface it by explaining how I came up with this list. Basically, I combed through the walkthrough and noted any issues that were encountered and mentioned in it, large and small. The result of this was a flat list of issues. Next, I went through the list and tried to determine a set of categories to organize them under by grouping together issues that seemed related. (You could do this in a group setting via a technique called “affinity mapping” – another fancy UX term that in essence just basically means writing everything out on post-its and sticking related post-it notes together. Fancy name for playing with sticky pieces of paper :) )

Breaking the issues into categories serves a few purposes:

  • It makes the list easier to read through and understand, since related issues are adjacent to each other.
  • It breaks up the list so you can review it in chunks – if you’re only interested in a certain area of the UI, for example, you can hone in on just the items relevant to you.
  • It tends to expose weak areas in great need of attention – e.g., if you have 5 categories and one of them is attached to a particular screen and the other 4 are more generic, you know that one screen needs attention (and should probably be a high priority for redesign.)

All right, so here is the list!

Base UI Design

These issues apply not to specific dialogs or screens, but more to the basic mechanics of the UI and the mental model it creates for users.

  1. Takes time to get situated: When I first look at this UI, I’m not sure where to get started. Because the first tab says “Create Project” and the second says “Modify Project,” I get the impression that you might progress through the tabs in order from left-to-right. From poking around, though, this doesn’t appear to be the case. So at initial glance, it’s hard for me to understand the overall flow or direction I’m meant to go in through the interface.
  2. Projects created/imported feel very disconnected from DevAssistant: It feels like there is no follow-up once you create or import a project via DevAssistant. I expected to be able to browse a list of the projects I’d imported/created using DevAssistant after doing so, but there doesn’t appear to be any link to them. DevAssistant seems to forget about them or not recognize them afterwards. Sure, they live on the file system, but they may live in all different places, and I may need some reminders / instruction about how to work with them – the filesystem doesn’t provide any context on that front.
  3. Little user guidance after project creation / import: After the user creates a project, all they really get is a green “Done” notification on the setup wizard window. I think there’s a lost opportunity here to guide the user through everything you set up for them so they know how to take advantage of it. Maybe have a little guide (easily dismissed or optional) that walks the user through the options they selected? For example, if they chose the vim option, have a section that activates on the post-project creation screen that talks about how DevAssistant customizes vim and how they can make use of it in their workflow. Basically, nudge the users towards what they need to do next! Offer to open up Eclipse or vim for them? Offer to open up the project in their file manager? Etc. etc.

Clarity / Context

These are issues where the UI isn’t clear about what information it needs or what is happening or why the user would pick a specific option. The cop-out fix for these types of issues is to write a lot of documentation; the right way to fix them is to redesign! If an option is confusing to explain and benefits all users, just turn it on by default if it’s not harmful instead of putting the burden of selecting it on the user. If the pros/cons of a config option aren’t clear, explain them – add some contextual documentation right into the app via tool tips or more clear text in the UI.

  1. Tab names unclear: The names of the tabs across the top don’t give me a good idea of what I can actually do. What does “prepare environment” mean? Looking at the interface, I think that going through one of the wizards under “Create Project,” would prepare an environment for the selected type of project, so why would I click on “Prepare Environment?”
  2. Prepare Environment options confusing: When I look at the options under “Prepare Environment,” I see “Custom Project” (what does this mean vs. the “Custom Task” tab?) and “DevAssistant.” These options don’t help me understand what “Prepare Environment” means. :-/
  3. DevAssistant button under Prepare Environment confusing: Why would I want to set up the environment for DevAssistant and checkout sources? Is the “Dev Assistant” button under “Prepare Environment” meant specifically for developers who work on DevAssistant itself?
  4. Some options could use more explanation / optimization: Some of the options in the dialogs could use more explanation but they don’t have any tooltips or anything. For example, why would I choose Python 2 vs. Python 3 when creating a new project? What are the pros/cons? How do I take advantange of the customizations offered for vim so I can determine if they’re worth setting up? (Or why wouldn’t I want to set them up? If it doesn’t take up much disk space and it’s a good value add why not just do it if I have a vimrc?)
  5. Not sure what “deps only” means: This could be my ignorance not being a real developer, but most if not all of the config dialogs I ran into had a ‘Deps-Only’ option and it’s still unclear to me what that actually means. I get depenencies in the context of yum/RPM, and I get them in the context of specific stacks, but I’m not sure how DevAssistant would generically determine them? Also, what happens if I don’t check off ‘Only install dependencies’ and check off everything else? Do the dependencies get installed or not? If I check off ‘Only install dependencies’ and also check off everything else, does that mean none of the other things I checked off happen because I checked off ‘Only install dependencies?’ The grammar of the string makes it ambiguous and the option itself could use some wordsmithing to be a bit clearer.
  6. What happens if you choose an option that requires something not installed? It’s not clear to me what happens if you pick vim or Eclipse, for example, in one of the options dialogs on a system that does not have them installed. Does it project setup fail, or does it pull in those apps? Maybe DevAssistant could check what development environments it supports that you already have installed and gray out the ones you don’t have installed, with a way to select them while explicitly choosing to install the development environment as well?
  7. Users need appropriate context for the information you’re asking them: There were a few cases, particularly related to connecting to github accounts, where the user is asked for their name and email address. It isn’t clear why this information is being asked for, and how it’s going to be used. For example, when you ask for my name, are you looking for my full name (Máirín Duffy,) just my first name (Máirín,) or my nick (mizmo?) (And can you support fadas? Or should I type “Mairin” instead of “Máirín”?)

Human Factors

This is a bucket for issues that put unnecessary burden / inconvenience on the user. A good example of this in web application design is a 3 levels deep javascript tiered dropdown menu that disappears if you mouse off of it. :) It makes the user physically have to take action or go through more steps than necessary to complete a task.

  1. Hover help text not easily discovered / pain to access: After a while of poking around, I notice that there are nice explanations of what each button under each tab means in a hover. My initial thought – putting this valuable information under a hover makes it more challenging to access, especially since you can only read the description for one item at a time. (This makes it hard to compare items when you’re trying to figure out which one is the right one for you.)
    Hover tips for create project buttons.

    Hover tips for create project buttons.

  2. Window Jumps – This happens when clicking on buttons in the main setup wizard window and new windows are launched. For example, go to “Modify Project” tab. Click on Eclipse Import or Vim Setup. It moves the DevAssistant up and to the right. Click back. The window remains up and to the right. Why did it move the window? It should remember where the user placed the window and stay there I think.
  3. Project directory creation defaults to user’s homedir: I think a lot of users try to keep their home directory neat and orderly – defaulting to creating / importing projects to users’ home directories seems the wrong approach. One thing to try would be to make a devassistant directory during the first run of the application, and defaulting to creating and importing projects to there. Another option, which could be done in conjunction with defaulting to a ~/devassistant directory, could be to ask the user during first run or have a configuration item somewhere so that the user can set their preferred repository directory in one place, rather than every time they create/import a project.
  4. No way to create new project directory in file chooser for project directory selection: In a lot of the specific project creation dialogs, there’s an option to specify a project directory other than the user’s home. However, the file chooser that pops up when you click on “Browse” doesn’t allow you to create a new directory. This makes it more of a hassle (you have to go outside the DevAssistant application) to create a fresh directory to store your projects in.
  5. Holy modal dialogs, Batman! I encountered a few modal dialogs during the process that made interactions with the application a bit awkward. Some examples:
    • There was a very large Java error dialog that was hidden under another window on my desktop, and it made buttons on the main progress/setup window unclickable so I couldn’t dismiss the main window without dismissing the Java error window. (And the Java error window didn’t have any button, not even an ‘X’ in the upper right corner, to dismiss it.) (See Use Case 2 for more details on this specific scenario.)
      This was too long to display fully on my 2560x1440 monitor... the button to close it wasn't accessible. Luckily I know how to Alt+F4.

      This was too long to display fully on my 2560×1440 monitor… the button to close it wasn’t accessible. Luckily I know how to Alt+F4.

    • During the Django setup process (Use Case 1) and during the C project use case (Use Case 2), there was a small modal dialog that popped up a little after the setup process began, asking for permission to install 20 RPM packages. It halted the progress being made – similar to how old Anaconda would pop up little dialogs during the install process. It’s better to ask questions like this up-front.
    • Another time during the Django setup process (Use Case 1), there was a tiny modal dialog that aligned to the upper left corner of the screen. I completely missed it, and this halted the project creation process. (It was a dialog asking for my name, related to Github account connection.)

      http://blog.linuxgrrl.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Screenshot-from-2014-08-30-215454-1024×576.png

  6. If the user fills something out incorrectly, it’s not possible to recover in some cases. This is just another vote to ask users needed information up front and avoiding modal dialogs – I filled out the wrong email address in one of the pop up modals during the project creation process and realized too late I used the wrong email address.
  7. Git name / email address very sticky and not easily fixed: During Use Case 1, I was prompted for my name and didn’t realize it was the name that would be attached to my git commits. Once it’s input though, there’s no way to update it. It’s unclear where it’s stored – I blew away the project I was creating when I input it, thinking it was stored in the .git/config file, but DevAssistant still remembered it. Configuration items like this that apply to all projects should be editable within the UI if they can be input in the UI.
  8. Text fields for inputting long paths are unnecessarily short: This is pointed out specifically in Use Case 2, but I think all the setup dialogs were affected by it. The text dialog for putting the path to your project in, for example, was only long enough in my case for “/home/duffy/Repo” to be visible. The field should be longer than that by default.

Status / Transactional

These are issues that revolve around the current status of the task the user is trying to complete. An example of a common issue related to this in UIs in general is lack of progress bars for long-running tasks.

  1. When main window is waiting on user input, it should be made clear: During the Django setup process in Use Case 1, I had opted to use Github for the new project I was creating. After filling out the config screen and pressing ‘Run,’ it looked like the project creation process was going to be a while so I multi-tasked and worked on something else. I checked on the main window a few times – at a certain point, it said “In progress” but it wasn’t actually doing anything – a tiny little window popped up in the upper-left corner, halting the whole process. It would have been better to ask me for that information up front, as to not halt the process. But it also would have been good, if the main window is waiting on something, for it to let the user know it’s waiting and isn’t “In progress.” (Maybe it could say, “Paused, waiting on user input?”)

  2. Ask users all of the information you need up front, so they can walk away from the computer while you set things up: Speaking of that last point – this was an issue we had in the old Anaconda, too. During the installation process, sometimes error messages or dialogs would pop up during the install process and they would halt install progress. So the user may have gone to get a coffee, come back, and everything wasn’t done because anaconda sat there a lot of the time asking if it was okay to import some GPG key. When you have a long-running process (a git repo sync, for example,) I think it’s better to ask the user for everything you need up front rather than as the application needs it. It’s akin to someone coming up to your desk to ask a question, going away for a couple of minutes, then tapping you on the shoulder and asking you another question, then coming back 3 minutes later to ask another one – people like that are annoying, right?! (Well, small children get away with this though, being as cute as they are. :) )
  3. Transaction status unclear after errors or even after completion: When I canceled the Django project creation in Use Case 1 because I input the wrong email address, I wasn’t sure of the state of the project and how to proceed cleanly. What directories had been created on my system? What packages had been installed? Etc. I would have liked to clean up if possible, but it wasn’t clear to me what had happened and it didn’t seem like there was an easy way to undo it. Ideally, after hitting cancel, the application would have explained to me something about the state of the system and recommended a forward course of action (is it better to blow everything away and start over? Or re-run the command using the same parameters?)
  4. Little/Vague progress indication: There’s a yellow “in progress” string on the wizard screen after you hit run, and the cursor goes into spinner mode if you focus on that dialog, but there could be better progress indication. A spinner built into the window (here’s an example) is a good option if it’s not possible to do a progress bar. Progress bars are a little better in that they give the user an indication of how much time it might take to complete.

Layout / Aesthetics

These are issues around the actual layout, typography, padding, arrangement of widgets, widget choices in a given screen or dialog. They tend to be surface issues, and usually it’s a better use of time to rethink and redesign a dialog completely rather than fix these kinds of issues only on the surface (which could be akin to putting a different shade of lipstick on.)

  1. Package install confirmation dialog layout issues: So this is pretty surface-level critique – but there’s a few issues with the layout of the dialog asking the user if it’s okay to install packages via Yum. Here’s what it looks like initially:

    Usually the button that moves you forward is the farthest to the right, and the cancel is to the left. Here, the ‘Show packages’ button is on the right. I think maybe, ‘show packages’ should not be on the same line as ‘Ok’ and ‘Cancel,’ but instead maybe it should be a link above the buttons that expands into the full list (limited to a specific max vertical height of course, as to not make the buttons disappear so they are not clickable!) The list itself, has numbers, ‘1’ and ‘2’ before some of the package names – it’s unclear to me why they are there. Also, the list is very long but there’s no way to filter or search through it, so that might be a nice thing to offer. What are people concerned about when evaluating a list of packages to be installed on their system? The number of packages and total size might be useful – the size isn’t listed so that could be a good piece of information to add. I could go on and on about this dialog, but hopefully this demonstrates that the dialog could use some more iteration.
  2. Layout of options via linear checkbox list can cause confusion about relationship between options: In several cases during the walkthrough, I became unsure of how to fill out the setup wizard for various project types because I wasn’t sure how the different checkbox options would work. In one case, it seemed as if particular selections of checkboxes could never result in success (e.g., in use case 4 when I tried to create a custom project with only the ‘deps only’ checkbox selected.) In other cases, some of the options seemed to be vaguely related to each other (Eclipse or vim) and others seemed less related (github vs python 3 or 2.) I think probably each screen needs to be reviewed and potentially rearranged a bit to better represent the dependencies between the checkboxes, base requirements, etc. For example, categorizing the options – put Eclipse and VIM under a “Development Environment” category, put git / github / etc. options under a “Version Control” category, etc.

Feature Set

These issues are around the features that are available (whether or not they are appropriate / useful or accessible / placed correctly) as well as features that might be needed that are missing.

  1. No way to import pre-existing project that wasn’t created with DevAssistant? This one seems like a bit of a show stopper. I tried to import a project that wasn’t created using DevAssistant (which is the majority of upstream projects at this point,) and it didn’t work. It bailed out after detecting there’s no .devassistant in the repo. If there is a way to do this, it’s not clear to me having gone through the UI. It would be nice if it could import an existing project and create a .devassistant for it and help manage it.
  2. The button to create a github project is under the ‘Modify Project’ tab, not the ‘Create Project’ tab: This is a bit of an oddity – the create project tab is more focused on languages / frameworks… creating a new project in GitHub is definitely creating a new project though, so it doesn’t make sense for it to be under “Modify Project.”

Bugs

These are just outright bugs that don’t have so much to do with the UI specifically.

  1. Screen went black during root authentication during Django setup: I think this was some kind of bug, and wasn’t necessarily DevAssistant’s fault.
  2. Could not create a Django project on development version of Fedora: My Django project creation failed. The error message I got was “Package python-django-bash-completion-1.6.6-1.fc21.noarch.rpm is not signed. Failed to install dependencies, exiting.” Now, while this is a little unfair to point out since I was using F21 Alpha TC4 – DevAssistant should probably be able to fail more gracefully when the repos are messed up. When errors happen, the best error messages explain what happened and what the user could try to do to move forward. There’s no suggestion here for what to do. I tried both the “Back” and “Main window” buttons. Probably, at the least, it should offer to report the bug for me, and give me explicit suggestions, e.g., “You can click ‘Back’ to try again in case this is a temporary issue, or you may click ‘Main Window’ to work on a different project.” It probably could offer a link to the documentation or maybe some other help places (ask.fedoraproject.org questions tagged DevAssistant maybe?)
  3. Unable to pull from or push to github: During the Use Case 1 walkthrough, I was left with a repo that I couldn’t pull from or push to github. It looks like DevAssistant created a new RSA key, successfully hooked it up to my Github account, but for some reason the system was left in a state that couldn’t interact with github.
  4. C project / Eclipse project creation didn’t work: There was a Java/Eclipse error message pop up and an error with simple_threads.c. Seems like a bug? (Full error log)
  5. Tooltip for Eclipse import talks about running it in the projects directory: This seems like a bug – the string is written specifically for the command line interface. It should be more generic.

Up Next

Next, we’ll talk about some ways to address some of these issues, and hopefully walk through some sketchy mockups. This one might take a bit longer because I haven’t sketched anything out yet. If I’m not able to post Part 3 this week, expect it sometime next week.

DevAssistant Heuristic Review Part 1: Use Case Walkthroughs

You might be asking yourself, “What the heck is a heuristic review?”

It’s just a fancy term; I learned it from reading Jakob Nielsen‘s writings. It’s a simple process of walking through a user interface (or product, or whatever,) and comparing how it works to a set of general principles of good design, AKA ‘heuristics.’

To be honest, the way I do these generally is to walk through the interface and document the experience, giving particular attention to things that jump out to me as ‘not quite right’ (comparing them to the heuristics in my head. :) ) This is maybe more accurately termed an ‘expert evaluation,’ then, but I find that term kind of pompous (I don’t think UX folks are any better than the folks whose software they test,) so ‘heuristic review’ it shall be!

Anyway, Sheldon from the DevAssistant team was interested in what UX issues might pop out to me as I kicked the tires on it. So here’s what we’re going to do:

  • Here in Part 1, I’ll first map out all the various pieces of the UI so we can get a feel for everything that is available. Then, I’ll walk through four use cases for working with the tool, detailing all the issues I run into and various thoughts around the experience.
  • In Part 2, I’ll analyze the walkthrough results and create a categorized master list of all the issues I encountered.
  • In Part 3, I’ll suggest some fixes / redesigns to address the issues catalogued in Part 3.

Okay – ready for this? :) Let’s go!

Setup Wizard Mapping

(This is the initial dialog that appears when you start DevAssistant.)

Screenshot of the initial DevAssistant screen

Screenshot of the initial DevAssistant screen

I’m starting this review of DevAssistant’s GUI by walking through each tab and mapping out a hierarchy of how it is arranged at a high level. This helps me get an overall feel for how the application is laid out.

  • Create Project
    • C
    • C++
    • Java
      • Simple Apache Maven Project
      • Simple Java ServerFaces Projects
    • Node.js
      • Express.JS Web Framework
      • Node.JS application
    • Perl
      • Basic class
      • Dancer
    • PHP
      • Apache, MySQL, and PHP Helper
    • Python
      • Django
      • Flask
      • Lib
      • Python GTK+ 3
    • Ruby
      • Ruby on Rails
  • Modify Project
    • C/C++ projects
      • Adding header
      • Adding library
    • Docker
      • develop
    • Eclipse Import
    • Github
      • Create github repository
    • Vim Setup
  • Prepare Environment
    • Custom Project
    • DevAssistant
  • Custom Task
    • Make Coffee

Use Case Testing

I’m going to come up with some use cases based on what I know about DevAssistant and try to complete them using the UI.

Use Cases for Testing

  1. Create a new website using Django.
  2. Create a new C project, using Eclipse as a code editor.
  3. Import a project I already have on my system that I have cloned from Github, and import it into Eclipse.
  4. Begin working on an upstream project by locally cloning that project and creating a development environment around it.

Use Case 1: Create a new website using Django

I’m not much of a Django expert, so this may end up being hilarious. So I know Django is Python-based, and this is a new project, so I click on the “Create Project” tab, then I click on “Python.” I select “Django” from the little grey menu that pops up. The little grey menu looks a little bit weird and isn’t the type of widget I was expecting, but it works I guess, and I succesfully click on “Django.” Note: the items in the submenu under Python are organized alphabetically.

An example of the little grey menu - this one appears when you click on the Python button. Not all of the buttons have a grey menu.

An example of the little gray menu – this one appears when you click on the Python button. Not all of the buttons have a gray menu.

A new screen pops up, and the old one disappears. I had the old screen (the main DevAssistant window) placed in the lower right of my screen. The new screen that appears (Project: Create Project-> Python -> Django) jumps up and to the right – it’s centered perfectly on my left monitor. It looks like I’m meant to feel that this is a second page to the same window (for example, the way the subitems of GNOME control center work.) Instead, thought, it feels like a separate window because it’s a little bit larger than the first window and it jumped across the screen so dramatically.

Django project setup window

Django project setup window

This new window is a bit overwhleming for me. First it asks for a project name. I like ponies, and Django does too, so I call my project “Ponies.”

Next, it wants to know where to create the project. It suggests /home/duffy, but man is my home pretty messy. I click on “Browse” to pick somewhere else, thinking I might create a “Projects” subdirectory under /home/duffy to keep things nice and clean. There isn’t a way to create a directory in this file chooser, so I drop down to a terminal and create the folder I want, then fill out the field to say, “/home/duffy/Projects” and move on.

Now, it’s time to look through available options. Hm. This is definitely the most overwhelming part of the screen. Looking through the options… two seem to be related to coding environments – there’s a checkbox for eclipse, and there’s a checkbox for vim. There’s an option to use Python3 instead of Python 2. There’s an option to add dockerfile and create a docker image. There’s a virtualenv option, and a deps-only option. I think I understand all of these options except for “Deps-only,” which is labeled, “Only install dependencies.” If I don’t only install dependencies, then what happens? What is the alternative to clicking that box? I’m not sure.

Anyway, back to the editors. I like vim, but this is a fresh desktop spin installation and I know that doesn’t come with vim preinstalled. I wonder what will happen if I pick vim. I decide to do it.

Oh, and there’s a Github option. It will create a GitHub repo and push the sources there. That is pretty slick; I click that checkbox too and provide my github username. Then I click “Run” in the lower right corner. (Note that a lot of new GNOME 3 apps have the button to progress forward in the upper right.)

Next, pops up a screen that has a log that spits out some log style spew, looking like it’s installing some RPMs. Quickly, a modal dialog pops up that says:


Installing 20 RPM packages by Yum. Is this ok?

[ No ] [ Yes ] [ Show packages ]

The modal dialog has the same problem of being centered to the whole desktop rather than centered along where the parent window was. I like that it offers to show me which packages it’s going to install. I click on “Show packages.” I get a very nice scrollable display in the same window, neat and clean. I click “hide packages” to hide the list. Then I click “Yes” to move forward.

Now things got a bit weird. My whole screen went black. A gnome-shell style black dialog is in the center of this black screen and it is asking for my root password. I don’t think the screen behind the dialog should be black. It feels a little weird. (turns out this was a F21 TC4 issue only.) I type in my root password and click to continue.

And it seems the process failed. (To be fair, I am doing this on an alpha test candidate – F21 TC4 – so the issue may be with the repos and not DevAssistant’s fault.) It says:


Resolving RPM dependencies ...
Failed to install dependencies, exiting.

I like the option to copy the error message to the clipboard, and to view and copy to clipboard the debug logs. It errored out because of a packaging issue, it looks like:


Package python-django-bash-completion-1.6.6-1.fc21.noarch.rpm is not signed
1
Failed to install dependencies, exiting.
Failed to install dependencies, exiting.

There is also a “Back” button and a “Main window” button; I’m not sure which to click. I try “Back” first. That brings me back to the screen I filled all the details in for my project; however I know it won’t work now when I click run.

So at this point, I emailed Sheldon to let him know that I ran into some breakage, and he told me that it wasn’t necessary to test on F21 TC4 – what’s in F20 at this point is reasonably recent and worth doing a heuristic review on. So let’s continue from this point, using F20. :)

This time, I pick the same options on the create new Django project screen, and when I press forward, it says it’s installing 21 packages. Okay. It seems to be going, and I realize after wasting precious minutes of life reading crap on Twitter that it has been quite some time. I check back on the DevAssistant window – it looks like it’s still working, but it’s kind of not clear what it’s really doing.

Then I notice the tiny little dialog peering down at me from the extreme upper left corner of my laptop screen (it is easy to find in this screenshot; harder when other windows are open):

Hey, little guy! Whatcha doing up there?

Hey, little guy! Whatcha doing up there?

So this is another window positioning issue. I drag that little guy (who has some padding and alignment issues himself, but nothing earth-shattering) closer to the center of the screen so I can fill him out. The problem is, I’m not really sure of the context – why does it want my name? Does it just want my nickname, my first name, my full name, my IRC handle…? I end up typing ‘mairin’ and hit enter.

This little dialog is centered with the main window, thankfully.

This little dialog is centered with the main window, thankfully.

And then, something clicks. “I bet it wants my name and email address for the git config.” Well, crap. I already typed in “mairin,” and that’s not the name I want on my commits. I hit “Cancel” on the email dialog shown above, and try to “start over” by going back to the main window and creating the “Ponies” project again. But… ugh:

I changed the path from ~/Projects to ~/Code just because.

I changed the path from ~/Projects to ~/Code just because.

So there are a few problems here:

  • The form field for my name lacked enough context for me to understand what information the software really wanted from me.
  • I figured out what the software wanted from me too late – and there isn’t any way for me to go back and fix it via the user interface, as far as I can tell.
  • There’s a transactional issue: in order to completely finish creating the project as I requested, DevAssistant needed some additional information. I bailed out of providing that information, leaving the project in an unknown state. (Will it work, and just miss the features that required information I didn’t provide? Since I bailed out early, which features will be missing? Is there a way to fix it by filling them in afterwards? Should I just delete from the filesystem and start over again?

The latter is what I did – I went into nautilus, nuked my ~/Code/Ponies directory, and ran through the Django project creation process (same options) from the main DevAssistant window one more time.

Unfortunately, it remembered the name I had given it. Normally this is a wonderful thing – interfaces that ask the same question of a user over and over again are annoying. In this instance, however, the politeness of remembering my name was a bit unforgiving – how could I correct my name now? Will all projects I create in the future using DevAssistant have “mairin” as my name instead of the “Máirín Duffy” of my vain desires??

Well, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet – whatever. Let’s carry on. So I am asked my GitHub password after my email address, which I provide, and soon afterwars I am greeted with a completed progress screen, a link to the project I created on GitHub, and a perusable log of everything DevAssistant just did:

That was definitely an easy way to create a project on GitHub.

That was definitely an easy way to create a project on GitHub.

So I think I’m done at this point? Maybe? I’m not 100% clear where to go from here. Some potential issues I’ll note at this point:

  • The project I created on GitHub through this process is completely empty. I was expecting some Django-specific boilerplate content to be present in the repo by default, and maybe some of the files suggested by GitHub (README, LICENSE, .gitignore.) But maybe that part happens later?
  • There’s an ssh issue in the logs. Ah. Now we see why my repo on GitHub is empty:

    Problem pushing source code: ssh_askpass: exec(/usr/libexec/openssh/ssh-askpass): No such file or directory
    Host key verification failed.
    fatal: Could not read from remote repository.

I didn’t see a seahorse dialog pop up asking me to unlock my ssh key. I open up seahorse – it looks like DevAssistant made an RSA key for me. I’m not sure what’s going on here, then. It never asked me for a passphrase to create a new key.

I have an interesting test case in that I have a new laptop that I didn’t copy my real ssh key over to yet. I wonder how this would have gone done if I did have my real ssh key on this system…

Then, I get an email from GitHub:


The following SSH key was added to your account:

DevAssistant
98:a0:c9:9e:aa:44:08:ae:c4:96:a0:f9:1c:96:34:04

If you believe this key was added in error, you can remove the key and disable
access at the following location:

https://github.com/settings/ssh

If the new ssh key was added to my account, then why didn’t this work? :-/

My big question now is: what do I do next? Here is what I have:

  • A new boilerplate Django project in my home directory.
  • An empty GitHub project.
  • Some stuff that got added to vim (how do I use it?)

What I don’t have that I was expecting:

  • Some kind of button or link or something to the boilerplate code that was created locally with some tips / hints / tricks for how to work with it. (Links to tutorials? Open up some of the key files you start working with in that environment in tabs in Geany or Eclipse or some IDE? Okay so I selected vim – tell me how to open this up in vim?)
  • Some acknowledgement of the ‘Ponies’ project I just created in the DevAssistant UI. I feel that my ponies have been forgotten. There isn’t any tab or space in the interface where I can view a list of projects I created using DevAssistant and manage them (e.g., like changing the ssh key or changing my name / email address associated with the project.)

I’m feeling a bit lost. Like when the lady in my GPS is telling me how to get to Manhattan and she stops talking to me somewhere in the Bronx.

Use Case 2: Create a new C project, using Eclipse as a code editor.

Back to the main window in DevAssistant! I click on the “C” button and right away am greeted with the “Create Project -> C” screen, which I dutifully fill out to indicate a desire to use Eclipse and to upload to GitHub:

Screenshot from 2014-08-30 23:14:44

A modal alert dialog ask me if it’s okay to install 139 packages (and again, helpfully offers a list of them if I want it.)

(The alignment within the dialog is a bit off; there’s a lot of extra padding on the bottom and the buttons are a bit high up. The OK button should probably be the right-most one, and a different widget used for ‘show packages,’ (like a disclosure triangle, maybe.)

The dialog that asks for permission to install required dependencies. The alignment within the dialog is a bit off; there's a lot of extra padding on the bottom and the buttons are a bit high up. The OK button should probably be the right-most one, and a different widget used for 'show packages,' (like a disclosure triangle, maybe.)

The dialog that asks for permission to install required dependencies. The alignment within the dialog is a bit off; there’s a lot of extra padding on the bottom and the buttons are a bit high up. The OK button should probably be the right-most one, and a different widget used for ‘show packages,’ (like a disclosure triangle, maybe.)

First, I click to show the list of packages. Now I see why there is so much padding on the bottom of the dialog. :) But it’s not enough space to comfortably skim the list of dependencies:

Selection_101

I drag out the window size to make it a bit bigger to more comfortably view the list. Some package names have a “1:” in front of them, some have “2:” in front of them, some have nothing in the front. I’m not sure why.

Selection_102

Anyway, enough playing around. I agree it’s okay to install the dependencies.

I watch the dialog. 139 packages is a lot of packages. While they are downloaded, there’s no progress bar or animation or anything to let me know that it’s still actively working and not crashed or otherwise unstable. The only indications I have are the cursor getting set to spinner mode when I go to the DevAssistant window, and the text, “Downloading Packages:” at the bottom of the visible log in the DevAssistant window:

Screenshot from 2014-08-30 23:20:00

After a little while, unfortunately, things didn’t go so well:

DevAssistant setup wizard_104

Here’s the full error log.

So now I’m not sure what state I’m left in. The “DevAssistant setup wizard” window has grayed out “Main window” and “Debug logs” buttons – the only live button is “Copy to clipboard.” I click on “x” in the upper right corner and it tries to quit but it doesn’t seem to do anything. Then I notice the large Java error popup window hidden behind my browser window:

This was too long to display fully on my 2560x1440 monitor... the button to close it wasn't accessible. Luckily I know how to Alt+F4.

This was too long to display fully on my 2560×1440 monitor… the button to close it wasn’t accessible. Luckily I know how to Alt+F4.

Once I closed that window, the main DevAssistant wizard window changed, and I was able to get access to the main window and back buttons.

On to the next use case!

Use Case 3: Import a project I already have on my system that I have cloned from Github, and import it into Eclipse

All right, so what project should I import? I’m going to import my selinux-coloring-book repo. :) This is a git repo I created on github and have synced locally. Let’s see if I can import it and open it in eclipse.

So I go back to the main DevAssistant setup wizard window and I click on the ‘Modify Project’ tab along the top (is this the right one to use? I’m not sure):

The "Modify Project" tab

The “Modify Project” tab

I’m not sure whether I should do “Eclipse Import” or “Github.” If I hover over the Github button, it says:

Subassistants of Github assistant provide various ways to work with Github repos. Available subassistants: Create Github repository.

While the first sentence of the description makes this seem like the right choice, the last sentence gives me the sense that the only thing this button can do is create a new github repo since that seems to be the only available subassistant (whatever a subassistant is.)

The Eclipse Import hover message is:

This assistant can import already created project into Eclipse. Just run it in the projects directory.

This seems like what I want, except the last line has me confused. I’m running a UI, so why is it telling to me to run something in a directory? (I’m assuming this is maybe a shared help text with a command-line client, so it wasn’t written with the GUI in mind?) Anyway, I’m going to go with the “Eclipse Import” button.

Again, the main DevAssistant window disappears and a new window pops up, ignoring my window placement of the first window and centering itself on top of my windows in the middle of my active screen. Here’s what that new window looks like:

Window shown after the Eclipse Import process is started.

Window shown after the Eclipse Import process is started.

So I notice a few issues on this screen (although note some of them may be because I’m not a real developer and I haven’t used Eclipse in years):

  • There are two text fields where the user can specify a path on the file system. While such paths are usually pretty long, the fields aren’t wide enough to show much beyond the portion of my path that points to my home directory – /home/duffy. So these fields should probably be wider, given the length of these kinds of paths.
  • I’m not sure what Deps-Only is going to do – what kind of project is it assuming I have? Is it going to somehow detect the dependencies (from make files?) and install them without importing the project? Why would I want to do that?
  • The options are listed out with checkboxes – and you can click them all at once. Does that make sense to do? I guess it does – I could specify the Eclipse workspace directory (although is that in ~/workspace or $PROJECT-PATH/eclipse?), and the path to the project, and that I only want deps-only. It seems like maybe ‘deps-only’ is an option that is subject to path though – if I don’t specify a path, how is it going to detect deps?
  • In fact, the process fails completely if I only select the “Deps-Only” checkbox and nothing else. So this selection shouldn’t be possible.

I end up just specifying my path (which points to /home/duffy/Repositories/selinux-coloring-book,) checking nothing else off, and clicking “run.” This doesn’t work – I get a blank “Log from current process” window that says “Failed” on the bottom:

DevAssistant setup wizard_110

On a whim, I check to make sure Eclipse is installed – yeah it is. That’s not the issue. I go back and check of the “Eclipse” checkbox in addition to the “Path” checkbox – looks like the failed C project creation made a ~/workspace directory, so I use that one. I hit run again…

DevAssistant setup wizard_110

I’m not sure where to go from here, so I’ll move on to the next use case.

Use Case 4: Begin working on an upstream project by locally cloning that project and creating a development environment around it

What upstream project should I work on? Let’s try something I don’t already have synced locally that isn’t too huge. I’ll choose fedora-tagger.

Okay back to the main DevAssistant window:

Screenshot of the initial DevAssistant screen

Screenshot of the initial DevAssistant screen

Where do I start? Not “Create Project,” because that’s for a new project. I look under “Prepare Environment:”

Prepare environment tab

Prepare environment tab

I’m not going to be working on DevAssistant or OpenStack, so I examine the hover text for “Custom Project:”

Only use this with projects whose upstream you trust, since the project can specify arbitrary custom commands that will run on your machine. The custom assistant sets up environment for developing custom project previously created with DevAssistant.

Hm. So two things here:

  • This won’t work, because fedora-tagger wasn’t created with DevAssistant.
  • I don’t think I would trust any project with this option, unless I could at least examine the commands it specified to run before running them. It would be nice to have a way to do that. Looking at the dialog linked to this button, it doesn’t look like there is.

Okay, so now what will I do? It doesn’t seem like there is a way to complete this use case under “Prepare Environment” unless my upstream is OpenStack or DevAssistant. The “Custom Task” tab won’t work, because the only option there is “Make Coffee.” So I’ll try to “Modify Project” tab:

The "Modify Project" tab

The “Modify Project” tab

Even though I know from an earlier use case that the hover text for the “Github” button seems to indicate that it can only create new Github projects, I try it. Nope, it just lets you create a new project. Hm. Well fedora-tagger is a python project. There’s a C/C++ projects button – maybe I should pick a C project instead.

So I’ll try a C project. What is written in C? I know a lot of GNOME stuff is written in C; I’m sure I could find something there. So I look at the tooltip on the C/C++ projects button:

This assistant will help you ito [sic] modify your C/C++ projects already created by devassistant. Avalaible [sic] subassistants: Adding header, Adding library

Well, I don’t know any GNOME C projects that were created with DevAssistant. :-/ At this point, I’m not sure how to move forward. I click on the “Get help…” link in the upper right:

Problem loading page - Mozilla Firefox_122

It looks like doc.devassistant.org doesn’t work at all. Nor does devassistant.org …. it must be down. It’s still up on readthedocs.org though… okay let’s see:

Preparing: Custom – checkout a custom previously created project from SCM (git only so far) and install needed dependencies

This seems to be what I need? But the button for “Custom Project” said that the project should have been created with DevAssistant. Let’s try it anyway. :) I’ll use gnome-hello, which is a small C demo project.

First screen for "Custom Project"

First screen for “Custom Project”

A couple things on this screen:

  • All of the items are checkboxes, except for URL which has a red asterisk (‘*’) – why? Is that one required? Then it should probably have a checked and grayed checkbox?
  • Again, the text fields for typically long path strings are pretty narrow.

I paste in the gnome-hello git url (git://git.gnome.org/gnome-hello) and hit “Run.”

Custom Project completion dialog.

Custom Project completion dialog.

Hmm, okay. So it didn’t find a .devassistant and bailed out. What did it do on my filesystem?

Project directory created by Custom Project wizard

Project directory created by Custom Project wizard

I would have preferred it not dump the git repo in my home dir – but I suppose that the path was an option I could have specified on the screen before. It might be better for me to be able to specify that I keep my git repos in ~/Repositories… so by default DevAssistant uses that so I don’t have to input it every time.

I don’t think there’s anything else I can do here, so I’ll finish here.

On to analysis!

In Part 2, we’ll go through the walkthrough and pull out all of the issues encountered, then sort them into different categories. Look for that post soon. :)

Como hacer videos para Instagram usando Kdenlive + Instashot

Te has preguntado como hago mis videos de Instagram? Trabajar con Kdenlive es muy fácil y una de las cosas que mas me gusta es que puedes arrastrar cualquier video, imagen o audio y automáticamente se cargará en la aplicación. Hacer un video en Kdenlive es como armar un rompecabezas, solo debes arrastrar las piezas que ya cargaste y ordenarlas. Puedes separar las pistas, cortarlas, agregarles efectos y mucho más. Poco a poco iré explicando como trabajar mas detalladamente con Kdenlive, pero primero, quiero que vean la potencialidad de esta aplicación y se enamoren de ella como yo lo he hecho.

Una vez exportado nuestro video mp4 lo copiaremos a nuestro teléfono, abriremos instashot y selecionaremos video. Navegaremos hasta encontrar nuestro video y lo cargaremos a la aplicación. En este punto verás una serie de opciones en la parte inferior, seleccionaremos Fit de ajustar, y si queremos que el video sea cuadrado como instagram, seleccionaremos Full. Puedes probar las otras opciones si te da curiosidad. Cuando estés feliz con el encuadre, pulsa el visto bueno a la derecha y en la parte superior encontrarás el enlace directo para cargarlo a instagram. Tarda un poco ya que le baja la calidad, al menos ese fue mi caso y eso te dará la opción de publicar de una vez.

Y así es como realizo los videos que me gusta compartir con ustedes en instagram y que ultimamente “creo” que los han hecho reir un monton. Recuerden que sus dudas se convierten en podcast, así que no sean timidos y dejen un comentario… ahh…. y si les gusta mi contenido, no olviden ir a portal programas y votar por tatica.org como mejor Blog de SoftwareLibre, su voto significa mucho para mi!

<iframe class="youtube-player" frameborder="0" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/a21b2Jl9MwE?version=3&amp;rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" type="text/html" width="640"></iframe>

flattr this!

September 22, 2014

Tatica.org nominada a mejor Blog de SoftwareLibre! Y ya puedes votar!!!

Con mucho gusto les cuento que este blog ha sido nominado a “Mejor Blog de Software Libre” por la gente de PortalProgramas. El simple hecho de estar nominada junto a portales de noticias me hace sentir increíble y ya de por si es una nueva motivación para seguir escribiendo mis experiencias y seguir haciendo videotutoriales y podcasts para ustedes… mil gracias!

nominado-thumb

Hoy (22 de septiembre de 2014) comienza la fase de votaciones para la 6ª edición de los Premios PortalProgramas al mejor Software Libre 2014 y estará activa hasta el día 11 de octubre de 2014. Esta fase durará hasta el 11 de octubre de 2014, y cualquier usuario podrá votar a su software preferido de entre los nominados este año. Cada usuario puede votar una única vez en cada categoría y para que la votación sea lo más ágil y fácil posible no se requiere registro en PortalProgramas para vota.

Como cita el mismo portal:

¿Por qué lo merece?
Tatica tiene años realizando artículos y podcast de forma libre para todos sus lectores. Su proyecto Gimp100Podcast es bastante conocido en la actualidad y ha permitido a varios institutos y colegios aprender más sobre el diseño y la fotografía con Software Libre.

Y hacen una pequeña descripción de lo que trata mi blog (mucho mejor que las fallidas descripciones que yo misma le he tratado de poner durante todos estos años)

El Blog de Tatica tiene varios años colaborando desinteresadamente con las comunidades de Software Libre. Es un blog personal, por lo que pese a su vida cotidiana, ella logra sacar tiempo para realizar artículos y podcast de calidad que apoyan el aprendizaje en Español.
Tatica le permite al usuario aprender, sin necesidad de utilizar una terminología complicada, y usualmente divierte mucho al lector mientras aprende algo nuevo. Siempre contesta las preguntas que le hacen y realiza nuevos artículos en base a las dudas de sus lectores.
Es un Blog que le permite al usuario aprender y conectarse con un usuario que, al igual que el, está deseoso de aprender más sobre el mundo del Software Libre. 

Así que, a votar!!!!! es muy fácil, solo deben dar click en el botón amarillo que dice votar y listo, y si les gusta este blog, no olviden compartirlo con sus amistades! Nuevamente, gracias :D

– tatica hace el baile de la felicidad…

<iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="0" height="710" scrolling="no" src="http://instagram.com/p/tQNelvok6V/embed/" width="612"></iframe>

flattr this!

September 20, 2014

Inkscape-Weekend Oktober 2014

Ich habe von verschiedenen Seiten Anfragen erhalten, ob ich denn nicht noch einen Inkscape-Wochenendworkshop anbieten könnte. Momentan ist meine Zeit allerdings begrenzt und es gibt nur eine Möglichkeit und zwar am Wochende vom 24.-26. Oktober 2014

Der Workshop beginnt am Freitag Abend mit einigen Dingen rund um SVG, der Oberfläche von Inkscape, den Verzeichnissen, Zooming und Panning und setzt sich dann am Samstag morgen fort mit den Zeichenwerkzeugen. Nach meinen Erfahrungen schaffen wir in bestimmte Themen, wie Live Pfadeffekte, Gekachelte Klone und vor allem Filter nur Einblicke aber die reichen aus, um im Selbststudium sich damit beschäftigen zu können. Wann immer es geht schieben wir auch praktische Teile ein, bist Sonntag Abend sollten wir auf diese Art und Weise alle Funktionen von Inkscape kennengelernt haben.

Neu dieses Mal ist, das wir verstärkt auf die neuen Funktionen von Inkscape eingehen, denn unter Umständen ist die Version 0.91 von Inkscape dann bereits erschienen. Diese bringt eine große Anzahl Neuerungen mit.

Wie bei allen anderen Workshops vorher auch gibt es wieder ein Formular zur Anmeldung, auch dieses Mal gilt ich mach mir nur die Mühe, wenn mindestens 3 Leute zusammen kommen. Ich gebe spätestens eine Woche vor Veranstaltung per Mail Bescheid, ob die Veranstaltung stattfindet.

Ansonsten bleibt alles beim alten Teilnahme frei, es sei denn ihr wollt mir etwas zustecken aber das bleibt euch überlassen.

September 16, 2014

People sea wallpapers
Usually pictures including people does not make for good desktop wallpaper, one exception is images of your beloved one, which do not make sense to share, and another exception is images of scantily clad celebrities, which is some circles may be popular but in others are highly controversial. But as a photographer I prefer to take photos with people, those pictures have more soul. Still, how such pictures can be turned in generally usable wallpapers? Make sure people are not recognizable, turn them in silhouettes, is a perfectly cromulent way.
people sea wallpaper
people sea wallpaper
Don't stop at the summer project!

Note: this is work in progress. I’d like to improve this post to include universal opinions, so I’d appreciate any feedback!

Ouch, two summers with Fedora are over! As far as GlitterGallery news goes: Emily’s working on setting up a demo for design team, fantastic Paul is scrubbing up some final pre-release bugs and more potential contributors are now showing up. As far as GSoC itself is concerned: Google’s sent over money, the tshirt should be here soon enough and it doesn’t look like any more formalities are pending. Time to pack, find a job, and say goodbye to friends at Fedora project, right?

Wrong.

The other day, Kushal called me up and mentioned his concerns with students disappearing once their GSoC projects are over, and once they have their money. The experienced folks in most communities share the same disappointment. I couldn’t agree less, and promised to write about it, hence this post. I’m not sure who the target readers should be, but my best guess would be anyone aspiring to start contributing to a FLOSS project, especially students hoping do a GSoC next year :-)

Why bother contributing to a FLOSS project?

Let’s be done with the incentives first. Sure, there’s the geek-badge associated with it, and you’re helping make the world a better place. What other incentives do FLOSS communites offer? Here are the ones that attract me:

  • Something meaningful to work on: If you’re a student stuck in a place where they make you do things you aren’t motivated about (I hear jobs aren’t too different), then being involved in a community can make your spent time meaningful. It doesn’t really have to be a FLOSS community, but in my case, it seems to have worked out well. I would rather feel awesome about having built a small piece of software that does something for me, over mugging an outdated book on “Net Centric Programming”.

  • Jobs, money, opportunities: Depending on your case, you may not necessarily get paid, but typical FLOSS communities have participants from world over => you get exposed to a lot of opportunities you wouldn’t hear of otherwise. Many of my professors think the idea of writing FLOSS is stupid. As a result, their understanding of opportunities is limited to campus placements. It doesn’t really have to be! I have come to learn that there’s an entire industry of people who land jobs just based on links to stuff they’ve worked on.

  • Friends around the world: It’s embarrasing I didn’t know of a country by the name Czech Republic until about last December. Now I not only have friends from Cz who I speak to quite often, I actually was in Prague a month ago and even did a talk! My summer mentor is from the USA. My closest friend is a German. On a daily basis, I probably end up interacting with someone from each continent. It’s a lot of fun learning how things in other places work. If you’re from India like me, the idea of trains departing at times like 15:29 should impress you.

Why not contribute?

However much FLOSSy geeks will brag about their flawlessness, FLOSS communities aren’t for everyone. Some hints:

  • You need a certificate for showing up: I wish I could wrap two bold tags there. Please contribute only if you want to do it for the fun of it. Most people in any community exist because they want to improve or utilize a skill, not because they can stack up a bunch of certificates on their resume.

  • You need to be spoonfed Unfortunately, as much as everyone would like to help new contributors to a project, showing people around takes time. Sure, we’re willing to put in an hour or two every week finding links and emailing you. But if you aren’t going to read them, and learn to find more links, then you’re making things difficult.

  • You need to made ambassador the first thing, just so you have a tshirt: Here’s the thing about Ambassador programs - they were created to provide structure for contributors to show off the awesome stuff they’re building. If you aren’t contributing, you need to do that first. Ideally, if there are incentives coming up (swag, flight tickets, whatever), they go to the active folks first. Of course there are exceptions once in a while when new people are encouraged with incentives when they seem promising, that’s different. (I have had a junior ask me what organization offers the best perks so he could contribute there, and another one wanting to fly to a different continent at a community’s expense, because she wanted to attend a Django workshop).

In my case, I got involved with the Fedora community through a design team project I ended up co-authoring. But I’d say it was just a starting point! I don’t have unlimited time thanks to University classes, but with what I have, I contribute where I can. It really doesn’t have to be limited to my project (although that’s where I focus my efforts on) - it could be a random broken wiki page. These days I’m cleaning up expired requests on our request-tracking system. A while ago, I started with Inkscape and attempted Fedora.next logos. On other days I hang out on IRC channels geared at helping newbies. Even though Fedora infra doesn’t do ruby oriented projects, I sometimes hang out in their meetings to see what they’re up to. I don’t understand how Marketing works, so next I’m planning to give it a shot. Ultimately, the goal is to quickly pick up a skill, while improving Fedora as a community in whatever small way I can.

That’s something I’d request everyone to do. Being involved with a GSoC or a similar summer engagement is fun - you get to work on something large enough to be accountable for, while being small enough to pick up quickly. But try to look around - find projects that your project depends on. Fix them. Find projects that could use yours. Fix them. If they don’t exist, make them! I bet Kushal wants to convey the same message: just don’t stop with your project. A successful summer is a good thing - but if you’re simply going to disappear, then it’s purpose is defeated. You have to justify the time your mentor spent on you! :-)

On an ending note, how would you look for more areas to contribute? It’s simple - ask your mentor. Or just try to remember the inconvenience you had with library X compiling too slow. It was a good thing you overlooked it then because you had to keep track of the bigger picture. Now’s the time to return to it and fix it. Also, try to attend events relevant to what you’re working on. I’m really lucky Gnokii invited me to LGM in his country - I ended up finding another project to use within GlitterGallery, for a start.

There’s almost always everts happening around where you live. I’m in Coimbatore which is relatively sleepy, but I travel to Bangalore about every month to participate at an event. If you find an event that could benefit from you, try and ask the organizers if you could be funded. Just don’t stop!

September 15, 2014

¡LiveCast con Tatica este Martes 16!

¿Tienes preguntas, recomendaciones o comentarios? ¡Es el momento de aprovechar y hacerlas! Este martes 16 de Septiembre estaré realizando un LiveCast donde podrán realizar cualquier pregunta o comentario y lo estaré respondiendo en vivo. La idea es compartir una tarde con uds y poder compartir con quienes hacen que escribir sea divertido.

El LiveCast comenzará a las 5pm(VE) (Para verificar el horario correspondiente a su país, vean este enlace) y durará una hora aproximadamente. Si no pueden asistir, pueden comenzar a dejar sus dudas o comentarios en esta entrada y las mismas serán respondidas ese día.

La URL del LiveCast será dada por twitter el mismo día del evento a la hora de inicio, así que estén en sintonía. Las mejores preguntas serán parte de los próximos podcast de este mes, así que, dejen que su creatividad ponga el límite!

livecast

flattr this!

Sunrise sea wallpapers
I was away for the week-end, so I continue clearing the summer wallpapers queue after a small gap (initially planned the climax for the Sunday). Hope you will enjoy them, no matter the timing.
sunrise sea wallpaper
sunrise sea wallpaper
sunrise sea wallpaper

September 14, 2014

Texturas de Naturaleza: Grama

Es fin de semana, y con lo único con lo que pude jugar fue con la cámara, así que mientras grababa a Gris en su baño dominical aproveché de tomar algunas fotos de la grama que crece en el jardín. Es bastante variada ya que es silvestre, así que, espero lo disfruten y le sea de utilizad.

Si las usan, no olviden compartir su trabajo, eso me hará muy muy feliz :)

(Click en las imágenes para verlas/descargarlas en flickr)

IMG_5697.redimensionado Nature Texture

Nature Texture Nature Texture

flattr this!

September 12, 2014

Ser una emprendedora con Software Libre, en el II Foro de Mujeres y TIL

Este viernes 12 y Sábado 13 de Septiembre, se estará realizando el II Foro de Mujeres y Tecnologías Libres, organizado por las ActivistasXSL, el cual se está llevando a cabo en las instalaciones del INCES en la Av. Nueva Granada, en Caracas. Soy parte de este grupo desde hace varios años, cuando tuve la oportunidad de conocer mujeres maravillosas que, como yo, son parte del mundo de las tecnologías y el Software Libre.

Por mi ubicación geográfica y que en este momento estoy super abollada de trabajo (Gracias a Dios) no podré asistir de forma presencial, sin embargo, gracias a la tecnología puedo dejar mi granito de arena en este evento que es tan importante para quienes aún somos una minoría en busca de levantar nuestra voz.

Puedes conocer la agenda completa del evento aquí: http://foromujerestil.org.ve/agenda.html

He aportado un pequeño video donde cuento mi experiencia como mujer emprendedora utilizando herramientas de Software Libre, si te da curiosidad conocer mi experiencia, no dudes de asistir al evento, será transmitida a la 1:30pm de hoy… pero si tu ubicación geográfica no te permite asistir de forma presencial, no dudes en ver el video y preguntar o comentar lo que quieras.

Lo importante es que, como mujeres, podamos compartir conocimiento, experiencias y formar una red de apoyo donde, quienes ya tenemos años en este mundo, podamos dar esos consejos o mensajes de apoyo a quienes quieren recorrer esta vía, pero sin los tropiezos que nosotras tuvimos.

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="330" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zLl0rv2klVg?list=UUKaTf52v2U7EYTA0iIQ3QeA" width="630"></iframe>

flattr this!

Sea birds wallpapers
As anticipated, today my free wallpaper series is completed with yet another part from this summer backlog (good new for those uninterested: two more parts and I will stop for a good while). Now is about birds flying above the sea and in front of a rising sun. Quite a lot of empty space to host desktop icons.
sea birds wallpaper
sea birds wallpaper
sea birds wallpaper

September 11, 2014

Post-industrial wallpapers
I'm not sure why I liked to call those images "post-industrial" when the cranes in the background are from a large and very active naval yard, still I think they are a worthy addition to the series (and free, of course, as in CC-BY-SA).
post industrial wallpaper
post industrial wallpaper

September 10, 2014

¿Qué es una Máscara de Capa? GIMP

¿Te gustan los montajes donde la misma persona aparece dos veces en la misma toma? Esta es una de las preguntas mas frecuentes que me hacen y la verdad es que solo necesitas una herramienta, la mascara de capas.

En este podcast verás como la mascara de capa te permite agregar y quitar cosas cuantas veces quieras porque lo importante es que nada desaparece en realidad.

IMG_5542-edit.redimensionado

La máscara de capa se activa haciendo click derecho sobre la capa que tienes seleccionada y activando en el menú la opción “mascara de capa”, para conocer más sobre las opciones de la misma, solo ve el tutorial!

Trabajar con mascaras de capa no es sencillo la primera vez, y no te voy a negar que requiere de mucha práctica, sin embargo, cuando comiences a trabajar con la mascara, nunca volverás a trabajar sin ella, ya que es una forma fácil de agregar y quitar elementos sin perder tu trabajo original, porque solo estás dejando ver una porción de tu capa original sin modificarla realmente.

Recuerda que hay un podcast nuevo cada semana, no olvides de ver los podcast anteriores y, porque no, dar un poco de amor si te gustaron :)

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="354" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/hYH7Is4u948" width="630"></iframe>
Youtube Link: http://youtu.be/hYH7Is4u948

flattr this!

Beach wallpapers
As hinted the other day, there are more posts in the queue for my free wallpaper series. Today we are going to the beach! ...and if I wouldn't be so used with the one I keep using for a few years, I could see myself going with the first.
beach wallpaper
beach wallpaper
beach wallpaper

September 09, 2014

Wallpapers: sunsets over the city
Now, when the summer is over, I look back and notice quite a lot of summer-ish pictures which people may want to use as desktop wallpapers. Damn! my last post in the free wallpaper series was in the winter! My backlog of picture is considerable, so there may be 3-4 more similar posts to follow if I feel there is interest.
city sunset wallpaper
city sunset wallpaper
city sunset wallpaper

September 08, 2014

Como crear un Formulario de Reservas en tu WordPress

Una de las cosas que no pueden faltar en una web de servicios es un formulario de contacto, sin embargo, si el servicio que se presta depende de la disponibilidad de la persona que está siendo empleada el formulario de contacto se debe convertir en un formulario de reservas, con la que el cliente pueda conocer la disponibilidad del mismo y asegurar la fecha en la que quiere recibir el servicio.

Como varios saben, mi profesión desde hace ya casi 10 años es de diseñadora, y desde el 2009 me desempeño como fotógrafa a tiempo completo, y ya que no puedo estar en dos sitios a la vez, cuando un cliente solicita que preste un servicio de fotografía para un evento o producto, esa fecha queda eliminada del calendario laboral de otras actividades.

wordpress-reservation-howto

Luego de pasar prácticamente meses buscando una solución que me permitiera no solo agregar un Formulario de Reservas, sino que le enviara una respuesta apropiada al cliente que a elaborado la solicitud, no encontré nada específico a mis necesidades, así que, en mis ratos libres (que últimamente no son muchos) me dispuse a probar cuanto plugin que tuviese la palabra “Reserva”en su nombre. Restaurant Reservations es un plugin que acepta reservaciones para restaurantes. Permite rápidamente confirmar o cancelar una reserva, enviar correos de notificación y mucho más. Sin embargo, mi negocio no es un restaurante, sino un servicio de fotografía, así que luego de un par de arreglos y modificación de campos, quedó como quería.

1 El Restaurant Reservations agrega el código del formulario generado debajo del contenido de la página que aya sido especificada. En mi caso, ya yo tenía una página donde las personas podían consultar los precios actuales, por lo que coloqué el formulario de reservas en la parte inferior. Cabe destacar que hubo que modificar un poco el Css para que se mostraran tal como quería, pero no fue la gran cosa. (Click en la imagen para agrandarla)

rr-screenshot1-thumb

2 Como es un sistema de reservas de restaurantes, las personas pueden realizar diversas reservas un mismo día, sin embargo, lo que me hizo escoger particularmente este plugin, fue que podía indicar que hubiese solo una reserva al día. Así que el cliente puede seleccionar el día de su evento, la hora a la que inicia y sin más que un poco de información personal de contacto, generar su reservación. (Click en la imagen para agrandarla)

rr-screenshot2-thumb

 

3 Finalmente, solo debes configurar los mensajes tanto para el momento en el que el cliente llena el formulario, la confirmación de recibo de la reserva y dependiendo del caso, la aceptación o rechazo de la misma. (Click en la imagen para agrandarla)

rr-screenshot3-thumb

 

Como ven, es un plugin que, pese a que no estaba hecho para este propósito en particular, con unas pequeñas modificaciones ha quedado de lujo. Si quieren ver el resultado final en vivo no duden en visitar http://tap.pics/precios

 

flattr this!

September 05, 2014

Wallpapers: Paisajes de San Cristóbal

El sábado pasado asistí a la boda de Kelvin y Elisa como su fotógrafa y, en medio de tanta locura logre capturar dos fotografías que para mi, resumen lo que ha sido vivir este primer año en la hermosa ciudad de San Cristóbal.

San Cristóbal es la capital del estado Táchira, uno de los estados fronterizos de Venezuela, ubicado a solo 57Km de Colombia.San Cristóbal es llamada “La ciudad de la cordialidad” y no en vano, uno de los primeros “shocks culturales” que tuve al mudarme acá, fue que la gente nunca se olvidaba de dar los buenos días ni las gracias, y eso es algo que lamentablemente el resto del país ha perdido.

Es un estado andino, por lo que sus paisajes montañosos y su clima fresco, predomina casi todo el año; y como buena aurinegra, no puedo dejar de lado el hecho de que, a diferencia del resto del país donde el Béisbol es el deporte del que todos hablan durante todo el año; acá se vive y se respira fútbol y ciclismo todos los días.

Son un par de fotos que si gustan, pueden utilizarlas como wallpapers, y de esa forma, llevarse un pedacito de este cielo donde ahora estoy viviendo. Gracias a Kelvin y Elisa por dejarme ser parte de su boda… y gracias a San Cristóbal por regalarme estos paisajes cada día.


IMG_4491.redimensionado

IMG_5200.redimensionado

flattr this!

September 03, 2014

WLMRO 2014
I am a bit late writing about this here, but on September 1st a new edition of the Wiki Loves Monuments photography contest started globally, with 34 countries registered to participate.

It is happening in Romania too, for the 4th time (I am again part of the team) and for us the start is promising so far: in the mid of the 3rd day we are well past the 1k images mark, something which happened much later (7 to 13 days) in the previous editions. Let's see if the contributors (and this includes you, my readers!) will be able to keep up. BTW, this year our prizes improved too.
Chiajna ruine 01
Filtros de Color con GIMP

Una de las cosas mas divertidas que puedes hacer cuando tomas fotografías es utilizar filtros y tienes dos formas, la forma física, y la forma digital. La forma física es tan sencillo como agarrar un papel plástico transparente  y hacer distintas rayas de colores con marcadores, pero hay una forma más fácil de hacer un filtro de color y eso es usando las aplicaciones que ya conocemos. En este caso utilizaremos GIMP.

filter-detail

La fotografía editada hoy es de la boda a la que asistí el sábado pasado, así que pronto tendremos otro video de bodas, y porque no… un tutorial de Kdenlive!

IMG_5171_edit.redimensionado

Para este tutorial, lo único que tienes que saber utilizar son las aplicaciones libres que tienes en la suite de cualquier distribución de linux, ya que no importa que tan experto seas en la edición de fotografías, unos pequeños trucos pueden hacer que tu fotografía mejore y que se vean completamente profesionales.

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/OAwhusvXIFs" width="560"></iframe>
Youtube Link: http://youtu.be/OAwhusvXIFs

flattr this!

August 27, 2014

5 UX Tips for Developers

I wrote an article walking through 5 UX Tips for Developers over at the Red Hat Developer blog. They are just some general suggestions for improving applications that are geared towards developers without training in UX. If this sounds like something that might be useful to you, feel free to take a look:

5 UX Tips for Developers

Thanks :)

August 23, 2014

Gmic available in Fedora repository
It appears GMIC is now available in Fedora repository meaning it will be included in Design Suite 21 as replacement of the obsolete GREYstoration by default. That plugin is very useful for the excellent tutorials from Pat David who also contributed to the GMIC project thus removing the need to manually compile and install it.
Winner F21 supplemental wallpaper

The voting phase for supplemental wallpaper is closed now and the results are there. But is time to look a little bit back on the contest this time. We had this time lesser contributions as last time, we got 87 submissions where on the end 83 was accepted. Last time we had 114 from 117 submissions. Also this time the quality of the submissions was lower as last time.
One of the reasons for this is, the results of the last votings, I have spoken with some of the contributors where did contribute high quality content, why they not contribute this time.
I will find a solution how we can raise the quality of the submissions again. There are several solutions in my head. But for now is time to show the winner pictures which will get packaged.

If you are interested in all the results you can find them in Nuancier.

August 18, 2014

Estabilizar videos en Linux con Transcode y Vid-Stab

Tener una cámara que grabe videos es algo que siempre quise, sin embargo, no tengo un estabilizador de imagen, por lo que aunque tengo una calidad increíble, el movimiento que genera mi pulso no ayuda para nada. Es por eso que decidí ver que opciones tenía en Linux y me conseguí con Vid-Stab, el cual permite estabilizar la imagen. vid-stab es un plugin para transcode, por ende, lo primero que debemos instalar es transcode:

[tatica@susan Descargas]$ su -
[root@susan ~]$ yum -y install transcode

Ahora, solo debemos bajarnos el plugin, descomprimirlo e instalarlo: (Verifica la última versión en: http://public.hronopik.de/vid.stab/download.php?lang=en )

[tatica@susan Descargas]$ wget -c http://public.hronopik.de/vid.stab/files/vid.stab-0.98b-transcode-1.1-binary-x86_64.tgz
[tatica@susan Descargas]$ tar -zxvf vid.stab-0.98b-transcode-1.1-binary-x86_64.tgz
[tatica@susan Descargas]$ cd vid.stab-0.98b-transcode-1.1-binary-x86_64
[tatica@susan vid.stab-0.98b-transcode-1.1-binary-x86_64]$ ./install.sh

Así de sencillo es instalar el plugin, ahora vamos a estabilizar nuestro video. Esto generará un archivo trf donde se almacenará la información de los fotogramas que luego serán afectados por la transformación que transcode realizará.

[tatica@susan Videos]$ transcode -J stabilize -i ORIGINAL.mp4

Una vez obtenido el archivo trf, es momento de transformar el video:

[tatica@susan Videos]$ transcode -J transform -i ORIGINAL.mp4 -y xvid -o ESTABILIZADO.mp4

Y eso es todo! Siempre puedes agregar opciones adicionales tanto para mejorar la salida, como para cambiar el codec o incluso, para aplicar una reducción aún mayor del movimiento generado por el pulso u otros elementos.

Me tomé la libertad de hacer una prueba y tomar un video de Gris, el consentido de la casa. Perdí un poco de calidad, sin embargo, la estabilización funcionó a la perfección.

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Y-DTBXulhlc" width="560"></iframe>

Youtube Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-DTBXulhlc

flattr this!

August 15, 2014

Flock 2014: Report

Flock 2014 took place in Prague this year. Here’s a photo to start with:

Tshirt ;)

Although Flock wasn’t the first FOSS/Dev/Tech conference I have been to, it was my first Fedora-specific event. Definitely special in it’s own way - most of the speakers and attendees are from within the Fedora community, so basically every third person is someone you have chatted with over irc, seen on planet, or is someone whose wikipage you have stumbled upon at some point. Which means, you walk to the end of the corridor, look at a person’s badge and say “Oh, so YOU are that guy!”

I wouldn’t say I attended a lot of the talks, since many of them would go over my head; but I did spend a good time interacting with the people present & offered to help with their projects & found potential contributors for mine. After all, the Flock organizers were awesome enough to live stream and upload all the sessions on YouTube (I’m still watching some): Flock channel on YouTube.

First day started with the opening by Matt, followed by a keynote on how FOSS was accepted in the EU by Gijs Hillenius. It was inspiring; I was left wondering how I can make an impact at least at the University level for a start. The next one I attended (online though) was on the State of Fedora Fonts, by Pravin Satpute.

I spent most of the remainder of the first day in the hackroom, reviewing slides for my talk, scheduled for later during the day. Mine followed Marina’s session on Gnome OPW which I attended in part - she did a great job of outlining how the community had succeeded in increasing participation of women within FOSS communities, events and projects. Her talk also reminded me that Marie (riecatnor) was here at Flock! I’ve known Marie for a while through the Fedora design IRC, but we hadn’t met in person.

Soon after, I did a talk called the Curious Case of Fedora Freshmen. It covered how Freshmen found it difficult to cope up with more experienced folk speaking complex things to them or simply not paying enough attention. I brought up various programs that would help Freshmen, should they be worked on. The talk was followed by a pretty extensive discussion. I’ll start Wiki pages working on some of the stuff I brought up during the session within a couple of week’s time. Slides for my talk are here and the video is here.

One interesting session I attended was by Chris Roberts and Marie Catherine Nordin - on Fedora badges. Chris did a quick run through about how fedmsg awards badges, and Marie followed up with her Fedora badges internship (which I have been impressed with like forever). Post-session, I introduced myself to Marie and we’ve been super friends since! :D

In fact, at this point, you should read Marie’s blog post about Flock. It covers a bit of what we did over our own impromptu hackfest - as she calls it ;) Marie spent a great deal of time explaining me how to play with nodes and we worked a bit on Waartaa’s logo. She also did a Glyph from scratch, it was quite amazing!

Snake man!

Among other sessions I attended were one on state of the Ambassador’s Union by Jiri, Advocating Fedora.next by Christoph, Improving Ambassadors Mentor program by Tuan (online) and Meet your FesCo (filled with Josh Boyer’s humor).

Fun stuff: On the first evening was FudPub, where we competed over who can take in more beer ;) Thanks to the organizers, we were on a boat another evening. We did a tour of Prague during the night - pretty mesmerizing! On other days, Gnokii took us to Budvarka, where some of us had lots of local food and beer ;)

Budvarka

On final day, Marie, Ralph, Toshio, Pingou, Arun and I, among others went on a quick city trip before we were headed home :) I’ll have to say, I’m now richer in terms of memories and a few badges ;)

Me in Prague

I’d really like to thank the Fedora community for having supported me on this trip! You guys deserve a badge ;)

August 13, 2014

Podcast: Puntaje en darktable

Y seguimos con los podcast de utilidad, ya que es importante aprender a organizarse antes de comenzar a trabajar. Hoy hice un podcast bastante sencillo (pero necesario) sobre como utilizar el sistema de puntajes de estrellas y colores de darktable. Espero les guste este podcast y me cuenten su experiencia utilizando ambos sistemas.

Las fotos fueron tomadas en la pasarela de Runway Models 2014 en la ciudad de San Cristobal, si quieres ver un resumen, no dejes de visitar mi portafolio profesional en tap.pics

Url Directa: http://youtu.be/ZIfX1xlKpMg

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZIfX1xlKpMg" width="560"></iframe>

flattr this!

August 07, 2014

¿Necesitas iconos? OpenClipart e IconFinder

Una de las cosas más útiles cuando hablamos de diseño, son los iconos. Bien sea porque estés desarrollando una aplicación y necesites un pack completamente inédito, o porque estás diseñando un banner y quieres agregarle algunos elementos que lo hagan resaltar.

Lo cierto es que hoy en día hay muchos recursos donde puedes conseguir gráficos libres, y si lo necesitas, gráficos que puedas licenciar. Por eso hoy les contaré un poco sobre OpenClipart, un website con miles de gráficos vectoriales libres; y IconFinder, un sitio que te permite liberar tus iconos tanto de forma gratuita como licenciada (paga).

openclipart

OpenClipart cuenta hasta la fecha con 54282 gráficos completamente libres bajo CC0 1.0, lo que quiere decir que  la persona asociada al trabajo ha otorgado su trabajo de forma pública y cede todos sus derechos de autoría. Puedes copiar, modificar, distribuir y trabajar con ellos de forma comercial, sin tener que pedir permiso.

Cuentan con elementos individuales, colecciones y existe una sección de “solicitudes” a la que los artistas pueden acceder cuando se les acaban las ideas. Es una comunidad bastante amable, que contestan los correos casi de forma instantánea y que no te hace esperar para subir tu contenido. Todas las cargas son única y exclusivamente en SVG (Vectores)

iconfinder

En IconFinder, puedes encontrar tanto iconos individuales como paquetes completos, sin embargo, para quienes subimos contenido, solo nos permiten subir paquetes ya en formato zip. A diferencia de OpenClipart, permiten que los artistas suban contenido tanto en svg, como en png y otros formatos, siempre y cuando se respeten los tamaños que piden.

Como no todo en la vida es gratis y los artistas tienen que vivir de algo, estos pueden escoger si desean subir de forma gratuita sus packs de iconos o si por el contrario, prefieren colocar un precio tanto por el pack completo como por cada icono de forma individual. Si por ejemplo, estás desarrollando una aplicación en tu empresa, lo ideal es que compres un pack de iconos o hagas un requerimiento directo. En temas de licencias, IconFinder obtiene la licencia completa sobre las creaciones subidas a la web, y tienes que esperar entre 3-4 días para que tus iconos sean publicos luego de subirlos.

Ya tienes dos opciones tanto para subir tu arte como para descargar y/o comprar iconos. Cuéntame, si ya has utilizado alguno y ¿Cual te agrada más y por qué?

flattr this!

Check out Flock Day 2’s Virtual Attendance Guide on Fedora Magazine

flock-logo

I’ve posted today (Thursday’s) guide to Flock talks over on Fedora Magazine:

Guide to Attending Flock Virtually: Day 2

The guide to days 3 and 4 will follow, of course. Enjoy!

August 06, 2014

Tipos de Plano o Encuadre

Casi siempre hago un podcast que explica como hacer algo con una aplicación, sin embargo, hoy decidí publicar algo más como una infografía sobre como encuadrar a un sujeto dentro de una fotografía. Siempre es bueno tener tips que nos ayuden a mejorar nuestra composición básica; ya que de esta forma, gastaremos menos tiempo editando.

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/vcsn7L6mBwU" width="560"></iframe>

Enlace Directo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vcsn7L6mBwU

Los tipos de encuadre que veremos en este video, son:

  • Gran Plano General
  • Plano General
  • Plano Conjunto
  • Plano Entero
  • Plano Americano o tres cuartos
  • Plano Medio Largo
  • Plano Medio Corto
  • Primer Plano
  • Primerísimo Primer Plano
  • Plano Detalle

Hay otros tipo de encuadre, sin embargo, es bueno comenzar con lo básico. ¿Los conocías? Cuéntame tu experiencia!

flattr this!

Guide to Attending Flock Virtually: Day 1

flock-logo

Flock, the Fedora Contributor Conference, starts tomorrow morning in Prague, the Czech Republic, and you can attend – no matter where in the world you are. (Although admittedly, depending on where you are, you may need to give up on some sleep if you intend to attend live ;-) )

Here’s a quick schedule of tomorrow’s talks for remote attendees:

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

6:45 AM UTC / 8:45 AM Prague / 2:45 AM Boston

Opening: Fedora Project Leader (Matthew Miller)

7:00 AM UTC / 9:00 AM Prague / 3:00 AM Boston

Keynote: Free And Open Source Software In Europe: Policies And Implementations (Gijs Hillenius)

8:00 AM UTC / 10:00 AM Prague / 4:00 AM Boston

Better Presentation of Fonts in Fedora (Pravin Satpute)

Contributing to Fedora SELinux Policy (Michael Scherer)

FedoraQA: You are important (Amita Sharma)

9:00 AM UTC / 11:00 AM Prague / 5:00 AM Boston

Fedora Magazine (Chris Anthony Roberts)

State of Copr Build Service (Miroslav Suchý)

Taskotron and Me (Tim Flink)

Where’s Wayland (Matthias Clasen)

12:00 PM UTC / 14:00 PM Prague / 8:00 AM Boston

Fedora Workstation – Goals, Philosophy, and Future (Christian F.K. Schaller)

Procrastination makes you better: Life of a remotee (Flavio Percoco)

Python 3 as Default (Bohuslav Kabrda)

Wayland Input Status (Hans de Goede)

13:00 PM UTC / 15:00 PM Prague / 9:00 AM Boston

Evolving the Fedora Updates Process (Luke Macken)

Fedora Future Devices (Wolnei Tomazelli Junior)

Outreach Program for Women: Lessons in Collaboration
(Marina Zhurakhinskaya)

Predictive Input Methods (Anish Patel)

14:00 PM UTC / 16:00 PM Prague / 10:00 AM Boston

Open Communication and Collaboration Tools for Humans (Sayan Chowdhury, Ratnadeep Debnath)

State of the Fedora Kernel (Josh Boyer)

The Curious Case of Fedora Freshmen (aka Issue #101) (Sarup Banskota)

UX 101: Practical Usability Methods Anyone Can Use (Karen Tang)

15:00 PM UTC / 17:00 PM Prague / 11:00 AM Boston

Fedora Ambassadors: State of the Union (Jiří Eischmann)

Hyperkitty: Past, Present, and Future (Aurélien Bompard)

Kernel Tuning (John H Dulaney)

Release Engineering and You (Dennis Gilmore)

16:00 PM UTC / 18:00 PM Prague / 12:00 PM Boston

Advocating Fedora.next (Christoph Wickert)

Documenting Software with Mallard (Jaromir Hradilek, Petr Kovar)

Fedora Badges and Badge Design (Marie Catherine Nordin, Chris Anthony Roberts)

How is the Fedora kernel different? (Levente Kurusa)

Help us cover these talks!

help-1

We’re trying to get as full coverage as possible of these talks on Fedora Magazine. You can help us out, even if you are a remote attendee. If any of the talks above are at a reasonable time in your timezone and you’d be willing to take notes and draft a blog post for Fedora Magazine, please sign up on our wiki page for assignments! You can also contact Ryan Lerch or Chris Roberts for more information about contributing.

August 04, 2014

Como traducir un subtitulo con Gnome-Subtitles

Tengo aproximadamente 8 años bajando subtitulos de la web, y varias veces me tocaba esperar, ya que la traducción al español siempre tardaba un poco más. Sin embargo, desde hace un par de semanas, he decido dar un paso adelante y comenzar a realizar subtitulos para aquellas series que aún no lo tienen y manteniendo el espíritu de compartir, subirlos a SubDivX.com. Hay diversas herramientas para hacer un subtitulo, por ejemplo, tienen subtitleeditor y gaupol, pero siempre me he sentido cómoda editandolos con Gnome-Subtitles.

Acá un pequeño tutorial de como realizar una traducción simultanea utilizando todas las potencialidades de esta aplicación.

NOTA: Si quieren crear un subtitulo desde cero, solo abran la app, hagan click en el botón “Nuevo” continuen desde el paso 4.

GS001

1 Primero abriremos nuestro subtitulo existente en el idioma de origen, utilizando el botón de “Abrir

GS002

2 Luego le asignaremos al subtitulo el idioma correcto haciendo click en “Herramientas -> Establecer idioma del texto“.

GS003

3 Para activar el campo de traducción en simultáneo, iremos a “Archivo -> Traducción -> Nuevo” y esto creará una columna alterna donde podremos ingresar los nuevos campos.

GS004

4 De igual forma,le asignaremos el idioma al subtitulo en “Herramientas -> Establecer idioma de traducción

GS005

5 Para ayudarnos a sincronizar y entender mejor el texto, a veces necesitamos ver el video como tal. En inglés, hay veces en las que una frase no define con exactitud el género de la persona que está hablando. Para activar el video, haremos click en “Video -> Abrir” y buscaremos el video correspondiente al subtitulo que tenemos activo.

GS006

6 La pre-visualización será algo así. Si quieres ver la porción de video específica para una línea de traducción en particular, solo tienes que hacer click sobre el la línea y luego presionar la tecla Enter. Esto hará que el video salte automáticamente a la línea de tiempo correspondiente al subtitulo en cuestión.

GS007

7 Ya solo resta guardar el subtitulo que hemos creado. Daremos click en el botón de Guardar, y si se fijan con detenimiento, se le agregará el código del idioma que han seleccionado al subtitulo que acaban de traducir.

flattr this!

August 01, 2014

Flock booklet

Most of my work for Flock 2014 in Prague is now done, booklet is done and is now in print and will be delivered on monday. The schedules for the doors are also done and a lot of badges designed. If you want to download the booklet, I did put a download version here.

July 30, 2014

A logo & icon for DevAssistant

logo-vert

This is a simple story about a logo design process for an open source project in case it might be informative or entertaining to you. :)

A little over a month ago, Tomas Radej contacted me to request a logo for DevAssistant. DevAssistant is a UI aimed at making developers’ lives easier by automating a lot of the menial tasks required to start up a software project – setting up the environment, starting services, installing dependencise, etc. His team was gearing up for a new release and really wanted a logo to help publicize the release. They came to me for help as colleagues familiar with some of the logo work I’ve done.

jumbotron-bg

When I first received Tomas’ request, I reviewed DevAsisstant’s website and had some questions:

  • Are there any parent or sibling projects to this one that have logos we’d need this to match up with?
  • Is an icon needed that coordinates with the logo as well?
  • There is existing artwork on the website (shown above) – should the logo coordinate with that? Is that design something you’re committed to?
  • Are there any competing projects / products (even on other platforms) that do something similar? (Just as a ‘competitive’ evaluation of their branding.)

He had some answers :) :

  • There aren’t currently any parent or sibling projects with logos, so from that persepctive we had a blank slate.
  • They definitely needed an icon, preferably in all the required sizes for the desktop GUI.
  • Tomas impressively had made the pre-existing artwork himself, but considered it a placeholder.
  • The related projects/products he suggested are: Software Collections, JBoss Forge, and Enide.

From the competition I saw a lot of clean lines, sharp angles, blues and greens, some bold splashes here and there. Software Collections has a logotype without a mark; JBoss Forge has a mark with an anvil (a construction tool of sorts); Enide doesn’t have a logo per se but is part of Node.js which has a very stylized logotype where letters are made out of hexagons.

I liked how Tomas’ placeholder artwork used shades of blue, and thought about how the triangles could be shaped such to make up the ‘D’ of ‘Dev’ and the ‘A’ of Assistant (similarly to how ‘node’ is spelled out with hexagons for each letter in the node.js logotype.) I played around a little be with the notion of ‘d’ and ‘a’ triangles and sketched some ideas out:

devassistant-logo-sketches

I grabbed an icon sheet template from the GNOME design icon repo and drew this out in Inkscape. This, actually, was pretty foolish of me since I hadn’t sent Tomas my sketches at this point and I didn’t even have a solid concept in terms of the mark’s meaning beyond being stylized ‘d’ and ‘a’ – it could have been a waste of time – but thankfully his team liked the design so it didn’t end up being a waste at all. :)

devassistant-logoidea-1

Then I thought a little about about meaning here. (Maybe this is backwards. Sometimes I start with meaning / concept, sometimes I start with a visual and try to build meaning into it. I did the latter this time; sue me!) I was thinking about how JBoss Forge used a construction tool in its logo (Logo copyright JBoss & Red Hat):

forge

And I thought about how Glade uses a carpenter’s square (another construction tool!) in its icon… hmmm… carpenter’s squares are essentially triangles… ! :) (Glade logo from the GNOME icon theme, LGPLv3+):

Glade_new_logo

I could think of a few other developer-centric tools that used other artifacts of construction – rulers, hard hats, hammers, wrenches, etc. – for their logo/icon design. It seemed to be the right family of metaphor anyway, so I started thinking the ‘D’ and ‘A’ triangles could be carpenter’s squares.

What I started out with didn’t yet have the ruler markings, or the transparency, and was a little hacky in the SVG… but it could have those markings. With Tomas’ go-ahead, I made the triangles into carpenter’s squares and created all of the various sizes needed for the icon:

devassistant-sheet

So we had a set of icons that could work! I exported them out to PNGs and tarred them up for Tomas and went to work on the logo.

Now why didn’t I start with the logo? Well, I decided to start with the icon just because the icon had the most amount of constraints on it – there’s certain requirements in terms of the sizes a desktop icon has to read at, and I wanted it to fit in with the style of other GNOME icons… so I figured, start where the most constraints are, and it’s easier to adapt what you come up with there in the arena where you have less constraints. This may have been a different story if the logo had more constraints – e.g., if there was a family of app brands it had to fit into.

So logos are a bit different than icons in that people like to print them on things in many different sizes, and when you pay for printed objects (especially screen-printed T-shirts) you pay for color, and it can be difficult to do effects like drop shadows and gradients. (Not impossible, but certainly more of a pain. :) ) The approach I took with the logo, then, was to simplify the design and flatten the colors down compared to the icon.

Anyhow, here’s the first set of ideas I sent to Tomas for the logomark & logotype:

logo-comps-1

From my email to him explaining the mockups:

Okay! Attached is a comp of two logo variations. I have it plain and flat in A & B (A is vertical, and B is a horizontal version of the same thing.) C & D are the same except I added a little faint mirror image frame to the blue D and A triangles – I was just playing around and it made me think of scaffolding which might be a nice analogy. The square scaffolding shape the logomark makes could also be used to create a texture/pattern for the website and associated graphics.

The font is an OFL font called Spinnaker – I’ve attached it and the OFL that it came with. The reason I really liked this font in particular compared to some of the others I evaluated is that the ‘A’ is very pointed and sharp like the triangles in the logo mark, and the ratio of space between the overall size of some of the lowercase letters (e.g., ‘a’ and ‘e’) to their enclosed spaces seemed similar to the ratio of the size of the triangles in the logomark and the enclosed space in the center of the logomark. I think it’s also a friendly-looking font – I would think an assistant to somebody would have a friendly personality to them.

Anyway, feel free to be brutal and let me know what you think, and we can go with this or take another direction if you’d prefer.

Tomas’ team unanimously favored the scaffolding versions (C&D), but were hoping the mirror image could be a bit darker for more contrast. So I did some versions with the mirror image at different darknesses:

scaffold-shade

I believe they picked B or C, and…. we have a logo.

Overall, this was a very smooth, painless logo design process for a very easy-going and cordial “customer.” :)

Cortar una imagen con una relación de aspecto definida: Darktable Vs. Gimp

A veces las cosas más fáciles son a las que menos les prestamos atención, y son estos trucos pequeños los que marcan la diferencia a la hora de editar rápidamente una imagen.

En el podcast de hoy, les daré una breve explicación sobre qué es la relación de aspecto, los tipos mas comunes para la fotografía, y como utilizarla. En el podcast está incluido el tutorial tanto en Darktable como en GIMP, ya que como siempre digo, lo bueno de Linux es la variedad.

Últimamente, cuando nos piden enviar un wallpaper a las distribuciones a las cuales colaboramos, uno de los requerimientos más importantes, mas allá del formato, es que tengan una relación de aspecto de 16:9. Es por eso que, si estás pensando colaborar con algún proyecto enviando tu wallpaper, que este pequeño tutorial de ayudará.

Espero que este tutorial les guste, y si además de eso también les gustó la imagen que se utilizó, no olviden darle click al post donde pueden encontrar los wallpapers de las avispas.

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Be8_fBjpXUg" width="560"></iframe>

flattr this!

July 28, 2014

ColorZilla, recoge muestras de color en tu navegador

La gente de ColorZilla ha creado un par de plugines tanto para Chrome como para Firefox que te permiten tener un gotero integrado en tu navegador, y así, poder recoger muestras de color de forma fácil y rápida. Vamos, es como tener un kcolorchooser a un solo click de distancia.

screenshot2

 

ColorZilla incluye varias herramientas adicionales:

  • Cuentagotas - para obtener el color de cualquier pixel en la página
  • Una busqueda de colores similares.
  • Analiza los colores del elemento DOM en cualquier página Web
  • Generador de gradientes en CSS
  • Palette Viewer con 7 paletas preinstalados
  • Histórico de los colores escogidos recientemente
  • Información del elemento de la etiqueta, clase, Identificación, tamaño, etc
  • Manipular los colores por sus componentes / saturaciones / Valor Rojo / Verde / Azul o Hue.
  • Copia automática de los colores generados o muestreados en el portapapeles en CSS RGB, Hex y otros formatos.
  • Atajos de teclado para el muestreo rápido colores de la página.
  • Características adicionales

screenshot1

Si eres un diseñador y siempre necesitas revisar los colores con el inspector de código de tu browser, esta será una fácil y rápida solución para tu flujo de trabajo diario.

flattr this!

July 27, 2014

Updates with GlitterGallery

Personally, I’ve been troubled with illness for a while now. College has started and time has gotten scarce. However, work on GG is going great as usual. As usual, I’d recommend running through the demo hosted at http://glittery-banas.rhcloud.com, since design work is only best experienced.

For Fedora folks following the project, I’d like to mention some highlights:

For starters, now we have a remember me, because a couple of people said it’s trouble having to enter login credentials every time they’re on a new instance of their browser. Of course, it’s optional; it’s only meant to aid you. We’re facing trouble with the 3rd party login, which suddenly seems to have broken. Paul is investigating it at the moment.

Login page

I’ve improved the toolbars on Project and User projects. There are slight changes to the transitions and the active element is now highlighted properly.

Toolbars

Paul recently rolled out the server side stuff for GlitterGallery Issues. I’ve also given it some front-end polish. Here’s some screenies:

Issues New

Issues List

Other areas I’m currently working on:

  1. Slideshow display for project images (80% complete)
  2. Multiple uploads for project components (50% complete)
  3. OpenShift QuickStart (stuck)

July 24, 2014

Shortcodes Ultimate, un plugin para todo.

Una de las razones por las que utilizo WordPress como CMS es la facilidad, comodidad y versatilidad que me provee a la hora de publicar. Desde que migré a WP no me preocupo de actualizaciones, y escribir se ha convertido en un placer más que en una obligación; y de vez en cuando, aparecen plugines como Shortcodes Ultimate que hacen la experiencia aún mejor.

 Este plugin provee un mega-pack de shortcodes con el que puedes crear etiquetas, sliders, cajas, botones y mucho más. Si eres de esas personas que les gusta tener un artículo con un poco de interactividad, este es el plugin que debes instalar.

Este plugin también tiene una versión paga con la cual puedes conseguir más mejoras. La lista completa de mejoras que incluye la versión gratis de este plugin son:

screenshot-2

  • Servicios
  • Cajas
  • Notas
  • Secciones privadas
  • Youtube
  • Vimeo
  • Audio
  • Video Embedido
  • Tablas
  • Permalinks
  • Membresía
  • Invitados
  • RSS
  • Menú
  • Sub-páginas
  • Documentos
  • Mapas
  • Slider
  • Carrusel
  • Galería
  • y más!

flattr this!

July 23, 2014

Here’s a low-barrier way to help improve FLOSS apps – AppStream metadata: Round 1

UPDATE: This program is full now!

We are so excited that we’ve got the number of volunteers we needed to assign all of the developer-related packages we identified for this round! THANK YOU! Any further applications will be added to a wait list (in case any of the assignees need to drop any of their assigned packages.) Depending on how things go, we may open up another round in a couple of weeks or so, so we’ll keep you posted!

Thanks again!!

— Mo, Ryan, and Hughsie


appstream-logo

Do you love free and open source software? Would you like to help make it better, but don’t have the technical skills to know where you can jump in and help out? Here is a fantastic opportunity!

The Problem

There is an cross-desktop, cross-distro, Freedesktop.org project called AppStream. In a nutshell, AppStream is an effort to standardize metadata about free and open source applications. Rather than every distro have its own separate written description for Inkscape, for example, we’d have a shared and high-quality description of Inkscape that would be available to users of all distros. Why is this kind of data important? It helps free desktop users discover applications that might meet their needs – for example, via searching software center applications (such as GNOME Software and Apper.)

Screenshot of GNOME Software showing app metadata in action!

Screenshot of GNOME Software showing app metadata in action!

Running this project in a collaborative way is also a great way for us to combine efforts and come up with great quality content for everyone in the FLOSS community.

Contributors from Fedora and other distros have been working together to build the infrastructure to make this project work. But, we don’t yet have even close to full metadata coverage of the thousands of FLOSS applications we ship. Without metadata for all of the applications, users could be missing out on great applications or may opt out of installing an app that would work great for them because they don’t understand what the app does or how it could meet their needs.

The Plan

Ryan Lerch among other contributors have been working very hard for many weeks now generating a lot of the needed metadata, but as of today only have roughly 25% coverage for the desktop packages in Fedora. We’d love to see that number increase significantly for Fedora 21 and beyond, but we need your help to accomplish that!

Ryan, Richard Hughes, and I recently talked about the ongoing effort. Progress is slower than we’d like, we have less contributors than we’d like – but it is a great opportunity for new contributors, because of the low barrier to entry and big impact the work has!

So along that line, we thought of an idea for an ongoing program that we’d like to pilot: Basically, we’ll chunk the long list of applications that need the metadata into thematic lists – for example, graphics applications, development applications, social media applications, etc. etc. Each of those lists we’ll break into chunks of say 10 apps each, and volunteers can pick up those chunks and submit metadata for just those 10.

The specific metadata we are looking for in this pilot is a brief summary about what the application is and a description of what the application does. You do not need to be a coder to help out; you’ll need to be able and willing to research the applications in your chunk and draft an openly-licensed paragraph (we’ll provide specific guidelines) and submit it via a web form on github. That’s all you need to do.

This blog post will kick off our pilot (“round 1″) of this effort, and we’ll be focusing on applications geared towards developers.

Your mission

If you choose to participate in this program, your mission will be to research and write up both brief summaries about and long-form descriptions for each of ~10 free and open source applications.

You might want to check out the upstream sites for each application, see if any distros downstream have descriptions for the app, maybe install and try the app out for yourself, or ask current users of the app about it and its strengths and weaknesses. The final text you submit, however, will need to be original writing created by you.

Specifications

Summary field for application

The summary field is a short, one-line description of what the application enables users to do:

  • It should be around 5 – 12 words long, and a single sentence with no ending punctuation.
  • It should start with action verbs that describe what it allows the user to do, for example, “Create and edit Scalable Vector Graphics images” from the Inkscape summary field.
  • It shouldn’t contain extraneous information such as “Linux,” “open source,” “GNOME,” “gtk,” “kde,” “qt,” etc. It should focus on what the application enables the user to do, and not the technical or implementation details of the app itself.
Examples

Here are some examples of good AppStream summary metadata:

  • “Add or remove software installed on the system” (gpk-application / 8 words)
  • “Create and edit Scalable Vector Graphics images” (Inkscape / 7 words)
  • “Avoid the robots and make them crash into each other” (GNOME Robots / 10 words)
  • “View and manage system resources” (GNOME System Monitor / 5 words)
  • “Organize recipes, create shopping lists, calculate nutritional information, and more.” (Gourmet / 10 words)

Description field for application

The description field is a longer-form description of what the application does and how it works. It can be between 1 – 3 short paragraphs / around 75-100 words long.

Examples

Here are some examples of good AppStream description metadata:

  • GNOME System Monitor / 76 words:
    “System Monitor is a process viewer and system monitor with an attractive, easy-to-use interface.

    “System Monitor can help you find out what applications are using the processor or the memory of your computer, can manage the running applications, force stop processes not responding, and change the state or priority of existing processes.

    “The resource graphs feature shows you a quick overview of what is going on with your computer displaying recent network, memory and processor usage.”

  • Gourmet / 94 words:
    “Gourmet Recipe Manager is a recipe-organizer that allows you to collect, search, organize, and browse your recipes. Gourmet can also generate shopping lists and calculate nutritional information.

    “A simple index view allows you to look at all your recipes as a list and quickly search through them by ingredient, title, category, cuisine, rating, or instructions.

    “Individual recipes open in their own windows, just like recipe cards drawn out of a recipe box. From the recipe card view, you can instantly multiply or divide a recipe, and Gourmet will adjust all ingredient amounts for you.”

  • GNOME Robots / 102 words:
    “It is the distant future – the year 2000. Evil robots are trying to kill you. Avoid the robots or face certain death.

    “Fortunately, the robots are extremely stupid and will always move directly towards you. Trick them into colliding into each other, resulting in their destruction, or into the junk piles that result. You can defend yourself by moving the junk piles, or escape to safety with your handy teleportation device.

    “Your supply of safe teleports is limited, and once you run out, teleportation could land you right next to a robot, who will kill you. Survive for as long as possible!”

Content license

These summaries and descriptions are valuable content, and in order to be able to use them, you’ll need to be willing to license them under a license such that the AppStream project and greater free and open source software community can use them.

We are requesting that all submissions be licensed under the Creative Commons’ CC0 license.

What’s in it for you?

Folks who contribute metadata to this effort through this program will be recognized in the upstream appdata credits as official contributors to the project and will also be awarded a special Fedora Badges badge for contributing appdata!

appstream

When this pilot round is complete, we’ll also publish a Fedora Magazine article featuring all of the contributors – including you!

Oh, and of course – you’ll be making it easier for all free and open source software users (not just Fedora!) to find great FLOSS software and make their lives better! :)

Sign me up! How do I get started?

help-1

  1. First, if you don’t have one already, create an account at GitHub.
  2. In order to claim your badge and to interact with our wiki, you’ll need a Fedora account. Create a Fedora account now if you don’t alrady have one.
  3. Drop an email to appstream at lists dot fedoraproject [.] org with your GitHub username and your Fedora account username so we can register you as a contributor and assign you your applications to write metadata for!
  4. For each application you’ll need to write metadata for, we’ve generated an XML document in the Fedora AppStream GitHub repo. We will link you up to each of these when we give you your assignment.
  5. For each application, research the app via upstream websites, reviews, talking to users, and trying out the app for yourself, then write up the summary and description fields to the specifications given above.
  6. To submit your metadata, log into GitHub and visit the XML file for the given application we gave you in our assignment email. Take a look at this example appstream metadata file for an application called Insight. You’ll notice in the upper right corner there is an ‘Edit’ button – click on this, edit the ‘Summary’ and ‘Description’ fields, edit the copyright statement towards the very top of the file with your information, and then submit them using the form at the bottom.

Once we’ve received all of your submissions, we’ll update the credits file and award you your badge. :)

If you end up commiting to a batch of applications and end up not having the time to finish, we ask that you let us know so we can assign the apps to someone else. We’re asking that you take two weeks to complete the work – if you need more time, no problem, let us know. We just want to make sure we reopen up assigned apps for others to join in and help out with.

Let’s do this!

Ready to go? Drop us a line!

July 21, 2014

Herramientas OpenSource para Edición de Videos

La edición de videos se ha convertido en una actividad cotidiana tanto para quienes lo realizan de forma profesional, como para quienes lo consideran solo un hobby. ¿Cuantos de nosotros no hemos querido mejorar la iluminación de un video o simplemente cortarlo y unirlo luego? Son muchas las cosas que podemos hacer cuando hablamos de edición. Lo bueno de trabajar con herramientas OpenSource es que la variedad siempre será una constante. Acá algunas de las aplicaciones para la Edición de Videos más utilizadas:

Kdenlive: Del acrónimo KDE Non-Linear Video Editor, es un editor no lineal bastante cómodo, y probablemente la primera opción para muchos. Pese a su sencillez permite una manipulación completa de tu video sin lagearse o crashearse. Es el que utilizo siempre para realizar mis podcast (al menos hasta que otra opción le robe el puesto)

OpenShot: Una de las cosas que me gusta de esta aplicación son sus efectos. Mostrados de una forma bastante gráfica (casi rayando en un instagram) agregar efectos es tan fácil como arrastrar y soltar. Si buscas una app para editar videos con efectos a lo instagram, esta debería ser tu elección.

Pitivi: Esta es una de esas aplicaciones de las que esperamos grandes cosas. PiTiVi permite renderizar, importar y exportar videos con capacidades básicas de edición; sin embargo, han contratado a un estudiante gracias a GSoC para que agregue efectos. Esperemos que todo les salga bien y tengamos una excelente app de edición en un futuro no muy lejano.

Avidemux: Esta aplicación es el equivalente a edición de negativos de los videos. Es posiblemente la única aplicación que literalmente corre sobre cualquier cosa. Permite edición y filtros. Por muy potente que sea, su interfaz sigue siendo una de las menos atractivas de la lista.

Existen muchas otras apps, tales como Lives, Cinelerra, Lombard, LightWorks, Kino y hasta Blender; lo importante es conocer la variedad y poder escoger. Por los momentos, mi favorita sigue siendo Kdenlive. Esta app ha demostrado ser útil y estable con el tiempo. ¿Qué opinan ustedes? ¿Cual es su preferida? ¿Cual me faltó?

flattr this!

July 16, 2014

Iconos Isométricos en Inkscape (Podcast y Pack de Iconos!)

¿Te has preguntado como se hacen esos iconos que simulan perspectiva? Pues acá está la respuesta!!!

La perspectiva axonométrico es aquella en la que se simula volumen utilizando tres planos que corresponden a altura, anchura y longitud. Como toda perspectiva, tendremos diversas representaciones prácticas, las cuales corresponden más que todo al punto de visualización del elemento tridimensional que queremos plasmar en el plano 2D. Aunque existen diversos tipos, para este podcast trabajaré con la perspectiva Isometrica,en la que la perspectiva es equitativa en todos sus ángulos. Si quieres conocer un poco más sobre los tipos de perspectiva Axonométrica, solo mira el podcast ;).

Subtitulos en español

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/NOsXxYnb3JM" width="560"></iframe>
URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOsXxYnb3JM

En este slideshow puedes ver los tres pasos principales para trabajar con tu perspectiva isométrica en Inkscape.

Paso 1 para iconos isométricos

Y como hay que compartir, he realizado un pequeño pack de iconos isométricos de diversas cajas, los cuales espero que les gusten. Este pack contiene las siguientes figuras:

  • Caja de embalaje
  • Caja para transportar mascotas
  • Caja de regalos
  • Caja de madera sellada
  • Guacal (Caja de madera abierta)
  • Cabina telefónica londinense
  • Cartón de jugo
  • Caja de herramientas
  • Cubos de lego
  • Tardis

Como creo en que debemos compartir las fuentes (a menos que sea trabajo) he colgado los packs de iconos en OpenClipart e Iconfinder. Pueden bajárselos, pero recuerden comentar y porqué no, enviarme un screenshot de donde los utilizaron!

Gracias a nuestros patrocinadores de esta semana! especialmente a cursorlibre.com

flattr this!

July 10, 2014

Wallpaper Motivacional: Sueña en grande y atrévete a fallar

Soy de las que usan wallpapers minimalistas pese a que más de una vez me ha tocado hacer algunos con más elementos, así mismo, soy amante de las referencias o citas. En este caso quise dejarles un sencillo wallpaper motivacional bien simple con un mensaje que los invita a seguir soñando, a seguir tratando… fallar no es el final. La cita es de Norman Vaughan, un deportista olímpico que recorrió la Antártida a los 89, escribió libros y nunca renuncio a sus sueños por un poco de comodidad.

sueña en grande y atrevete a fallar
Full Resolución 2880 x 1800: https://www.dropbox.com/s/kqxknj332z5kk2c/suena-atrevete.png

flattr this!

July 09, 2014

Como crear letras con textura de piedra con GIMP e Inkscape

Primero que nada, quiero tomarme unas líneas para agradecerles por su apoyo. Cuando realicé el video solicitando su ayuda para poder continuar con los podcast no pensé que recibiría tanta receptividad. Hoy, a una semana de iniciar las campañas en Patreon, Flattr y Paypal ya se han recibido 2 donaciones y más de 10 mensajes de apoyo! Los podcast son posibles gracias a su generosidad, la cual me permite dedicar mi tiempo a generar contenido explícito y de calidad, basado en sus solicitudes e ideas. Nuevamente, gracias por creer en este proyecto… y si no saben de lo que hablo, den click aquí!

El video de hoy será un tutorial para darle textura de piedra a tus tipografías. Hay diversos métodos, pero soy una fiel creyente de que las cosas hay que simplificarlas, por lo que el proceso de hoy se realizará con ambas herramientas para que puedan comparar y sacar sus propias conclusiones. Vamos a por ello!

<iframe allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/tuShX_GjtaI" width="560"></iframe>

Ahora, si quieres revisar rápidamente este tutorial, he agregado un par de slideshows para que puedas el paso a paso de cada herramienta. Recordemos que GIMP es un editor de Bitmaps,mientras que Inkscape es un editor vectorial. Aunque adoro GIMP, cuando tengo que hacer diseños que “pueden” ser impresos, prefiero utilizar Vectores, ya que me permitirán redimensionar mi arte sin perder calidad. Sin embargo,lo bueno es que siempre tendremos formas diferentes de hacer todo, así que da un vistazo y cuéntame cual proceso te agradó más!

Como crear letras con textura de piedra con GIMP

Texto con Textura de Piedra con Gimp

 
 
 

Como crear letras con textura de piedra con Inkscape

Texto con textura de piedra en Inkscape

flattr this!

July 07, 2014

Cambiar el logo para cada Idioma con mQtranslate

Y si… seguimos con mQtranslate, pero con cada cosa que me encuentro en el camino, prefiero bloguearla que dejarla en el olvido. Esta vez toca agregar un logo diferente para cada idioma cuando utilizamos mQtranslate, al menos es algo curioso que me han pedido mis clientes… también a ustedes?

Este tutorial es mucho más sencillo que el tutorial anterior de mQtranslate, solo deben agregar la siguiente instrucción a su header en donde la instrucción que pide el logo está:

<?php
if(qtrans_getLanguage() == ‘eu’){
echo ‘<a href=”#top”><img src=”/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/eu-logo-eu.png”></a>’;
}
if(qtrans_getLanguage() == ‘es’){
echo ‘<a href=”#top”><img src=”/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/logo-europa.png”></a>’;
}
?>

Y presto… con esto están listos. Yo subo las imagenes al mismo wordpress ya que hay ciertos clientes que son recelosos con dar acceso al servidor (no en este caso, pero me ha pasado antes) por lo que hay que ingeniarse soluciones. Una vez que subes las imagenes, obtén la url y elimina el dominio manteniendo todo lo demás, esa será la url que utilizarás.

logos

Sé que es un tutorial sencillo, pero estoy 100% segura de que se me va a olvidar, así que acá quedará como un post-it digital para la posteridad!

flattr this!

July 02, 2014

Anaconda Crash Recovery

Whoah! Another anaconda post! Yes! You should know that the anaconda developers are working hard at fixing bugs, improving features, and adding enhancements all the time, blog posts about it or not. :)

Today Chris and I talked about how the UI might work for anaconda crash recovery. So here’s the thing: Anaconda is completely driven by kickstart. Every button, selection, or thing you type out in the UI gets translated into kickstart instructions in memory. So, why not save that kickstart out to disk when anaconda crashes? Then, any configuration and customization you’ve done would be saved. You could then load up anaconda afterwards with the kickstart and it would pre-fill in all of your work so you could continue where you left off!

However! Anaconda is a special environment, of course. We can’t just save to disk. I mean, okay, we could, but then we can’t use that disk as an install target after restarting the installer post crash because we’d have to mount it for reading the kickstart file off of it! Eh. So it’s a bit complicated. Chris and I thought it’d be best to keep this simple (at least to start) and allow allow for saving the kickstart to an external disk to avoid these kind of hairy issues.

Chris and I talked about how it would be cool if the crash screen could just say, “insert a USB disk if you’d like to save your progress,” and we could auto-detect when the disk was inserted, save, and report back to the user that we saved. However, blivet (the storage library used by anaconda) doesn’t yet have support for autodetecting devices. So what I thought we could do instead is have a “Save kickstart” button, and that button would kick off the process of searching for the new disk, reporting to the user if they still needed to insert one or if there was some issue with the disk. Finally, once the kickstart is saved out, it could report a status that it was successfully saved.

Another design consideration I talked over with bcl for a bit – it would be nice to keep this saving process as simple as possible. Can we avoid having a file chooser? Can we just save to the root of the inserted disk and leave it at that? That would save users a lot of mental effort.

The primary use case for this functionality is crash recovery. It crashes, we offer to save your work. One additional case is that you’re quitting the installer and want to save your work – this case is rarer, but maybe it would be worth offering to save during normal quit too.

So here are my first cuts at trying to mock something out here. Please fire away and poke holes!

So this is what you’d first see when anaconda crashes:
00-CrashDialog

You insert the disk and then you hit the “Save kickstart” button, and it tries to look for the disk:
01-MountingDisk

Success – it saved out without issue.
02A-Success

Oooopsie! You got too excited and hit “Save kickstart” without inserting the disk.
02B-NoDiskFound

Maybe your USB stick is bricked? Something went wrong. Maybe the file system’s messed up? Better try another stick:
02C-MountingError

Hope this makes sense. My Inkscape SVG source is available if you’d like to tweak or play around with this!

Comments / feedback / ideas welcomed in the comments or on the anaconda-devel list.

July 01, 2014

On Wiki Loves Earth Brasil 2014
I was invited to be a member in the jury for the Wiki Loves Earth 2014 photography contest in Brasil and I joined gladly: it was both a honor and an opportunity to see some places which otherwise I don't expect to see any time soon. Also it was an opportunity to share from my experience with 3 editions already of the similar Wiki Loves Monuments in Romania. Now, as the Brasilian contest has published its winners, I want to share a few conclusions.First, it was a success from any point of view, from the impressive number of images (around 7000), to the exposure the team managed to receive, with presences on the most important technology and photography magazines and portals in the country. Then, a lot of impressive places I wish I could see in person, a good selection of winners and a first place image I really like and envy the photographer who took it.
Amanhecer no Hercules --
'Amanhecer no Hercules' by Carlos Perez Couto, CC-BY-SA, winner of WLE 2014 Brasil

Unfortunately, nothing is perfect and I have a couple of pet peeves about the contest. First, not once I found myself shouting in my head 'They didn't hear of the rule of thirds in Brasil?' I saw too many otherwise nice pictures with the horizon line cutting the image in half for no good reason, which could be way better with a 'correct' composition. Second, I had the feeling some participants misunderstood the purpose of Wikimedia Commons and sent unedited images: is OK to upload thereedited images as long as you do not change the reality. I encountered a lot of photos which can easily be improved with a few simple edits: framing (crop and/or rotation), color/exposure adjustments (curves, levels, brightness, saturation), sharpening and such. Some photos could made the top 10 if they had be edited as such. Fortunately, grace to the license, such improvements can be made at a later date by any contributor.
Still, the Wiki loves Earth 2014 contest didn't end: is still ongoing in a few other countries and will conclude with an international contest. Best of luck to all participants! Have good photos and all of us will win (including myself as an ordinary Wikipedia user).