Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Exciting Summer for Amarok

Since 2005, summers are slightly more interesting for open-source projects than other seasons, and this year will fortunately be no different. You've guessed right, the reason is Google Summer of Code! I'm super-happy about the students that were accepted to hack on Amarok this year. And yes, I'm one of them. :-)

Tatjana Gornak (melandory), who has already refactored the way how we handle playlist files and implemented support for .asx playlists, will rewrite AudioCD support, making it much more solid and solving bugs that have bothered us for ages. She'll also take a look whether it could work on Windows too and remove a dependency on a deprecated framework within Amarok.

Anmol Ahuja (DarthCodus), who has already submitted and got merged 7 patches to Amarok, will revamp Amarok Scripting Interface, improve its documentation, make it tested and will add bindings for more Amarok components so that you will be able to write even more powerful scripts. He has already started surveying script authors for what they would like to see added on Amarok forum, so be sure speak up.

Konrad Zemek (kzemek), finalist of a prestigious Polish programming competition who has already fixed playlist sorting, will improve importing personal metadata from other players. More specifically he'll refactor Amarok 1.4 and iTunes importers so that they match tracks by tags and allow synchronization (rather than overwriting) of metadata. He'll also add support for synchronizing with Rhythmbox and another Amarok 2.x instance.

Yours truly (strohel) will rework MTP collection support from scratch, making sure it works flawlessly, especially on Android phones (not forgetting other MTP devices of course). Apart from fixing long-standing bugs and porting it out from the deprecated framework, new features like on-the-fly transcoding will be added too.

Given that I've had the luck to review past work of all mentioned students, I'm absolutely confident that all the projects will result in a big success.™ Look ahead to Amarok 2.9! (oh, is that speaking about N+2 while N+1 is not yet out syndrome?) :)

There have been 4 more student proposals (some of them very good) for Amarok that we unfortunately couldn't accept, due to lack of mentoring manpower. You're encouraged to keep submitting patches, an excellent preparation for the next time.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Amarok 2.7.1 Released!

Hi there, while we've been working very hard on the next Amarok feature release, the 2.8, we also haven't forgot the majority of our users using the stable versions.

Welcome Amarok 2.7.1, a very close relative of 2.7.0 with just a couple of very important bug fixes. The 2.7.1 is also an opportunity for Arch Linux to package it correctly. :-)

Don't fear that we've made just 8 commits since 2.7.0. In fact, we've made over 300 by 25 different people! Look forward for better transcoding, ASX playlist and Opus audio format support, improved MusicBrainz tag guessing and improvements of existing features all over the place for Amarok 2.8.0.