Goolge Summer of Code 2012 – Ambassador/Event plugin for openSUSE Connect – Event#1

Introduce my self

My name is Athanasios-Ilias Rousinopoulos. I am an openSUSE Ambassador and an active member of openSUSE Community. This year i participate in Google Summer of Code with openSUSE .[0]. My project is called “Ambassador/Event plugin for openSUSE Connect”.

Introduce my project

As an openSUSE  Ambassador  [1] i participate in conferences , make presentations and promote openSUSE to the people. openSUSE Connect is the social network of openSUSE Project (based on Elgg ). In my opinion openSUSE Connect  it is more than a useful tool. Ambassadors , members of openSUSE community do use it in order to communicate , form groups , follow other people, create events ,create polls  etc. Although it is a useful tool , it does suffer from some deficiencies. As an ambassador i found using the wiki in order to manage the community events not a good idea at all. As mentioned before openSUSE Connect is based on Elgg. Elgg is an  open source social networking engine that provides a robust framework on which to build all kinds of social environments. [2]. Elgg provides well-organized documentation [3] for developers. Furthermore Bug tracker is also available [4] . Besides Elgg has its own API Reference [5] which developers can use it. Finally he goal of my project is to create a plugin (developed in Elgg) which allows the users planning of events in openSUSE Connect , instead of using the wiki pages so as to create an event. Using this plugin by the community can be more beneficial


Event #1 (23/04-07/05) [Community Bonding period begins]

What did i do

Until  now i did made my “Contact first steps” [6] which means i talked with my mentor , informed him about my plan. Furthermore i started using Trello as a project management tool. Focusing more on the project i read openSUSE connect’s main features and Installed it as well [7] , [8] , [9]. openSUSE Connect allows create and develop new widgets , plugins and new themes by using the Elgg platform. During installing openSUSE Connect i did face some problems , so i edited the documentation [10] in order to make the installation process easier and more successful. After the installation process i read Elgg’s Wiki Main page [11] , how Elgg’s Engine works , and made my firsts steps with  Elgg Plugin Development. [12] ,[13], [14]. Elgg’s offers some introduction tutorials so as to begin developing your plugin. In addition Elgg offers about 1500 plugins which you can download them and  install them as well. Finally i installed PHP plugin for Eclipse and started using it.

What i am going to do

This week i will focus more on Elgg’s Plugin Development and try to implement the first tutorials [15] . Furthermore i am going to focus on Elgg Plugin Development and read upon the current used event plugin.

Problems &  Solutions

After the installation process i wasn’t able to access Elgg due to an Error message. Also while configuring “System settings” i had to add a folder which is not placed in Connect’s installation folder. These problems are already solved and descibed more detailed here [16]


These are my first 14 days in the project. I feel very happy about participating in Google Summer of Code with openSUSE Project. In my opinion this project would be beneficial for members of openSUSE Community and Open Source community as well. Finally my reports about my progress will be posted in weekly basis and will be called “Event # “.

Interview with Izabel Valverde

Case Studies II – Interview


Who are you and what exactly you do for openSUSE and GNOME as well?

My name is Izabel Valverde. I’m Brazilian and work as a Development Coordi-
nator for a Brazilian IT company.
In openSUSE currently I’m part of the openSUSE Travel Support Program
as Finance Planning [1] . Since last year, I have been helping openSUSE Con-
ference [2]-committee on fund raising and sponsorship matters. Also I’m helping
to spread the word about openSUSE in Brazil attending local conferences. For
GNOME for the last 2-3 years my talks at conferences are related to GNOME
Women subjects.How to get more women involved in GNOME project, also how
the project works in simple terms.

How did you involved in openSUSE and GNOME?

Long ago I started with Mandrake and windowmaker. My father and brother
were the ones that brought Linux to me. My brother was (sometimes is!) my
personal support desk. Around 2000 he introduced me a very powerful tool
called Yast! Since then I felt smart enough to choose and use the Linux that
I wanted and I fell for SUSE!!! It was love at first sight! Back in 2003, I met
Timothy Ney. He was Executive Director at GNOME Foundation. During that
time Tim asked me to help him to organize a local GNOME Forum. I did
and after that that I joined the GNOME Foundation and still am a member.
The ”I Frum Gnome” happened in 2004 with just few people, now is a big
community. Today few people from the first Forum are still contributing to
GNOME , but to different Free Software Projects. The same happened to
me. In 2010, a friend called me to help to organize an openSUSE meeting in
Latin America Conference – Latinoware(3). Because of this organization I joined
openSUSE by IRC to understand the project and get to know people. During
Latinoware, Jos Poortvliet invited me to join openSUSE Marketing and since
then I’m supporting openSUSE in the best way I can.

Apart from these what else are you working on?

I’m studying about SCRUM and reviewing some PMI best practices. It’s very
well useful for my everyday job.

Can you tell us, which is the relationship between openSUSE and Gnome community?

In openSUSE, we are lucky to have some engineers and contributors who pro-
vide a very polished and stable GNOME release running on openSUSE. As a
community in Brazil our people are really great! Because of this, it is is easy
to have collaboration between projects. At conferences when they invite us to
talk about GNOME, we can also to present openSUSE and they welcome us.
The same happens in the opposite way I can talk about openSUSE and have
time to spread about GNOME in general. It is a amazing! In some conferences
we have the GNOME booth close to KDE booth and when I can choose I make
openSUSE in between! It is fun for all of us and we take care of each others
booth doesn’t matter the OS or desktop. We are such a rich community of

Can you explain why use Gnome in openSUSE?

In the past when I was SLED user, it was a bit complicated cause the perfect
marriage was with KDE. A lot of work to update my Operation System. Now
since openSUSE releases with 4 desktop is pretty easy! I’m using GNOME for
so many years that I don’t no how or what to say about difficulties. GNOME is
pretty intuitive for end users and great for developers. You can find whatever
you need to work. What is not immediately or update Zypper can help you…
or for end users Yast! Nice and easy almost a ”click install”

Can you imagine the future of openSUSE and GNOME community as well?

GNOME is a very mature community. Very well organized and I can say today
is pretty easy to follow and understand how things happen. Many projects are
happening and many people are able to make big compromised that deliver
great results. Every year when I can go to Guadec(5) – the GNOME Users and
Developers’ European Conference – in the Foundation General Meeting we can
see how bigger and professional we have become. In openSUSE I love the way
it is. A mix of passionate and chaotic people with who look for results. Again
I love it! openSUSE is not a highly structured community, but we do have a
Board to help. We can easily reach our Board without a lots of bureaucracy.
Last year I attended openSUSE Conference in Nuremberg and the atmosphere
was fantastic! The only thing I can say is everyone in their was are amazing and I
don’t plan to leave. Of course some issues happen, fortunately – or unfortunately
– not technically related, but I’m involved in Foss for many years to know isn’t
always a paradise! But then you just need to sit, wait and issues tend to be
naturally solved… because people without the best intentions” leave or be cause
your group, team or board helped. Sometimes isn’t related to you but you, there
always a few bad apples… Nobody likes to have their project attacked. After all
isn’t it about to have lots of fun? I believe in the future of both communities.
I was a bit afraid about the future of GNOME two years ago, but now I can
see how strong GNOMEis. I believe GNOME learned not to be focused in just
one operationsystem or company. This means we are even more mature and
experienced enough to guarantee quality on what we build. openSUSE as OS is
amazing. Any project related to openSUSE is technically great. As community
we are growing quickly ”multi-culturally” and surely we are dealing pretty well
with these diverse ways of seeing things and thinking.

Thank you for the opportunity to present my GNOME and openSUSE history 🙂


(1) upportP rogram
[Travel Committee]
…The Travel Committee is responsible for gathering all the requests and ideas
from the community and working with them to decide what the most valuable
conferences and events are and deciding on who to support and how much...”

WebKIT(-ing) and Python

According to it’s definition :

“WebKit is an open source web browser engine. WebKit is also the name of the Mac OS X system framework version of the engine that’s used by Safari, Dashboard, Mail, and many other OS X applications. WebKit’s HTML and JavaScript code began as a branch of the KHTML and KJS libraries from KDE.  ”

Focusing on what WebKIT is , i found that there are many areas when a developer (and user as well) is able to contribute (after he gets involved on the Project).

Having a quick view on the project’s web page we see that are many ways to get involved on the Project. So let’s see :

Prerequisites :

a) You have to download the download the latest nightly build ,

b) You have to install developer tools (for your OS)

c) And then you have to check out and build the source code

As you notice you are not able to write source code untill you follow the steps above 🙂

After we followed the steps above there are some projects when new users (and developers as well) are able to contribute :

Notice that working with the source code has it’s own guidlines. Furthermore searching on the web i found that Python do provides several ways for WebBrowser Programming. Actually provides the following Api’s/bindings :

Although we can’t find any info about developing in Python with WebKit. Hope on of my following posts i will show some Python code for WebKit!

Media Wiki – Semantic MediaWiki


The last years we use more and more the Wikipedia in order to search information , definitions and articles as well. Although Wikipedia is a very powerful tool and do have a very well organized community , in this post i talk about two similar FLOSS projects : Media Wiki and Semantic MediaWiki. My goal is to present (in a briefly way) these two projects by using the information provided by

Main part


According to it’s definition :

” MediaWiki is the collaborative editing software that runs Wikipedia, the free encyclopaedia, and other projects. It’s designed to handle a large number of users and pages without imposing too rigid a structure or workflow. ” So we are dealing with kind of software that Wikipedia currently use. Let’s focus on Media Wiki information :

Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :

  • PHP (78 %) — 2,612,973 lines of code
  • Javascript (15 %) — 485,921  lines of code
  • CSS (7%) — 78,938 lines of code
  • SQL (6%) — 70,598 lines of code

Estimated Cost :

The Codebase is about 3,344,329 lines so we talk about strong based project and considering the fact that the Estimated cost is  54,712,297 $  we can’t ignore it’s instance as a FLOSS project.

Semantic MediaWiki :

According to it’s definition :

“Semantic MediaWiki (SMW) is an extension of MediaWiki – the wiki-system powering Wikipedia – with semantic technology, thus turning it into a semantic wiki.” . So we focus on extension of MediaWiki. Is it so important? Let’s see :

Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :

  • PHP (95 %) — 36,116 lines of code

Estimated Cost :

The Codebase is about 37,951 lines and the Estimated cost is  497,308 $.


As a conclusion i focus on the main points/features of  each project (based on the data above)

On the one hand , the majority of MediaWiki’s source code is written in PHP but it has a well-established codebase. Furthermore the developing activity is rises up year by year and the developing team is a large one team as well.  On the other hand we do face the same features in Semantic MediaWiki project as well.



According to Wikipedia definition :

Mozilla is a term used in a number of ways in relation to the Mozilla project and the Mozilla Foundation, their defunct commercial predecessor Netscape Communications Corporation, and their related application software. Specifically, it is or was:

These and various other related uses of the term Mozilla are discussed below in the order when they were first used. ”

So talking about Mozilla and it’s features would fill many posts. I would like to focus on information and statistics as well.

Main Part

Mozilla Firefox

A very useful tool to analyze and obtain information about FLOSS project is Furthermore as we know Mozilla offers a Having a look at Mozilla’s Firefox page we see the following (Development side of view actually) :

Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :

  • C++ (39 %) — 2,497,113 lines of code
  • C  (19 %) — 1,221,004 lines of code
  • Javascript (13 %) — 827,790 lines of code
  • HTML (9 %) — 602,488 lines of code
  • XML (7 %) — 440,652 lines of code

Estimated Cost :

The Mozilla’s Firefox total lines are  6,361,286 lines  and the Total Estimated Cost (based on COCOMO Model) is  105,267,239 $ .  Furthermore the total number of contributors  is  1700 approximately and has more than 10,000 users. Also i have to mention that Mozilla Firefox is the most famous FLOSS project in Ohloh’s  web page

Mozilla Thunderbird

Like above i analyse here Mozilla’s Thunderbird information provided by So let’s have a look :

Programming Languages (listed by percentage) :

  • C++ (47 %) — 537,665 lines of code
  • Javascript (20 %) — 224,896 lines of code
  • XML (12 %) — 135,792 lines of code
  • Java (6 %) — 72,708  lines of code
  • CSS (6 % ) — 64,520 lines of code
  • C (5 %) — 53,403 lines of code

Estimated Cost :

The Mozilla’s Thunderbird  total lines are  1,132,278   and the Total Estimated Cost (based on COCOMO Model) is  17,227,804 $ . These means the 16 % of Mozilla’s Firefox total lines of code and approximately 10 % of it’s Total Estimated Cost as well. Furthermore the total number of contributors  is approximately  623  and has more than 3108 users, which means 36 % of Firefox’s contributors and 30 % of  it’s users.


Mozilla Firefox project and Mozilla Thunderdbird project are strongly related between each other. Personally i do use both of them and i am very satisfied from the quality that they offer. Furthermore Kmail and Evolution are valiable projects as well but not knows as Mozilla Thunderbird. Between Mozilla Firefox and Mozilla Thunderbird is something in common and it’s called  ” C++” . As shown above we can see that 39% and 47 % of the source code (of its project) is written in C++ and maybe this is able to explain the stability and flexibility that these kind of software offers to the user.

About OSOR.EU and Joinup


– What is OSOR.EU ?

According to the wikipedia definition :

“The Open Source Observatory and Repository (OSOR) is a website launched by the European Commission under the IDABC programme, to support the distribution and reuse of software developed by or for public sector administrations across Europe, connecting EU services and Member States. ”

So we talk about Open Source Observatory and Repository. Although i have to mention that was migrated to a new collaborative platform: Joinup , since December 2011

Main part

As main part of this post i make a brief review of OSOR’s main features and focus on two of them.

Having a look at OSOR.EU , the main points are :

a) It is designed for non technical users

b) It’s principles are : Community , Cooperation , Sharing

c) It offers 2.500 federated projects and also it has more than 400.000 downloads

d) European countries are involved

It is a truth that i could talk about and analyze ,as well, about OSOR features and advantages but i will focus on two of them .

These two features dealing with how the software offered by the OSOR can be sorted.  So let’s have a look at the sort lists below (i write down the first ten projects that appear after applying the “Activity” filter)  :

— Sort by Activity —


2) FENIX Workstation

3) KMKey : Project Management Software

4) NavTable


6) openFWPA


8) My Health Portal

9) Open e-PRIOR

10) Interfacage AgreGee

— Sort by Download —

1) gvSIG Desktop


3) WollMux

4) gvSIG-Network-Analysis

5) ECHO Offline eSingleForm

6) gvsig-mobile

7) Interfacage AgreGee

8) gvsig-3d

9) NavTable

10) Lesoll


As a conclusion i mention the following :

  • On the one hand only two of ten projects “Sorted by Activity” do appear as well at “Sorted by downloads” list above , mentioned in the Main part. That means that the most active projects are not necessarily the most downloaded ones .
  • On the other hand the “gvsig” projects (and it’s sub-projects as well) appear more than the other projects at the “Sort by downloads” list.  Considering that gvSIG is a GIS project the other “gvsig” seems to be strong related with the main gvSIG Project.

GNOME and KDE (a brief review)


After the presentation of the GNOME and KDE Community , lets’s have a brief review on main points of its GUI.

Brief  review


1) Very well organized portal and website

2) Many working teams and with organized structure as well

3) Moduleset organization

4) Meritocracy

5) Difficult to become a commiter

6) 2  licenses (LGPL , GPL) – one for the libraries and the other for the applications

7) Lack of bussiness eviroment appliances


1) Commit digest (commit feedback and report)

2) Cross platform GUI (available also for Windows)

3) Not well organized working teams

4) Easier to become a commiter

5) Many licenses (LGPL (2.1 or later) , BSD , MIT , X11 , FDL 1.2  or later , Qt Licensing , FreeQt License)

6) KDE Bussiness Enviroment appliances (Nokia ,


Searching more about the differences and the main points of its GUI , i did find an article and a poll below :

1) (An article about business appliance of its GUI)

2) (poll results by the users of Ubuntu)

Mozilla QA

QA , quality assurance seems to be a very important part of a FLOSS project. It is not enough only to report bugs and “bad” issues , the question is how QA Team  improves the software quality. So in each FLOSS project the QA team has to fill the following goals :

a) The product should be suitable for the intended purpose.

b) Mistakes should be eliminated.

Considering the goals above , Mozilla do have a strong QA. Let’s see:

Mozilla QA :

Mozilla’s QA is divided into teams focused on Mozilla product areas or technologies. My goal is to focus on the Community Contribution of each team.

Desktop Firefox QA:

The team focuses on testing current and upcoming releases of Firefox. Some of our responsibilities include qualifying builds prior to a maintenance or milestone release. Some of the responsibilities include:

  • Verifying bugs
  • Running basic functional tests and smoke tests – automated and manual
  • Running our automated test suites on localized builds
  • Running automated update tests across platforms, through all update paths, across localized builds
  • Making sure web content is ready for consumption

As mentioned before i focus on the community contribution. Anyone can participate to the team , but they do exist several ways to do it , such as :

  • File bugs
  • Triage bugs (confirm existing bugs and assign them to the right buckets)
  • Help test new features
  • Write test cases
  • Plan new features testing
  • Help others who want to get involved.

Browser Technologies QA :  The Browser Technologies Team mission is two-fold, they aim to improve the quality of Firefox and finely tune it for mobile devices as well as drive the testing efforts for all the Mozilla Labs projects, web services and web apps. As Mobile, Web Services, Labs, and Web Apps become more prominent in the Mozilla project, QA continues to strive to cover and test the projects forthcoming. Furthermore the Community Contribution part is similar to Desktop Firefox QA’s.

Web QA : Through a variety of tools and approaches, WebQA aims to ensure high quality web applications, of both external and internal applications and websites. The team’s structure differs from the other Teams. Likewise the Community , contributes in another way. The Community do participate in Testdays, when users are testing the claim of the bug and trying to reproduce it.

QA Automation Services : The Automation Services team is responsible for helping the QA teams on specific products excel at what they are doing using a number of tools. In this team there is no community , the users can just enjoy the team by  installing the Frameworks , which are being used (Mozmill , Selenium).

QA Community : QA Community works to broaden our community outreach and build a legion of community testers that will continue to help improve the Firefox browsing experience for users all over the world.  Although the goal of this team seems very interesting and usefull , untill now Community Contribution is not available.

From my point of view Mozilla do provide a high quality and efficient QA. Each team fill the goals and do participate in the whole project. An example of high quality assurance is the Mozilla Firefox , which i do use it the last 5 years. The reason is that provides the following issues :

a) Stability

b) Many ways to report a bug

c) Extensions and add-ons developed by the community and the teams

Finally it’s a truth that after the presentation during the class i did understood the real reasons why i still use Mozilla Firefox…