Getting Things GNOME 0.6 released

Yes, ladies, gentlemen, and seemingly-dead plants, it’s happening: after over 10 months of incremental work from the community, we are now releasing version 0.6 of our favorite personal productivity app, Getting Things GNOME. This release comes with some new features, lots of code improvements, many bugfixes and UX refinements (I am told that the “Better procrastination button”, presented below, deserves a place in the Museum of Modern Art).

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GTG 0.6 release candidate

Today we are publishing a “release candidate” version of Getting Things GNOME 0.6. You can either try it out directly from the git master version (by running; see the general instructions), or from the testing package available on Flathub’s “beta” repository, separately from the standard stable flathub/flatpak release you may already be running. To run it as a flatpak, simply run these two commands:

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“Getting Things GNOME” 0.5 released!

It is time to welcome a new release of the Rebuild of EvanGTGelion: 0.5, “You Can (Not) Improve Performance”!

This release of GTG has been 9 months in the making after the groundbreaking 0.4 release. While 0.4 was a major “perfect storm” overhaul, 0.5 is also a very technology-intensive release, even though it was done in a relatively short timeframe comparatively.

Getting Things GNOME 0.5 brings a truckload of user experience refinements, bugfixes, a completely revamped file format and task editor, and a couple of notable performance improvements. It doesn’t solve every performance problem yet (some remain), but it certainly improves a bunch of them for workaholics like me. If 0.4 felt a bit like a turtle, 0.5 is a definitely a much faster turtle.

If that was not enough already, it has some killer new features too. It’s the bee’s knees!

To benefit from one performance improvement in particular, it requires the new version of liblarch, 3.1, that we have released this month. GTG with the latest liblarch is available all-in-one in a Flatpak update near you. 📦

This release announcement and all that led up to it was, as you can imagine, planned using GTG:

“Who’s laughing now eh, señor Ruiz?”

As you can see, I came prepared. So continue reading below for the summary of improvements, I guarantee it’ll be worth it.

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Pitivi 0.95 — Enfant Suisse

Hey everyone! It’s time for a new Pitivi release, 0.95. This one packs a lot of bugfixes and architectural work to further stabilize the GES backend. In this blog post, I’ll give you an overview of the new and interesting stuff this release brings, coming out from a year of hard work. It’s pretty epic and you’re in for a few surprises, so I suggest listening to this song while you’re reading this blog post.

Engine rework: completed.

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Tricks or Tracebacks? Pitivi 0.94 is here

Dear werepenguins, we’re thrilled to announce the immediate availability of Pitivi 0.94! This is the fourth release for the new version of our video editor based on GES, the GStreamer Editing Services library. Take a look at my previous blog post to understand in what context 0.94 has been brewing. This is mainly a maintenance release, but it does pack a few interesting improvements & features in addition to the bug fixes.
The first thing you will notice is that the main toolbar, menubar and titlebar have been replaced by a unified GTK HeaderBar, saving a ton of precious vertical space and making better use of the horizontal space. Once you try it, you can’t go back. There is beauty in the equilibrium it has now, compared to the previously clunky and unbalanced layout:

pitivi 0.94 headerbar comparison 1
Pitivi 0.93 on the left, 0.94 on the right

The combined screenshot above allows you to get the “complete picture” of how this change affects the main window, but it’s hard to get a sense of scale and it does not really do justice to the awesomeness of client-side decorations like the GTK HeaderBar. So here’s a simplified version where all the “wasted space” is highlighted in red:
pitivi 0.94 headerbar comparison 2
Pitivi 0.93 above, 0.94 below

Pretty rad, huh?
Beyond that eye-popping novelty, many distro/setup-dependent startup crashes have been investigated and fixed:

  • Various Linux distributions have started shipping a broken version of CoGL in recent months, which led to crashes. Technically this is a bug in the CoGL library/packaging, but we found out that the functions we were calling in that particular case were not needed for Pitivi, so we dropped our use of those broken CoGL APIs. Problem solved.
  • People running Pitivi outside of GNOME Shell were seeing crashes due to Clutter GStreamer video output, so we ported the viewer widget to use GStreamer’s new GL video output (glimagesink) instead of the ClutterSink. We had to fix various bugs in GStreamer’s glimagesink to raise it to the quality we needed, and our fixes have been integrated in GStreamer 1.4 (this is why we depend on that version). The GL image sink is expected to be a more future-proof solution.
  • We found issues related to gobject introspection or the overrides provided by gst-python. Again, make sure you have version 1.4 for things to work properly.
  • On avant-garde Linux distributions, you would get a TypeError traceback (“unsupported operand type(s) for /: ‘int’ and ‘NoneType”) preventing startup, which we investigated as bug 735529. This is now fixed in Pitivi.

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Pitivi 0.93 released

Last week, a flash snowstorm brought me around 2ft of snow overnight. I thought, “If I’m going to clear that much snow, might as well have some fun and make a timelapse out of it”, and so I did. While watching it, I realized, “Hmm… that’s an interesting metaphor for the huge amount of preparatory and cleanup work we’ve been doing in the past few years”:

Today, we’re very happy to announce another great Pitivi release. It brings a truckload of bug fixes and refinements, which you can read about in the 0.93 release notes (prepared by yours truly). This release now brings us to a quality level where we can let go of the “alpha” status and call this a “beta”. Many nasty bugs are gone and people are increasingly relying on it for their own projects. Besides the video above, the 2014 fundraiser‘s video and the Pitivi showcase, I was quite pleased to see someone using Pitivi to easily make a nice video for a commercial booth at a technology tradeshow!
0.93 is the result of continued efforts in our spare time—occasional hacking during vacations, nights and week-ends. Just imagine what could be achieved if Mathieu and Thibault could be funded to work full-time towards bringing us to 1.0!
Update: you may also want to take a look at this blog post.

Pitivi 0.92 and the wandering opensourcerer

The past few weeks have been pretty crazy.
At the last minute, I ended up going to the GStreamer Conference in Edinburgh, thanks to the GStreamer project sponsoring my attendance. As always, it was a fantastic event and it was great to meet up with old friends and see great topics being discussed. I was pretty impressed by the amount of attendees too. I’m feeling guilty for having missed good talks while being dragged into hallway discussions or being hammered by jetlag, but our pals at Ubicast recorded everything so I should be able to catch up later. My good friend Luis summarized the event much better than I could, so I won’t go into detail here. Except that Thibault won a bottle of whiskey and was unable to claim it, so I picked it up and brought it back for him (I don’t hack on GStreamer itself, so I don’t need the whiskey):
After gstcon, I embarked on a pretty hectic journey throughout Europe, with the goal of prospecting sustainable development opportunities and to eventually crash at Mathieu Duponchelle’s home in order to spend time on Pitivi together.
shadow of the colossus horse ride
Since I’m someone who tends to plan and optimize everything, hopping from city to city in a semi-improvised way over the past two weeks has been somewhat stressful. Especially the part where I found out the hard way that some capitals have their public transportation system to the airport shut down at night, or the part where I had to sleep on the floor in the entrance of the airport that was also closed at night even though you have flights departing before sunrise. That was fun. It is also a significant amount of transportation costs piling up (even though I’m an expert at minimizing them), so if you’d like to help offset some of the costs resulting from our current Pitivi activities, please feel free to tip a few bucks 😉
Managing and maintaining an established open-source project does not just mean coding: there is a lot of administrativia and planning involved, which has been consuming my free time lately. After discussions with Karen and Jim at the GNOME Montréal Summit, the post-GSoC stuff to deal with, the big research project I’ve been tackling and the research around the infrastructure needed for it, all on top of paperwork needing to be done at home during my absence, there was pretty much no time left for me to look at code. I somehow still managed to squeeze in a few commits to fix some blockers and a few trivial things, but that means that larger projects (even something as “simple” as reviewing a new set of icons) had to be renegotiated in my TODO list.
While staying with Mathieu in the past few days, we made some good progress on a big project coming up for Pitivi (more on that later) and released 0.92 to provide some fixes and polish over the earth-shattering 0.91. As you can see, this release comes just one month after the biggest release in years, so we are indeed aiming to get back onto a “release early, release often” cycle now. We hope you like it.

Pitivi 0.91 "Charming Defects"

And so it has come to this.
A few days ago, we stealthily published the tarball of the first Pitivi video editor release based on the GES engine. Incredible but true! 0.91 is finally out! In case you were living under a rock for the past two years, this release is the result of a major rework of the entire Pitivi architecture, and as such it is considered an “alpha” release. From a very (VERY) high level, it includes:

  • Replacing the core of Pitivi by GES; 20 thousand lines of code removed
  • Porting to GStreamer 1.x
  • Porting to GTK+ 3.x
  • Replacing GooCanvas by Clutter for the timeline
  • An automated UI test suite, with many checks for mission-critical parts
  • Fixing hundreds of bugs
  • Implementing many new features
  • UI polish all over the place
  • Refactoring pretty much the entire codebase

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Pre-releasing in New York

A pre-release of Pitivi is out. Please test it out and report any problems you may find, and help us make the 0.15 release (due September 26th) a great success!
Among the usual round of fixed bugs, niceties of this release include a presets system for project settings and rendering settings (there’s a preset for HTML5 video, for example), a lot of code cleanup/refactoring, improved startup times, and all the stuff from the previous unstable 0.14.1 and 0.14.2 releases which would be too long to list here.
While I was banging my head on cleaning up the profiles implementation and investigating last minute bugs, I’ve been attending the Open Video Conference (thanks to the MoFo).

  • Nice atmosphere and a fun/productive time overall (in part because I had time to hack on pitivi)
  • At first I did not understand why “no railway system from LGA airport to Manhattan” was a problem; now that I’ve stood for over an hour in an overcrowded bus to get to the first subway station, I get it.
  • Great time hanging around with Benjamin Schwartz and the Xiph folks, with some fellow Montréalers, and with a bunch of other interesting people whose name I forget.
  • The “open video editors” session attendance was interesting:
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