Archive | December 2010

Recent developments on Radio Tray

I just wanted to tell you a little about the recent developments in radio tray and its roadmap. Development hasn’t been as fast, due to several personal and professional matters. Nevertheless, issues are being solved and a few features being added (thanks specially to Ed Bruck for those).
The next version (0.6.2) is mainly a bugfix version. It has however a few new features, like a sleep function.
Also, one of the recent developments was to create an application indicator for Ubuntu. As you probably know, Ubuntu’s next version won’t have the system tray (among other changes). This is unfortunate, because the application indicator is a lot less flexible. Radio Tray is not an Ubuntu application, but a Linux application and it should run in pretty much all distributions. However, we all know that Ubuntu is the most used distribution and it would be foolish to just ignore it.
So, we now have support for both modes of operation: the usual interface in the system tray, and the new application indicator.
Because of its limited API, in application indicator mode there’s no secondary menu and no tooltips. We had to fit everything into the main menu. It’s not perfect but it ended up better than I imagined.
I don’t like the application indicator API and I don’t think it improves usability for the end user, on the contrary. Nevertheless, I don’t blame Canonical for this, I understand they’re trying to tackle several kinds of devices with just one user interface. We can’t right-click on a tablet or see a tooltip, can we ? 🙂

We still miss a few things that I wanted to put in 0.6.2 version, but I don’t want to postpone it much more time. So we might release it soon and move the unfinished issues to other version.
One of the issues that won’t be on 0.6.2 will be plugin support. This is a major feature for me, as I don’t want to add too many features to the main Radio Tray application. Most of the future features will probably be based on plugins. This way we can keep the application simple and offer the option to add extra functionality through plugins (stream recording is one example).
This will take some time, as much code needs to be refactored because of this. Nevertheless, I hope we can have 0.6.2 at the begining of 2011 and 0.7 a couple months after it.

Thank you all for your support and kind words of incentive. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

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