Application Indicator Update

People ask “what’s the big deal about application indicators, they’re just little icons!” As it turns out, when you drain a swamp you can make cool things. KDE applications support StatusNotifier already so Aurélien Gâteau has started landing fixes that will make things like this possible: Check out the video here. (Sorry, I failed at video tag and I’m at the airport so I went with the easy fix)

What you see here in the middle is Rhythmbox, ported by Cody Russell (upstreamed patch), then Kopete, and Kmix. You’ll notice that since we’re running GNOME the KDE apps look LIKE THEY SHOULD. If you run KDE and run rhythmbox it will look like IT SHOULD. Nice and “nativey”.

  • More accessability, and note how he’s scrubbing through the menus with his keyboard.

  • For third party applications of the world this means they can support one “linux” thing.

  • Everything behaves the same in both desktops and everything is consistent.

  • My tray doesn’t feel like a back alley.

We have work to do, the stuff in the old notification tray (on the left in my video) need to be ported. We have committed to fixing the things in main for this cycle. Here you will find a list of bugs of apps we’ve listed to so far. I’ve filed corresponding wishlist bugs in upstream GNOME Bugzilla. If you want to help with this, it’s not considered done until it’s submitted upstream - we also offer a fallback method so that application maintainers can support both with minimal effort.

Find more about our rationale, guidelines, and porting guide here.

PLEASE FEEL FREE to check into application indicator support for your favorite apps in Universe, we need help to figure out which apps people love and want support for. We’ll handle the things on the CD, but we need help to catch all the little fish too. Even filing wishlist bugs and tagging them would be a help.

If you have an upstream with questions, send them to me or #ayatana and we’ll be there to support their efforts, we want people to use this. If you want to go ahead and just port an application then this is an excellent way to get something slick into user’s hands.