[Members] XSF roadmap

Justin Karneges justin at affinix.com
Wed Nov 10 16:31:26 CST 2010


On Wednesday 10 November 2010 13:27:50 Nicolas Vérité wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 10, 2010 at 19:31,  <jehan at zemarmot.net> wrote:
> > "eh let's rather use Skype. Don't you have an account?". And when I run
> > with a grunt my old dusty Skype account to please her, and then when it
> > works after at worst a few configuration clicks, I feel even more
> > embarrassed. Why can't XMPP do as well?
> > 
> > What do we need? Are the specs not good enough? Is no implementation
> > still perfectly following the XEPs and all the necessary requirements?
> > Should we push implementors more? Should we run some developer-feedback
> > call to improve the XEPs? There should anyway be something to be done,
> > and this too could be in the a high priority item for the roadmap, no?
> > 
> > :-D
[..snip..]
> True.
> 
> The same UX for file transfer.
> 
> How can we fix this? Interop tests only?

There are many issues here:
  - audio/video is hard
  - going around NATs is hard
  - wrong protocol (incomplete implementations, mismatched codecs, GTalk)

As far as protocol goes, I think most of the "real" Jingle clients (i.e. 
anything other than GTalk) are all acting correctly enough by now except for 
two areas:
  - codec compatibility (Psi for example requires Speex 16KHz)
  - TURN support (clients support differing TURN versions or none, and/or are 
unconfigured out of the box)

Technically the XEPs don't mandate any particular codecs, and TURN support is 
optional, so it will be interesting to see how the XSF can address these 
issues to help promote an optimal user experience.

Other issues related to NAT and protocol:
  - Jingle Nodes spec.  This seems to be a TURN-alternative and the XSF should 
probably address the potential conflict there.
  - In the case of TURN, we need a standard way to locate TURN servers, and we 
need TURN deployments.

Implementing audio/video is hard, and it is still an ongoing effort.  I believe 
it is still possible, though rare, to have weird issues with GStreamer-based 
apps (essentially all of the open source IM clients) such as failed audio or 
one-way audio.  Traditionally, multimedia has not been a strong point of open 
source, but GStreamer represents one of our best efforts, and I do not think we 
are far away from a world where audio/video multimedia operates perfectly in 
free software.  Please note I am not talking about networking here, but just 
basic hardware and multimedia engine operation and the end of issues like "my 
microphone doesn't work in Windows".  In general, I think most Jingle failures 
today are about NAT, codec mismatches, and incomplete protocol (Jingle, ICE).

-Justin


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