[Standards] Whiteboard XEP, Gajim and GSoC2008

Mateusz Biliński mateusz.bilinski at gmail.com
Sun Mar 2 21:07:30 UTC 2008


Hi.
Google Summer of Code 2008 is really close. So I've thought of
applying for a project connected to Gajim client - being more
specific: implementing whiteboard. I've already talked to Asterix
about it and he thinks this would be a really nice feature. He pointed
me out here to ask whether there is any official (or at least
recommended) way to do this.

So I've done my homework and read all the discussion I have found on
this list regarding 'whiteboard xmpp specification' - especially
discussion that took place in August last year. Below is my attempt to
summarize this briefly:

* there are a few implementations working already (i.e. Concinella,
Psi by Joonas Govenius, the one in Inkscape) but these are _not
interoperable_
* there were a few attempts to build a specification. I list them
below in the order (I think) they've appeared:

The oldest (last update:2001) approach to specify a standard for
whiteboard (I don't suppose this is used. but I'm not sure):
http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/inbox/whiteboard2.html

XEP-0113: Simple Whiteboarding (this one's deferred)
http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/xep-0113.html

An SVG Based Whiteboard Format (this could be used with the next one
-sxde - to build a standarized whiteboard?):
http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/inbox/whiteboard.html

Shared XML Document Editing (a generalized approach, I suppose this
one was substituted by the next one):
http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/inbox/sxde.html

Shared XML Editing (This is by far the most recent approach - this is
going to a fundamental standard for all applications of shared XML
editing. This is the one that team is currently working on.):
http://www.xmpp.org/extensions/inbox/sxe.html

* stated above there are two types of discussions around:
  - whether the 'shared XML editing' isn't too generalized approach
for whiteboard (but AFAIK this SXE would only be a common _base part_
for all    applications that would use shared editing - or am I
wrong?)
  - how to solve concurrency problems, especially when users attempt
to edit the same object in parallel

I think this would be it. Maybe I have missed something - if so,
please point this out.

Finally here are my two questions:
- what is currently _the best way_ to implement whiteboard (in this
case in Gajim). Should it be based on SX(D)E? Or maybe it should be
based on currently working implementations in other clients so that it
could interoperate with them? (I guess the first one is more sensible
in current situation)
- what are the chances that this project will be chosen by XSF for
GSoC2008. What I am worried about is whether currently there is any
sense in implementing this if there is no official specification for
whiteboard. What I mean is that I would really like to do this, but
what is XSF opinion about this.

My current proposal would be to implement SX(D)E in Gajim as
whiteboard and point out pitfalls that I fall in to during coding
which could help build a specification draft. But I suppose Jonnas
Govenius is working on this in Psi, so this falls back again to the
question: is this project sensible for GSoC in XSF opinion.

Thank you for your answers in advance.

-- 
Regards -- Mateusz Biliński


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