User Experience Hackfest

What, where, when

We'll hold a five-day User Experience Hackfest before the GNOME Boston Summit 2008, on Monday October 6 to Friday October 10 (best guess: starting at 10:00 am every day). This will be happening in the Novell/Ximian offices in Cambridge: 8 Cambridge Center, 5th Floor, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142. In case you have difficulties entering the building, feel free to mention you come visit Miguel de Icaza :-)

We'll discuss new ways to revitalize the look and feel of the GNOME desktop, and explore new ideas for the future.


Monday Oct. 06

09:30 - FedericoMenaQuintero will be at the Hampton Inn to walk people to the office.

10:00 - Hackfest starts at the Novell office. Opening general discussion (led by OwenTaylor)

13:00 - Lunch

14:00 - Work in groups on idea generation

16:00 - Making GNOME Comfortable by FedericoMenaQuintero

Tuesday Oct. 07

10:00 - Resume idea generation work

12:00 - GNOME desktop customization at the City of Largo, Florida, by DavidRichards

14:00 - OLPC's document-centric work, by C. Scott Ananian

15:00 - Presentation of ideas, select ideas to elaborate/polish

20:00 - Group dinner at East Ocean City (see below)

Wed Oct. 08

Polishing of ideas.

14:00 - How to improve File Management, by SebastianFaubel

Thu Oct. 09

Polishing of ideas.

14:00 - Mini-talks (TBD, signup here)

Fri Oct. 10

10:00 - Presentation of polished ideas

14:00 - Open-ended hacking


Tuesday night: dinner at East Ocean City map. (Sponsored by Novell.) To get to the restaurant, take the Red Line to the Downtown Crossing station, change to the Orange line, and take that 1 stop to the Chinatown stop. See map for how to get to the Restaurant from there. We have reservations for 20, so talk to Owen first if you want to invite someone along.

Getting there

See the big picture map with the local hotels, or see the map below for the route from the subway station to the hackfest location.

Find the Kendall T station (the T is the Boston subway):

  • Exit the Kendall station to Main Street (there are about four exits on the same street).

  • Go west toward Ames Street.

  • Turn right on Ames Street, and head north toward Broadway.

  • Turn left on Broadway and head northwest.

  • The Novell office is on 8 Cambridge Center in the Akamai building. Tell the security clerk that you are visiting Miguel de Icaza at Novell, 5th floor.

Here's a map stolen from you-know-where, with some landmarks:



The core topic is the desktop shell and what we might want to change in the next 2 years. Some ideas:

  • Thinking a new panel and desktop (desktop as in nautilus desktop)
  • Application-centric vs document-centric vs...
  • Bling with a purpose. How do we use compositing managers for more than flashy effects? How do we use Clutter and fancy canvases?
  • Collaboration throughout the desktop. Telepathy, Online Desktop.

Some links:


If you were not invited and would like to attend, please contact FedericoMenaQuintero, OwenTaylor and VincentUntz. We want to keep the event small enough for productivity reasons, and because the location of the hackfest is of limited size.

Please put your name here if you'll be attending. Keep the list sorted by first name!

Groups Space

Idea Dumps

  • /IdeaDump/QuickFeatures - Ideas for usability improvements that can implemented in under one week of hacking.

  • /IdeaDump/UsabilityProblems - List of areas with usability problems that need a long term solution. (E.g. file management.) You may optionally list suggested long term solutions.

  • /IdeaDump/Strategies - General strategies and policies that all application developers should pay attention to. This is meant as a better HIG that will actually make a difference in usability. (Note: Notify the GUI Nazis as soon as this is completed to save us the work of publicizing it. ;) )

  • /IdeaDump/LargoPresentationFeedback - Feedback and ideas given during City of Largo presentation.


Events/Summit/2008/GUIHackfest (last edited 2013-11-25 17:49:13 by WilliamJonMcCann)