IntroTelepathy

Ubuntu Open Week - Introducing the Telepathy Stack - Ken Vandine - Fri, Nov 6, 2009

  • utc

(04:01:27 PM) kenvandine: We're here to talk about Telepathy, a real-time communications framework
(04:01:43 PM) kenvandine: Let me start out by saying this session is planned to be about the Telepathy real-time communications framework, not about instant messenger preferences.
(04:01:53 PM) kenvandine: Let me address that before we really get started.
(04:02:21 PM) kenvandine: Empathy vs. Pidgin, Pidgin is a fine IM client and I don't think anyone has anything against it.
(04:02:43 PM) kenvandine: A number of people have complained about the change of default IM client in Karmic, let me address that quickly.
(04:03:09 PM) kenvandine: The choice wasn't exactly "Which IM client do we want in Karmic?"  It was more about the Telepathy framework and the possibilities it brings to the desktop.
(04:03:42 PM) kenvandine: We have been watching telepathy for quite some time, and we feel it has matured enough that it is time to start to leverage it on the desktop.
(04:04:04 PM) kenvandine: Of course we aren't doing anything to prevent people from using Pidgin if they choose, but Ubuntu's default is Empathy which utilizes the telepathy framework.
(04:04:51 PM) kenvandine: Now lets talk about telepathy, what it is and why it rocks!
(04:05:26 PM) kenvandine: For a little background I will paste a few links along the way for you to skim over now or read later.
(04:05:43 PM) kenvandine: Telepathy - http://telepathy.freedesktop.org/wiki/
(04:06:11 PM) kenvandine: real-time communications framework
(04:06:33 PM) kenvandine:  for example instant messaging, voice and video chats, collaborative editing, etc
(04:06:55 PM) kenvandine: modular design, for example adding protocol support is really just installing another backend (like a plugin).
(04:07:32 PM) kenvandine: each of these backends run independently, if one crashes it doesn't crash everything else and it should just restart automatically
(04:07:36 PM) kenvandine: making it rather robust
(04:07:43 PM) kenvandine: Easily integratable, we'll talk more about that later
(04:09:08 PM) kenvandine: for the rationale behind Telepathy, http://telepathy.freedesktop.org/wiki/Rationale
(04:10:05 PM) kenvandine: also for a system overview, explaining all the components and how they work together
(04:10:07 PM) kenvandine: http://telepathy.freedesktop.org/wiki/System%20Overview
(04:10:13 PM) kenvandine: is a good read
(04:10:52 PM) kenvandine: basically there is mission-control which acts as a dispatcher between clients and backends
(04:11:34 PM) kenvandine: backends advertise their capabilities, etc and mission-control handles hooking everyone up
(04:12:19 PM) kenvandine: so empathy as a client, wants to create a video chat with a jabber contact, mission-control creates that channel to the telepathy-gabble (jabber) backend and begins creating the streaming channels
(04:12:20 PM) kenvandine: etc
(04:12:46 PM) kenvandine: next up is my favorite part, Tubes
(04:13:14 PM) kenvandine: Telepathy Tubes is a mechanism for supporting arbitrary data transfer and remote IPC
(04:14:08 PM) kenvandine: this allows telepathy to send data
(04:14:38 PM) kenvandine: and other methods of communication with an application on the other end (remote)
(04:14:56 PM) kenvandine: Tubes support both in band (stream through a jabber server) and out of band which talks directly to the remote contact.
(04:15:22 PM) kenvandine: some examples of how these are used, or will be used today
(04:15:32 PM) kenvandine: Vino and Vinagre - VNC server and client which supports streaming over telepathy tubes
(04:15:40 PM) kenvandine: you can use this today in Karmic
(04:15:47 PM) kenvandine: Screencast showing offering side http://people.collabora.co.uk/~cassidy/blog/vnc-tube-offer.ogv
(04:15:53 PM) kenvandine: Screencast showing accepting side http://people.collabora.co.uk/~cassidy/blog/vnc-tube-accept.ogv
(04:16:09 PM) kenvandine: those screencasts show both ends of a VNC session
(04:16:29 PM) kenvandine: basically in your empathy buddy list, you can select a friend and "Share your desktop" with them
(04:16:43 PM) kenvandine: telepathy negotiates the transport to do that
(04:17:01 PM) kenvandine: which makes it operate well behind a NAT, home router, etc
(04:17:09 PM) kenvandine: which has always been a limitation
(04:17:28 PM) kenvandine: QUESTION: is that protocol dependent?
(04:17:30 PM) kenvandine: yes it is
(04:17:38 PM) kenvandine: it requires xmpp (jabber)
(04:18:02 PM) kenvandine: i am not sure if it can work over other protocols, but xmpp is much more extensible
(04:18:25 PM) kenvandine: so that is a great example of tubes that you can use today in Karmic
(04:18:47 PM) kenvandine: some other works in progress
(04:18:49 PM) kenvandine: Banshee
(04:18:55 PM) kenvandine: Browse your friends music and music metadata
(04:19:03 PM) kenvandine: Download, stream and see what your friends are playing (if they allow it)
(04:19:11 PM) kenvandine: http://nlokos.blogspot.com/2009/08/crossing-finish-line.html
(04:19:23 PM) kenvandine: it was a google summer of code project
(04:19:41 PM) kenvandine: very impressive stuff, not really ready for everyday use but it will get there soon
(04:19:49 PM) kenvandine: Rhythmbox
(04:20:02 PM) kenvandine: there is work to enable sharing music with IM contacts
(04:20:30 PM) kenvandine: i don't have a link for that, it seems splintered at the moment between a couple git repositories
(04:20:38 PM) kenvandine: Gtetrinet
(04:20:49 PM) kenvandine: there is a patch for Gtetrinet to play tetris with your friends via tubes
(04:20:54 PM) kenvandine: http://cass.no-ip.com/~cassidy/blog/index.php/post/2007/10/21/GTetrinet-through-tubes
(04:21:02 PM) kenvandine: the site appears to be down, perhaps the link will work again at some point :)
(04:21:16 PM) kenvandine: i think it was up earlier this week, so hopefully only temporary
(04:21:26 PM) kenvandine: GNOME Games, sudoku
(04:21:36 PM) kenvandine: also a google summer of code project
(04:21:41 PM) kenvandine: collaborate or compete with friends
(04:21:58 PM) kenvandine: http://blog.zhangsen.org/2009/08/gsoc-final.html
(04:22:21 PM) kenvandine: i think that work is proposed for merging into gnome for 2.30
(04:22:42 PM) kenvandine: and there is talk about replacing ggz (gnome game zone i think) with telepathy based services
(04:22:50 PM) kenvandine: i don't think ggz has ever been used much
(04:23:15 PM) kenvandine: Tic Tac Toe (work in progress)
(04:23:27 PM) kenvandine: simple tic tac toe game with your friends
(04:23:35 PM) kenvandine: https://edge.launchpad.net/tictactoe
(04:23:55 PM) kenvandine: those are some samples i found to give everyone a basic idea
(04:24:36 PM) kenvandine: i would love to see a f-spot extension that lets you share/view your friends photos
(04:25:25 PM) kenvandine: there are many possibilities
(04:25:43 PM) kenvandine: QUESTION:  Is the VNC with Empathy secure.  VNC  needs to be tunneled over SSH for example to make it secure when using over The Internet.
(04:26:11 PM) kenvandine: I don't know what kind of encryption is used, if any
(04:26:35 PM) kenvandine: it is really piping vino/vinagre connection over jabber
(04:26:40 PM) kenvandine: which is likely using ssl
(04:26:46 PM) kenvandine: depending on your configuration
(04:26:57 PM) kenvandine: i can't answer if there is anything more done than that
(04:27:26 PM) kenvandine: that last question was from sebsebseb
(04:28:35 PM) akgraner: <Chopinhauer> QUESTION: While talking about games. Have you considered Telepathy integration with the Volity framework?
(04:28:59 PM) kenvandine: I haven't heard about Volity, might be something nice to consider
(04:29:10 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:29:12 PM) akgraner: <Jesi> Question: are there any reasons why you might have to use another means to have a remote desktop session (at least with Linux/Ubuntu) or do you see Telepathy replacing older methods?
(04:29:27 PM) kenvandine: not sure about replacing other methods
(04:29:36 PM) kenvandine: but it definately adds convenience
(04:30:08 PM) kenvandine: for example, i used to have my mother's computer login to my openvpn server at home so i could have a connection out to her machine behind her router
(04:30:14 PM) kenvandine: so i could ssh in if needed
(04:30:36 PM) kenvandine: now i can just ask her to share her desktop with me if she has any problems (fortunately that never happens) :)
(04:30:55 PM) kenvandine: it greatly simplifies the networking situation if it is needed
(04:31:16 PM) kenvandine: and a good proof point for what telepathy can do
(04:31:20 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:31:36 PM) akgraner: none right now
(04:31:41 PM) kenvandine: ah... no more questions yet
(04:31:45 PM) kenvandine: anyone else?
(04:31:57 PM) kenvandine: or ideas for more applications to utilize telepathy?
(04:32:08 PM) kenvandine: we will be discussing it quite a bit at UDS for Lucid
(04:32:25 PM) akgraner: <IdleOne> QUESTION: facebook chat???
(04:32:27 PM) kenvandine: I would love to have lots of ideas going into some discussions
(04:32:34 PM) kenvandine: ah... that is easy :)
(04:32:44 PM) kenvandine: facebook chat will be xmpp soon
(04:32:55 PM) kenvandine: it works today with the pidgin-facebookchat plugin
(04:33:06 PM) kenvandine: one of the backends for telepathy is called haze
(04:33:24 PM) kenvandine: which is an interface to the protocols supported by libpurple (pidgin)
(04:33:44 PM) kenvandine: so if you install telepathy-haze and pidgin-facebookchat it will almost work
(04:33:55 PM) kenvandine: you need to actually delete a file :)
(04:34:13 PM) kenvandine: but none of that will be needed when facebook opens up the jabber service
(04:34:19 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:34:21 PM) akgraner: gQuigs1> QUESTION - it would be possible to use pidgin as a frontend to telepathy (and then going through telepathy) to libpurple?  (yes I miss my pidgin plugins)
(04:35:15 PM) kenvandine: sure, if someone hacked pidgin to be a telepathy client
(04:35:33 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:35:35 PM) akgraner: <johanbr> QUESTION: Telepathy audio/video still seems a bit unstable. What's being done to address that for Lucid (or later)?
(04:35:48 PM) kenvandine: we are doing what we can there
(04:36:16 PM) kenvandine: it seems pretty stable if both ends have UPnP enabled, and UPnP is fairly reliable on the routers
(04:36:35 PM) kenvandine: most of the voice/video problems are failures to negotiate UPnP with the router
(04:36:42 PM) kenvandine: although, it will work without upnp
(04:36:56 PM) kenvandine: but for video, it opens two streams
(04:37:05 PM) kenvandine: and that seems to be a little more problematic
(04:37:17 PM) kenvandine: although i haven't seen a single voice only call failure in weeks
(04:37:26 PM) kenvandine: which has been great :)
(04:37:41 PM) kenvandine: some stuff we want to address in Lucid is the workflow used for answering calls
(04:37:50 PM) kenvandine: make that simpler and more discoverable
(04:38:15 PM) kenvandine: also we have talked to the upstream telepathy developers about working with them to create a diagnostics type of interface
(04:38:42 PM) kenvandine: so embedded into the call window there might be a button that lets you check for common problems and help guide you toward fixing them
(04:38:55 PM) kenvandine: for example checking to see if you have UPnP enabled
(04:38:56 PM) kenvandine: etc
(04:39:10 PM) kenvandine: perhaps sound configuration, things like that
(04:39:12 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:39:19 PM) akgraner: <Jesi> Question: Is there work on providing Telepathy support for Windows? I know this is not a windows discussion, but it would be great to use Telepathy for remote desktop and music browsing of my friends not using Linux, and I wouldn't always have to go to their house to fix their computer
(04:39:47 PM) kenvandine: hehe
(04:40:05 PM) kenvandine: there are instructions on the telepathy website for compiling telepathy on windows
(04:40:10 PM) kenvandine: i don't know how well it works
(04:40:10 PM) kenvandine: but
(04:40:24 PM) kenvandine: even if you had it running on windows, the applications would need to be there too
(04:40:35 PM) kenvandine: for example, banshee expects the other end to be banshee
(04:40:47 PM) kenvandine: because the client and remote end are actually talking to each other
(04:40:55 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:40:58 PM) akgraner: <Chopinhauer> QUESTION: Meta-contacts in Empathy (or maybe better Telepathy) would be nice. Would they be available in Lucid? Having multiple buddies for the same person is a little annoying.
(04:41:11 PM) kenvandine: short answer is yes
(04:41:22 PM) kenvandine: it is on the roadmap for gnome 2.30 (i think)
(04:41:39 PM) kenvandine: even if it isn't on their roadmap, i think they have other features that depend on it
(04:41:52 PM) kenvandine: so i am pretty confident in saying we will have that for Lucid
(04:42:13 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:43:05 PM) akgraner: not one yet but I have one to ask typing it now
(04:43:49 PM) akgraner: akgraner> Question: I was using empathy to see someones computer today but if I moved my mouse it all to check on things not in that widow it messed up what the other person was doing.  How can I use it but still work on the other stuff on my desktop with messing up the other screen?  make sense
(04:44:04 PM) kenvandine: ah
(04:44:18 PM) kenvandine: that is remote control, which is usually what you want
(04:44:35 PM) kenvandine: for example there is only one mouse pointer and one keyboard cursor
(04:44:42 PM) kenvandine: but two people are controlling it
(04:44:55 PM) kenvandine: it isn't the same as multiple users logged in
(04:45:33 PM) kenvandine: anymore questions?
(04:46:26 PM) akgraner: maybe getting clarification
(04:46:40 PM) akgraner: <jordi1983> I'd like to know when there will be LCS (Microsoft Network Communicator) support on Empathy, now it is provided by pidgin-sipe plugin but it doesn't work through telepathy-haze.
(04:47:00 PM) kenvandine: sorry, i can't really answer that
(04:47:13 PM) kenvandine: i would think it should work through haze
(04:47:22 PM) kenvandine: is there a bug filed against telepathy-haze?
(04:47:27 PM) kenvandine: if not, please do
(04:47:44 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:47:45 PM) akgraner: <Jesi> Question: it should be possible to use Telepathy to sync the calender on multiple machines..... as well as say your Evolution or Thunderbird mailbox, correct? or would something else like U1 be better?
(04:48:01 PM) kenvandine: humm..
(04:48:14 PM) kenvandine: well telepathy is designed for real-time communications
(04:48:24 PM) kenvandine: things like calendar sync are pretty well defined already
(04:48:26 PM) kenvandine: however
(04:49:10 PM) kenvandine: if, for example, evolution added a feature to show calendar events, or other "right now" kind of things
(04:49:15 PM) kenvandine: that could be kind of cool
(04:49:41 PM) kenvandine: click on a calendar entry, share with contact and it sends to one of your friends in your buddy list
(04:49:55 PM) kenvandine: could also be used for selecting/scheduling meetings and such
(04:50:09 PM) kenvandine: so it is possible, but someone would need to write it :)
(04:50:26 PM) kenvandine: mail probably not so well suited
(04:50:33 PM) kenvandine: any more questions?
(04:50:50 PM) akgraner: nope not yet
(04:50:59 PM) akgraner: one more
(04:51:04 PM) akgraner: one sec
(04:52:12 PM) akgraner: <sebsebseb> QUESTION:  If  I am correct one of the reasons Empathy replaced Pidgin is, because it's an upstream Gnome app, that also had web cam support unlike Pidgin?
(04:52:30 PM) kenvandine: humm...
(04:52:33 PM) kenvandine: not really
(04:52:46 PM) kenvandine: it was desirable that it was on the same release schedule as gnome
(04:52:54 PM) kenvandine: and so well integrated in gnome
(04:53:04 PM) kenvandine: those were definately good points in favor of empathy
(04:53:21 PM) kenvandine: but i really think the driver was the advanced nature of the telepathy framework
(04:53:37 PM) kenvandine: pidgin doesn't really give us the future we want as a desktop
(04:53:52 PM) kenvandine: especial now that everything has become so social and well connected
(04:54:03 PM) kenvandine: pidgin is a messenger, that's it
(04:54:09 PM) kenvandine: and it does that well
(04:54:19 PM) kenvandine: been around forever and has a ton of plugins
(04:54:39 PM) kenvandine: but it doesn't really embrace where we want to be as a desktop
(04:54:44 PM) kenvandine: telepathy really does that
(04:55:13 PM) kenvandine: and empathy is by far the most mature client for it, and actually a very nice instant messenger
(04:55:19 PM) kenvandine: it does it's job quite well
(04:55:25 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:55:28 PM) akgraner: <Jesi> I meant more about keeping my calender and mailbox the same between my laptop and desktop, any ideas ?
(04:56:05 PM) kenvandine: ah, that isn't a good use of telepathy
(04:56:13 PM) kenvandine: telepathy is between you and your contacts
(04:56:19 PM) kenvandine: u1 would be a better fit for that
(04:56:31 PM) kenvandine: or using an existing service like gmail, etc
(04:56:41 PM) kenvandine: evolution has pretty nice support for google calendars now
(04:56:43 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:56:44 PM) akgraner: <jbicha> QUESTION: supposedly, we can use Pidgin protocols in Empathy, but I don't see an option to add either Facebook or Twitter/Identica, what do I need to do?
(04:57:36 PM) kenvandine: facebook isn't available in pidgin by default, you have to install a plugin
(04:57:43 PM) kenvandine: pidgin-facebookchat
(04:57:59 PM) kenvandine: and do a little google search for how to make it work with empathy
(04:58:09 PM) kenvandine: you have to remove a file from telepathy-haze
(04:58:16 PM) kenvandine: then it woks quite nicely
(04:58:24 PM) kenvandine: well as good as it does in pidgin :)
(04:58:33 PM) kenvandine: not sure about twitter/identi.ca
(04:58:35 PM) kenvandine: next
(04:58:36 PM) akgraner: <AlanBell> QUESTION: IRC is very important to the Ubuntu community (evidenced by the fact we are here) is telepathy-irc up to the job of being Ubuntu default IRC client for a new user?
(04:58:54 PM) kenvandine: well telepathy-idle is the irc backend
(04:59:04 PM) kenvandine: it works... most irc commands don't work though
(04:59:07 PM) kenvandine: so rather limited
(04:59:19 PM) kenvandine: but if you only use the UI, it works fine for most people
(04:59:30 PM) kenvandine: however, imho pidgin was never a good irc client either
(04:59:53 PM) kenvandine: irc in empathy will be improved in 2.30
(04:59:54 PM) kenvandine: next
(05:00:00 PM) kenvandine: we need to start wrapping up
(05:00:14 PM) akgraner: <jordi1983> question: Which are the plans for Empathy integration in Gnome-shell and Gnome 3 in general? Is there something worth noting?
(05:00:41 PM) akgraner: that has to be the last question.. we are out of time...:-)
(05:00:44 PM) kenvandine: great
(05:00:48 PM) kenvandine: one more thing
(05:00:57 PM) kenvandine: http://telepathy.freedesktop.org/wiki/FAQ
(05:01:03 PM) kenvandine: that's it... thanks!

MeetingLogs/openweekKarmic/IntroTelepathy (last edited 2009-11-07 20:57:15 by ausimage)