Universal Control Panel
A Universal Control Panel Launcher
Currently we throw all "user based controls" in to one bag, and "system administrator tools" into another.
There is no current structure or organization many tools have redundant features that could be simplified or eliminated.
A system where there is a unified control panel and the tools would act as modules would not only alleviate the difficulties of finding what you need but would allow feature expansion.
The goal of this project is to consolidate and organize these tools for a better and easier user experiance.
A better means to finding and lauching system control utilities. All tools would have a breif description of their functions along with whether it is Root required or not.
The design would allow a more intuitive access to system tools, a user would be able to find what he or she needs based on the category and would know ahead of time if it is a option he or she could chaneg or if it would require a system admin.
This would simply be a launcher platform for other tools, eventually I could possibly see the tools being integrated into the window it self so each tool would be a plugin and once the tool was clicked it would change the veiwport to the functions of the tool. Ofcourse that is a longterm plan and currently just getting a organized means of access is more then enough.
The first step I think would be the easiest, Simple make a user interface that was much like a portal for system tools, showing descriptions and catergorization.
The second step would be to expand the code base to look at each tool as a plugin and instead of showing a seperate window it would simply display that window contents within the viewport.
The third step which is the hardest is to get other developers to support this new method of tools, making the tools as nothing more then plugins or modules for this control panel.
No current code or application would need to be changed for the first phase of this standardization project, a simple xml file could store current installed applications along with description and category, new programs would act like plugins to the Unified Control Panel and automatically be listed as of installation, just as they become listed in "System>>Prefrences" or "System>>Administration"
Data preservation and migration
Nothing would need to be changed right away for phase one but as it progress's all system tools would have to be modifed or converted into a standardized module/plugin.
Need other developers to support the idea of making their system tools/ Applets as plugins or modules rather then completly seperate applications or have them write a function that can be called upon so it acts as both a seperate application but also a module when called upon from the control panel. Need able bodied programmer to throw together this from Idea to actual application
Darek27: YaST2 in Suse (and Suse KDE Control Center with integrated Yast modules) are very close to an ideal control center. You must see it! YaST2 from SuSE/Novell is released under the GNU GPL and consists of different modules for different administration tasks. This page contains information about the YaST2 for Debian: http://yast4debian.alioth.debian.org/ They are porting the GREAT YaST2 source code to the Debian! You can work with Debian team. News: YaST in Ubuntu, launchpad, Porting_YaST See screenshots: 01 02 03 04 05 or download Suse: imageCD
DenisWashington : gnome-control-center upstream is already working on integrating the SLED control center. This solves the problem, I think.
UbuntuDemon : There is a really interesting thread in the Edgy Development section at the forums going on : Ubuntu Control Center [WWW] http://www.ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=207894
NMWillard : Currently Gimmie also has a similar concept going on but working from another direction. It is trying to redesign the standard file access concept but also integrates the most commonly used items, such as document access, Messanger access, and Program Access, I think this could go some where,the last color block is system settings.