In last years GSoC scripting capabilities have been added to KWin and have been shipped with 4.6. Unfortunately the student did not stick around so far which results in a situation that during the complete 4.7 releasy cycle there have only been two commits to the scripting component: one to fix some Krazy issues and one to change the coding style. With other words: the development of the component is dead.
For a new component this is very bad as it is unlikely that it is bug free and feature complete. There are probably many usecases where scripting integration might be useful and which is just not yet implemented. It also shows us that the core development team is not able to also maintain this new component. In fact due to lack of provided documentation the core team does not have the knowledge to further extend it.
This unfortunate development raises questions for the future. Currently we have a GSoC to modularize KWin core and it is likely that such a refactoring will break the scripting component at some day. Given that no core developer is knowledged about the scripting component, we are not able to see this in review requests (and we don’t have unit tests for it and cannot add them due to the lack of knowledge about the component). We are also not using the component so we won’t notice a breakage. My expectation for 4.8 is that scripting will be no longer functional and even if bug reports arise we would not be able to fix them.
The GSoC project is preparing KWin core to properly add support for multiple windowing system backends. I have already started to add support for a new windowing system and all the code so far does not integrate scripting. In the far future we want to be able to switch to this new windowing system which has also implications for scripting. Due to the current lack of scripting integration in the new written code it would mean that scripting no longer functions in future.
Overall this does not look good for the scripting component and I am currently considering various options. One of them is to remove scripting support again in 4.8. This is something I don’t want to do and I would feel very bad about it. Lots of work has gone into the code and it is a pity to remove it. Especially given that it was a successfully finished GSoC project and the slot might have been used in a better way for KDE if we remove the code after a year again.
I don’t want to do that! But I need your help to prevent that from happening. Step up and share scripts on kde-apps.org, provide a way to exchange scripts through GHNS, maybe add support for writing scripts to Plasmate and most important get in touch with the development: ensure that the code does not get broken in master, add support for further parts, help to document scripting in techbase, fix some glitches in the scripting related code.
I will keep the code at the moment and look how it evolves over the next months. In case the situation has not improved till soft-feature-freeze of 4.8 I see no other solution than to exclude the code from building 🙁
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