Following both the new sysinfo release and the new gtk-rs release, I worked on updating process-viewer as well. So here comes the 0.3.3 version! As a reminder, process-viewer is a process viewer GUI written in Rust.
The vgtk project started out as a side effect of one of my "must write a text editor" phases, as many things do. It triggers a review of the state of UI development in my current favourite language, and sometimes it triggers a ground-up attempt to construct an ad-hoc, informally-specified, bug-ridden, slow implementation of half of Elm, when I decide the state of the art is insufficient for my tastes. Usually, if the ground is sparsely trodden, I never get further than building some of the developer tooling necessary to build the UI tooling I need to build my text editor.
In this latest case, thanks to the superlative state of Rust's developer tooling—and its low level bindings for at least one sufficiently qualified UI toolkit—I've gotten to the point where I've been able to build UI tooling that appeals to my idea of what UI tooling should look and feel like. So far, I've yet to build the text editor, but I've come to accept by now that it will only ever exist as a Platonic ideal, serving only as a motivating force to get me started building more useful things.
I'll try to introduce vgtk, idea by idea, by way of a tutorial. You'll need to have a working knowledge of Rust to follow along. You shouldn't need to know GTK already, but you may need to be prepared to consult GTK documentation to understand certain things fully.
Tobias from our design team created an excellent Librem 5 app design tutorial, which covers GNOME design philosophy, going from sketches to mockups, convergence and even how to name your app. The three part series designs a Wallabag app for the Librem 5 called Read it Later. Wallabag is a link saving service with apps for various platforms, which now includes the Librem 5 thanks to Bilal Elmoussaoui. Bilal is a passionate community member who turned Tobias’s designs into a fully featured app. Purism community member Thibault spoke to Bilal about the development process and contributing to the larger ethical software movement.
linux flatpak gtk
Distributing and packaging your Rust GUI application and making it available for Linux users can be hard, I will try to explain the various ways of doing that using Flatpak as a packaging format.
Late last year, I wanted to find an application that I can try the Rust async features with it. I started looking for a service that had a nice Rust API wrapper already and I started prototyping Read It Later on top of wallabag-rs.
Read It Later, is a well designed Wallabag client. It’s built with Rust, GTK & libhandy on the UI side. It’s fully adaptive which makes it Linux on pocket ready and also comes with a beautiful icon designed by Tobias Bernard.
Recently, after a few failed attempts at using other frameworks to make an application that was both easy to use and easy to install, I embraced native software development with Rust and GTK.
Though I have made short forays in the past, GTK was a change for me. Before this, most of my user interface experience came from building React applications. The transition from React to GTK posed some challenges. Most came from differences in widget philosophy. GTK in Rust, though, is particularly hard because of the extra rules Rust enforces to protect against memory management errors and against operations that are unsafe to do in a threaded context.
In this article, I will talk primarily how I adapted the philosophies from React into GTK, and I will highlight some of the extra tricks that are necessary to make GTK conform to Rust’s rules. Rust enforces some tricky rules that will be unfamiliar to most developers, primarily in terms of how values can be shared, but also with strong restrictions on mutability. I’ll point out these rules as they come up throughout this article.
gled is an application for creating animations and effects on light installations. Featuring: All animations are based on the beat of the music, All lamps are controlled using Art-Net udp protocol, Lamps are placed at the correct location in a SVG file, Leds/Lamps can be grouped in "render groups" which enable very flashy effects, gled is a single binary, very small and uses little system ressources while maintaining 60 frames per second with thousands of lamps.
Oxidation is a process of adding oxygen to a chemical compound. Some examples are burning, and rusting. This experiment concerns the Rusting of a compound called Squeekboard: a derivative of Eekboard, originally containing high quantities of C, and reacting eagerly with GObject, GTK, and the X windowing system.
Gnome-shell uses CSS processing code that dates from HippoCanvas, a CSS-aware canvas from around 2006. It uses libcroco to parse CSS, and implements selector matching by hand in C.
This code is getting rather dated, and libcroco is unmaintained.
I've been reading the code for StTheme and StThemeNode, and it looks very feasible to port it gradually to Rust, by using the same crates that librsvg uses, and eventually removing libcroco altogether: gnome-shell is the last module that uses libcroco in distro packages.
When talking to various people at conferences in the last year or at conferences, a recurring topic was that they believed that the GTK Rust bindings are not ready for use yet.
I don’t know where that perception comes from but if it was true, there wouldn’t have been applications like Fractal, Podcasts or Shortwave using GTK from Rust, or I wouldn’t be able to do a workshop about desktop application development in Rust with GTK and GStreamer at the Linux Application Summit in Barcelona this Friday (code can be found here already) or earlier this year at GUADEC.
Shortwave is an internet radio player that lets you search for stations, listen to them and record songs automatically.
Welcome everyone to this whole new gtk-rs release! Time to check what was added/updated in this new version.
Last week, I went to the fifth Rust+GNOME hackfest which was in Berlin again. My goal for this hackfest was to fix this issue I opened nearly three years ago. The problem is that sometimes you want to create a widget or an object and set some properties at construction time. This might be needed when you want to set construct-only properties. For instance, you might want to create a webkit2gtk::WebView with a WebContext and a UserContentManager at the same time. That’s why a constructor was manually written for this use case.
Currently, testing UIs is difficult, but with gtk-test you can test basically everything UI-related way more simply.
Last week, I was working on improving the integration of Rust with GNOME libraries at the third Hackfest, which happened this time in Madrid.
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