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QML, A designers perspective!

Real Name of Submitter: 
Nuno Pinheiro
Company or Project Affiliation: 
Short Bio: 

Nuno Pinheiro was born 1977 and lives in Vila Real, Portugal. He is KDE contributor since 2004. Nuno is part of the KDE artist team and Oxygen coordinator. In this position he was central in creating most of the visual experience one can see in KDE today. Currently he works for KDAB as an UI designer.

Talk Abstract: 

QML (Qt Meta-Object Language) is a JavaScript-based, declarative language for quickly designing user interfaces of applications. It is part of the Nokia Qt framework.

In a way it is an incredible tool that enables the designer to create an immersive UI experience, providing incredible freedom on how a application can look, feel and how users can interact with it. But it is also surprisingly simple to understand and learn.

As such, it has the potential to be used directly by designers, removing the need for the traditional flow of designer->mock->developer->implementation->review->designer cycle. The designer can deliver to the developer a working user experience that the developer can use as is combining it with the underlying code providing the data.

This is the vision behind QML and it works rather well in traditional development teams. But... In FOSS land the scenario can change a lot. The designer can be the developer, in fact given the scarcity of designers in open source, the most probable outcome will be that the developer will do the UI design himself. And given the flexibility of QML, this can be a very bad idea.

On the other hand, tools such as QML can help create for designers in FOSS land the type of ecosystem it created for developers, empowering them to design and share UI's.

In this talk I will try to expose some of the risks QML poses for OSS, and point possible solutions to those, as well as go into how we could maximize the benefits Free Software reaps from this great technology.

Intended audience-- UI Designers, traditinal desktop application developers, Touch application developers