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Ardour, Sound Agnula/DeMuDi Re: ardour

Hi Robert and all audio and multimedia developers,

this thread offered me the opportunity to make a proposal to all the Debian
developers interested in multimedia, but not necessarily limited to them, of

Some of you might know about the existence of the AGNULA (A GNU Linux Audio
Distribution) http://www.agnula.org. The AGNULA project continues the DeMuDi
(Debian Multimedia Distribution http://www.demudi.org ) project with the help of
the European Commission, an IST project (key action IV.3.3, Free Software: towards
the critical mass).

AGNULA should produce in the next two years a distribution totally dedicated to
the multimedia and completely based on free software (somehow even more extreme
than Debian itself...which means no non-free section at all). This wants to prove
that free software has reached a high professional level in the audio realm,
efficiency and it is reliable. Actually there will be at the end two
distributions...one based on Debian and one Red Hat, which is technically
developed by Red Hat France. Even if some of us can see that presence
suspiciously, i find important that Red Had France agreed to produce a totally
free software based distribution.

In my personal idea, still when i started DeMuDi two years ago, i would have
considered that eventually DeMuDi should have merged into Debian, this is the best
way for such a project to survive (see Andreas Tille - Debian-med - paper...thanks
Andreas) and the best way to make even more reach and interesting Debian.

Now that AGNULA started, and inside Debian two similar projects, in different
fields indeed, have started, Debian-junior and Debian-med, i would see the merging
as a even more logical way to go....and thanks to the, very welcomed, pressure
from Andreas Tille...:-)

In fact, recently, it became even more clear to me that our, small team, even
smaller if compared with the Debian *teams*, would have wasted time in replicating
what in Debian already exists....repackaging applications that are already packaged
in Debian and already up to date (according to the necessary security policies)
would have made our effort worthless...

what is instead rather important for us, or the best way for us to spend our
resources, is rather where there isn't and already done job by Debian, so we
should focus on:

1- working on a easy/fast, with a lot of auto configuring, installation for the
specific Debian-multimedia (whether will be called Agnula/DeMuDi or
Debian-multimedia etc.), sound card setup etc. (that could become useful in

2- working on a guided Tour to the system, *heavy* documentation, tutorials and
examples, for with we could call core applications. (this task is already active
and is lead by Dave Phillips)

3- writing a AGNULA-system manager apps, from where it will be possible to control
and setup audio and related apps, browsing documentation (documentation will be
written in docbook, so accessible then as info, html etc.). 

4- packaging applications at the moment not available in Debian, either because
not known or because problematic (because of license or because other problems
...see ardour thread here).

Our first release is due by the end of November, which is quite close, and the
following one will be in April 2003.

My personal idea, dont blame if I'm going to say something that is not reasonable,
even if i studied I'm not totally aware of the Debian policy details, would be
that a process of integration could be done (if that will happen and the Debian
community will agree on that) gradually for the April release, while the November
release will still be *outside* Debian -still using Debian policies and woody -
and could be seen as a *testing* version, where Debian developers could cooperate,
if they wish, in order, not just to build the distribution/task, but also with
ideas, criticism, etc, so, by April we could have a very solid Debian-Multimedia
that could be integrated smoothly into the official Debian.

Those Developers who are interested and want to contribute on the discussion and
project development could join the Agnula mailing lists.

Actually a first step into a integration would be to be able to create  a
Debian-multimedia mailing list in the official Debian mailing list section.

I'm sorry for the very verbose mail, which, now that i reading twice, maybe could
be a bit off topic for this specific mailing lists, but i wanted to be also sure
that all developers, that could be interested, would have read this and hopefully
all developers in the audio section. ...Actually i first extracted all mails for
Debian maintainer in the sound section and was about to write to them...i felt
miserably like a spammer, of course i was not, so i gave up the idea and sent here
the message with the hope to reach all of you guys.

Even if you have strong criticism, please do not hesitate to reply and let me know
your opinion. I personally feel that AGNULA is an important project and really
needed, that has the potential of improving the quality for the audio community,
the free software community and last but not least the Debian Community.

thank you for you patience in reading all this ..pamphlet...


* marco trevisani                                            *
* http://trevisani.mine.nu   marco@centrotemporeale.it       *
* http://www.agnula.org -- A GNU/Linux Audio Distribution    *
* Neither MS-Word nor MS-PowerPoint attachments please:      *
* See http://www.fsf.org/philosophy/no-word-attachments.html *

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