I, too, have read this thread with interest. A lot of valid points have been made.
I'd like to throw a couple of stones into the pond, however.
IMHO what we have at the moment is an advanced "proof of concept". Yes, HA, telephoney, security etc. all integrated seamlessly into our media experience is what we want. In another thread, I think it was Thom who posted a description of an evening at home with MCE that made me salivate!
At the moment, for the masses, it at best is a hassle and at worst doesn't work at all. I have been trying to so what fearingsept has done, but maybe my "old bits and pieces" are a little older than his
I also agree with bongowongo. Most of the information IS all here, but finding it isn't easy - especially if you don't really know what you're looking for or what keywords to use. I've lost count of the number of threads where somone says "I've searched the Wiki/forums" then asks a question. The answer is a link to the Wiki / forum and they apologise with a "that's about the only thing I didn't
search for"!! I reckon, as a matter of some urgency, we need to do two things:
1) CLEARLY indicate on each Wiki page how up-to-date it is. This is something the Wiki manager needs to do. Various approaches could be used. How about adding a "created" and "last edited" date into the global page footer? If we see something that hasn't been edited for a couple of years, then we know to treat it with some suspicion. A sdatabase query could similarly insert some kind of text at the top of each page that indicates that the page is of "unknown version". As we trawl the wiki as users, if we stumble on such a page, we can check it, test it and then update the header with versioning information. (Thinking about it, can we have two new categories, please? "Works with 710" and "Works with 810"? Looking to the future, make both of these sub-categories of a new top level "Versions" category. I would add these myself, and if I can figure out how, I will, but the wiki admin is the only person who can do mass alterations or update the footer etc.)
2) EVERYONE and ANYONE who updates / modifies / improves / fixes ANYTHING needs to make sure they document it and make that documentation available on the wiki. That goes for the newest user who managed to use a non-standard NIC right through to the core devs who have made massive changes to the system. Guys, any work you do that is not properly documented is ultimately wasted effort. I know it's a pain to do when you are working on code or whatever, but it must happen. I know a lot do, but a lot don't as well. Ideally, the forum should not be a place to search for information - it should be a place to discuss. Once resolution is found - on to the wiki so we have one place to search!!! It's a COMMUNITY folks, that means EVERY member of it needs to contribute! Not just the few "key" people who do most of the grunt.
I don't wish to decry the hard work anyone has put in, but may I suggest a "feature freeze"? I know we want it to do everything
, but in that quest we risk it not doing anything
. I'm not suggesting people shouldn't still pursue their own projects within MCE, but as far as the main trunk goes, we should limit updates to fixing known issues. How many times have people posted saying "I had this working then applied the latest build and it broke"? Sometimes, it's the addition of a new feature, sometimes not, but the fact that the core devs are working on these features is delaying (I suspect) the fixing of some issues.
Like, I suspect, a lot of people here, I found the project due to an interest in media. Even the project title highlights media above all else. In the "blurb" (on the video, I think) much is made of the UI being "all about the media". I happen to disagree that it's in any way childish and in any case, you can always re-skin. The fact thet you don't end up with a tiny "picture-in-picture" when you access the orbiter is a real "Micro$oft killer" IMHO. This means that the media side needs to "just work". If ensuring that means that support for a new VoIP provider is delayed, then so be it.
I know others wiill disagree, and that's fine with me. It's an open project and the open-ness should stretch to debate as well
Just my 10Eurocents.