Snapcraft Summit summary – day 5

by elopio on 3 February 2018

This Snapcraft Summit is coming to an end. We had five days full of hard and fun work, together with many friends from many other projects that are part of our ecosystem.

It was amazing to see the kind of collaboration that snapcraft brings to the Linux world. The engineering, advocacy, desktop and design teams of snapcraft spent every day working next to developers from Microsoft, Skype, Slack, Electron, CircleCI, Plex and ROSHub on improving the experience to deliver their applications continuously, in a way that fits perfectly into their release process and that will make their users feel secure and confident. It was great to see the mix of languages, cultures and operating systems, all working together to solve this common delivery problem, now with a tool that is very open and welcoming, and that evolves quickly as new applications bring new requirements.

We are making packaging a problem of the past, so developers can just focus on the exciting part of the job: writing features. This week ended with a lot of improvements to get us there. Sergio was supposed to summarize what happened on Thursday, but has instead been hard at work preparing those improvements to be released in snapcraft 2.39, coming to an automatic update near you early next week. So we’ll excuse him, and I’ll summarize the things that happened on these last two days.

Kyle is in the middle of a deployment provider for Travis, that will make it super simple to release applications to the Snap Store for projects already using Travis for their CI. He also vastly improved the way we generate the snapcraft docker images. He also worked on a super-secret, soon-to-be released snap, more good news coming soon!

Leo started experimenting with a new language: typescript, with a new snap that was a nice proof of concept: tslint. He met with members of other teams at Canonical to make a big improvement on the testing infrastructure for snapcraft itself, focusing on tests that will run on Mac and Windows. Finally, he started a call for testing to get more people from the community exploring the features of 2.39 before the stable release.

Martin and Alan have been non-stop working with all the special guests of this summit, testing the early builds, offering advice on ways to improve the packaging, integrating the release of the snap into their pipelines, and removing unnecessary parts of the snaps to make them smaller. They were also constantly seen using an audio chat to talk to each other, despite being at the same table. Expect a new and shiny release to the mumble snap!

James has been working on the much expected feature to let users give access to individual files/directories, instead of granting the applications full access to your home. He’s also doing an amazing job at reducing the amount of time that it will take snapcraft to generate a fully self-contained application. That is work in progress, so something to look forward for the 2.40 release, later in the month.

Sergio, as mentioned before, worked on the 2.39 release. Get it on Linux with sudo snap install snapcraft –candidate, or on Mac with brew install snapcraft.

And now is time for us to celebrate. Cheers for a bright year full of snaps!

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