AppImage Hub Proposal


#1

Hi guys, I’m currently working on a software-center-like web site as a part of my bachelor’s thesis; this software could be used as a basis for an hub website for app images.
The project can be found here:
Gitlab: https://gitlab.com/davcri91/softhub-site
Github: https://github.com/davcri/softhub (but it is only a mirror)

Info

Latest version : v0.2.0
Changelog: https://gitlab.com/davcri91/softhub-site/blob/master/CHANGELOG.md

Help is very appreciated:

  • install Softhub on your machine and try it! (Install instruction; It’s simple if you have some web development skills)
  • comment or create issues
  • make suggestions here on the forum
  • for any other thing feel free to contact me and tell me all that goes in your mind :slight_smile:

Keep in mind that:

  • it’s a work in progress
  • at the moment there isn’t a live demo of the project
  • I can’t work full time on it because I’m also studying

Random screens



#2

I agree that discoverability should be much better for appimages but I am not sure how I feel about this suggestion. Does this site rely on Node.js? It seems like it does.


#3

The software is written in Python, using the Django web framework server-side.
Node.js is required only as development dependency :slight_smile:


#4

Looks like a nice website to host all those Bintray images on.


#5

Indeed! Is there a way to keep them in sync automagically?


#6

The actual code doesn’t have any hook to external services so the answer is: no at the moment.

When I’ll reach v1.0 milestone, I’ll fork this project and create a specific AppImage repo where new features (as Github login and repo synchronization) can be implemented.

Help is very appreciated, also for bug reports, suggestions and also simply speaking with other FOSS people :slight_smile:
If someone wants to contribute to the code, I organized the issues with a label “Help wanted”; you can also see a list of issues ordered by weight.


#7

Update
v0.2.0 released and v0.2.1 is approaching :smiley:

Notable changes from the first post:

  • Added a CHANGELOG
  • Simple search implemented
  • User page implemented

Screenshots here: https://imgur.com/a/6KtAE


#8

Some updates:
I created a mirror on Github because many people tend to prefer it and I don’t want to turn them away of the project for any reasons :slight_smile:
Also updated the first post with some new informations.

Bonus: Matteo, a my dear friend at university, suggested me to use a card-like design for Applications in the index view, here it is a before/after video comparison:


#9

Hi guys, sorry for the lack of presence in the last weeks. In the next days I’ll be back to update the project :smile:
Tomorrow I’ll take my last exam, then a couple of days to rest :slight_smile:
Next plans:

  • Refactor the code to improve readability
  • Remove some useless features from “Softhub”
  • Search for a free hosting server for Python+Django, so that I can give a live demo and get feedback
  • Study specific AppImage features (Github API integration ? OBS integration ? )

#10

The one thing appimage need to fly. This will help the appimage softwares to be easily found and updated


#11

Hi @davcri thanks for your great work. I really, really like what you have done so far. Thanks to your easy step-by-step documentation, I was able to get an instance up and running in no time.

Do you plan to continue working on this after your thesis? I see large potential in this, especially if we can make it really, really easy for developers to put an AppImage in and essentially have AppImage Hub do the rest, e.g., download the AppImage and extract all the useful information from it (e.g., description, categories, icons, size, etc.)


#12

Maybe one of these?

Later we could always consider to switch to something more “bare metal”.


#13

My wishlist - ranked by importance

  1. Developers and users can log in using GitHub accounts, no need to set up an account in SoftHub. In fact I would be fine with disabling account creation in SoftHub entirely, requiring the user to log in using a GitHub or Google or Twitter account
  2. Developers can add applications without filling out any forms, just by providing an AppImage download URL. SoftHub woud download the AppImage, do some basic checks, and extract all the information (description, icon, author, categories, homepage, screenshots etc.) from there. Especially if the application provides an AppStream metadata file. Support all (sub-) categories supported by AppStream/XDG
  3. Say we initially populate the database with information about all the AppImages known to us. There should be a way for the upstream developer to claim, i.e., “take over” ownership of, the product detail pages of “their” applications. This should work fully automated. Example: we have https://github.com/akameco/PixivDeck/releases in the database. Then GitHub user akameco should be able to “take over” this application without having to ask or manual intervention from the administrator.
  4. There should be a way to link to application projects’ donation page
  5. Visually, if there is “Cover” artwork other than the icon, use that (similar to https://itch.io/) to make the store visually more appealing. Perhaps extract the key colors from the icon and use these as background/highlight elements to further customize product detail pages

#14
  1. Ok, there are Django packages for OAuth, so this should be easy.

  2. Ok, I only need to dive in AppStream standard, but this will be fun :slight_smile: I
    know the project, and I know for what is used for, but I never studied the
    specification.

  3. Yeah this should be doable, but I need to think more about it. It seems
    a little bit harder than the other issues.

  4. Absolutely!

  5. No problem, we can experiment and iterate :wink:

(edit: cut some obsolete information.)

In the next days I’ll do some minor work on softhub-site and then I’ll stop
working on that repo because I would like to keep it as a university
project.

PS: I’m replying with emails, I still cannot log in to Discourse with my
Github account :frowning:


#15

I’m really glad that the installation was easy!

I really want to work on this project, this saturday I’ll complete my last
task for the university and from the next week I’ll have some free time to
spend :slight_smile:


#16

That’s cool. To log into Discourse, make sure that you call it with https. I checked with Chrome and it works.


#17

Finally back into Discourse :smile:
I forgot to mention that I created the new repo on Gitlab (because it is open source), but I’m totally fine with Github, so please @probono tell me:

  • where do you prefer to host the repository for this project ?
  • is “AppImage Hub” a good name for the project ?

#18

Hi. If you have some time, please come to the #AppImage channel on irc.freenode.net. This is where the developers hang out (mostly in the Evenings European time and on rainy weekends).

I’m fine with both GitLab and GitHub with a slight preference for the latter. If you would like this to become part of the AppImage organization sooner or later, it would be on GitHub and MIT-licensed.

As for the name, I like the idea to not just provide AppImages but also other formats (e.g., Mac, Windows). So for now I’d say lets stay with the original name if that’s fine for you.


#19

Then it’s okay for MIT-license and Github.
I would be very happy to join AppImage organization; if I can have a repository on Github, I’ll start working there creating a fork of “softhub-site”.

As for the name, I like the idea to not just provide AppImages but also other formats (e.g., Mac, Windows). So for now I’d say lets stay with the original name if that’s fine for you.

Wow I was not expecting this. It’s totally fine.

PS: I’ll be on IRC, until now it was a bit difficult because my university firewall blocked IRC ports :sweat:


#20

Also check this out:
http://appstore.deepin.com/