kio and frameworks 5

Ben Martin monkeyiq at
Sun May 13 21:52:08 BST 2012

On Fri, 2012-05-11 at 21:33 +0100, Casper Clemence wrote:
> The discussions is this "what part should libferris take in the
> refresh of KIO in KDE Frameworks 5?"
> Ben Martin really should be involved in any discussion of a redesign
> at the very least. He clearly has put a lot of work and thought into
> virtual filesystems and has created something quite unique.

Thank you Casper for all these kind words! 

I am very happy to discuss VFS tech and would be delighted if I could
help with a refresh of KIO. Even if only at the level of contributing
some of the ideas and designs I've come up with over the lifetime of

A few ideas from libferris which might be useful, to kick off potential

* Using the extended attribute (EA) interface to provide access to all
metadata. Schemas offered for all metadata (fwiw, I used xsd with
extensions in ferris). With these two, one can show any metadata in
directory listings and with schema, can sort the columns correctly. The
schema is also very handy for index/search on data to allow correct
resolution of range queries.

  It can be handy to have access to the ctime, atime, and mtime as
columns in a file manager depending on circumstance. Also, I have found
decorator EA useful, so mtime is the time_t as an int, but mtime-display
is the modification time in a user configurable human readable string
format. The file manager is then free to sort on "mtime" when I click
the "mtime-display" header and I get what I want, readable content
sorted in the correct order.

* With an emphasis on EA as above, the filesystem model becomes much
closer to a virtual XML DOM. With xpath/xquery this can be a useful API
for data access.

* Hookup between RDF and EA. One of the backing plugins for EA in
libferris is a soprano one. This allows 
$ echo 5 > /something/cool.txt at rating
So users and developers don't have to care about RDF/SPARQL for
everybody to reap it's benefits. An added benefit of RDF in this case is
that EA can be attached to any VFS object, be it a flickr photo or a
tuple in a database.

* More to come... is this seen as a useful discussion?

Unfortunately I won't be at Akademy, largely due to my distance from the
event. So quick fire feature exchange over beer is off the table, so to
speak :/

Feel free to list some ideas which are cool from the KIO world too.
Perhaps this can be a useful thread for all VFS hackers...

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