Now that Lightning 1.0 has been released, we can move forward and adapt to the rapid release schedule that Thunderbird and Firefox are using. In terms of development we will do this gradually but for localization we will do so right away. From now on, if you are already used to the Firefox/Thunderbird localizations you can think the same for Calendar.
Here is an overview of where to get the sources and see the translation progress
Specifically for Lightning 1.1, we have managed to open a milestone for Lightning 1.1. I’d like to encourage you to sign off on this milestone until December 5th so we can be ready in time for the release on December 20th.
As a Lightning user I often wish that all events would arrive at my Inbox as invitations in the iCalendar format. This way I could just click the accept button and it would be added to my calendar. But they don’t. Often people just write you a text-based email when they want to invite you somewhere. So you right-click the email, choose convert to event and a new event dialog opens with start date set to next full hour. Not quite correct unless you’re really lucky.
This is why I’m working on an extension to Lightning which would fill in dates and times automatically from email content. The basic idea is that localizers can define most common ways dates and times are referred to in their language similarly to how they localize Lightning itself. Using these patterns event dialog can be much smarter about setting start and end times and in most cases you wouldn’t need to correct them at all.
Since Lightning is localized into 38 languages and language variants I need your help. If you fluently speak a language other than English and would be willing to spend some time to localize the patterns and test this prototype on your emails then please leave a comment below. Be sure to include your email and language of choice so I can send you a customized pattern file and prototype. Do so even if you speak only English as you can still help with testing. Feedback on when it guesses correctly and when not is crucial to improving the extension. What works great in English may not work well in your language and of course everyone’s email is different too. With your feedback I can improve my extension so that this functionality can be included into Lightning later on (the curious can follow bug 403222 where more technical information will be posted).
Merike Sell, Mozilla Calendar Team
It’s been over a year since we last posted about the current state of Lightning usage. Since that day Thunderbird 5, 6, 7 and 8 have been released with their Lightning counterparts 1.0 beta4, 1.0 beta 5, 1.0 beta7 and finally Lightning 1.0.
Now it’s time to look at things again and I’m happy to report, that Lightning is more popular as ever before with nearly 30% more daily users than one year before. Right now we average nearly 1,400,000 users each day during the workweek and about 775,000 users on the weekends, which brings to more than 1,200,000 users on average over the course of a week.
Most of our users (64.2%) are now on Thunderbird 8. Most of the rest still uses Thunderbird 3.1 (15.0%) and Thunderbird 7 (13.4%). The remainder (7.4%) is mostly distributed to Thunderbird 2 (still at 2.3%), Thunderbird 6 (2.6%), Thunderbird 5 (1.0%) and other installations (other Thunderbird releases, SeaMonkey and Firefox) at 1.5%.
So, this is it! My early birthday present, Lightning 1.0, has finally been released. For quite some time now we have had so-called “beta” releases, that were in no way different to our other releases. With Lightning 1.0 we can finally say good bye to the betas and hello to exciting new releases!
When planning for this release, we mainly focused on rounding off any sharp edges you may find in Lightning. Just as an example, you can now press Escape to cancel creating an event via dragging. Sounds like a simple, intuitive feature that should have been there all along? You bet! There is one exception though, Lightning now supports full offline editing using the cache feature you can find in the calendar properties. This great big feature has been in the works during the past Google Summer of Code and has now finally made it into the release.
As always, you can get the latest release from addons.mozilla.org. If you are using the Provider for Google Calendar, make sure to upgrade too. Please note that Lightning 1.0 is compatible to Thunderbird 8, which is also being released today.
So, whats happening next? I will be gathering some ideas during the upcoming EU MozCamp 2011 and will present you my plans shortly after. If you have any suggestions, please do use the newsgroups to get in touch.
Hello Lightning users and testers,
With the forthcoming release of Lightning 1.0, we would like to organize a community driven testing event in order improve subsequent versions of Lightning, making sure that it isn’t regressing in any major way. This event will take place during the week starting on November the 13th. If you use Lightning regularly, it should be quite easy to participate.
What do I need to do to participate ?
- You will need to sign up by sending an email to email@example.com who will coordinate the testing effort. Mention “Lightning testing” in the subject.(1)
- You will need some free time on that week to perform some tests.
- You will need an account on litmus.mozilla.org – this is the tool that we will use to track testing and you might need an account on bugzilla.mozilla.org to report defects.
How would my involvement participation would look like ?
- You read this – send the email and create the accounts that you might need.
- On the day we start the event you’ll get an email with detailed instructions on what needs to be tested and links to getting started.
- You follow the links and select some test in litmus.
- Report if the test is ok, or borked
- If borked you file a bug.
It’s that simple !!!
And while this test will be happening – we will also test Thunderbird 10. If you also want to help just let us know when you signup
(1) signing up ensures that the test workload can be distributed amongst the participants – if we don’t do that install get’s tested 4 times and alarms might end up not being tested.
I’d like to present you with Lightning 1.0rc2. You can find it at its new location on the addons.mozilla.org beta channel (If you still get 1.0rc1, then please try again in a few hours when the page cache has been updated).
There is a big new feature in this release which needs your testing. Thanks to the hard work of Mohit, who has joined us through the recent Google Summer of Code, we have extended the cache with full offline support, which means you can write your events while in offline mode. If you are using a CalDAV calendar, it will even retry events that failed.
If you encounter any issues, please file a bug at bugzilla.mozilla.org.
Note, if you are using the cache with the Provider for Google Calendar, please stay tuned. I will soon post a development version of the provider containing a patch that corrects offline support.
Thank you very much for the feedback on my last blog post. I’d like to give a short wrap-up and comment on some of the mentioned annoyances.
- Multiple Password Prompts – Sorry, this one isn’t trivial to solve. The issue lies somewhere in the Mozilla Platform and how we interact with it.
- Send Reminder via Email – This means you need to have Thunderbird running for it to send you an email. Is that really what you want?
- Move Lightning’s tab in front of inbox/Tab closing order – More of a Thunderbird issue. You might want to watch bug 508776
- Invitations with Provider for Google Calendar – I have a possible fix for this, I’ll see that this makes the next release (bug 684482)
- Descriptive Errors on Failure – This means string changes, which we can’t do this late in the cycle. We did add some debug messages for the ics provider though
- Disappearing Calendars – Unfortunately I haven’t been able to reproduce this issue, so its hard for me to actually fix it
- Editing invitation email – This needs some Thunderbird changes which are not part of Thunderbird 8. Maybe for Thunderbird 9 though!
- Alarms showing multiple times – I’ll take another look into this bug, I thought I got rid of that for the last release!
- Failures Dismissing recurring events – We’re doing our best to fix this bug for the release
- Offline Support – Well, that’s not exactly very small….but on the bright side, this was planned already! Support has landed and will be part of 1.0rc2, which is due very soon (today, tomorrow)
- Flickering in the views – I agree this is a very annoying bug. Unfortunately its not trivial to fix and requires massive changes in the views and/or backend architecture. As much as I’d like to make it a part of 1.0, I doubt its reasonable.
- Snoozed alarm fires at old event time – Yes, working on this!
- New Calendar Wizard – While a lot of work was done in the Summer of Code, this is not quite ready yet. The Student is still in contact with me though and is working on fixing the remaining issues
- Dual Boot – Until certain platform issues are fixed, this is not feasible, sorry
- Copy entire recurring event – We need some good UI for this, how would we know if the user wants to move the master or just an occurrence?
- Multiday scrolling issues – I’ll look into this and see what I can do
- Events being an hour off on DST change – I’ll also take a look here
- Import/Export issues – This isn’t much of a focus for 1.0, but if its an easy fix I’m happy to consider
- text/plain on caldav – I can imagine allowing this might cause issues for items that are really just text/plain, i.e documents uploaded to the same collection. This would cause an error message for those events. Can’t this be fixed on the server side?
- Hooks/Refresh Killer – Refresh Killer is already in, Mohit is working on the hooks patch, which will make it in too.
I’ll do my best to round off these edges to make 1.0 the best Lightning release you’ve seen to date!
In anticipation of 1.0, I’d like to ask you what bug you find most annoying in Lightning. Our goal is to round the edges, so please focus on small issues (negative example: Missing local mobile device sync) and try to keep it down to one (I’ll also go with two, but don’t start copying our whole buglist ;-).
Comments welcome, lets get this rolling!
I’d like to announce our plans for the localization of Lightning for 1.0 and beyond. I’ve done my best to make the process as little work for the localizers as possible, so please excuse if the naming and repos don’t currently match whats usual for Firefox and Thunderbird. I promise this will change for the following releases though.
First of all, lets focus on Lightning 1.0 which is due November 8th. As with the last two releases, we will be using l10n-miramar. The main reason for this is that we’ve taken great care to not change any strings for 1.0b7 and the upcoming 1.0 release. Note however, the tree to compare with is not comm-miramar, but rather comm-beta. This may be a bit confusing, but be assured this name clash will go away after the release. Currently, 38 locales are green and only 11 are red. I would love to see a few more locales going green for 1.0. How about it? According to the current state of the l10n dashboard, here’s a list of the missing locales. Maybe you can help out? If so, please click on the links below and contact the team leaders there:
If you already localize for any of these locales and you know everything is translated, please request sign-off again to make sure it shows up as green on the dashboard.
The following information is not relevant for Lightning 1.0. We haven’t agreed on version numbers, but we do have l10n trees and will be leaving l10n-miramar after the release. Given Lightning has a binary component and needs to re-release every time that Thunderbird does, it makes sense for us get aboard the release train too. You can see the l10n trees here:
If you have any questions, please do let me know via comment or email.
The Calendar Team is happy to present Lightning 1.0rc1. This build requires Thunderbird 8 and is the first of a few release candidates we will be publishing on the road to Lightning 1.0.
During the previous releases there was often only a week or two between the first rc and final release. To make sure there are no unpleasant surprises there will be much more time (and more release candidates) for testing this time around. The scheduled release date for Lightning 1.0 is November 8th, which gives us time for 3-4 release candidates.
The rc1 release, and this is a first, is availble on addons.mozilla.org. We are now making use of the development channel feature, so head on over to addons.mozilla.org and click on the “Development Channel” box. Once you’ve installed this build, you will automatically get updates to future release candidates.
We are almost there, please do report any bugs you find on bugzilla.mozilla.org or use the newsgroups.