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Announcement for Plugin Developers

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Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby Alex Brazeau » Wed Jan 14, 2015 10:36 pm

Hello plugin devs,

Happy New Year! From the photo team at Corel, we wish you all the best in 2015. Allow me to take a moment to thank you for your efforts to support AfterShot Pro and your ASP plugins in 2014, and for all your ongoing efforts. The AfterShot user community really appreciates it, and we continue to get requests for more new and recompiled 64-bit plugins for AfterShot. There is real excitement about your creations! :-)

With this note I'd like to bring you up to date on some of our next steps for AfterShot Pro and our plugins framework. This message is primarily for plugin developers, but also has some information many of you may be interested to know.

Upgrading AfterShot Pro to Qt 5.4
The biggest news pertains to an update that will have far reaching improvements for the AfterShot Pro family. In a coming update, currently scheduled for March 2015, we plan to upgrade to the latest version of the development framework on which AfterShot Pro is built—Qt. Qt allows us to reuse our code efficiently, making it easier for us to deploy the AfterShot Pro family to Windows, Mac and Linux (and potentially other platforms). Upgrading to a more recent version of Qt, 5.4, will allow us to support high DPI displays including Retina on the Mac, something many users are asking for. However, this upgrade may cause a variety of additional issues while we complete the transition. Most notably, this will render our current plugins incompatible—all plugins will need to be recompiled. We respect how much effort goes into maintaining your plugins and so we wanted to advise you of this planned update as soon as we could. I'm sure you might have some questions pertaining to this update, so please read on for more details.

Compile Server
Some of you have wisely suggested that we provide a compile server to help you compile your plugins. We are now in the process of setting this environment up and will have a more detailed announcement coming soon.

Private Forum for Plugin Devs
In response to other requests, we’ve resurrected a private developers forum where devs can get together to discuss and collaborate on plugin related issues. This is a practice some of you found to be extremely helpful back in the Bibble days. Many of you have expressed your desire to see more plugins make their way to the 64-bit version of AfterShot Pro and this revived forum will help devs to connect and work out issues with our internal development team in a timelier manner, so we can bring you the plugins you’ve been waiting for in 64-bit under the new Qt framework.

Several plugin developers have already been granted access to the private platform. To gain access, simply login to your forum account and, on the main forum page, look under the Private Discussion heading at the bottom. If you are a plugin developer and do not already have access to the private forum, or if you want to get involved in the development of new plugins or recompiling plugins for the Qt 5.4 upgrade, please PM me to discuss your plans.

As I’ve said a few times already, 2015 is a big year for the photo team. We're looking forward to more exciting developments around ASP in the year ahead and we're keen for you to be part of that.
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby Tadjio » Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:29 pm

Good news, thanks Alex, and Happy New Year to you too!
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby ferdinand-paris » Wed Jan 14, 2015 11:47 pm

Thank you for the new forum. What I am about to say might best be said there, once I have access.

A recompile is a pain. If the SDK is unchanged, or doesn't require changes to existing plugins then it's less of a pain.

Before ASP2 life was simpler. There were three development environments required. Most people could manage two and Jonathan Knights compiled for the Mac. With 64 bit there are now six development environments required. It's very hard for any of us to run six, or even four, if Jonathan is able to run both 32 & 64 bit Mac versions. (It may be possible to compile for 32 & 64 bit in the same OS environment, but I could never get it to work.)

So if another recompile is required, you're going to give us more help this time. A compile server would be a big help, if it gave us access to all the six development environments.

My plugins are open source, and you're welcome to compile them six times on my behalf.
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby andreas » Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:10 am

Hi,

a compile server for all builds with automatic bundling would be cool. Would be a chance to deliver new versions of my plugins.

But give us early access to new API and test versions.

BTW: Compile server for tintin running here for linux. Tintin, perhaps you want to provide some pro and cons.

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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby BrianCee » Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:33 am

Sorry Alex - could you explain where this new developers forum is - we have not set up anything here - there has been a private forum here for the last couple of years or more which has restricted access to only those people who are registered as plug-in developers and agreed as such by the Corel employees leading the Aftershot programme

are you now looking for something different ? - are you suggesting everyone should have access to the developers forum
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby BrianCee » Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:37 am

ferdinand-paris - you already have access to the developers forum - have had for a long time - scroll down the main index page at
index.php - can you not see it ?

...
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby tintin » Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:28 pm

andreas wrote:But give us early access to new API and test versions.
+1
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby tintin » Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:39 pm

andreas wrote:Compile server for tintin running here for linux. Tintin, perhaps you want to provide some pro and cons.

pro's:
- no need to set up an linux/other environment(s) for the devs, incl. all administration and update(s)
- quick access/compiles of my plugins for other OSs (in this case here linux only)

the only con i see is, that the server-owner will have your code ;-)
maybe Corel could give a statement on that... theoretical possible scenario: it could potentially happen that the one or other plug-in functionality is suddenly a directly included function of ASP ;-)

br
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby Alex Brazeau » Thu Jan 15, 2015 7:54 pm

BrianCee wrote:could you explain where this new developers forum is... there has been a private forum here for the last couple of years which has restricted access to only those people who are registered as plug-in developers and agreed as such by the Corel employees leading the Aftershot programme. are you now looking for something different ? are you suggesting everyone should have access to the developers forum?

Hi Brian: No need to create an additional forum. The one I talked about resurrecting is the private forum you're referring to. Things should continue as they have, only instead of plugin devs posting development related questions or comments to this public forum, that discussion should now be taken to the restricted forum specifically for devs where they can chat more directly with other plugin developers and members of the photo team. Membership to that forum should remain the same and any new devs requiring access should request to become a member via a PM to me to discuss their plans, then I can follow up with you or Ken to have them added.

andreas wrote:But give us early access to new API and test versions.
tintin wrote:the only con i see is, that the server-owner will have your code ;-) maybe Corel could give a statement on that.

Both excellent ideas and questions. Let me connect with the product team and I'll come back to you shortly on these. Protecting your IP and the code you've developed is very important to us, so we'll draft an official statement/agreement for plugin developers to address those specific concerns. Thanks for weighing in.

-Alex
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby spoilerhead » Thu Jan 15, 2015 8:17 pm

About compile servers:

we got very good experience at work using Jenkins ( http://jenkins-ci.org/ ) it's pretty easy to deploy and maintain, and writing jobs for it is quite trivial.
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby -cr » Fri Jan 16, 2015 11:17 am

Happy new year to you and the rest of the ASP team at Corel, Alex!

This announcement is good news.
There's one part that worries me, though:
Alex Brazeau wrote:[...] Most notably, this will render our current plugins incompatible—all plugins will need to be recompiled. [...]

While I see why this is necessary, not having my most used plugins available will make me hesitant to switch to a new ASP version - which is also why I'm not running a 64 bit ASP, yet. The plugins I'm most worried about here are those that have been supplied by developers who have either abandoned ASP or find little time for its support; I'm talking about Nostalgia (and Nuance, which I don't use that often) by Sean M. Puckett and GradFilter by Roger Barnes (all in the paid-for version with extended functionality, btw.). Please do try to get their support when you release a new ASP with an incompatible plugin API!

... and a big "thank you!" to all the other plugin developers for their continued support of ASP!
(In case you're interested: I also use WaveletSharpen, zPerspector, and FatToni on a regular basis. ...and I did send spoilerhead and tintin a donation or two, if I remember correctly. :)
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby Hobgoblin » Fri Jan 16, 2015 1:27 pm

-cr wrote:Happy new year to you and the rest of the ASP team at Corel, Alex!

This announcement is good news.
There's one part that worries me, though:
Alex Brazeau wrote:[...] Most notably, this will render our current plugins incompatible—all plugins will need to be recompiled. [...]

While I see why this is necessary, not having my most used plugins available will make me hesitant to switch to a new ASP version - which is also why I'm not running a 64 bit ASP, yet. The plugins I'm most worried about here are those that have been supplied by developers who have either abandoned ASP or find little time for its support; I'm talking about Nostalgia (and Nuance, which I don't use that often) by Sean M. Puckett and GradFilter by Roger Barnes (all in the paid-for version with extended functionality, btw.). Please do try to get their support when you release a new ASP with an incompatible plugin API!

... and a big "thank you!" to all the other plugin developers for their continued support of ASP!
(In case you're interested: I also use WaveletSharpen, zPerspector, and FatToni on a regular basis. ...and I did send spoilerhead and tintin a donation or two, if I remember correctly. :)

Very well put.
I should like to second those thoughts.
The need to ensure that all currently working plugins are transitioned to any newer version of ASP should be considered, by Corel, to be an absolute neccessity.
That does mean a far more pro-active approach from Corel to ALL plugin developers, past and present.

Regards,
R
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby afx » Fri Jan 16, 2015 2:19 pm

As Sean bluntly refuses to answer any mails that even mention Corel or AfterShot, I think we can kiss his plugins goodbye ;-(

Thanks to SilikonBonk, the need for Nostalgia has greatly diminished, still it will be sorely missed.

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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby ferdinand-paris » Sat Jan 17, 2015 12:16 am

BrianCee wrote:ferdinand-paris - you already have access to the developers forum - have had for a long time - scroll down the main index page at
index.php - can you not see it ?
...

Thanks Brian, got it! It was hidden in more ways than one.

I read these forums through a search link that I constructed that shows the latest posts in the ASP forums, since I have no interest in the others. I've had to add the new forum to this URL, which was
search.php?search_id=active_topics&fid[]=90&fid[]=94&fid[]=95&fid[]=96&sc=1&sr=posts&submit=Search
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Re: Announcement for Plugin Developers

Postby andreas » Sat Jan 17, 2015 5:05 pm

please tell us if your link works. adding the new forum in my search link does not work. In that case it lists no new post. even if some exists.
http://forum.corel.com/EN/search.php?search_id=unreadposts&fid%5B%5D=93,96,94,95,90,92
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