improving the appstream metadata

kendell clark coffeekingms at
Thu Jul 9 23:47:17 UTC 2015

Hash: SHA512

hi all
I'd like to help improve two key areas of fedora and by extension,
gnome. They both have to do with appstream, which is, I think, what
gnome software uses to display metadata about a package, license,
description, etc. The first is the data itself. Some packages are
missing the metadata. The second has to do with handling of unknown
mime types. Whenever the system comes up with a file type it can't
handle it opens up gnome software to install something that can handle
that type. Usually this results in a generic "unfortunately, we
couldn't find anything to handle this type" message. I'd like to fix
this. I'm just not sure how this works. Looking in my appstream data
in /usr/share/appdata, I see that some applications have two files.
applicationName.appdata.xml, which is the metadata, license,
description, etc. And appName.metainfo.xml, which looks like what I'm
looking for. Would it be at all possible to parse the .desktop file
for  applications and extract the mime type data from there? This
would improve the accuracy significantly since most desktop files say
what mime types they can handle. We could then use the data to
generate either an appstream file or a metainfo file. This might not
need much work, all it would need would be changes to
appstream-builder and possibly either an extension to the freedesktop
desktop file standard or adding extra tags, something like
x-license="license"  and x-description="description". Sorry if I'm
getting a little technical. I'm also trying to figure out how gnome
software finds applications when typed into the search field. Most of
the time, typing in an application name results in a "no application
found" message, even though that app is indeed available. Is this
related to the appstream data again? Or is there something else? A
good example is orca, the screen reader. Type orca into gnome software
and you'll get an error message. I hope this isn't the wrong place to
write this, but it was the only one I could think of.
Thanks for reading
Kendell clark
Version: GnuPG v2


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