The Future of Titanium Desktop

Titanium Desktop is a remarkable open source project.  The ability to deploy a Webkit-based desktop application across all three major desktop operating systems, with privileged access to native APIs, has empowered web developers to escape the browser and deliver rich, “always on” desktop apps.  Today, we’re announcing the next phase of the Desktop project, as we call for leaders and contributors in the Desktop development community to take the reins and decide Titanium Desktop’s future.
With the increasing divergence in architecture between Titanium Desktop and Titanium Mobile, we feel the time is now right to spin off the Desktop project into a separate, community-driven project.  If you are interested in helping chart the course of the Desktop project in the future, please join us on this mailing list as we take the first steps toward establishing an independent governance and technical leadership structure for the Desktop project.
Our decision to split Desktop off into its own project is not a reflection on the technology its self, but rather on our goals and focus as a company.  Appcelerator is committed to delivering the best mobile application development platform in the world, and we feel that we need to focus in 100% on that goal.
The new Desktop project, which will undergo a name change from Titanium Desktop, will be governed and developed by the Desktop community, with material, administrative and logistical support from Appcelerator, but limited development resources. From the Appcelerator side, I will be acting as the liaison for this community to Appcelerator, and facilitate any action or assistance that needs to be rendered from our end. To participate actively in the transition, please join the Google Group here:
Below is a rough roadmap of what changes we intend to make, and when we would like to make them.

  • January 2012:
  • Call for participation in the Desktop community
  • Interested parties will sign up for an ad hoc group of potential developers and contributors (titanium-desktop-transition Google group)
  • Open call for alternative names for Titanium Desktop, as the Titanium brand will remain only for what is today the titanium_mobile codebase
  • Governance structures will be put in place for this project, modeled loosely after other major community-driven software projects, such as jQuery.
  • Nominations for a project board of directors will take place.  Board of directors will form the primary governance structure for the reformed Titanium Desktop project
  • Board will govern the project by parliamentary procedure (Motions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parliamentary_motion) – majority rules on project decisions.
  • Project wiki and web site created
  • February 2012
  • Board will appoint a technical lead for the desktop project.  Appcelerator will work to provide GitHub repository administration and any administrative support needed
  • Development support will be provided as best we can to help facilitate the transition to a new technical lead, and to get the project off to a rolling start
  • Technical lead will provide a roadmap for the next release version of the Desktop SDK.  Can use Appcelerator JIRA or a bug reporting suite of their choosing
  • Technical lead will submit a list of JIRA or work items for approval as the backlog for the 1.0 release of the re-branded Desktop
  • March 2012
  • Backlog will be worked through by interested peers in the Desktop community
  • When the backlog has been depleted, the technical lead will create a release of the desktop software.
  • Technical lead and board of directors will begin work on the next phase of the roadmap.
  • NOTE: Desktop project support dropped from Titanium Studio by end of month
  • NOTE: Appcelerator-managed desktop packaging servers may be taken down at this time – we may leave them up slightly longer, but reserve the right to shut down the service at this time
  • API and reference documentation for Titanium Desktop 1.1 moved to new project web properties
  • September-December 2012
  • Assuming the completion of a release or releases by the newly formed Desktop team, Appcelerator will initiate an application for contributing the Desktop codebase to both the Apache Software Foundation and the Free Software Conservancy, with whom we’ve already been in contact.
  • If accepted to either, financial sponsorship and the transition of authority will pass from Appcelerator to the new sponsor.

Once again, we encourage all members of the Titanium Desktop community to be a part of this project.  We think there is a bright future for the Desktop project, and look forward to supporting its community in the next phase of the project’s development.