After I raised some concerns about the music lense, I got some feedback
that made me think. Didier Roche asked me how we can make it better.
I had the TV on in the background the other day and there was a
documentary on. The narrator kept referring to "the damn wall". I
thought it was rather peculiar language for a Discovery documentary, so
I had to investigate. It turned out that it was about the "Dambusters"
who blew up a nazi dam during the second world war. If you get a single
crack in the dam wall, then that wall is coming down. The same can be
said about trust. If the emotional trust is broken, then a relationship
might be lost even if there's still some rational trust. A user might be
calmed by the fact that only searches for music is sent online, but I'm
a little bit worried that some might not be able to shake the question:
"yes, but how do I know?". The feeling that the crack might expand just
doesn't make you want to invest in it. I wrote to Didier that a bottle
is either water-proof or leaking. That's not entirely true, of course. A
bottle is supposed to leak, but only when and how you want it to.
So how do we make the lenses and scopes work the way we want it to,
without making it complicated and without introducing any privacy
concerns? For the music lense in isolation, this would be very easy. A
checkbox "search online" or "use u1ms" would suffice. But we want lots
of lenses and scopes, don't we? So what happens when I get a Google Docs
scope? Should it be told about all my file searches? In some cases,
maybe that'd be fine. In others, it would be completely unacceptable.
What if we learn from JACK? They manage many inputs and many outputs.
Sounds perfect for lenses and scopes. That is, we'd have our lenses on
the left and our scopes to the right. Then we could just connect our
lenses to the scopes we wanted to use and disconnect them just as
easily. The default scope would always be personal data and nothing
else, but it would be easy to add others. You'd want to use the u1ms
scope, of course, but wouldn't it be nice if you could also have a music
scope for your local radio channel so that you could choose to purchase
the last song they played? And wouldn't it be nice if a sales manager
could connect to the recent customers scope of the salesmen in her team
so she could easily find a customer if anyone had a question? Obviously,
when you installed a new scope, it would be able to add itself -- with
I'm sure there are thousands of use cases, but that also means we must
have a flexible way of managing them. Until we do, I propose that the
online searches for the music lense be deactivated for Oneiric and use
the time to come up with a proper way to deal with this issue and to
make it both more flexible and user friendly. Searching u1ms through the
music lense, is not a killer feature (though it is nice), but does have
a potential to fuel some FUD and I don't think it's worth it. Better to
really _launch_ it in April.
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