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Actually Using It: Doing Cool Things with Telepathy

The Telepathy real-time communications framework (http://telepathy.freedesktop.org/) is a rapidly developing project to abstract messaging, presence, voice and video functionality, regardless of the underlying protocol. Amongst numerous benefits, this makes the connections available as a D-Bus service which can be shared between multiple applications on the desktop (or embedded device, or small script, ...), rather than limited to single monolithic jack-of-all-trades clients.

Now in it's third year, the Telepathy project has historically suffered from its bottom-up design, and been regarded as a complex beast for developers to actually start using in their projects. The project now has a strong focus on escaping from this by creating documentation, putting an emphasis on providing convenient APIs, and encouraging application developers to take its functionality and integrate it into their user experience. As part of these efforts, a Telepathy-based IM client, Empathy, is being added to the GNOME desktop in the next version, making Telepathy backends available on users' desktops for other applications to integrate with.

This talk will introduce the Telepathy framework, its basic concepts and current functionality, show the progress in these efforts to make it more accessible to developers, and provide some examples and hopefully inspiration of how its power can be unleashed on the desktop or in your next project.

Robert McQueen



Robert McQueen is the leader of the Telepathy project to develop a real-time communications framework for the desktop and embedded devices. He studied Computer Science at the University of Cambridge and has in the past worked on Debian and Pidgin (formerly Gaim), and contributed to the Jingle standards for VOIP/Video over XMPP. He is now lucky enough to work on free software full-time as one of the directors of Collabora Ltd, who support the development of Telepathy.