Photon landing strategy

Justin Dolske dolske at mozilla.com
Fri Mar 31 21:52:13 UTC 2017


As I understand Dao's point (and I could be -- *gasp* -- wrong)...

The issue is that the longer we have Photon conditional on some pref
(whatever that is, technically), and thus the more code that's involved,
the more unwieldy it becomes overall. Totally not an issue for a couple of
weeks, totally a nightmare if it was a couple of years. Similarly,
refactorings to optimize for the Photon end-state are more difficult the
longer we need to keep both alive in parallel.

It's a fair concern, but I'm not sure if there a way to quantify it more
firmly. So, yes, delaying the start of the 57 cycle by 8 weeks means having
to deal with this issue for longer. I've not thought about it deeply yet,
but so far it feels like an incremental complication that we'll just have
to deal with. Possible there's impact I'm not seeing?

Justin

On Fri, Mar 31, 2017 at 1:47 PM, Gijs Kruitbosch <gkruitbosch at mozilla.com>
wrote:

> I wanted to follow-up here in light of the thread about Dawn and plans
> about aurora. You voiced concerns there that longer nightly cycles would
> make the life of Photon devs harder. I'd like to understand those concerns
> better. AIUI, ifdefs and/or prefs would be workable and a longer nightly
> cycle wouldn't really make a difference there, right? We'll have to write
> the ifdefs/prefs anyway...
>
> Related brainwave: I wonder if we could have a general pref here and
> expose it in CSS as a custom (-moz-photon) media query (via small amounts
> of CSS c++ code hooked up to a prefcache). That would avoid ifdefs for the
> CSS and would also avoid forks / custom themes, and it would mean that
> toggling the pref would immediately update the UI, more or less for free
> (minus invalidation issues, which in an ideal world don't exist, but at
> least it won't be a build-time switch!).
>
> In general, if it's possible to end up with pref switches rather than
> ifdefs, that would be preferable, IMO, as it reduces the threshold to test
> this stuff out, and makes it easier to quickly test a change in both
> settings / versions, without rebuilding.
>
> ~ Gijs
>
>
> On 30/03/2017 09:42, Dão Gottwald wrote:
>
> It's quite possible. Could just be a different theme folder with a
> build-time switch. However, I don't see how that's better than a project
> branch. It seems like a different way to fork stuff with roughly the same
> overhead due to having to synchronize it.
>
> 2017-03-30 0:04 GMT+02:00 Mike Conley <mconley at mozilla.com>:
>
>> Hey folks,
>>
>> Not sure if my suggestion got lost in the shuffle, or if it's malodourous
>> / obvious enough that it didn't prompt reply, but would landing the
>> appearance changes as a new complete theme be out of the question? I know
>> we're tearing out the support for that stuff, at least for third-party
>> extensions, but for this kind of theme development, it seems quite well
>> suited.
>>
>> Or am I wrong?
>>
>> -Mike
>>
>> On 29 March 2017 at 08:37, Dão Gottwald <dgottwald at mozilla.com> wrote:
>>
>>> 2017-03-29 14:18 GMT+02:00 Gijs Kruitbosch <gkruitbosch at mozilla.com>:
>>>
>>>> On 29/03/2017 11:42, Dão Gottwald wrote:
>>>>
>>>> 2017-03-28 14:22 GMT+02:00 Gijs Kruitbosch <gkruitbosch at mozilla.com>:
>>>>
>>>>> On 28/03/2017 08:06, Chris Peterson wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>> It seems like some of the smaller visible UI changes could probably
>>>>>> ship in 55/56 without needing a pref. Users probably won't notice some of
>>>>>> the UI polish features until everything is into place in 57. Shipping these
>>>>>> smaller bits in 55/56 would give us more testing.
>>>>>>
>>>>> Can you elaborate on this? What are "small visible UI changes" that
>>>>> users "won't notice"? I'm skeptical these even exists, looking at (for
>>>>> instance) things like https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/s
>>>>> how_bug.cgi?id=1345989 . https://xkcd.com/1172/ comes to mind... And
>>>>> yes, of course these are extreme examples, but I'm also looking at the
>>>>> mockups I've seen and thinking I don't see anything that falls in the
>>>>> "small polish" category in our main theming & structural changes.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> You're reading Chris too literally.
>>>>
>>>> I fail to understand what is "literal" about my reading and how yours
>>>> is less so, and I'm disappointed that you're turning an honest question
>>>> into "you're (reading it) wrong".
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> No need to take it personally, I was just trying to answer your
>>> question. Clearly, there is no UI change that is guaranteed to go unnoticed
>>> with every single user. Reworded as "most users won't notice", are you
>>> still skeptical that such changes exist?
>>>
>>>
>>>> We're not trying to make it look like there were no changes at all
>>>> between 54, 55 and 56, but the changes shouldn't particularly stand out and
>>>> take away from Photon.
>>>>
>>>> <snip>
>>>> For the visual refresh, I'm trying to be smart and divide the work into
>>>> parts that can be tackled early and parts that should wait. Nihanth is
>>>> going to start with integrating our new SVG toolbar button icons in bug
>>>> 1347543 -- this should land when it's ready (I've checked with shorlander,
>>>> he's fine with this)
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> I wouldn't have thought that changing the icons over to the Photon icon
>>>> set would be something we'd do before 57, as that's pretty noticeable.
>>>>
>>>> (To be clear, I'm not arguing that we shouldn't do this stuff prior to
>>>> 57 if people are on board with it, but to me this is a surprising example
>>>> of "small changes".)
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> From what I've seen the icons are a bit sharper and thinner, but in the
>>> grand scheme of things it's a rather subtle and incremental change.
>>>
>>> dao
>>>
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>>> Photon-dev at mozilla.org
>>> https://mail.mozilla.org/listinfo/photon-dev
>>>
>>>
>>
>
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