Frequently asked questions about the OSDash project
1. What is the OSDash project?
The OSDash project is a project to build plug-ins as services that can be accessed by any front end through an open source and standardized interface and methods. It consists of a client that runs on the pc and a server that provides access to web services that run out on the web. In addition, a web-based configuration tool is used to control which services are available and how they will work.
This architecture allows any car pc that runs the client to access the services and use them in the front end. Developers can write them once and make them accessible to all front ends while front-end enthusiasts can integrate them into the program of their choice. Freely, transparently, and openly. For more information, see this thread
or view a visual explanation
of what OSDash is.
2. I don't get it. What is the problem that this solves?
Traditionally web services used by the various front ends had to be implemented one at a time, sometimes multiple times for each of the different providers. Should any of the service providers change their data structure the FE would require an update before it started working again.
With OSDash, developers implement each service only a single time and yet have access to dozens of providers. Since the data source is under our control there is no risk of a data source changing its structure. Even if one of the providers does, this can be corrected server side with no adverse effects to the end-user.
3. Is this project open source?
4. How will it work?
There are 4 parts to the OSDash story: Web Service, Web frontend, Client Library and Platform Specific Implementation. 5. What front ends use OSDash?
The Web Service does all the background work and provides data to the web frontend and the client.
The Web Frontend is a web page that users can goto to change settings and view data.
The Client Library is a development tool that runs on the users hardware (a carpc).
The Platform Specific Implementation is done by your favorite frontend developer. He uses the Client Library to interface with the Web Service and provide pretty, easy to use user interface on your touchscreen.
Currently LinuxICE, openMobile plan on implementing OSDash services but others are welcome. The client library required to access the web service is freely distributable under the LGPL license and can run on any operating system. Source code for the project is all available from the sourceforge project page and implementation guides for any front end will be available on the mp3car forums.
6. Who is involved with this project?
This is a crowd sourced project with community members and mp3car contributing ideas, designs, time, and resources to the project.
7. Where can I get a technical overview of the project? Stuff like architecture, technical documentation and so forth?
8. How can I get involved?
Requirements documents list is here
. Check each of the sub-forums for threads on the technical details for the component you are interested in (e.g. the details for the server would be in the server forum)
We definitely need help in all areas but particularly in writing services for front ends to consume. Got an idea for a service? Want to program a service but need an idea? Check out this thread of proposed services
and their status.
9. What type of services are you talking about?
10. What is the roadmap for this project?
11. When was this project started?
The OSDash project was started in December of 2009.
12. Whose idea was it?