[PC-BSD Pbi-dev] pbidir suggestion

Sam Lin semin2006 at gmail.com
Sun Dec 26 21:52:40 PST 2010

Hi -

Some suggestions regarding improving pbiDIR (both pbidir.com and
Software Browser, and perhaps the Kickoff Application Launcher too).

1. It would be helpful for users to use additional keywords to search
the pbi database as some ports (hence their PBIs) are quite hard to
find solely with its name. For instance, if I need math/R and enter
"R" on pbidir.com, it will give me a long list of pbi which contains
this character whereas the exact PBI "R" locates in the middle of the
fifth page. If I try the same search in Software Browser, the Browser
also gives me a long list with everything contains the character "r"
but then clicking on the next page will give me a message "No PBI
found for your search criteria" which then switch back to its homepage
within a second or two. Like this, it's sometimes almost impossible to
dig out the buried PBI unless you know in what category that PBI is
located. In our example, it is under "Math" but I wouldn't surprise if
others thought it's under "Educational", "Office" or even

To make pbidir easier to use, it would be good to allow users search
for PBIs with additional options... perhaps something like what
freebsd.org/ports or freshports provide.

2. Another thing is that I think the structure of pbidir and that of
"Application" in KDE4 need to be re-organised as sometimes it is a bit
confusing when a specific PBI is required. Let's take the previously
stated R as example again. The statistical package is under the
category "math" in the FreeBSD port tree, and under "Mathematics" in
pbidir, whereas it is under "Utilities" in PCBSD kickoff Application
Launcher. I confess that I should have made this PBI to be installed
under "Education/Mathematics" when I created the module (this will be
fixed shortly), but the point is that we need to find a way to sort
out the possible inconsistency in the location of an application in
FreeBSD port tree/pbidir/Kickoff Launcher. Another confusing example
is Emacs - this is listed in "editors", "ipv6" and many other
categories in the port tree/freshports, listed in "Office" in pbidir
whereas can be found in "System" in the Kickoff Launcher (!?).

3. I cannot remember which PBI for now but I noticed that in pbidir
some PBIs have thumbnails with a very large file size... some of them
are even as large as 2~3MB - obviously overwhelming as a thumbnail
which is supposed to have been some KB in size. Also some thumbnails
are utterly blurry and some others are plain broken (for instance,
Opera). These thumbnail images need to be polished when time.


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