GXml: bringing Serialisation for GSOC 2012

Hello there.  Here is a quick post because I haven't posted yet, but I am still a bit busy this week.

For GSOC 2012, we're adding XML serialisation of GObjects to GXml!  Whee!  For details, here is the proposal.  I'm happy to be working with my mentor from last year, Alberto Ruiz, again.

Since last summer, the amazing Daniel Espinosa Ortiz added autotools and useful GObject Introspection support.  Hooray!  Sadly, WAF support has languished a little and so have the tests.  My inadequate attempt to push libxml2 vala binding changes upstream also didn't go far, as most of my time went towards my Masters (two semesters to go!).  I'm pleased to be a part of the 2012 Google Summer of Code and grateful for the opportunity to focus time this summer on GXml again (rather than taking another unrelated (albeit exciting) Teaching Assistant position :D). 

So far, I've been

  • investigating other serialisation libraries, such as Java's serialisable interface, XStream, JsonGlib, .NET's XML serialisation, and Buzztard's BtPersistence.  I'm grateful to Emmanuele Bassi for answering questions about JsonGlib so far. 

  • fixing bitrot: I got waf working again, have the tests working again, and have addressed feedback on the vala libxml2 binding patch I originally submitted (and am making better progress now with it split up as a series of patches, thanks to reviews by the timely Evan Nemerson :D).  Relevant bug numbers filed today include 677375, 677374, 677359, 677355, 677354 if anyone's interested.

  • playing with serialisation.  Part of my thesis wants it, so I have a prototype with that, and I have a quick prototype trying to use JsonGlib's approach, but with XML.  This is just for self-educational purpose.

Coming up, an actual design needs to be agreed upon and plans on integrating the new functionality with other people.  Whee! 

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