Student Project Ideas
If you are interested in participating in the Google Summer of Code program with wxWidgets, we have prepared a list of some potential projects you could work on below. Please see our main Summer of Code page for details on how to apply.
Please notice that this list is not exclusive, ie that you can submit proposals to work on projects which are not listed here – but please post to wx-dev mailing list to discuss them first if you plan to do this.
Notice that the projects are sorted roughly in order of their importance:
- wxiOS: Continue the porting project started during GSoC 2011.
- Frozen grid columns/rows: Add support for “freezing”, i.e. fixing in place while the rest of the grid is scrolled, of rows or columns in wxGrid.
- Multi-touch gestures support: Support for multi-touch gestures.
- Power Management: Cross platform support for power management events.
- Cross Platform System Sound: Provide a way to play various “system sounds”.
- Cross Platform Animation: Finish the implementation of the animation API started during GSoC 2011.
- Several wxWebView-related projects:
- wxRichTextCtrl RTL Support: Support right-to-left languages and BiDi in wxRichTextCtrl.
- wxAUI Native Art Providers: Make wxAUI blend in better with native rendering methods on each platform.
- wxOpenGLGraphicsContext: Create a wxGraphicsContext renderer using OpenGL for drawing.
- wxQt: Improve the port for Qt support under Linux/Android, targeting fully featured apps like wxPython Phoenix (see GSoC 2010 and 2014)
Alternatively, you could decide to select a project depending on your background, so that if you are a…
- Linux hacker – then you could be interested in cross-platform power management or system sound projects.
- Mac guru – then, in addition to the two projects above, you could be interested in wxiOS.
- Mobile enthusiast – then wxiOS could be exciting for you.
- Somebody else – tell us what could be interesting for you!
Improve wxiOS port
A previous GSoC project has created the basics of a wxWidgets port to iOS. The task for this year would be to make this port really usable and complete the missing parts.
In particular the wxiOS branch, in which all the work had been done up to now, would need to be merged into the mainline and all standard controls would need to be implemented. Note that part of this project – which ideally should be done before submitting the proposal to work on it – would consist of building the existing wxiOS sources and ascertaining its current state.
Stefan Csomor, Václav Slavik
Familiarity with Cocoa/iOS.
Implement support for frozen rows/columns in wxGrid
The goal is to implement support for freezing some rows or columns in wxGrid, i.e. fixing them in place while allowing the rest of the grid contents to scroll. At the very least, it should be possible to freeze a single row at either top or bottom of the window, as this is commonly used to implement header or footer rows, but ideally all possible combinations of freezing single or multiple rows or columns at either side of the grid window should be supported.
This is a difficult project as implementing this feature will require updating the existing wxGrid code to deal with the consequences and it is not impossible that relatively major changes in it would be required. On the other side, wxGrid is entirely implemented in wxWidgets itself, so unlike almost all the other projects in this list, this project can be implemented entirely under a single platform.
No specific requirements.
Support multi-touch gestures
The goal of this project is to generate wxWidgets events for the multi-touch gestures recognized by the underlying system and, possibly, also the raw touches which compose them. But it’s adding support for the high level events, such as “zoom”, “pan” or “rotate” which is the most important part of this project.
Modern desktop systems all support sending such events but do it in different ways, so the first part of this project will be to find a subset of events and information carried by them sufficiently rich to be useful, yet also supported by more than one, and ideally by all three, major platforms.
Eric Jensen, Stefan Csomor
Ability to work with more than one platform is definitely required.
Power management under non-Windows platforms
wxWidgets has support for power events but it’s currently only implemented on Windows and doesn’t work for Vista and later systems right now, e.g. it’s impossible to prevent the system from suspending in this way (which was used until Windows XP) any more. The goal of this project would be to update power management support for Windows Vista/7 (which is simple to do, see this thread) and, most importantly, also implement them for Linux and/or OS X. This will include devising an API which can be implemented on all platforms and actually implementing it for Windows and at least one of Linux/OS X (and ideally both).
Paul Cornett, Stefan Csomor
Linux part will require the use of DBUS and/or DeviceKit so experience using them would be handy. OS X part obviously would be easier with some prior experience with this platform (foundation level) API.
Cross-platform animation support
Animations are becoming and more important in the modern UIs but are not yet supported by wxWidgets. The goal of this project would be to allow simple to use cross-platform (including falling back to suppressing animations entirely on the systems that don’t support them) API for animating parts of the program UI.
This project has been started during GSoC 2011 but never brought to completion. The goal would be to revisit the work done so far and finish the implementation of it for Windows and Cocoa.
Notice that in 2011 there was no simple way to support animation with GTK+, but if this has changed since then, working on GTK-specific implementation would be welcome too and could replace Windows or Cocoa part of this work.
Cross platform support for playing system sounds
wxWidgets provides a
wxBell() function which is as simple as it gets and the
wxSound class which allows sound files to be played but requires the file (or
sound data) to be present and produces the same result under all platforms
(meaning that it won’t sound good on any of them). The goal of this project
would be to provide a way to play various “system sounds” in a simple and
portable way and respecting the user settings (in particular, not play anything
at all if the sound effects are turned off).
Difficulty is 5 is for a minimal usable implementation, 7 for something sufficiently powerful to represent libcanberra API while still being implementable on the other platforms.
Experience with the platforms being targeted would be welcome.
- Windows example (not sure if this is the best way though)
- OS X system sound reference
- libcanberra from Freedesktop, i.e. modern Linux systems.
Make wxWebView more configurable
The goal of this project would be to add the necessary API to allow for such “controlled” use of wxWebView. Notice that ideally this would need to be done for all three of the existing backends, ie Internet Explorer, WebKit and Chromium, and at the very least for the first two.
Steven Lamerton, Vadim Zeitlin
Any experience with using
IID_IWebBrowser and/or WebKit would be helpful.
wxWebView currently provides a simple
RunScript() function for running
would be required that ensures uniform behaviour across the different backends.
Before applying for this project please contact the wx-dev mailing list as
further research is required.
Steven Lamerton, Vadim Zeitlin
wxWebView Cookies and Downloads
Currently wxWebView does not support cookies. This has been implemented as a GTK+ specific patch, but this is not useful for a cross-platform library. The idea here would be to implement a cross-platform API for this that supports at least GTK+, Windows, and OSX - covering “the big three” platforms usually required for new additions to wxWidgets.
Additionally, wxWebView has no way of managing file downloads. At a minimum, we would require a download request event available to be tied into, but ideally providing a full API for managing multiple downloads, and tracking status is desired.
Considering how similar these two projects are, and the approximate time required to implement both, the proposal here is to join both tasks into one potential project for Summer of Code.
Steven Lamerton, Bryan Petty, Stefano Mtangoo
Any experience with using
IID_IWebBrowser and WebKit would be helpful.
Right-to-left languages support in wxRichTextCtrl
The goal is to support right-to-left languages such as Hebrew, including support for composing individual diacritics from within wxRichTextCtrl.
This will also require improving support for the entry of Unicode characters in wxWidgets globally, ie adding events for various IME actions and so would be useful even for the programs not using wxRichTextCtrl.
Julian Smart, Vadim Zeitlin
Good knowledge of Unicode and BiDi would be helpful. Knowledge of IME under different platforms is also needed.
Native art providers for wxAUI
The goal is to make wxAUI blend in better on a set of platforms, particularly on Mac, GTK+ and Windows 7. The original wxAUI art is rather Windows XP-like and it should be possible to take colours from the current theme and apply them to wxAUI. Mostly this will be writing separate art provider classes, but occasionally it may be necessary to dig deeper into the wxAUI code.
No platform-specific experience is needed as the art provider should behave in the same way under all platforms.
- The ribbon classes, implemented as a GSoC 2009 project, has customisable art and demonstrates a Vista/Windows 7-like art mode.
- wxRendererNative documentation
The goal is to create a wxGraphicsContext implementation that uses OpenGL for (2D) drawing.
Advantages over current wxGraphicsContext renderers would be hardware accelerated and consistent output on all three major platforms (Windows, Linux, OS X).
Eric Jensen, Manuel Martin
Improve wxQt port
Previous GSoC 2010 and GSoC 2014 projects (plus several major contributions) had created an experimental wxWidgets port using Qt, initially targeted to simple applications. The task for this year would be to advance and complete the missing parts, so that the port would be full-featured enough to be used for real applications and also be used by wxPython under Linux and Android too.
The wxQt port has been already merged into the mainline with most of the standard controls implemented, but it need some maintenance due minor changes in wxWidgets and Qt, along with other possible low-level improvements (i.e. event loop).
There is a pending Pull Request needing attention, that would be a great starting point to begin with, in order to fix known issues and ascertain the project’s current state –ideally should be done before submitting the proposal–.
Also, there are some miscellaneous controls, dialogs and major features missing (including printing framework, drag and drop, etc.), see wxQt Status.
This is an ambitious project at this stage, so expect to learn a lot about technical topics like low-level multi-platform support, core desktop and mobile applications development, deep C++ programming concepts, toolkit internals, etc.
Mariano Reingart (prior GSoC student)
Familiarity with Qt, Linux, Android and optionally wxPython.