Why OpenRepos is needed? If you dont like reading lots of text, watch colorful slides! :-D
So, what the idea?
Lots of developers distribute their applications via own sites, repos, or even via direct links to fileservers and dropbox. It's a luck if developer have true repo, which can be added by user to his device. But instead, user installs single version of application and cant provide any feedback, cant receive the updates(ofcourse we are talking about apps which dont have internal in-app updates notification system).
OpenRepos provides personal repository for any developer. Binary and source distributions are allowed. Source packages will be builded against selected platforms.
On top of that, we have base catalogue with information and screenshots provided by developers or extracted directly from uploaded packages.
That part of OpenRepos works exactly the same way as any other content delivery system do, like ovi store, n9-apps, etc.
Except for we dont have "single-big-repository", where all uploaded content is stored. User enables and subscribes only to repositories he truly needs.
In addition to standard "main" personal repositories, "beta" or even "paid" repositories with restricted access will be provided in the future. Thats the time you should know, that OpenRepos provides a feature called "repos mixing".
Whats that you may ask? Well, it's not very complicated :) Mixed repos are like lists of applications.
Any OpenRepos user can create mixed repository. Then user can cherry-pick any apps he wants, from any personal repository. During that process, list attaches into application sinkhole. When attached, all currently available versions of application(by the time of attachement) are pulled into newly created repo.
Now user has his own mixed repo, with application he selected. Repository is available to the public with the following settings(for Harmattan platform):
deb http://harmattan.openrepos.net/username mixed reponame
and now anyone can subscribe to that repository, if he likes the applications inside, or trust maintainers choise.
When developer of original application upload new version for his application, notification about that version appears at mixed repo configuration panel, and if changes are good, maintainer of this mixed repo approves new version and it is pulled. Main feature of that approach is that users will need to redownload repository metainfo only when chosen applications have been updated.
If you wish, you can create as many lists as you want, or pull whole application base into one single list. It's all up to you now, you are the maintainer of application lists.
Create own list, add worthy applications, and users will subscribe to your mixed repo.