Linked by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 15th Aug 2010 18:31 UTC
KDE KDE reaches out to another device form factor. Plasma's plugin-based design is at work again, after launching KDE special netbook interface. This time around, the KDE team presents its Plasma Tablet interface.
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Comment by ddc_
by ddc_ on Sun 15th Aug 2010 19:47 UTC
ddc_
Member since:
2006-12-05

The weakness of most UIs on tablets is text input - You need a sane virtual keyboard to be not very much annoying, taking right place, always close by but still somewhere out of Your siht until needed. This is well done in Android and iOS. Here seems to be non-existent.

Actully too far from usable state yet...

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by ddc_
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 15th Aug 2010 21:44 UTC in reply to "Comment by ddc_"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Nobody is claiming that the Tablet interface is currently usable. In fact, Marco Martin clearly wrote that it is still experimental.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Comment by ddc_
by mart on Sun 15th Aug 2010 22:07 UTC in reply to "Comment by ddc_"
mart Member since:
2005-11-17

on screen keyboard:
yes, we are working on it (some time ago i shown an early stage of it on the blog).

this will also depend on what platform it will run.
Somewhere it could use an already present system-wide one, or have to use whatever system wide standard way to make it appear when and only when is necessary...

but anyways yes, all is at early stages of development, and work is going quite fast.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Comment by ddc_
by WereCatf on Mon 16th Aug 2010 00:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by ddc_"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

this will also depend on what platform it will run.
Somewhere it could use an already present system-wide one, or have to use whatever system wide standard way to make it appear when and only when is necessary...


I find the way Opera Mobile does this on my Nokia N900 to be extremely good and would absolutely love to have it in more apps than just one: it shows the virtual keyboard only when you tap on a field that accepts input, zooms in on what you are typing, and hides the keyboard when you tap on "Ready", outside the input area, or you open the hardware keyboard. It also has enough spacing between the virtual keys and numbers aren't accessible by default; you tap on a key with '123' written on it to switch to special characters and numbers. This saves space and makes the keyboard visibly less cluttered.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by ddc_
by Chicken Blood on Mon 16th Aug 2010 03:14 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by ddc_"
Chicken Blood Member since:
2005-12-21

this will also depend on what platform it will run.
Somewhere it could use an already present system-wide one, or have to use whatever system wide standard way to make it appear when and only when is necessary...

I find the way Opera Mobile does this on my Nokia N900 to be extremely good and would absolutely love to have it in more apps than just one: it shows the virtual keyboard only when you tap on a field that accepts input, zooms in on what you are typing, and hides the keyboard when you tap on "Ready", outside the input area, or you open the hardware keyboard. It also has enough spacing between the virtual keys and numbers aren't accessible by default; you tap on a key with '123' written on it to switch to special characters and numbers. This saves space and makes the keyboard visibly less cluttered.


Sounds pretty much the same as on iOS. Except without the hardware keyboard of course.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by ddc_
by ichi on Mon 16th Aug 2010 03:15 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by ddc_"
ichi Member since:
2007-03-06

That sounds a lot like Android's keyboard, which wasn't it because text prediction (and specially the autoreplacement) gets in my way more often than not, I would be quite satisfied with.

That layout does indeed work fine, even on portrait.

Reply Score: 2

Forget KDE
by leos on Sun 15th Aug 2010 19:58 UTC
leos
Member since:
2005-09-21

Plasma Tablet Edition: Even if you have a dinosaur claw for a hand, you can still use it!

Edited 2010-08-15 20:00 UTC

Reply Score: 6

RE: Forget KDE
by VenomousGecko on Sun 15th Aug 2010 21:15 UTC in reply to "Forget KDE"
VenomousGecko Member since:
2005-07-06

I hate to say it, but I was thinking the same thing. I couldn't even tell where he was trying to push on the screen.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Forget KDE
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 15th Aug 2010 22:17 UTC in reply to "RE: Forget KDE"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

So an experiment has quirks. Big deal.
The focus of the article was to show code reuse between GUIs for different form factors which should be an interesting topic for a technology website like OSNews.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Luminair
by Luminair on Sun 15th Aug 2010 23:35 UTC
Luminair
Member since:
2007-03-30

good programmer demo.

Reply Score: 3

UI Reuse? Bad Idea
by tony on Mon 16th Aug 2010 03:55 UTC
tony
Member since:
2005-07-06

Hopefully they can get the speed to where it's usable (as shown would drive me nuts after about 2 minute).

It looks like they aren't making the same mistake as Microsoft, in trying to graft a touch screen interface onto their existing apps. That typically ends up as a badly done skin, and then you drop right into the Win32 API with its mouse-specific interface.

Usability is a bit of a concern, only because open source doesn't have the greatest track record for making interfaces that aren't terrifying to the general public (Microsoft does only slightly better). Android is the best at that in the open source world.

Reply Score: 2

RE: UI Reuse? Bad Idea
by KAMiKAZOW on Mon 16th Aug 2010 09:33 UTC in reply to "UI Reuse? Bad Idea"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Hopefully they can get the speed to where it's usable (as shown would drive me nuts after about 2 minute).

"Plasma Tablet on a device that uses VESA drivers and therefor doesn't run at full performance," says the video caption.

Usability is a bit of a concern, only because open source doesn't have the greatest track record for making interfaces that aren't terrifying to the general public (Microsoft does only slightly better). Android is the best at that in the open source world.

IMHO usability-wise pretty much everything is better than the average Microsoft GUI (exceptions like Win Phone 7 exist obviously).
Big FOSS projects like KDE and GNOME have usability teams these days and since it's easier to apply a good GUI on top of new applications (or in this case a completely new GUI on top of an existing core) than to rearrange existing GUIs, I not worried about usability.

Reply Score: 2

RE: UI Reuse? Bad Idea
by Timmmm on Mon 16th Aug 2010 13:30 UTC in reply to "UI Reuse? Bad Idea"
Timmmm Member since:
2006-07-25

It looks like they aren't making the same mistake as Microsoft, in trying to graft a touch screen interface onto their existing apps. That typically ends up as a badly done skin, and then you drop right into the Win32 API with its mouse-specific interface.


True, however, look at Qt QUICK. It allows you to have more than one interface style for a single app.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: UI Reuse? Bad Idea
by mart on Wed 18th Aug 2010 14:56 UTC in reply to "RE: UI Reuse? Bad Idea"
mart Member since:
2005-11-17

True, however, look at Qt QUICK. It allows you to have more than one interface style for a single app.


yep, that's what is being used in Plasma mobile, Plasma tablet and Kontact mobile

Reply Score: 1

Great
by Coxy on Mon 16th Aug 2010 12:31 UTC
Coxy
Member since:
2006-07-01

I'm sure the nerds in the world that actually want a tablet with Linux on will be verx pleased.

Everyone else will stick with iTablet

Reply Score: 0

RE: Great
by Neolander on Mon 16th Aug 2010 13:09 UTC in reply to "Great"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Many people in this world run an Android phone without even knowing about the Linux name.

If a linux tablet has reasonably good software and hardware, is backed by big companies, and is relatively cheap, it will sell. In fact, some of those criterions may even compensate others : the iPhone was far from being cheap if you consider what it does and its software quality (okay but not very exciting), but it was massively backed by the Apple behemoth and most mobile phone companies here in France, and we saw lots of sales...

Edited 2010-08-16 13:23 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Great
by KAMiKAZOW on Mon 16th Aug 2010 13:35 UTC in reply to "Great"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm sure the nerds in the world that actually want a tablet with Linux on will be verx pleased.

Everyone else will stick with iTablet

I don't know what an iTablet is. A cheap knock off of the iPad from China I assume. Though I have no idea why a cheap knock off should prevail.

Free Software is actually dominating the current tablet landscape. iPad's iOS is a BSD Unix with an proprietary high level layer. Lower level layers like LLVM, WebKit, Bonjour, etc. are all FOSS with contributions by Apple to the appropriate upstream projects. In fact it's likely that FreeBSD 9 will move to the LLVM-based compiler infrastructure Apple is developing for iOS applications (clang).

On the Linux side the future looks promising as well: Android is already in use on Archos tablets with more on the horizon with Android 3.0.
MeeGo has also gathered some followers from the industry.
And webOS will power HP's upcoming Palmpad.

KDE's Plasma is only one player in the diverse FOSS landscape that runs on almost all tablets.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Great
by Coxy on Mon 16th Aug 2010 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE: Great"
Coxy Member since:
2006-07-01

Yeah I meant iPad.

I mean this kde plasma tablet thing looks good in the screenshots here, but it's just playing catchup with iPad for consumers. Sure it may get used elsewhere, but to be honest, when processing photos in a shop to obtain instant photos I don't care if linux is powering the photo developer or not.

Edited 2010-08-16 13:40 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Great
by BluenoseJake on Mon 16th Aug 2010 18:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Great"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

iOS is not a BSD Unix with a proprietary high level layer. It's a mach kernel with a BSD subsystem, all that subsystem does is provide text userland tools and services. It is BSD. It could be ripped out and replaced with the GNU userland. The graphical environment is also a subsystem.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Great
by KAMiKAZOW on Tue 17th Aug 2010 09:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Great"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Um, the kernel of Mac OS X and iOS is called XNU. XNU combines code from Mach with code from 4.3BSD. Mach itself is also derived from a BSD kernel (even though much code was replaced in the meantime, but FreeBSD is not different in this respect), making XNU a direct descendant of the original BSD.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Great
by BluenoseJake on Tue 17th Aug 2010 10:49 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Great"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Mach is a microkernel, The BSDs kernel is a monolithic kernel. Two different beasts.

XNU just takes mach and bolts a BSD subsystem on top of it. The BSD portion is NOT part of the kernel. I know it's Wikipaedia, but:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mach_%28kernel%29

Edited 2010-08-17 10:50 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Great
by KAMiKAZOW on Tue 17th Aug 2010 14:22 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Great"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Mach is a microkernel, The BSDs kernel is a monolithic kernel. Two different beasts.

So? Original Mach is still derived from a BSD kernel.
Yes, over time it changed significantly. Yes, Mach is a microkernel, the original BSD is not.
You know what? XNU isn't a microkernel either.

BSD portion is NOT part of the kernel.

I suggest that you look at the actual source code files of XNU instead of posting stuff you know only partially about.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Great
by BluenoseJake on Tue 17th Aug 2010 14:53 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Great"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Why in hell would I look at the source code? I'm not a C, C++ or Objective C developer, so it wouldn't mean much to me. That's like telling me to go read the Old Testament in ancient Hebrew.

Oh, and posting stuff you know only partially about is what the internet is all about, are you new or something?

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Great
by KAMiKAZOW on Tue 17th Aug 2010 23:22 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Great"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Why in hell would I look at the source code? I'm not a C, C++ or Objective C developer, so it wouldn't mean much to me.

I'm not a programmer either but I can at least look at the headers of source files and see plenty of original BSD copyright notices there.

Reply Score: 2

v famalegoods.com
by famalegoods103 on Mon 16th Aug 2010 13:24 UTC
v Simplicity?
by puelocesar on Mon 16th Aug 2010 14:48 UTC
RE: Simplicity?
by Elv13 on Tue 17th Aug 2010 00:01 UTC in reply to "Simplicity?"
Elv13 Member since:
2006-06-12

That is less or more the point of KDE, you can disable those buttons and move things around, but they exist, and it is on purpose.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Simplicity?
by KAMiKAZOW on Tue 17th Aug 2010 09:39 UTC in reply to "RE: Simplicity?"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't know about KDevelop in particular but the average KDE Application does not have "5000 buttons on screen" by default as Puelocesar claims.
It is possible to give any single action that has a menu entry a button in the toolbar via the "Configure toolbar" window but that is purely optional and in no way default and never ever has been default.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Simplicity?
by mart on Tue 17th Aug 2010 10:06 UTC in reply to "Simplicity?"
mart Member since:
2005-11-17

we are way better in this regard compared to the past and yes, we can get better, still.

In Plasma we never accepted complex interfaces, neither we accept things like micro-options to change some not relevant detail.
in those videos, the wigets shon are pure content, with nearly zero chrome. They are mostly lists of content, being microblog entries, news from rss, contacts from opendesktop, weater info...
you won't see more than one-two buttons for each of those widgets, just when the widget lets "post entries" or things like that.

Reply Score: 2

Nokia N900...
by leech on Tue 17th Aug 2010 01:20 UTC
leech
Member since:
2006-01-10

Sweet, kind of surprised they had that odd looking tablet instead of just running it on the Nokia N900.

http://labs.trolltech.com/blogs/2009/10/27/qgraphicsview-is-a-humme...

They were working on it since Oct 2009, which means it was being worked on BEFORE the N900 was even released.

Looking forward to this, even though I don't even really like KDE. A lot of the Plasma stuff is really cool though.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Nokia N900...
by Elv13 on Tue 17th Aug 2010 03:14 UTC in reply to "Nokia N900..."
Elv13 Member since:
2006-06-12

N900 is a smartphone, Plasma already have a smartphone UI. This is the tablet UI, there is also the NetBook UI et Desktop UI (normal mode).

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Nokia N900...
by leech on Tue 17th Aug 2010 12:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Nokia N900..."
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

Technically the N900 is in the class of "Internet Tablets" as the other N700 and N800 series were.

It really is more of an internet tablet that makes calls, than a smart phone. I always tell people, it's a mini computer, that has some phone features. And I believe that's a pretty accurate description.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Nokia N900...
by mart on Tue 17th Aug 2010 13:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nokia N900..."
mart Member since:
2005-11-17

Technically the N900 is in the class of "Internet Tablets" as the other N700 and N800 series were.

It really is more of an internet tablet that makes


yes, that's what makes the device more interesting.

However its screen physical size puts it in another category compared to bigger tablet, from an user workflow standpoint, that's why we are thinking about two different user interfaces

Reply Score: 2