Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 13th Jan 2008 20:09 UTC
KDE KDE 4.0.0 has been released on January 11th, after a number of delays; the months preceding the release, the KDE developers tried very hard to downplay expectations. KDE 4.0.0 was just the first release in the KDE 4 series, and such, should not be seen as the best possible representation of the KDE 4.0.0 vision. So, when I installed KDE 4.0.0 on my Ubuntu Gutsy installation last Friday, I knew what to expect: KDE 4 Developer Release 1 (yes, I am a BeOS guy - how did you know?). Read on for a few quick first impressions.
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KDE 4 is built over a cross-platform widget (Qt 4), multimedia (Phonon) and hardware (Solid) frameworks. A lot of work is involved, and Amarok, Konqueror and Okular (former KPDF) were already ported over Windows and OSX.

Amarok was ported in 2 days to OSX and could have been ported faster, according to developers. Phonon allows a media player to use GStreamer or Xine on Linux/BSD, Quicktime on OSX and DirectShow on Windows without changing code. Same goes for Solid, which will allow use of removable devices, Bluetooth, WiFi, ACPI on all supported OSes. And have a look at the impressive Decibel framework.

There's much to be said about KDE4 besides Plasma and SVG rendering, but reviewers aren't looking in the right place.

The Road to KDE 4: Phonon Makes Multimedia Easier

The Road to KDE 4: Solid Brings Hardware
Configuration and Control to KDE

The Pillars of KDE 4: Decibel

The Pillars of KDE 4: Decibel Definitions and Benefits

KDE4 has the potential to become the open source desktop unifier. It already has the performance and will improve, now they can focus on configurability.
The ability to spread open source apps over closed source OSes will show the quality of open source to much more people, you may see Amarok becoming popular among Windows and OSX users.

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