Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 10th Mar 2008 17:52 UTC, submitted by irbis
KDE Ars takes a look at KDE 4.0.2. "When KDE 4.0 was officially released in January, there were a lot of gaping holes in basic functionality. During the past few months, the codebase has matured considerably, and the environment is steadily approaching the point where it will be sufficiently robust for widespread day-to-day use. Although there are still many features missing, version 4.0.2 - which was released last week - offers an improved user experience. We tested KDE 4.0.2 with the recently released Kubuntu 8.04 alpha 6." In addition, there is a new 'visual changelog' for KDE 4.1.
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oy vey
by aseigo on Thu 13th Mar 2008 07:58 UTC
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first, it's just "aaron". not "mr. seigo" .. ugh, i really hate formalities that distance people from each other.

so .. yeah, toolboxes. i know this is a really difficult thing to wrap one's head around: but it's rather easy to replace, as others have noted here. i understand that all the cool kids are hyperventilating over the little things, but step back for a moment and consider just how critical it really is. but that's not really the point, is it?

no, what this is is a power struggle: those clamoring for it's removal like it's the new satan itself are concerned that this represents the end of User Rules Endlessly in KDE. the mistake here, besides the often shocking behaviour, is that it's really rather the opposite:

we're making something that doesn't tie you down to anything.

remember how kicker always enforced you to have at least one panel, and it was a regular panel that you couldn't do anything with but keep it a regular panel? plasma doesn't have that restriction. (btw, i tried a few times to rationally get rid of that panel in kicker. i succeeded in getting rid of it while experimenting, but the resulting code base was so ungodly..)

remember how kdesktop offered exactly one way of working? you know.. icons. wallpapers. a run dialog that was literal beyond belief yep. same thing: we're already better than that. (neat thing to try: type 'fox' into krunner and hit enter ... or if you are running trunk/: type 'logout')

remember how the kde3 workspace was designed so clearly with desktop machines in mind that they never did make the transition cleanly to small devices or too more "exotic" things like media center devices (instead we have things like myth, etc, which have had to (and to their credit done a rather decent job of it!) reinvent everything)

remember how in kde3 you had the choice of c++, c++ or python in superkaramba? (and the latter was brought into "kde proper" via kdeutils only because in recognition of their achievements and what it would mean for plasma, that i suggested they add sk to kde 3.4 in expectation of plasma's arrival ... so honestly, even then, without plasma it would've been c++ or c++)

remember how in kde3 superkaramba was an add-on with all its own overhead and no real interop with the actual desktop? plasma can load sk themes, both legacy kde3 ones as well as ones that use plasma api's, natively.

now, i'm not saying all this in a "see, you should be grateful" manner. what i'm attempting to demonstrate is that the intentions and the actions line up: the goal is to create something more accessible, more complete and more flexible than what we had .. in every, single, way. we've already achieved this in some areas, and are on our way to achieving them in others.

given the short time put into it thus far (yes, ages by internet time, but not by real, actual, software development time), the pace is ok.

now, in the process of reaching these goals, which we are only partly on the way to doing so, eggs have been broken. and breaking eggs sucks. fortunately, unlike real eggs which once broken can't be put back together, we are day by day making our way back to goodness.

all while producing software that also runs on rather measly powered phones. (i blogged about this the other day actually)

we're also pushing a lot of boundaries in things like and qt itself.

yes, i could have picked the easy route. i could have avoided all the negative feedback. i could have said, "plasma is too big of an idea to be achievable within the attention span and patience of people." or "it's unreasonable to risk kde's reputation with such a new development." both of those things are probably true. we'll see in the long run if the risk and challenge have been worth it.

it would also be awesome if people took a moment to use the rest of kde4 as well. some of those things have similar limitations for similar reasons (the file views in konqi/dolphin aren't as complete in kde3, but they were going through complete rewrites, and before dolphin came along i might add, and so are going through similar re-architecting growing pains), but the vast, vast majority of kde4 is already more powerful, more flexible and straight out more cool than kde3.

i still can't get over how damn wonderful it is to be able to plug in my usb headset and have my audio routed to it automagically. yeah, it's a "small" thing ... but it took away one of my personal pain points with f/oss on my desktop/laptop/etc.

konsole, gwenview, kstars, kwin, dolphin, okular (i really need to blog about that one soonish), krdc and so much more .. i really wish that the 4.0.2 announcement would've been more about them. as fun as it is to stoke the plasma ;) they deserve limelight time too =/

anyways ... there's a lot of mischaracterization going on here as to my personal goals, aims and viewpoints. that's been happening for a while and it got to the point where it really was pissing me off. i've rounded a corner where .... i simply don't care and am back doing the things i do because i enjoy doing them. i hope those of you who insist on throwing bags of dog crap on my doorstep (metaphorically) find the same corner soon enough, hopefully by realizing that your little power struggle here is over something that is not only a hill of beans (or.. cashews? ;) to begin with but which is very much one sided in the sense that the flexibility you are fighting so hard to retain is being delivered more so than ever in a way that doesn't screw over others in the process.

anyways, peace and love. enjoy life. may we each consider our parts in the wheels of the machinery.

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