Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 1st Nov 2011 21:31 UTC, submitted by Z_God
KDE Disappointed with KDE 4's performance and other shortcomings, Timothy Pearson continued KDE 3.5 development under the name Trinity. Today the first third major update of the Trinity Desktop Environment is released, providing an alternative upgrade path for KDE users who do not feel comfortable with KDE 4.
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RE[2]: What's going on?
by lemur2 on Wed 2nd Nov 2011 10:22 UTC in reply to "RE: What's going on?"
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These new desktop environments are released early lack polish and are incomplete and quirky. However, all of them either do or in the very near future will offer a complete and engaging user experience, even if there is some learning curve for users of older desktops. The old tree menus seem to be a thing of the past.

No. Wrong. The KDE4 desktop lacked polish and was incomplete and quirky back in 2008 when it was first released. It has put all that well behind it now, and is quite polished and easily THE most complete desktop of any.

The "old tree menus" are still there under the Kickoff menu. Just right-click on the menu icon, and select "classic" mode.

Personally I find KDE 4 difficult, I dislike the kicker menu and don’t like Lancelot much either

Lancelot is a lot like the "new" mode menu of XP, except easier.

Kicker classic mode is a lot like the "classic" tree menus of XP and KDE3.

If you have these opinions of KDE, do you also have them for XP? If not, then you have a clear double standard, I'm afraid.

however, I suspect that most of this is my fault as I’ve never bothered to get my head around the activities system in KDE 4 – which I suspect is good.

OK, a lot of people seem to have a similar comment. I'll try to explain without too many words.

On KDE's Plasma, everything you see on the desktop is implemented as a widget. This includes panels, the task bar, system tray, notifications, icons (representing either shortcuts, URLs or actual files), the wallpaper, folder views, and true widgets such as weather monitors. All of these are different types of widgets in Plasma.

As do most desktops, KDE4 lets you arrange these desktop elements however you like. You can change the wallpaper, change the size and placement of widgets (of all kinds), add quick-launch icons to the panel ... whatever. All pretty much standard. The thing is, KDE4 lets you "save" such a setup as a named "activity". You can save as many such "desktop arrangement definitions" as you like, under different names. Then later you can "load" a previously saved "desktop arrangement definition" (or activity, if you will) back on to any virtual desktop.

KDE 4.5 brings to the table plenty of useful, functional, innovative features. One of those very features is the Desktop Activity. Although many scoffed at the idea (even tried to get the feature pulled), those same naysayers are (hopefully) glad their requests were not followed. Why? The KDE Desktop Activities feature is a great new desktop metaphor that takes the Linux desktop to new levels of organization.

Prior to Desktop Activities a user could have multiple desktops (thanks to the ever-present KDE pager). You could use one desktop for productivity, one for networking, one for graphics, one for fun, or whatever categories you needed. This was a great way to keep yourself organized. The KDE team saw something that no one else seemed to see — that the Pager idea could be greatly improved.

As it stood, the Linux pager could have particular windows associated with it, but when you added a particular Plasmoid (Desktop Widget) that widget would be found on every desktop. So, what if you could associate widgets with particular desktop activities? And then, what if you could associate particular windows (or even files) to a particular desktop activity? What if you could give your desktops truly separate identities? And what if each activity had multiple workspaces of its own?

That is exactly what Desktop Activities is all about. No more are you limited to moving windows to different workspaces and associating different wallpaper to different workspaces. Now, each workspace takes on an entire life of their own, making them a feat of organization and efficiency unheard of on the PC desktop, until KDE 4.5. Now the Linux desktop can enjoy a multi-dimensional, multi-faceted desktop environment that no other software has ever offered.

Very powerful. More flexible than any other desktop.

You don't have to use this feature if you don't want to. If you do want to use it, it is only available with KDE4.

For my part I like Unity which is greatly improved in 11:10 and presumably will be more so in the next Ubuntu release, I find it easy to work with multiple desktops and as I tend to use only 5 or 6 apps so the doc works well for me. I friend of mine likes gnome 3 a lot and the multiple desktops system here look very promising and better than I can see in any other DE including Mac OSX or Windows. I don’t like the icons being so large but this will no doubt be adjustable shortly.

None of this is outside the scope of KDE. KDE can easily do all that for you.

The changes to the DEs are innovation and the nature of open source means that the initial releases are unlikely to have the polish of OSX but if you are prepared to be a little tolerant and climb a little learning curve the DEs will be as good or better than proprietary ones, if they are not already – I prefer Unity to the Windows desktop now, as it has more features that I use and this will only increase.

KDE is better than the OSX desktop. Unity has quite a way to to get anywhere near the OSX desktop.

Edited 2011-11-02 10:28 UTC

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