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Aaron Seigo On KDE SC 5.0 — and What Getting There Means

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the slow-and-steady dept.

KDE 157

An anonymous reader writes "After years of focusing on further improving KDE4, two weeks ago the developers of the free desktop announced the next big step for their project: KDE Frameworks 5.0. But as long-time developer — and Plasma team leader — Aaron Seigo points out in an interview with derStandard.at/web, the source-incompatible changes shall be held to a minimum. He also calls Frameworks 5.0 only the 'first step;' new Applications and Workspace releases are to follow later. Seigo goes on to talk about their chances in the mobile market with Plasma Active and further areas of collaboration with the other big free desktop: GNOME."

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Printing parity with KDE3? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213322)

Please please pretty pretty pretty pleeeeease with sugar on top?

Re:Printing parity with KDE3? (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215514)

I'm not sure printing is the bailiwick of KDE.
There has been some problematic regression in CUPS of late and that may be the source of your problems.

Its critical that the the "source-incompatible" changes be held to virtually ZERO, because KDE can't stand another
debacle like the release of KDE 4.0, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3 only to have it finally become reasonably usable by 4.4.

The new KDE framework is all the work of the current team, they should have no problem supporting a few dual methods to handle current code in the current way while adding what ever "source incompatibilities" that are seen as necessary.
I understand the break from the KDE 3 baggage forced on them, but what we have here is all their own work.

It should transition smoothly. It must, or no one will be left to use it.

4.6 and 4.7 have been wonderful releases. Please lets not regress this time.

it's the only good desktop left (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213374)

KDE is the only one. Gnome2 was OK, but Gnome3 and Unity went off the "dumb it down so far that it's useless" cliff. Windows is, well, Windows. XFCE is OK for small/lightweight systems but just doesn't provide anywhere near the level of functionality that KDE does.

So KDE is left holding the fort. I hope they manage to live up to the pressure of being the only usable Linux desktop remaining.

Also too bad KDE4.0-4.2 caused so many people to write off KDE entirely, because along about 4.6, it got really nice and they fixed most of the crap that was missing or wrong with the earlier 4.x series.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213406)

G3 and unity suck because of the emphasis on tablets.

As long as KDE doesn't do that, it'll be OK. But they sorta hint, from TFA:

"Doesn't that also mean, that the traditional desktop is losing importance?
Aaron Seigo: It's losing importance in the sense that newspapers have lost importance."

Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213572)

Like it or not, tablets are merely a fad. They have no staying power.

They're a lot like the hardware equivalent of Ruby on Rails. They get a lot of media hype, and a lot of "hip" people are really buzzed about them. They have a novelty factor that wears off with a couple of days worth of use, however. It's soon realized that they're actually pretty impractical in the real world. After the initial high has passed, any sensible person no longer uses them. Ruby on Rails programmers go back to Perl, Python or PHP, whereas tablet users go back to their desktops and their laptops.

KDE would do quite well if they ignore this tablet fad. In a couple of years, when everybody has forgotten about tablets, KDE will be a far better desktop environment than it currently is.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (3, Informative)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213760)

Like it or not, tablets are merely a fad. They have no staying power.

And I assume you're basing all this wonderful market research on yourself or a small group of like-minded friends? They sold 9.25 million iPads last quarter - for comparison they sold 3.95 million Macs. It's as much a fad as the iPhone, maybe you haven't found a use for it but the market has. The problem with Gnome and KDE chasing after the tablet market is that they think they'll be a "player" along with iOS and Android. If anything I think they have less chances of succeeding there on the desktop, they're ignoring the 1% desktop market share they have and chasing 1% of the mobile market. They haven't got the resources to run in two directions with two different teams, so they'll go halfway up both roads.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213850)

Having a pocket-sized supercomupter (by 1980 standards) is awesome, and has staying power. Not that it wasn't also a fad. Tablets, on the other hand are basically a laptop without a keyboard. I'm sure people feel cool walking around with them (and I'm sure they do have a few niche purposes). But they are:

1. Big. Bigger than a netbook. As big as a laptop.
2. Hard to write seriously on.
3. Much more expensive than ebook readers.

I summary, I agree with you and GP: KDE needs to ignore tablets.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

Artifakt (700173) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214406)

I don't own an E-book reader. I do read e-books on my laptops, in fact I have an old IBM Thinkpad R32 that has 'only' 512 Meg RAM and if it wasn't for comparatively lightweight OS's like Kubuntu all it could probably still do is e-books. I may well switch to a tablet PC, but I would much prefer to go through the comparatively minor hassle of making that old Thinkpad run XFCE in a really lightweight distro like Puppy Linux if Kubuntu gets to big for the old laptop, long before I would buy any of the proprietary format e-book readers. The notebook has lasted about 9 years (I don't remember when I bought it, but C-Net reviewed one in Oct of 2002). Not that I'm planning on keeping it another nine, but I would estimate that the chance this old notebook will be around in another nine years and some form of Linux will still run on it are both far, far higher than the chance I'd be able to legally access all proprietary format e-book files I might purchase by then if I started buying in some proprietary format or other now.
            E book readers are cheap because some prices are hidden - people will pay several prices later, just like they pay the full price for their low cost printer when they have to buy ink cartridges. One of those real prices will be re-buying and re-buying any media they want to keep longterm.
I'm perfectly cool however if KDE ignores tablets. Most of what I would want one to do doesn't take a really modern operating system at all. A tablet has more than niche purposes, but it doesn't substitute for everything I would do with a laptop, let alone a desktop. Now best of all worlds might be KDE doing a bang up job of supporting things big enough to include keyboards and still finding a way to deal with tablet environments as well, but I will gladly praise KDE if the deliver far less than that, just so they don't forget desktop machines.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215574)

But they are:

1. Big. Bigger than a netbook. As big as a laptop.
2. Hard to write seriously on.
3. Much more expensive than ebook readers.

I summary, I agree with you and GP: KDE needs to ignore tablets.

I have no idea what tablet you are looking at, but the ones I've seen are much smaller than most netbooks, handle standard bluetooth keyboards and mice, and the price is dropping all the time.

Ebook reading is just about the last activity that comes to mind with them.
They are the couch computer, the commuting computer, the brain trust, the portable desk, the shop floor, the shipping dock, and the GIS computer, as well as the doctors exam room computer. No they are not going away. Oh, and the funny rodent thingie with a wheel and two buttons is not going away either. They said that was a fad too.

KDE might do well on tablets, other than the fact that KDE is still a resource hog.
All you need is a touch screen driver (perhaps such exists already - backported from Android) to make
KDE viable on the more powerful Tablets.

LOL! Look two stories above this one! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37214306)

LOL! Look two stories above this one on the Slashdot home page. What do you see? Yes, that's right, a submission entitled Acer CEO Declares a Tablets Bubble [slashdot.org] !

The iPad's "success" had nothing to do with its computing abilities or usefulness, but everything to do with religion and the desire of Apple fanatics have to throw away perfectly good money on useless devices. Remember, just because they bought them doesn't mean that they actually use them! Many of the iPads sold have become dust collectors, sitting unused, because they have no useful purpose.

Tablets are a fad, whether you like it or not. HP knows this. Acer knows this. You're clearly too foolish to understand this reality.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214748)

The problem with Gnome and KDE chasing after the tablet market is that they think they'll be a "player" along with iOS and Android. If anything I think they have less chances of succeeding there on the desktop, they're ignoring the 1% desktop market share they have and chasing 1% of the mobile market. They haven't got the resources to run in two directions with two different teams, so they'll go halfway up both roads.

Regardless of what Siego may have said, I don't see KDE chasing after the tablet market, since last time I looked, KDE still had a very traditional desktop UI. It's only Gnome3 and Unity that are chasing the tablet market. I do hope they don't change direction though.

Aside from that, you're exactly correct. The tablet market is already dominated by iOS and Android (and I'm sure Windows will try to make a play there too, no matter how badly it flops the first iteration or two). Gnome/Unity trying to get in on that is just dumb, because they've pissed off and disenfranchised all the Linux desktop users who relied on them for a stable desktop computing environment to get their work done with. No, desktop Linux users weren't a giant majority of the market, but they're probably a lot more than people realize (since you can't go by retail sales or license counts to count them), and it's still a much larger number than the number of people who really want to wipe out iOS or Android and install a Linux distro on their tablet.

Meego (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216110)

Wasn't Meego already targeted @ the tablet market, granted non-KDE, but w/ the Qt tools & everything? When neither Nokia nor Intel could make it popular on tablets, how can KDE pull that off? Since Gnome 3 has made itself good for tablets only, KDE's best chance is to stay on the desktop, and not to compete for the #4 position (after Android, iOS and Blackberry)

Since Gnome 3 is there now, it may be an opportunity for any tablet vendor to try its luck outside the somewhat crowded Android market by making one with that interface. Let that project try it by all means, but drop the idea of KDE getting in there as well.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

KugelKurt (908765) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216476)

The problem with Gnome and KDE chasing after the tablet market is that they think they'll be a "player" along with iOS and Android. If anything I think they have less chances of succeeding there on the desktop, they're ignoring the 1% desktop market share they have and chasing 1% of the mobile market. They haven't got the resources to run in two directions with two different teams, so they'll go halfway up both roads.

The problem is that you and the people who voted you as Informative didn't even read the interview.
Unlike iOS OSX there is no porting required to get workspace elements to work on different form factors. Apple developed two closely related code bases whereas KDE develops a single code base that works everywhere. With Plasma Active the KDE devs create a framework that's so flexible that one only needs to write a simple shell in QML and all existing QML widgets will just work. Plasma Desktop widgets usually work just fine as fullscreen widgets in smartphone form factors. That means developing Plasma with one formfactor in mind, the other formfactors automatically benefit because all improvements are shared across the code base.

What you also don't understand is that KDE is no commercial project. As a community project it doesn't matter if 1% of the population use it or 99%. Community projects do the work for themselves and as long as there are devices available to run the software on, the community members are fine with that.
In addition to that you forgot that Qt also works on Android (currently in Alpha state). So even without MeeGo devices Plasma Active will at some point be available on Android devices (MeeGo is just a mostly traditional Linux distro which makes sense to support first because the underlying toolkit Qt does not have to be completely ported first).

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213974)

Like it or not, tablets are merely a fad. They have no staying power.

Don't count on it. Smart phones are tablets and they're here to stay.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214822)

Um, not exactly. I can see how you might be confused, since the hardware is largely the same, though not exactly. There's two giant differences:
1) the tablet isn't a phone. You can't talk on it. While some of them do have 3G radios, I don't know if any of them actually allow talking on them, or if they only do data over the 3G radio. Even if you could talk on them, it'd be a little clunky, since you'd need a headset. When was the last time you saw someone holding a 10" tablet up to their head?
2) the screen is much bigger on the tablet. Because of this, it's quite impossible to put a tablet in your pocket, while that's easy with a smartphone (unless you have some giant pockets...).

Lots of computing devices these days have very similar hardware under the hood. The touchscreen terminals you use at the checkout line at the supermarket are nearly the same as smartphones: same CPU, video capabilities, touchscreen, some have 3G radios, etc. That doesn't make them a smartphone, because the physical form factor is different, and the software is different. With a whole lot of work, you might be able to get one to work as a smartphone (once you figure out how to break the encryption on the bootloader), but it's a lot easier to just buy a smartphone.

So no, smartphones aren't tablets. They're two different devices, with different uses.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215672)

Wrong on both counts.

1) Any of the current line of tablets will run CSipSimple [google.com] , with which they instantly become a phone. Add the ubiquitous bluetooth headset and you don't even have to take the tablet out of your briefcase or back pack to answer it. My tablet has a phone number, and I pay exactly ZERO dollars for that service. No boot loader hacking involved. Install and run. Somewhere I had a How To [google.com] on this, now slightly dated.

2) 7 inch tablets fit in a coat pocket or purse, 10 inch in your brief case.

Some Android tablets come with 3G and could handle voice anywhere, not just when near wifi.
Cellular networks are moving to LTE [4gamericas.org] , and once completed, there is no distinction between data and voice.

There is really no difference between a tablet and a smartphone other than the size of the pocket it takes.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37215710)

Smartphones and tablets are members of a single continuum. Look at the Nokia N800 -- it's unambiguously a tablet, not a phone. It has a 4" display, though, and fits in a pocket easily; if it had a 3G radio it would be called a phone. Then there's the SmartQ5, I think Archos has one, and the Dell Streak 5 -- bigger than practically any modern phone, still pocketable. Moving up, 7" tablets and 5.6" UMPCs still fit in a jacket pocket, but are unquestionably not a phone, even when they have 3G radios and the ability to make phone calls. Then you get up to the unpocketable 9" and 10" tablets that are in vogue these days -- and if you ignore all the devices in the middle, it's understandable how you'd think 6x the screen area, no pocketability, and software limitations on voice calling make it a fundamentally different creature. But it's not, it's just distant points on a continuum of mobility.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (2)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214712)

KDE would do quite well if they ignore this tablet fad. In a couple of years, when everybody has forgotten about tablets, KDE will be a far better desktop environment than it currently is.

Actually, I disagree somewhat. KDE actually doesn't have only one UI, it has at least two. There's a netbook version of it, which I believe (haven't tried it myself) on the newest KDE versions you can switch to pretty easily. As you might expect, it's designed for netbooks with small screens, and looks very different from traditional KDE. However, this doesn't detract from KDE, because the traditional mode is still there and still the default. Apparently, someone over there got the bright idea that they don't need to have the exact same interface on all devices, and can instead have different interfaces, optimized for different devices, while the architecture underneath is still the same. This of course flies in the face of Unity and Gnome3, where the devs think that everything needs to be exactly the same everywhere, whether you're using a 4" smartphone or a desktop with quad 30" monitors.

So there's really no reason (if they haven't done it already) that KDE can't support tablets as well; they'd just make that a different UI mode, similar to the netbook mode but optimized for touchscreens of course. As long as it defaults to the traditional mode when you install it on a regular desktop system, users who don't want a smartphone interface on their desktop PC aren't going to complain.

Just as you use different tools for different jobs, and just as sports cars have different controls than tractor-trailers (and also different from airplanes), computing devices should have different interfaces optimized for their input/output devices.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215690)

The netbook UI is half the battle. KDE is still pretty huge.
There is no reason it couldn't run on an Android Kernel with a little work. But it needs to go on a diet.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216156)

The ability to (relatively) easily whip up different UIs was a large part of the major disruption of KDE4.

Plasma was designed ground-up with that in mind. In a video I watched, they spent a lot of time bragging about it, this was before 4.0 was released.

Sounded essentially like MVC type talk.

Re:Tablets are a fad. They have no staying power. (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216244)

Wouldn't the Netbook UI look pretty much identical to their desktop, just like Windows does? Or do they change things quite a bit?

This is actually quite a good idea, but it should be named differently so that it's clear that it's a completely different interface, something like OS-X vs iOS. The Gnome guys could have done well w/ this. As for Unity, is Ubuntu now making tablet OSs, or is Unity their all purpose UI? Some innovations, like their software center is good, but I'm not sure about Unity itself. Incidentally, is software center there in Kubuntu as well?

Merge Gnome + GNUSTEP, and make Gnome3 tablet-only (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37215918)

G3 and unity suck because of the emphasis on tablets.

As long as KDE doesn't do that, it'll be OK. But they sorta hint, from TFA:

"Doesn't that also mean, that the traditional desktop is losing importance? Aaron Seigo: It's losing importance in the sense that newspapers have lost importance."

If KDE wants something for tablets, they should pick a certain version of their DE that they deem provides the minimal functionality that a tablet needs, and fork it from there. That way, the tablet side of things can meet its own requirements, w/o touching the desktop.

Gnome 3 should be renamed something else for tablets altogether, and be a tablet only DE. Stop pushing it on the desktop, and in the process, making the thing look more ridiculous. Even Gnome 2 was unsatisfactory with respect to what one could or couldn't do w/o certain tweaks.

The rest of the Gnome project, as far as desktop goes, should be merged into GNUSTEP, which also seems to be more of an object model environment than Gnome was supposed to be, but never was. Maybe give the Gnome name to the GNUSTEP object model environment.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

lattyware (934246) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216770)

The difference is KDE are doing it the right way - it's a choice, not a forced feature. If you want to run in a tablet-suited mode, you go for it. But you don't *have* to.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#37217040)

G3 and unity suck because of the emphasis on tablets.

No, they suck because they're both relatively new desktops with documented missing functionality and they both have a lot of work to do before they can be considered mature. Unity is designed for Netbooks and a lot of its problems stem from that e.g. the massive icons, the global menu and launcher anchored to the left work really badly large screens. Gnome 3 has piles of missing functionality (e.g. desktop icons which have to be manually reenabled), and the activities launcher is annoying for living offscreen like it does.

Neither is especially useful tablets. I'm not even sure that either even supports touch properly, or implements stuff like onscreen keyboards.

Given the shitstorm KDE 4 got when it was released for similar reasons, one would expect some empathy with their situation even if you still prefer KDE. Neither IMO is ready but given them a point release or two and I think they'll both be fine. Personally I think Unity is a more conventional design and closer to what people expect but GNOME 3 appears better thought through and doesn't suffer from prominent positioning of Ubuntu's stupid online store at every turn.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214062)

Windows is, well, Windows

Honestly, (and if this gets me modded down, i have the karma to burn), I find the Win7 paradigm to be about the most functional and useable one. I miss the self-sorting menus (where software sticks itself in the right place), and I cant mod the heck out of it with Compiz, but out of the box it has VERY nice keyboard shortcuts, an uncluttered "active window" space, and the menu search is excellent.

Thats not to say im in love with Windows, but the new GUI (excepting their hiding of various control panel applets) is the reason I ditched XP on my desktop for 7.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

icebike (68054) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215722)

Well, KDE has hidden a ton of stuff just as deeply as Windows 7 did.
But, otherwise I agree, Win 7 is quite good.
I actually prefer KDE 4.7 to Windows 7, even though I spend most of my day on Windows 7. Something about having multiple desktops, allowing you to leave one a cluttered mess of windows while you use a fresh one to handle some interruption.

I even ran into a tablet (Atom processor HP Slate) running windows 7 and it was eminently usable, in spite of all the ranting you read all over the web about windows 7 never being designed for touch screens. Not as cool as the Android tablet, but pretty close.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 2 years ago | (#37215798)

Agreed. Windows 7 is nice.

KDE sucks too. Kde 3.6 was better but I remember it feeling cluttered back in the day before KDE 4.x so it was not perfect either but at least on par to Windows XP.

If KDE wants to do well they need to take their time for a nice desktop and not rush it like Gnome 3 without extensive R&D from people who have zero experience working with UIs.

I want features that are not hidden, but rather simple to use and Windows 7 fits this fine. Autoscroll and aero preview are perfect. I feel Windows 8 has it well done with tablets and a traditional UI together and you can switch to one or the other. I pray KDE 4 puts power and functionality back in but keeps its UI simply to use in a perfect balance. I think a tile startup screen like Windows 8 is perfect.

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216882)

Windows 7 is fine, but once Windows 8 is out, Windows users will experience what Gnome 3 users are experiencing today. Their interface [microsoft.com] is completely tile based, which is totally different from the start menu that people have been used to since Windows 95. In short, an user experience that is now close to 20 years old is being replaced by this (there was nothing in the cited article that suggested that a Windows 8 user could use, say, the Aero interface, much less the old Windows XP or the 2000 interface.

With KDE, you can at least adopt their 'Redmond' theme that would give you the Windows look & feel. I doubt it'll be do-able w/ WIndows 8. This is what beats me - previously, Microsoft used to allow users to use older interfaces, but it's not sure that they will this time. Also, by having the same interface for both desktop & tablet, MS is doing what GNOME did rather than what KDE did. If that ends the Windows desktop, it'll probably take down the x86 CPU w/ it, since Windows is the only reason the x86 is ubiquitous (or else, everybody would be using ARM or MIPS)

Re:it's the only good desktop left (1)

lattyware (934246) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216766)

True that.

I run KDE mainly because it's the only thing that supports my triple monitor setup. But it's also really wel done. It allows for stuff like a vertical taskbar that works well (Unity's is horrible, Gnome forces it to be wide and have text instead of just icons, KDE does it right, and supports the 'pin to taskbar' thing that windows does) - this is something that took me a while to get used to, but really is worth it. With widescreen monitors, vertical space is at a premium. I used to run the linux-traditional taskbar on top, but taskbar on left is definitely a much better solution, and KDE supports it well. With Gnome 3 - they have removed your ability to even move the taskbar (or the thing that replaced it). Not to mention gnome 3 refuses to run on many drivers, and multi-monitor setups.

KDE really does work nicely, it has a lot of good features built in, and it's a lot nicer than it used to be. I hated KDE 3.x, but 4.6 is the best desktop I can find, and I was lucky to be forced to use it.

Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213398)

I don't want to see the KDE developers wasting time and effort by collaborating with GNOME. GNOME is a dying project. It is the XFree86 of the open source desktop world. The complete failure of GNOME 3 means that it'll be a dead project in, at most, a couple of years. There's no reason for the KDE devs to get involved with a dying project like GNOME. They should instead focus on making improvements to KDE, which will bring real value to all KDE users. KDE is a very lively and continually-improving software project. GNOME is not.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (1)

DMiax (915735) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213434)

WTF? If you design something with cross-desktop in mind, or even just a shared KDE-GNOME technology, it is much more likely that your work will be well engineered and will stand the test of time, even if you end up being the only one using it.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213470)

That's utter bullshit. Good software arises from doing one thing, and only one thing, well. That's a cornerstone of the UNIX philosophy.

Supporting multiple desktops is the antithesis of that philosophy. All you end up doing is offering a shitty, compromised "solution" for everybody, rather than an optimal solution for a smaller number of users.

Hell, given the significant technical differences between KDE and GNOME, anything trying to improve interoperability between them will by necessity be very limited in ability and be useless to many users.

Like the GP says, GNOME is a failed desktop. KDE and XFCE are the future. GNOME, like CDE, is a relic of days gone by.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213834)

No love for LXDE?

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (3, Insightful)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214876)

That's utter bullshit. Good software arises from doing one thing, and only one thing, well. That's a cornerstone of the UNIX philosophy.

Supporting multiple desktops is the antithesis of that philosophy. All you end up doing is offering a shitty, compromised "solution" for everybody, rather than an optimal solution for a smaller number of users.

I think you meant "supporting multiple computing devices" or something like that, because having multiple virtual desktops is something most KDE users seem to appreciate.

Anyway, I disagree. KDE is more than just a UI, it's a lot of back-end systems as well; a subsystem for video/audio, a network manager, etc. Google for "KDE netbook"; KDE has another mode that's optimized for netbooks with their tiny screens, and it looks very different from regular KDE. Someone over there seems to realize that different computing devices need different UIs, and they've designed KDE to be able to change based on the device. There's no reason you can't have the same DE on different devices, but obviously it needs to be "skinned" differently: with a traditional interface for desktops with dual 30" screens, keyboards, and mice, and a totally different interface for tablets, and another interface for netbooks, etc. There's no reason these can't be combined into one DE, instead of forcing users to have a single interface that looks the same on all devices.

This is nothing new, and has always been part of KDE philosophy, and the same goes for GNOME. With KDE, the key was always configurability: you like window decorations that look like MacOS? You can choose that. You want the panel on the side or top or bottom, or ever two panels? You can choose that too. In GNOME, it's always been the opposite: we tell you what your desktop's going to look like because we know what's best for you, and you better like it. Gnome has long been removing configuration options because they're "too confusing".

So now that tablets and touchscreens are du jour, the Gnome fools think that we all need a UI that's, as you put it, a shitty, compromised solution for everybody, so that people don't get confused, whereas the KDE folks think that different devices can have different UIs, and that their users are smart enough to be able to adapt.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37215002)

Anyway, I disagree. KDE is more than just a UI, it's a lot of back-end systems as well; a subsystem for video/audio, a network manager, etc. Google for "KDE netbook"; KDE has another mode that's optimized for netbooks with their tiny screens, and it looks very different from regular KDE. Someone over there seems to realize that different computing devices need different UIs, and they've designed KDE to be able to change based on the device. There's no reason you can't have the same DE on different devices, but obviously it needs to be "skinned" differently: with a traditional interface for desktops with dual 30" screens, keyboards, and mice, and a totally different interface for tablets, and another interface for netbooks, etc. There's no reason these can't be combined into one DE, instead of forcing users to have a single interface that looks the same on all devices.

I think the technical term which you are looking for is called (by the KDE project) a "containment".

http://techbase.kde.org/Projects/Plasma/Vocabulary

KDE's Plasma can have any of several different types of containment on any given virtual desktop. Desktops, netbooks, tables and phones can all utilise different containments, each containment type can be optimised for touscreens, mice, touchpads, or even Kinnect, Wiimote or joystick as the primary HID input device.

It is all still KDE.

GNOME gets nowhere near this level of capability.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 2 years ago | (#37215884)

Good software arises from doing one thing, and only one thing, well. That's a cornerstone of the UNIX philosophy.

Supporting multiple desktops is the antithesis of that philosophy.

Quite the opposite is the case. Your only hope to work well on several desktops is to use that principle. Because otherwise your stuff will be so deeply entrenched into one desktop that it simply won't work well on the other one.

Uh huh. (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214326)

You claimed that Gnome was "dying" 3 times in only 6 sentences. Overcompensating with your rhetoric doesn't make it any more true, it just makes you sound like a fool. Or a politician.

Re:Uh huh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37214632)

I agree, I think he's very wrong. GNOME isn't dying. It's dead. It's completely dead in the water. Saying that it's "dying" is wrong because it implies that it's still alive, to some small extent.

multi-desktop benefits (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214482)

That's silly - there's plenty of work that is non-specific to any of the desktops, under the freedesktop moniker. The KDE and Gnome people are working on a wallet that works under both, but that also means it could work under XFCE and WindowMaker, etc.

Meanwhile, by not doing it all themselves (e.g. PAM integration) they have more resources to spend on KDE-specific stuff. This is a non-zero-sum game.

Re:Crush GNOME. Don't collaborate with them. (1)

unixisc (2429386) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216310)

I don't want to see the KDE developers wasting time and effort by collaborating with GNOME. GNOME is a dying project. It is the XFree86 of the open source desktop world. The complete failure of GNOME 3 means that it'll be a dead project in, at most, a couple of years. There's no reason for the KDE devs to get involved with a dying project like GNOME. They should instead focus on making improvements to KDE, which will bring real value to all KDE users. KDE is a very lively and continually-improving software project. GNOME is not.

Yeah, while Gnome was previously dominant and it made sense to be inter-operable w/ them, that's now gone. I wonder who now pre-installs Gnome3 w/ their desktop - Fedora? Debian? Instead, KDE should work on making their own improvements, as well as seeing what they can use from GNUSTEP, and even making themselves inter-operable with them - not for any reason other than GNUSTEP is better, and provides what GNOME was originally supposed to deliver, but never did.

If Debian doesn't want to pre-load KDE on their desktops, they should offer GNUSTEP instead. I know they offer one distribution of GNUSTEP on Linux. Oh, and is Kubuntu still an option? Because if I can get a Linux w/ a KDE interface but w/ Debian update capabilities, as opposed to RH/yumm, I'm happy. Particularly if the software center is available in Kubuntu.

Incidentally, what does Debian offer on their other non-Linux OSs, such as BSD, or Hurd? Gnome?

well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213426)

I am with KDE 3.5.10 and probably will stick with it for a _LOONNG_ time to come.
KDE 4 is more than ugly and useless and GNOME 3 is an unholy mess.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (4, Insightful)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213472)

Well, I was a KDE 3.x hold out for the longest time... but then I gave it a chance again.

I am glad I did.

It really has improved greatly since the 4.0 debacle. Try it, from one 4.0 hater to another.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

smpoole7 (1467717) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213490)

I'm glad to hear that, because 4.0 truly sent me to Gnome. I don't really like Gnome, but the first few KDE 4 releases were almost unusable for me.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213544)

For what it's worth I totally agree with gatkinso. KDE4.0 was an epic disaster. KDE 4.6-4.7 have become really nice. I don't miss anything from KDE 3.5 any more, and 4.6+ has more polish than 3.x ever did.

Give it a fair shake, you might like it. Don't let 4.0 put you off the whole thing.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213752)

I stuck with KDE 4x until the last updates, which made everything so sloooow that I'm posting this using LXDE instead. knotify4 is just one of many resource hogs.

It's insane that a desktop like KDE can kill a multi-core machine. Even Vista runs faster on the same box - which really was the last straw for me.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

KugelKurt (908765) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216518)

I'm glad to hear that, because 4.0 truly sent me to Gnome. I don't really like Gnome, but the first few KDE 4 releases were almost unusable for me.

How often do we have to repeat that 4.0 and 4.1 were not meant for end users and that the 3.5.10 release (which happened AFTER 4.1) is proof of that?
4.2 was for end users. Granted, there were a few glitches in 4.2.0 but after 4.2.1 the Plasma Desktop ride was nothing but pleasant for me.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

AaronW (33736) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213508)

I was the same way. It took until KDE 4.5 before I switched. There's still a few things I miss from 3.5.10 but it is much improved.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213660)

Agreed,
4.5 was the first usable
4.6 the first that felt stable
I think the changes to OpenGL make 4.7 really stable and smooth, even with crazy effects. I still miss the windows bursting into flames from Compiz though (there was something really satisfying about that, and when fast enough it wasn't distracting.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213552)

Eh. Recent releases are better, but I still don't like the direction KDE's gone with the user interface with 4.x; I care neither for Plasmoids (or whatever those things are) nor for the way the K-menu hides the item hierarchies.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213828)

You can still use the Classic K-Menu. I always do.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

crazycheetah (1416001) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214104)

Or try the Lancelot Launcher [fomentgroup.org] . I think it's in the kdeplasma-addons package in Kubuntu, not sure about other distributions, but it should be something like that. I actually use that pretty exclusively these days. I just really like it. It does not hide the item hierarchies like the normal K-Menu. Plus it's got small little things like the no-click interface that are kinda cool, and which I do use occasionally. It's at least worth checking out.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (4, Insightful)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214904)

It's a little bit silly to complain about KDE's user interface when the things you complain about are user-configurable. Configurability has always been the hallmark of KDE; if you don't like the way it comes by default, there's probably a setting to change it under System Settings->Workspace Appearance and Behavior.

As the other posters said, there's actually three different modes for the K-menu: classic (which is probably what you want), the new one, and Lancelot. If you don't like the one set by default, try another one.

This isn't GNOME, where you're stuck with whatever the "usability experts" there think you should use, and aren't allowed to change anything. You can have it your way (with apologies to BK).

Plus, no one's forcing you to put plasmoids on your desktop. You can leave it totally blank if you want.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215302)

I certainly can gripe about that being non-obvious, now can't I?

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215360)

How much more obvious can they make it, other than putting into the control panel (called "System Settings" in KDE, but the same thing)? What else should they do, stick a giant button on the menu itself that says "configure menu"? Who wants to see that every single time they open the menu? If they did that on every UI element, the whole desktop would be filled with configuration buttons for every little item. That's why it's all put in the control panel (or should be; KDE4 falls down a little in this area with certain things compared to 3.5).

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

m50d (797211) | more than 2 years ago | (#37217068)

Ok, here are my big complaints for things that were working in 3.5:

The system tray still doesn't work. KDE4 apps appear in it, but KDE3 or non-kde apps don't. So for an application that keeps running in the system tray when you close the window (e.g. skype), you then have no way to close it.

There's no way to set a default transparency for foreground windows. That was there in 3.5, I filed a bug about it, but five minor versions later it's still not there.

Re:well, can only hope it gets better than KDE4 (1)

vurian (645456) | more than 2 years ago | (#37217156)

Yes, it does. The skype icon on my KDE 4.7 system appears in the systemtray, just like any other systray app I've ever tried.

First post.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213516)

Inb4, he resigns from KDE.

Don't do it by the way. KDE is currently the best in Linux.

I LIKE TO WATCH T.V. !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213682)

Being There !! is better than Getting there !!

QML (3, Interesting)

Psychotria (953670) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213692)

Aaron spend a lot of time speaking about a transition, in the long-term, to QML (I had to look it up) in the interview. He mentioned that it makes prototyping interfaces quicker, and I assume that also means implementation of the GUI aspects would therefore be quicker also. But I am confused. Is QML just for GUI stuff, or do you write the entire application using it? What other advantages over C++ does it offer?
Cheers

Re:QML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213848)

designers cook up an interface in easy-to-learn QML (presentation)
developer writes the Qt voodoo (code)

separating presentation from code, empowering the designer, making it easier to port

Re:QML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213976)

it's just the gui stuff

Re:QML (5, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213984)

QML is pretty much like HTML/CSS+Javascript, except that you can do more Javascript magic to manipulate the UI. In theory the whole application can be written in Javascript, but I'd say normally just for the UI or things closely related to the UI. Personally I consider it a step backwards, to me it's more like trying to use web app tech to build a "real" app. I always thought that the only reason you'd want to use a declarative UI is because you need to send it as one big HTTP page, rather than set one and one property as you can do locally. To me at least the whole system seems way less intuitive. With an imperative system I always call setWidth() to set the width, in a declarative UI it's set in the declaration one way and I have to change that property some other way. Maybe I'm wrong but IMO it's throwing away the best part Qt has.

Re:QML (1)

Psychotria (953670) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214536)

Thanks. That's what had me confused. To me if you're programming in C++ anyway, I would have thought you'd do the UI in C++ also (especially considering Qt is C++ [with the moc]). I get that using QML may make the UI design easier for designers, but I couldn't see any other real advantages. Anyway, I thought he was saying the whole application would be written in QML, so thanks for clearing that up.

Re:QML (1)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216312)

I think one of the points of QML is that it can access Qt objects even ones written in C++ (and vice versa). This means QML can be used to script firefox-style plugins and extensions into any Qt application.

Re:QML (1)

tangent3 (449222) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214902)

"throwing away"?

You're saying like as if writing Qt5 app in C++ will no longer be possible.

Re:QML (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216446)

You're saying like as if writing Qt5 app in C++ will no longer be possible.

Possible yes, but you can tell they're now pushing QML as "the next big thing" and the traditional QWidgets aren't getting nearly as much love as before. The rest of Qt will of course be there but without all the UI building blocks I'd say Qt is gutted. So you can of course be an old fart and use the widgets anyway, but I fear it'll become more of a legacy option. While I don't think Nokia is going to depreciate them, the priority of bugs and enhancements vs QML is a concern.

Re:QML (2)

suy (1908306) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216392)

With QML you can do "width: parent.width / 2", or whatever other expression, and the width is now bound (not assigned) to the width of the parent. IMO is waaaay better than defining a width, and having to create a bunch of logic to make sure the width stays the amount you wanted in the first place. For user interfaces is a great thing, and other technologies are already doing it (Clutter, JavaFX). I think that the way that works in Qt is pretty good, because you integrate with imperative code in a very convenient way.

Re:QML (3, Interesting)

EvilNTUser (573674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216920)

You misunderstand how QML is supposed to be used. It's nothing at all like building a web app. Its biggest problem right now is that there aren't any good books about how to use it correctly, and what your overall design philosophy should be.

If we are to stay with the web analogy, in terms of usefulness QML/C++ is to plain C++ like CSS/HTML is to plain HTML. Positioning, reacting to changes, tasteful animations etc. are all extremely simple in a declarative UI. Explaining how to use it would be too much for one post, but it's becoming so powerful you'll soon be able to manipulate your UI using shaders. I've added comments to explain the basic QML, but the original article is here [nokia.com] .


Image { // Create a new image object
        width: 180
        height: 180
        source: "winter.jpg"

        Text { // Create a new text object parented to the image object
                id: theItem // Give this object an id to refer to
                anchors.fill: parent // Automatically and constantly adjust to the size of the parent
                horizontalAlignment: Text.AlignHCenter
                verticalAlignment: Text.AlignVCenter
                font.pixelSize: 120
                font.family: "Times"
                color: "blue"
                text: "Qt"
        }

        ShaderEffectItem { // Create a new ShaderEffectItem object
                anchors.fill: parent // Automatically and constantly adjust to the size of the parent

                property variant source: ShaderEffectSource {
                        sourceItem: theItem // The object that the shader will draw
                        smooth: true
                        hideSource: true
                }

                property real amplitude: 0.02 // Define new variables for the shader to interact with.
                property real frequency: 20
                property real time: 0
                NumberAnimation on time { loops: Animation.Infinite; from: 0; to: Math.PI * 2; duration: 600 } // Animate the time variable. You can also make animations that automatically animate objects' size changes when you do, say, width = 300.
                fragmentShader: " // Embedded fragment shader code
                        uniform highp float amplitude;
                        uniform highp float frequency;
                        uniform highp float time;
                        uniform sampler2D source;
                        uniform lowp float qt_Opacity;
                        varying highp vec2 qt_TexCoord0;
                        void main() {
                                highp vec2 p = sin(time + frequency * qt_TexCoord0);
                                gl_FragColor = qt_Opacity * texture2D(source, qt_TexCoord0 + amplitude * vec2(p.y, -p.x));
                        }"
        }
}

Re:QML (1)

Imbrondir (2367812) | more than 2 years ago | (#37217286)

Another benefit that will come with Qt5 and QML is better performance, from rendering with an opengl based scenegraph instead of QPainter. Even compared to the opengl qpainter backend, the improvements should be pretty dramatic in many situations.

Re:QML (2)

suy (1908306) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216360)

QML is just for GUI stuff, but you can add logic to the interface in JavaScript. Some people are claiming that Qt is losing its C++ roots, but, IMHO, they are wrong. QML will replace the UI files that Qt Designer created, but with lots of advantages. First, QML can be written by hand, and also with a very smart QML Designer that only modifies the lines that you change. That means that designers and coders can easily work together, and that changes to the UI are readable in the history of the project.

The other important benefit of QML, is that is really fun to use, and you can create compelling user interfaces with a fraction of the time. Then you can plug your C++ very easily to do the heavy lifting. The thing that makes Qt Quick excel, is that you can mix QML and C++ very easily throught the Qt property system and signals and slots.

Re:QML (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37216788)

Just to reinforce "suy" statements, I'm a designer i do not know C++ but i do manage with QML, as it is now I would avoid use of QML on traditional desktop applications if you are not a very good designer its a easy path to disaster. (this will change with the components stuff).
But the amount of UI freedom it gives you is amazing, you can do incredibly compelling UI's and the big advantage IMO is that a lot of different skill-sets (people) can use the same tool the same code to do their work, from the interaction designer to the c++ coder passing through the graphical and motion designer. All using the same code and more importantly, talking the same language witch is allays a big problem between designers and coders.
     

"Designers" have fucked up open source UIs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37217350)

We don't want so-called "designers" anywhere near our open source UIs. We've seen what they've done to GNOME. We've seen what they've done to Firefox. They've taken what were previously usable and functional UIs, and turned them into spectacularly unusable piles of shit.

Anything that makes it harder for non-programmers to create UIs is a good thing. Why? Because it forces real programmers to create them instead, and programmers are the ones who know how to do it right.

derp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213710)

since when was gnome a big desktop ever since they released gnome 3 90% of it's users have switched back to gnome 2 or kde or xfce.

Re:derp (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214930)

Gnome was a big desktop when KDE screwed up with the great KDE4.0 debacle about 3 years ago. Tons of KDE users got pissed off (mainly because 3.5 was no longer supported by the distros, and 4.[0-4] were broken and buggy), and defected to Gnome2, and have been using it ever since.

As for Gnome3, they just released that, what?, this month? This you're talking about it like it's ancient history.

Woot for Testing! (1)

NotBorg (829820) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213730)

FTA:

Also we will have a larger focus on quality, we are now requiring unit testing for changes to our core libraries.

About damned time. Maybe the Nepomuk file indexer will stop crashing every time I start a large compile. I turn it on every point release to see if it has gotten any better. I let it go for a few days before I become fed up with its constant disk access... the damned thing never stops, ever. I'm not sure what it does really... it pisses me off that Dolphin uses it for its search. If you want reliable search you still have to use grep, find, or something not built on the KDE indexer. WTF man?

It's funny that now they have this huge file indexer thing they finally (in a recent release) removed the the indexer/search feature from their "Help Center" that hadn't worked since the end of 2.x. Now that they have a brand new indexer... ??? !!! Chuckles. It's OK though no one used it anyway. *cough*Google*cough*.

I love KDE and wouldn't use anything else but sometimes I gotta wonder what's going on in the QA dept. Some of the stuff really is half baked while most of it is great. It's that 10% making the rest look bad.

Do we really need this? (1)

kbrannen (581293) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213802)

I'm really started to get burnt out on all the new versions for "mature" packages. There are multiple examples of this: MS-Windows, Firefox, KDE, even the Linux kernel (which recently rev'd major numbers just because). All of these things and others are mature; they do what they basically need to do and new major versions haven't really add anything all that useful lately. I'm tired of getting new GUIs, frameworks, etc just because the developers need to be seen as doing something. Stop it! How about fixing the existing bugs instead?

We know what OSes do and they do it well. Browsers get a bit of slack because of the new HTML5. But all the GUI changes "just because" are killing me (and a lot of others) because they force me to learn something new that doesn't give me anything to help me do my job better. Developers -- please think that thru very carefully! Please?!

When something truly new and innovative comes along, then I'll understand the new major version.

Re:Do we really need this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37213820)

Then don't update. Stick to what you have. I don't see what the problem is? There are many distros that have "LTS" versions (eg long term support) you can just use that.

Re:Do we really need this? (1)

kbrannen (581293) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213888)

I don't update every version, usually just every other release. However, because the developers keep working on new major versions that don't really give us anything truly useful, that means that the existing code never has obvious bugs fixed.

Software that isn't mature is exempt from my rant... :)

Re:Do we really need this? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214980)

There's a lot of problems with that approach. On servers, it makes sense, because if your MySQL server is working fine, then why bother updating it except for security fixes?

A desktop computer is a different matter. There's always bugs to be fixed with all the various applications you use. Maybe the printing is a little screwed up, maybe the music player has some UI problems. Also, features are added, which can be useful: maybe the music player added support for a new online store like Magnatune. Finally, browsers are changing out of necessity because of HTML5, which is still pretty new, so of course bugs and issues are getting fixed and improved there too.

If you stick with a LTS version, you're going to miss out on all of that. Firefox has already stopped support for the 3.x browsers, but if your distro is a year or so old, that's what it has, and you can't change it without having to add some different repositories (which kinda defeats the point if you're after stability). LTS versions don't fix bugs either, unless they're security-related. Finally, if your hardware is newer, an older distro won't support it as well with its older kernel version.

So, people like to have at least fairly-recent distro versions, so they can keep up with the latest features and bugfixes. But that doesn't mean they want their entire computing environment revamped every year or two, they just want a slow and steady progression of improvements and bugfixes.

To make a car analogy, how much have car UIs changed in the last 50 years? They still have a steering wheel, an accelerator pedal on the right, etc. What would happen if Chevy made a car with a tiller and an airplane-style throttle lever, saying this would "streamline the user experience" and "reduce confusion", or that "it's better for users with poor control of their feet", or whatever? There'd be an uproar. But that's exactly what the Gnome3/Unity people have done.

Re:Do we really need this? (2)

gweihir (88907) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214112)

You can ignore it.

KDE? GNOME? I could not care less. I have been using fvwm for something like 20 years now and it still does everything I need. If you want to get work done, the GUI must under no circumstances get in your way. It must not hog your attention. It must not waste screen area. At the same time, it must provide what you need. I need 3x3 virtual desktops, edge-scroll, autoraiser, one icon box to the right, a clock and some mouse-menus. fvwm does this fast, efficient and in these 20 years I had to change the config-file once, when fvwm2 came out. Everything else is just a bit of cosmetics now and then.

I do not understand why people get excited about the Windows GUI either. It is decades outdated, slow, inflexible, clutters your desktop, has no virtual screens out of the box, is hard to configure and is generally a study in how to not do it. The only thing I use it for is as a game launcher and it even manages to screw that up time and again. And this is the supposedly "best" what MS has to offer, namely Win7.

I think too many people forget that the PC is a tool and should work well as a tool. It can be fun to use too, but it is not a pacifier or mobile or other toy that has distracting people as its main task. In fact, when the GUI starts distracting, then it is massively misdesigned.

Re:Do we really need this? (1)

rastos1 (601318) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216750)

I need 3x3 virtual desktops, edge-scroll, autoraiser, one icon box to the right, a clock and some mouse-menus.

The point is that KDE is not only a window manager like FVWM. Though I don't think FVWM allows me to put a button on the title bar that makes the window "always on top". There also is a number of applications (ok, you can run them in FVWM too, but why?) and there is also lot of other useful stuff such as kioslaves, notifications, ...

smart move: including Qt developers (1)

Gravis Zero (934156) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213846)

Our goal is to give us better tools for desktop app development, give our KDE mobile projects a leg up and make KDE's libraries something that Qt developers can and will use.

i'm aware that KDE's API is based on Qt but it has some big differences. including/assisting Qt people will add a large sum of people to the KDE development platform.

KDE is looking better for dev'rs but the desktop itself is not friendly enough for me right now and it doesnt help that ease of use for lay people isnt a focus.

Like Java frameworks (1)

renrutal (872592) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213860)

Please correct me if I'm wrong in this analogy, Are _KDE_ Frameworks 5.0 is to QT the same as _Apache_'s many frameworks are to the Java SE/EE platforms? Really no major coupling at all?

Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (1, Interesting)

sqldr (838964) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213892)

Am I the only person in the universe who likes gnome 3?

I'm a sysadmin, so I usually have millions of windows open at once, and I've always been looking for ways to find the bloody one I'm after. I'm often in the middle of programming something when something urgent comes up, and I'm too lazy to switch to a new desktop so I just fire up a few more windows, then I always put my computer in standby every night (to keep my code open and remind myself what I was doing the following morning) until about twice a week I go about purging windows.

People complained about KDE4 because you couldn't put icons on the desktop. Instead that panel. Well, you could make it full-screen, but to me it was never a problem. If I have screen space available, I tend to put windows in it. Linus Torvalds talking about the number of mouse clicks to open a terminal hit two nerves for me:

    1) To click an icon on the desktop, I would first have to stop using the keyboard and reach for the mouse
    2) I would then have to drag possibly more than on window out of the way, possibly into some docs in another one I might be reading whilst I'm typing into another
    3) I stopped having a backdrop image years ago for this reason.

So then there's the taskbar.

I used ION for a couple of years. I really liked it. It's a tiling window manager, but it uses "managed tiling"., KDE 4.5 gave us unmanaged tiling. It also gave us stacking, but the two don't work together. MASSIVE BUG. I want 5 windows on top of eachother in a tile, and well, people like the auto-tiling.. I don't.. it's unpredictable. it resizes your windows.

What I liked about ION is you created a tile, or at least moved your cursor to the tile you want your window in, THEN open the window, rather than opening the window and seeing where it turns up. WHY? because that 1.5 seconds of thought made me put it in the right place then it stuffed it into my short term memory and I could always remember where I put it.

Taskbar redundant.

Gnome3 tries to solve it by zooming out and clicking on the window. problem unless you have a very high res monitor is you can't tell one terminal from another. That will be resolved in time, but the taskbar has failed for me. "group windows by task" makes it worse. I'm a sysadmin. I've got 20 windows open.

I stopped using ION when the author started being a dick with the GPL and having an utterly uninformed opinion of antialiasing ("If monitors have the resolution of printers, then I would use antialiasing. If you want your fonts dragged through mud, use windows". Firstly, printers use floyd-steinburg dithering. They don't have shades of colour. They use very high resolution dithering for colour. Secondly, monitors do have shades. you increase resolution by antialiasing).

KDE 4.5 introduced stacking and tiling.

The tiling is auto-tiling. There's many who like the auto-tiling approach of WMs such as "awesome". I hate it. it's unpredictable. I would rather create the tile then put the window in it. It also has stacking, which awesome doesn't have. ION allowed you to put many windows in one tile. KDE has a MASSIVE BUG. tiling and stacking don't work together! and it forces you to put all terminals into one stack!!

KDE: either get more like ION for tiling, or allow zooming for gnome 3 users. some people like desktop icons and stuff. If I want to *click* on a terminal, I'll put it on the taskbar. I get that. So do you. Just do something for us who appreciate that the taskbar has failed. new era.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | more than 3 years ago | (#37213924)

I like it more than KDE4

OK, I'm going to get in there first.. (1)

sqldr (838964) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214042)

"Linus Torvalds... hit two nerves with me"

1)
2)
3) ;just top save you all being smartasses!

Re:OK, I'm going to get in there first.. (1)

Mass Overkiller (1999306) | more than 3 years ago | (#37214496)

I personally like Gnome3 and Unity. I like them both. I also really like Gnome2. On my laptop I have Ubuntu 10.10 with Gnome2 and my desktop with Gnome3 and Unity. Let me give you an example as to why I like Unity specifically. My girlfriend uses my desktop when I'm at work as I "inherited" her laptop for work purposes. I told her about Linux, Unity, Ubuntu, etc. etc. All she said to me was "does it work?" I said yes. I told her about the Unity Home launcher thing, where she can move the mouse to the upper left corner and type in what she wants to do. "Like Google?" she replied. YES! After that brief introduction, she was able to use the desktop Unity without any further instructions and has not had any problems. She said "that makes sense". She can type in Firefox and VIOLA there it is, no clicking on menus or anything. To further this, she needed to scan something and, according to her, she typed in "scanner" and VIOLA XSane opened up and she could scan whateverthehell it was she needed. She thought that typing in what you wanted was useful and she didn't have to hunt for programs in menus. So, although I am a long time Linux user, and use Gnome2 most often, for a less-than-computer-literal person using Unity, literally using the desktop like a search engine to find the program she wants (ie: no menu crawling), she was very happy and had no problems. So from a usability standpoint, Unity wins. If the target audience is a less savvy computer user. For me I'm used to Unity and Gnome3 but I can see why some people really like Gnome2 - its stable and once you are used to where your applications are, the menu system is straightforward and rarely (actually never) crashes.

Re:OK, I'm going to get in there first.. (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 2 years ago | (#37215936)

I told her about the Unity Home launcher thing, where she can move the mouse to the upper left corner and type in what she wants to do. "Like Google?" she replied. YES!

I've got a great idea: Expand that line to a multi-line display where you can also see previous inputs. We just need a name for that ... command line?

Re:OK, I'm going to get in there first.. (1)

richlv (778496) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216266)

She can type in Firefox and VIOLA there it is

omfg. you just type "firefox" and somebody plays a viola ? or do you magically get flowers ?
that sounds very awesome, wondering what kind of nanotechnology assembly is used there. do you need new hardware ?

Re:OK, I'm going to get in there first.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37216376)

"I told her about the Unity Home launcher thing, where she can move the mouse to the upper left corner and type in what she wants to do. "Like Google?" she replied. YES! After that brief introduction, she was able to use the desktop Unity without any further instructions and has not had any problems. She said "that makes sense". She can type in Firefox and VIOLA there it is, no clicking on menus or anything. To further this, she needed to scan something and, according to her, she typed in "scanner" and VIOLA XSane opened up and she could scan whateverthehell it was she needed."

So instead just clicking "Applications > Internet > Firefox" or "Applications > Graphics > Sane" she needed still move the mouse and still type F-I-R-E-F-O-X or -S-C-A-N-N-I-N-G

Well, Alt+F2 has always been there because of that, you can even change it to metakey like windows button or Alt+Spacebar. No need to use MOUSE to summon it.
And still menu and panels are faster than those "move mouse to that corner and type what you want".

People does not even know what internet browser is but they know what firefox is.
They do not know what the scanner is but they know what is simple scan.

Unity has far most terrible usability when compared to KDE4 or even GNOME 2.x and GNOME 3.x. Even Windows wins it hands down.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37214380)

Linus Torvalds talking about the number of mouse clicks to open a terminal hit two nerves for me

1) To click an icon on the desktop, I would first have to stop using the keyboard and reach for the mouse
2) I would then have to drag possibly more than on window out of the way, possibly into some docs in another one I might be reading whilst I'm typing into another

Windows+D ... best. shortcut. ever.

Alternativly, create a shortcut key or taskbar icon to open a new terminal.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (1)

tyrione (134248) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215410)

You're not alone. I switched the moment GNOME 3 came out for Debian, even in it's incomplete status. I cannot stomach all the Nepomuk crap, the widgets here and there, Dolphin being a bloated pig, etc. The only apps I'm down to using are Kile and Kate. The Plasma crap I could live without.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37216546)

For latex editing, look into latexila. I've used it to write my thesis last year, worked very well.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (1)

Tomato42 (2416694) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216660)

With KDE4 exposé you can just type the window's title and it will start showing only the windows that their title match.

Re:Controversial KDE to gnome3 weirdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37217506)

What is "auto-tiling" feature?

Is it that when new window is created, it gets own location to screen what is shared to tiles? And you can choose is the tiling a spiral or so on?

If so, did you know you can disable the auto-tiling feature and then just position the windows to your wanted location by dragging them to three parts of the sides?

Who gives a rat's ass? (0)

tyrione (134248) | more than 3 years ago | (#37215398)

Seriously. The software gets heavier and heavier with each release and productivity software more often than not is just a KDE interface over some set of utilities or a port from GTK+ and vice versa. KOffice will never strike a chord beyond the 1% crowd. Same goes with Amarok and many others. How about working with corporations to port a flag ship CAD/CAM or FEA, solid modeling solution to KDE?

Re:Who gives a rat's ass? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37216454)

KOffice will never strike a chord beyond the 1% crowd. Same goes with Amarok and many others. How about working with corporations to port a flag ship CAD/CAM or FEA, solid modeling solution to KDE?

Because such CAD app would not strike a chord beyond the %1 crowd.....

Not another 4.0 fiasco? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#37215598)

Major distros early-adopting KDE 4.0 and 4.1 drove me away from KDE after nearly a decade of faithful use. I'm just about ready to come back and try KDE 4.6 because friends tell me it's regained most of its lost glory, and now they are about to jump ahead again. I hope distro maintainers saw the exodus a few years ago and don't make the same mistake again. Wait for 5.2 or later before changing!

Wow, never knew Aron was so ghetto (1)

MirzaD (1357375) | more than 2 years ago | (#37216502)

That part in the interview where he called the GNOME designers a "bunch of punk-ass bitches" was a bit uncalled for, I think.

Linux GUIs - one too many. (0)

aunt edna (924333) | more than 2 years ago | (#37217386)

Gnome or KDE?
Just get rid of one of them.
Having a choice is idiotic.

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