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KDE 4 to Support Apple Dashboard Widgets

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the apple-setting-accidental-standards dept.

373

Ryan writes to tell us Applexnet is reporting that Zack Rusin, a lead developer of KDE, has confirmed that KDE 4 will be able to run and display Dashboard widgets similar to Mac OS X 10.4. From the article: "Basically, this means that a layer (similar in some ways to layers in Adobe Photoshop) in the KDE desktop could function the same way that Dashboard does in Mac OS X. Widgets themselves are not inherently difficult to write nor properly interpret, since they are usually just HTML and Javascript (although Cocoa code can be included, the developer's skills permitting). Furthermore, since Konqueror and Safari share very nearly the same rendering engine, KHTML and WebKit, this too will simplify the process."

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who knew (0)

User 956 (568564) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379387)

Who knew that the "write once, run anywhere" promised to us by Java, would be beaten to the punch by an Open Source project?

Re:who knew (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379394)

Who knew that the "write once, run anywhere" promised to us by Java, would be beaten to the punch by an Open Source project... ...copying something from Apple.

Who indeed?

Re:who knew (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379472)

HTML widgets were invented by Microsoft.

Re:who knew (4, Insightful)

theAtomicFireball (532233) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379397)

Sure... if you define "anywhere" to mean "anywhere but windows"

Re:who knew (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379579)

Anywhere that matters...

--
crm14

Re:who knew (1)

scbysnx (837275) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379725)

the mojority of personal computer users don't matter?

Re:who knew (1)

ZeroZen (136166) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379776)

majority.

but yes i agree. not that write once, run anywhere, is part of the article, but if windows doesn't support these widgets, maybe someone should write software that makes it so...

Good enough for me! (1)

rodoke3 (681504) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379599)

nt

Who knew that open source would be beaten (3, Interesting)

ShatteredDream (636520) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379622)

I hate to break it to you, but Java beat them by a wide margin a long time ago. Java has been able to do the write once, run anywhere since around JDK 1.2. Yes, you still need to do testing on platforms you plan to officially support, but the big difference is that Sun has made incredible strides in making Java that reliable on all officially supported platforms.

Now, as a Java developer I see nothing wrong with this and even see a good place for Java in the development of widgets. It's an easy language to pick up and you have the applets concept which was the first attempt to create something similar to widgets. All things considered, Java is an asset, not a competitor, for widgets.

Re:who knew (2, Insightful)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379651)

Except, if you read the summary, you'd see it isn't, since OSX widgets can include Cocoa code, which KDE doesn't support.

In other words, you'll get your modpoints for bashing Java, but you lose in reality.

Re:who knew (1, Flamebait)

User 956 (568564) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379686)

Except, if you read the summary, you'd see it isn't, since OSX widgets can include Cocoa code, which KDE doesn't support.

They *can* include Cocoa code, but it's not required. So you can write a Konfabulator widget [yahoo.com] and it'll run just fine on OS X, Windows, and now KDE.

Re:who knew (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379735)

You're being pedantic. My point was, you posted an anti-java troll by playing loose with the facts. Don't let it worry you - I know you're probably chasing karma, and I'd hate to stop you in your quest to bump the invisible number.

Re:who knew (0, Flamebait)

User 956 (568564) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379783)

You're being pedantic.

...says the kid who's pointing out inconsequential, irrelevant "facts". Yeah, ok.

Re:who knew (3, Informative)

Decaff (42676) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379749)

Who knew that the "write once, run anywhere" promised to us by Java, would be beaten to the punch by an Open Source project?

Wow! So this means that these Dashboard widgets can run on my mobile phone? On Windows? On IBM z-Series mainframes? Can you write databases using these widgets? Application servers? Distributed network applications? Numerical applications?

Excellent! Then I'll abandon the hundreds of thousands of lines of portable Java code I have written and translate it into HTML and JavaScript after reading your informative post.

Oops! Hold on! Let's take a look at the article:

"KDE's runtime will be limited in that it will not be able to run widgets properly that use AppleScript or Cocoa in some way. Likewise, it's possible that Mac OS X users may also have to face not being able to run some widgets that depend on KDE somehow."

Oh well, back to Java....

Re:who knew (1)

jZnat (793348) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379754)

Yeah, who would have known that HTML and JavaScript/ECMAScript would have been more portable? Hmm...

MOD PARENT DOWN (1)

100 Percent Troll (734434) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379770)

only YOU can prevent java-troll-karma-whoring!!!

Too bad the K name is taken (4, Funny)

tepples (727027) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379388)

Konfabulator?

Re:Too bad the K name is taken (2, Informative)

User 956 (568564) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379408)

Konfabulator?

Nah, didn't you hear the news? Konfabulator has been renamed to "Yahoo widget engine" [digg.com] . Which means "konfabulator" is up for grabs.

Re:Too bad the K name is taken (1)

big tex (15917) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379443)

Actually, it's SuperKaramba. [superkaramba.com]

Desktop widgets, and it's been out for years.

Re:Too bad the K name is taken (3, Funny)

zarr (724629) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379646)

Kkonfabulator! :)

Re:Too bad the K name is taken (1)

Ruff_ilb (769396) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379712)

Ah, but you've forgotten the wonderful -ix suffix. Now the KDE Widgets app kan be kalled Konfabulatorix!

A possible merge in store, perhaps? (4, Interesting)

hahafaha (844574) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379409)

Apple already took a lot from UNIX. It pretty much *is* UNIX. Perhaps it will lend something to KDE.

Most UNIX-people use Apple because it still is UNIX but with a better GUI. Perhaps KDE will convince Apple to make the GUI Free Software.

Or maybe Apple will just sue the socks off of the KDE project.

Pulling numbers right out your arse? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379431)

None of the UNIX people I know use MacOSX. And I personally think the UI is awful.

Re:Pulling numbers right out your arse? (2, Interesting)

hahafaha (844574) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379471)

I know of plenty of people like that. You might have misinterpreted what I said. I did not mean that most people that like UNIX, use Apple because of its GUI. I said that most people that use UNIX and use Apple, do so because of the GUI.

Why do you think the UI is awful?

Re:Pulling numbers right out your arse? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379507)

Yes, I misunderstood. Sorry.

Why do you think the UI is awful?

It just feels clumsy. For example I didn't find out how to enable "focus follows mouse" and turn of "active window in front".

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (4, Insightful)

HowIsMyDriving? (142335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379438)

It will never happen. Apple needs OSX to be able to be in the market place. Apple, while making money off of the hardware will need OSX, especially since going to the Intel platform to make it different. If they opened it up to white box computers no one would buy Apple hardware, and they would soon be stuck with just iPods and iBooks and Powerbooks. The cannot do this, for it would kill the company.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379469)

The early powerpc clones almost killed apple. Another quarter and Jobs would not need to save the company since it would already would have been dead.

Sometimes whats best for consumers is not best for the companies who make the products. Software is used to create lockin and artificial high barriers to entry to jerk up prices. Bill Gates discovered this and Apple does the same with tying its hardware and software together.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379582)

The clones failed for Apple because Apple was bent on continuing their existing model (almost giving away the OS, but charging high prices for the hardware). If they had a more sensible plan - that is, following Microsoft's model by being OS-and-app-centric for their revenue, where the hardware is a means to sell that software solution, there's a good chance that they'd have gained more of the installed market share back. Back when they killed the clones I was about to buy a dual processor clone. Good thing I didn't. I have one Mac - one G3 a customer gave me because the NIC died on it. I do a lot of work on Macs, but would never pay Apple prices on the hardware because they simply are not worth the money for a new one (well, aside from the Mac Mini). They're great machines but given a choice between a dual G5 and a dual Opteron, a dual Xeon, or even a dual core (Opteron/Pentium D) PC, I'd go PC/Linux. I'd get far better value for my money, and a much faster video card in the deal.

If Apple gets a clue between now and the OS/X x86 release, I might switch from Linux to OS/X but I doubt they will see the light and will do everything they possibly can to break compatibility between OS/X and standard PC motherboards.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379758)

I agree. I really like their laptops. I am hoping the prices for their intel laptops will be reasonable compared to wintel counterparts. I pray I can run windows on them as well since that is important.

If they are only a few hundred more I would buy them simple because linux no longer just works and its a mess. I am a former BSD biggot so I am biased. I like macosx because it just works and is tied to the hardware. AN escape from rpm hell and apt-get hell is nice too. Why is it so hard to upgrade to openoffice 2.0 with ubuntu without installing things from unstable? With macosx I just point and click to upgrade or install packages. Not to mention some nice commercial software exists for the macs. I dont think they will break compatibility. but I do picture them using different sized agp and pci cards. I think Apple wants more hardware for their platform so we will wait and see.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

m50d (797211) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379545)

they would soon be stuck with just iPods and iBooks and Powerbooks. The cannot do this, for it would kill the company.

I don't think they would die. There's no sense them giving up their desktop division while it's making money, but they could survive perfectly well on the other lines you mention.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379636)

I too doubt Apple will go open source with their GUI system. I think that's a longer shot than Apple selling the OS to work on generic computers, though I would like that, I would buy several licences if they did such.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (2, Interesting)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379765)

Considering that *most* computer sales are laptops, it may well be a good thing to F/OSS their OS... you would get *real* support for branded hardware, and OSS community support for other hardware... Honestly, it's the *only* way I would trust apple to have an OS for non-apple hardware is an OpenSource license, considering what happened the last time they allowed 3rd party vendor licensing.

I really like OSX 10.4, and would really like more support, the intel move will help this a little. Open-Sourcing the OS could help a *LOT*, maybe restrict the license to use without redistribution, or something... Which would allow for download/install, but limit competing vendors.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (3, Insightful)

linguae (763922) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379470)

Most UNIX-people use Apple because it still is UNIX but with a better GUI. Perhaps KDE will convince Apple to make the GUI Free Software.

And don't forget about the ability to run commercial applications such as MS Office and Photoshop. I believe Macs are preferred to a standard Linux or BSD desktop configuration mainly because of mainstream application and hardware support; the GUI just makes the experience more worthwhile.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379674)

Apple already took a lot from UNIX. It pretty much *is* UNIX. Perhaps it will lend something to KDE.

Most UNIX-people use Apple because it still is UNIX but with a better GUI.

Please stop spreading this crap propaganda. OS X is barely a UNIX OS, and for most UNIX people, it serves as more of a frustration than a solution. For light users who need to write a 3-line wget script now and then, or people who run 'top' because they like to stare at all the pretty status information, yeah, it works. But if you want to, say, develop a Python module in C, you'll find yourself erasing OS X and installing Linux after about an hour and a half of cursing and spitting at the machine.

Re:A possible merge in store, perhaps? (1)

ZakuSage (874456) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379711)

While I think Apple open sourcing Mac OS X is a pipe dream and unrealistic, I do think it would be more realistic and nice if they offered more interoperability with KDE. Perhaps more in the vein of offering it as an alternative desktop shell right off the bat in a future OS X release.

Lets slow down KDE Even more! (-1, Flamebait)

HowIsMyDriving? (142335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379413)

Lets slow down KDE even more. The sad thing is KDE 4 is looking to be as bloated as a Microsoft Windows release. Too bad they cannot have a KDE lite without stuff that I don't need or things that I can do on my Mac.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (4, Informative)

chill (34294) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379441)

You haven't used KDE lately, have you?

Each release has been faster than before with 3.5 being noticably faster than 3.4.1.

Finally, get off your whiney ass and compile it for yourself using Konstruct. Pick just exactly what you want and make it nice and slim for you.

That is what the source code is for, you know.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (-1, Flamebait)

HowIsMyDriving? (142335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379480)

I still consider 395 megs of memory used when using the K web browser and file system to be too much. I have built my own KDE running 3.5, and even on a P4 2.8 with 1.5 gigs of ram running Debian it is slower than Windows or OSX. The sad thing is, being that KDE is the most usable GUI for Linux/BSD, and has the best support for Open office, that I still use it. I still am fond of when A GUI took up 20 megs, ran well with 12 megs of memory, and was almost instainious in response to commands. (Mac OS 7.1 and Windows 3.1 on a 68030 and 486 respectively)

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (3, Informative)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379639)

I still consider 395 megs of memory used when using the K web browser and file system to be too much.


I currently have following things running on my KDE-desktop:

- Konqueror with 4 tabs
- Kontact
- Konsole
- Basket
- Kopete
- Bunch of KDE-related services (Wallet-manager, Klipper etc.)
- The usual Linux-services

How much RAM is being consumed? 149 megs. Let me repeat that: KDE, with all those apps running plus host of other Linux-services, is consuming 149 megs of RAM. Not exactly the 395 megs you quoted, now is it? Let's make this interesting, shall we? I also often run K3b, Amarok (with 7gig music-library), Codeine and Kword. How much RAM is being consumed with those apps running as well (for a total of Konqueror, Kopete, Amarok, Kword, Codeine, Kontact, Basket and Konsole running at the same time)? 310 megs, it seems. So we are getting closer to your figure of 395 megs (which you claim KDE consumes with nothing but Konqueror running).

If I add System Settings (this is a Kubuntu-machine), KPDF and Kate to the mix, RAM-consumption jumps to 323 megs. Still not the same as your figure. Adding SuperKaramba, Info Center and Help in there, and the system consumes 338 megs of RAM. Kspread and Kedit make the RAM-consumption to jump to a whopping 347 megs, still not as high as your figure. And I don't even know what other apps I could be running here. My taskbar is full of running apps, and the RAM-consumption is more than reasonable.

I still am fond of when A GUI took up 20 megs, ran well with 12 megs of memory, and was almost instainious in response to commands. (Mac OS 7.1 and Windows 3.1 on a 68030 and 486 respectively)


Then keep on using those old GUI's. If modern GUI's are slow and bloated, why are you using them?

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (1)

HowIsMyDriving? (142335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379715)

And you are hitting your HD how much with this config? So are you saying that running KPDF should take up over 200 megs of memory if I need it running? Also, asking why I am not runing 3.1 or 7.1 is asking why did you start using the 2.6 Kernal when 1.3 was running fine? Oh, you mean I can run final cut on a 68030?

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (3, Informative)

molnarcs (675885) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379668)

395 megs of memory is too much. K web browser never uses that much. In fact, konqi's memory usage if far below firefox's. The least amount of ram you need for kde is 192. With 256, it should work smoothly (you can even have some konq. instances preloaded). Using purely KApps makes the experience smoother than with WinXP. Now if you start firefox (which is a memory hog) or openoffice, and $insert_app_here, and you find yourself running out of ram, don't blame kde!

This needs no special tuning whatsoever. Plain vanilla KDE will work fine without any tweaking on a puter with 256Megs. My main machine has 512, and even after extensive use, my swap partition isn't even touched. That with lots of apps loaded by default: skype, amarok, kmail, 4 preloaded instances of konqi, etc. My system begins swapping only if I start up firefox or ooo-build. (Or perhaps krita with an 50meg PNG :)

KDE's memory management is very efficient. In fact, considering what it does, I would say that I'd expect higher memory usage. Of course, we can throw numbers around here with little or no way to back up our claims, I realize that, but if you check the specs of people running kde (on forums) you'll see that configs like a 700Mhz duron with 256Mb RAM (I mentioned this in another post) is enough. I don't know where your K browser using 384Mb RAM comes from (well, except if you pull it out of your ass). Actually I made some screenies of kde 3.4.3 here. [unideb.hu] One of the screenshots displays memory usage. If you check the clock, you'll see that it shows the state of memory after opening a lot of apps, including scribus, with images loaded, etc (and you'll see what I have running in my systray). So I don't understand people who report excessive memory usage of KDE - it is either FUD, or they should switch distroes :)

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (1, Interesting)

melonman (608440) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379529)

You forgot to add "and if you don't like it you should write your own Window Manager, that's the power of open source". That's my favourite knee-jerk dismissal of constructive criticism.

If the KDE community is happy for their user base to be restricted to those willing to hand tune and compile KDE, fine. But if we're going to stick with the "Linux Desktop takes over the world" mantra beloved by many here, the way KDE runs out of the box does matter.

I've been using KDE for several years. It's hard to say if it has slowed down or speeded up, as I keep upgrading my hardware. But this laptop I'm typing on ran XP and Office just fine in 256Mb of RAM, but needed twice that to run KDE and OpenOffice comfortably.

Now maybe that's down to KDE, or Open Office, or the Redhat Network icon for all I care, the point is that overall system performance does matter, especially when it is worse than that of Windows, and berating the users for noticing the bloat is not a great growth strategy IMHO.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379535)

Finally, get off your whiney ass and compile it for yourself using Konstruct.
I hope none if you are sitting here and wondering why Linux hasn't made it as an end user desktop OS.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379603)

Nobody expects end users to build their system. You should vote with your dollar and buy from a linux packager that makes a slim kde distro. At least in the linux world you have choice.

Or it could be like in the windows world, where you can't build it slim and don't have the choice of a vender that builds it slim.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (2, Interesting)

molnarcs (675885) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379467)

You have absolutely no idea of what you're talking about... Slow down KDE even more? What version did you use last time? 2.2? With every release since 3.0 KDE is getting better and better perfomance on old hardware. I'm happily using it on a 700Mhz duron with 256Mb SDRAM (not my main machine though). Please don't spread FUD about KDE if you haven't used it for years...

On the other hand, if KDE is slow for you (on hw with speck >= to my duron conf.), than you screwed up your config (or your distro screwed up kde). KDE permorms admirably well these days...

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (2, Interesting)

oneiron (716313) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379577)

I have to admit, I am completely new to KDE/Linux. However, I just installed kubuntu on a HP omnibook p3 600 w/ 256mb RAM. It runs beautifully and flawlessly with zero post-installation configuration. I dare say the notebook is a good deal snappier than when WinXP was installed on it. I'm very happy with it, and I plan to run it in the future...whenever possible.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379484)

Kde4 should use less memory because it will be based on qt4. I've read somewhere that some apps use about 15%
less memory when compiled with qt4 instead of qt3 - so hopefully it wont be too bloated.And even if it is then you still have e17 ;)

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379498)

Don't forget that a lot of the slowness and inefficiency is because of X, not because of KDE and Qt.

Of course, if you want a truly bloated, slow and inefficient desktop environment, try GNOME.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (2, Insightful)

NamShubCMX (595740) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379556)

And like most things with KDE, this feature (desktop widgets) will be 100% optional and NOT running it will not affect performance.

Features != bloat (especially if off by default)

Btw, KDE has had this for years, namely SuperKaramba.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (2, Funny)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379699)

You're forgetting where you are. This is Slashdot, where anyone that isn't happy keyslapping arcane commands into a white on black console isn't really using a computer, and any piece of software that tries to do anything for the user is heretical.

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379595)

And now they've got Active Desktop!

Re:Lets slow down KDE Even more! (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379608)

If you find KDE bloated, you need to quit loading 3,281 programs in your system tray and turn off the eye candy. I found KDE 3.1 and later ran just fine on a dual Pentium III (which has since burnt up - literally. A power supply took it out) and KDE 3.5 runs just fine on a dual Celeron. Of course I can't enable the composite extension and alpha blending on the Celery but then, having half a clue, I know better than to turn on eye candy and expect great performance on a older, slower system.

Try running the Gnome desktop with all the eye candy and background applets and see how well THAT desktop runs on an older system - you'll then be saying that Gnome is bloated and we should all go back to fvwm2 (and the associated pain of customizing menus by editing .rc files).

Memory Usage (4, Informative)

Arctic Fox (105204) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379418)

Hopefully, they'll find some way to knock down the memory usage. A couple of widgets (weather, stocks, iCal) were killing my 1Gb Powerbook.

I switched to the ex-Konfabulator, Yahoo! Widgets and now my PB doesn't seem to thrash as much. That, and I've added a number of additional widgets.

Re:Memory Usage (1)

apflwr (930636) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379550)

Hopefully, they'll find some way to knock down the memory usage. A couple of widgets (weather, stocks, iCal) were killing my 1Gb Powerbook.

You are aware that you can close individual widgets, right?

Re:Memory Usage (2, Interesting)

Arctic Fox (105204) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379692)

Of course.

But 150+ Mb for a weather widget? The Mac widgets were pigs. Though, I don't think it was the individual widget's fault. I think Dashboard was funky.

Like I said, I've since turned of Dashboard and am using the Yahoo Widgets, with far less trouble.

What version of OS X are you running? (1)

Hamster Lover (558288) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379707)

I had, and so have several others, a similar problem with my Mac Mini until I upgraded to OS 10.4.4., but you probably already knew that.

Re:What version of OS X are you running? (1)

WeblionX (675030) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379779)

No, I doubt he knew about your problems and what fixed them.

Huh? (0, Flamebait)

bombshelter13 (786671) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379421)

They're comparing a 'layer to display widgets on' to Adobe Photoshop? Something really doesn't seem right here.

I'm so glad they're putting so much work into shaving off the bloat in KDE4.

Re:Huh? (4, Insightful)

jZnat (793348) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379775)

Yeah; GNOME 2.12 is already far ahead at the "shaving off bloat" to the point where Linus said "fuck it" and switched to KDE. As long as the bloat is optional and configurable, everyone can be happy.

Exciting (5, Insightful)

BrenBren (940202) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379422)

I think this is a great idea. Right off the bat, there will be lots of Widgets available.

The Apple community will also benefit, because there are probably a lot of people in the Linux community that will write new Widgets that haven't been thought of (or thought necessary) by the Apple programming community.

I, for one, welcome our new Widget overlords.

Re:Exciting (4, Informative)

mblase (200735) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379540)

I think this is a great idea. Right off the bat, there will be lots of Widgets available.

No, there won't. The headline is misleading. Read carefully:
...the upcoming KDE 4 will be able to run and display Dashboard widgets much in the same way that Mac OS X 10.4 can.... I'm planning to add full OSX Dashboard compatibility layer for Plasma....Basically, this means that a layer (similar in some ways to layers in Adobe Photoshop) in the KDE desktop could function the same way that Dashboard does in Mac OS X.
Furthermore, keep in mind that a not insignificant number of OS X widgets interact specifically with OS X apps like iTunes. Obviously, only internet-based widgets (like Google lookups) could be cross-platform.

Re:Exciting (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379680)

I am really scratching my head on all these posts. Are they implying more or a Mac-to-linux wine emulation type deal? Or are they implying that one day a linux installation will have the option of a Gnome/KDE/Mac interface?

Re:Exciting (1)

saddino (183491) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379682)

It's success will probably hinge on its execution. Many people dislike Dashboard widgets existing in a seperate desktop layer than the rest of the OS. The KDE implementation would be wise to allow a desktop-centric Dashboard widget manager like Amnesty [mesadynamics.com] for OS X.

Oh goody (-1, Redundant)

melonman (608440) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379434)

Another GUI layer? What is the minimum RAM requirement for running Open Office with this lovely system going to be? Windows is rapidly starting to look like the low-bloat OS...

crap (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379452)

I was writing notes down and being ready to write my own widget dashboard for kde. Someone beat me to it.

I know about gdesklets but it seems a little unstable at the moment.

Re:crap (1)

bombshelter13 (786671) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379487)

Why not get the code from these guys, read it through, and code in anything you'd thought of that they've missed? If you've been studying this for a while you should probably be able to make yourself into a useful contributer to their project.

Re:crap (1)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379690)

There already is a "widget dashboard" for KDE, has been for a long time. It's called SuperKaramba.

Am I the only one (2, Insightful)

Keruo (771880) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379465)

who thinks this is rather bad idea?
Why do we need to bind the browser this deep to the GUI?
Haven't we learned anything about bad design from microsoft and IE5?
I mean something like this [slashdot.org] .

Re:Am I the only one (4, Insightful)

AntiOrganic (650691) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379546)

Can you explain to me, from an accomplished software engineer's perspective, what's so bad about modular components that can be reused in multiple applications?

The problem with Internet Explorer was never that it was coupled too deeply into the file manager and it was therefore buggy and insecure, and only someone with no clue whatsoever would tell you that. Internet Explorer is problematic because it has multiple zones with different security settings, and as history has shown, it's very, very easy to trick Internet Explorer into thinking that a script executing from the Internet zone is actually in the Local Computer zone, and thereby able to overwrite files, instantiate arbitrary ActiveX/COM components, and do all manners of naughty things that it shouldn't be able to.

Obviously you didn't read the link. (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379667)

The title read:

"Malicious Web Pages Can Install Dashboard Widgets". It was about Safari and OS/X, *NOT* about MS-IE.

Re:Am I the only one (1)

Keruo (771880) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379768)

I'd rather quote [slashdot.org] .. these widgets have almost the same braindead design as ActiveX/COM.
I don't want any invisible modular components on my desktop, that randomly install stuff on my computer(even if it's only the limited widget dir) or throw pictures at me, but hey, if Bonzi Buddy is your friend, go ahead.

Re:Am I the only one (1)

AndroidCat (229562) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379644)

But finally Linux users will be able to have all the functionality of Microsoft Bob! :)

Re:Am I the only one (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379652)

Nobody's forcing you to use KDE. Or even to use KDE with KHTML installed.

Re:Am I the only one (1)

2nd Post! (213333) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379734)

Yes, we learned that the OS should not attempt to read the user's mind. Apple fixed that problem by not installing software without the user's consent.

Title possibly misleading (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379466)

The article title makes it sound like the widgets that are available for Dashboard will be directly compatible with KDE 4 (just download and run), which I'm not sure is exactly true.

I just don't see the point (0, Redundant)

monkaru (927718) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379473)

The very first thing I do, whether an OS is Mac, *NIX or Windows is turn off all the eye candy that slows the box down. Yay, One more thing to disable.

Re:I just don't see the point (3, Interesting)

Bralkein (685733) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379557)

Well things in the style of the OSX dashboard widgets can be useful too. In this interview [ox.ac.uk] , Zack Rusin (the guy mentioned in the summary for this article) talks briefly about OSX-style eye-candy in KDE4, and he says that they want their interface to be useful as well as good-looking. If you still don't want the useful magic eye-candy thingies because you think they're too heavy on resources or annoying or whatever, then you'd probably be better off not using KDE anyway. You could just use XFCE or Fluxbox or something like that instead. You'd still be able to run apps from KDE or GNOME or whatever, but the DE would be more minimal.

Re:I just don't see the point (1)

monkaru (927718) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379614)

Like Windows 2000 or XP, the KDE desktop is very light and nimble once you turn all the crap off. I want my OS to start basic and I choose what to turn on. It reminds me of the first time I installed Win 2k Pro and I was greeted with transition effects. Nothing says "professional" quite like sliding menus.

Re:I just don't see the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379670)

indeed,I'm exactly the same.

The first thing I do, is switch OFF all the Gary Glitter shiny spiny things.
that produce only unnecesary bloat. Then you have an OS, that's ready to use.

Dosen't matter if it's MAC OS X, windows or Linux either. that's the first thing I do.
Switch off all the crap that slows the os down, then you're ready to go!

just for what it's worth (0, Redundant)

I WILL KICK YOUR ASS (263791) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379478)

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Will enable the pent up demand for Apple Switchers (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379479)

Apple users looking to exploit the availibility of more games that Linux provides may now consider switching.

Dashboard is fun (0, Flamebait)

asv108 (141455) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379485)

For a few days. You can load all types of little crazy applets, but after awhile I hardly ever used it. Its one of those OSX features that has a huge WOW factor, but doesn't change the way people work. Its great to see that someone is finally following through on Linux compatibility, but considering Gnome is the default desktop for nearly ever major distro, it will not effect most desktop Linux users.

On the topic of OSX, why would anyone want to write commercial software for the OSX market? If your product is successful, Apple will simply duplicate the functionality, include it in OSX, and act like they invented it.

Re:Dashboard is fun (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379562)

There are plenty of successful applications for OS X that haven't been eaten up by apple. stop your bitching. i thought competition was good. oh and i am an OS X developer.

re: Dashboard and usefulness (4, Informative)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379716)

That's exactly the problem with Dashboard though ... it's too tempting to approach it as "let's load it up with all types of crazy widgets!". By doing that, you make it less functional. (Takes longer to switch to them when you've got a whole screen full of them, etc.)

Certain Dashboard widgets *can* change the way you work, but only when you select the right ones, and eliminate the rest!

For example, Ambrosia Software makes a free widget for easily printing addresses on envelopes (http://www.ambrosiasw.com/utilities/easyenvelopes / [ambrosiasw.com] ). That's something I occasionally need to do, and it's something you don't really want to load up a whole word processing package for.

I find the weather widget handy too. It lets me get the forecast on a whim, while not constantly running and eating resources when I don't need it. Sure, you can visit a web site to get the same info - but a widget is faster and always saves your preferences. (Web sites usually rely on cookies that you might clear out of your browser cache.)

Hey (1)

zsadiq (942364) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379486)

Look at it any way you want... it does not change the fact that this will make Linux even more viable as a desktop OS in the future to the common masses, as what they (the common masses) want is a pretty GUI and some form of familiarity.

What these new widgets will do, is make Linux look more familiar to OSX users, thereby increasing the overall Linux user base.

Re:Hey (1)

monkaru (927718) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379561)

I don't think so. The basic KDE desktop enviroment is pretty comfortable and easy to use anyway. The biggest problem for Linux is hardware compatibility and management. Apple gets around it by tying the OS directly to their hardware. A Mac user isn't going to care much how familiar the desktop is if their network card doesn't work and their monitor is stuck at 60 Hz VESA.

Stop compaining about bloat! (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379496)

I think this is great. KDE is a wonderful, powerful, flexible, full featured desktop enviornment. I currently run KDE 3.4.3 on a P3-450 laptop with 256mb of ram and it runs great.

Do I think that KDE 4 will also run great on that hardware? I'll be honest, I have my doubts, but that is fine. I have seen how the KDE team did a great job of optimising the KDE 3.x series. Every release got faster and smaller (in memory). Still, if I need to get more ram, I'll do that.

For people that want to run a computer with less ram, or can't afford any more: Don't run KDE! You can run blackbox, fluxbox, IceWM, twm, and many more!

GNU/Linux/*NIX/OSS/Free Software is all about choices, so PLEASE don't sit around complaining about bloat (or anything else, for that matter.) Make sugestions. Make contributions. Enjoy the amazing bevy of free software!!

Why a separate layer? (3, Insightful)

jbellis (142590) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379509)

That's just apple's workaround for "we think virtual desktops are too complicated." No need to impose that on KDE.

Re:Why a separate layer? (2, Informative)

Vaevictis666 (680137) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379575)

By layer, they're referring to a rendering layer.

I think the intention is to allow more dynamic desktop environments by putting multiple layers in your view. For example, Desktop Background -> water effect -> Widgets -> Desktop Icons -> App windows.

Re:Why a separate layer? (2, Insightful)

Smurf (7981) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379610)

That's just apple's workaround for "we think virtual desktops are too complicated." No need to impose that on KDE.


It seems you are confusing Dashboard [apple.com] with Exposé [apple.com] .

Re:Why a separate layer? (1)

10Ghz (453478) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379669)

The widgets on KDE live on the "normal" desktop (just look at how SuperKaramba works today). The widgets on OS X live on "separate" desktop. So they will work differently, even though the widgets themselves will be the same.

I'm not sure there is a more useless feature (1)

Queuetue (156269) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379516)

I'm not sure there is a more useless feature in all of OSX. Some widget thingy that does not fit in with the UI and I have to actually leave my working desktop in able to use? Why don't dashboard widgets a) get bounded by a normal window and b) follow the same window stacking rules as every other application?

Turning the dashboard off lest I accidentally trigger it is my first priority on OSX - even before installing quicksilver.

Open Source Likes Apple? (2, Informative)

romiir (874939) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379553)

If I recall correctly, the original code of the machintosh OS came from BSD 3... (Before they modifyed it extensively for commercial release) Now Opensource is taking the apple standard? This is interesting. Maby Microsoft will see this and include dashboard widgets for windows? It would be nice for once to be able to write something and run it on every os, not just Mac and Linux or Windows and Linux.

good work (1)

know1 (854868) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379563)

As someone who would dearly love a mac (since their OS has had a BSD core and a brilliant GUI) as a second computer this is good news to me. If i could take the eye candy of a mac and put it on my debian kde box it would be excellent.

Not "most" widgets (2, Informative)

saddino (183491) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379609)

KDE's runtime will be able to run most widgets designed for Dashboard. Also, KDE's runtime will be limited in that it will not be able to run widgets properly that use AppleScript or Cocoa in some way.

Those two statements are contradictory. Most widgets for Dashboard, especially for those that anyone considers useful, use Applescript and/or Cocoa. So in fact, KDE will be limited to only the simplest of widgets. Not much of a feature, IMHO.

Sounds neat. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379633)

Now the kde4/dashboard widgets just need to be merged with the custom boxes on Google's Personal Home Page, and Microsoft's vaporware feature set will be matched :D

RAM-hogging pleasure (2, Interesting)

kitzilla (266382) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379664)

So now KDE users can enjoy the same RAM-hogging pleasure afforded us OS X users by an array of useless, bloated widgets. Now THAT is progress! ;-)

I don't like KDE. (1)

Fluffy_Kitten (911430) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379718)

It's not that I think it is bad, I just don't like it exactly because of these kinds of things.
KDE just adds anything which seems popular at the moment.
If flash is opensourced and becomes THE most popular thing ever, KDE will probably RUN on actionscript!
Is this the kind of desktop that you want to be using? Maybe you, but not me.

Optional components (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 8 years ago | (#14379747)

Then dont run the parts you dont like... Pretty simple.

Yay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14379757)

YAY! More useless bloat in KDE!
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