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Performance and Animation: Krita Kickstarter Kicks Off

Monday 4th of May 2015 12:38:40 PM

Last year, we held the first Kickstarter campaign for Krita. We raised more than €20,000 for Krita development, blowing past the fundraising goal. Thanks to this funding, a year later a dozen new features have been implemented, ranging from transform masks to High Dynamic Range (HDR) painting, from layer styles to improved vector objects. The Krita team did all that was promised...and much more.

It was a great year for Krita all-round, with the Steam release, a booth at SIGGRAPH, and the Artists' Choice award in ImagineFX magazine.

Now, it’s time for another Kickstarter! This year, we're even more ambitious. If there's one thing that's always held back free graphics software, it's raw interactive performance. That's true for Krita as well. So that is what we'll focus on first!

Next is extended animation support. Together with Google Summer of Code student Jouni Pentikäinen, we'll be putting hand-drawn 2D animation right into the core of Krita. That will require many of the optimizations Dmitry Kazakov will be working on.

And if we go over the initial goal—well, there are 24 stretch goals. For every additional €1500 over the initial goal another stretch goal will be added. After the dust settles, the backers will be asked to vote for their favorite goals!

Help us spread the word and make this campaign a big success!

Check out the Krita Kickstarter video. Here's a video of Krita in action (Layerstyles Work in Progress).

https://www.krita.org/kickstarter

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Plasma 5.3 Adds Improved Power Management and Media Center Preview

Tuesday 28th of April 2015 10:58:39 AM

Today KDE makes a feature release of Plasma 5, versioned 5.3.




Plasma 5.3

Highlights





Battery applet now informs what is blocking power saving



New energy usage monitor

Enhanced Power Management
  • Power management settings can be configured
    differently for certain activities
  • Laptop will not suspend when closing the lid while an external monitor is
    connected ('cinema mode', by default, can be turned off)
  • Power management inhibitions block lock screen too
  • Screen brightness changes are now animated on most hardware
  • No longer suspends when closing the lid while shutting down
  • Support for keyboard button brightness controls on lock screen
  • KInfoCenter provides statistics about energy consumption
  • Battery monitor now shows which applications are currently holding a power management
    inhibition for example ('Chrome is currently suppressing PM: Playing video')





The new Bluedevil Applet

Better Bluetooth Capabilities
  • New Bluetooth applet
  • Bluedevil was ported to a new library from KDE, BluezQt
  • Added support for blocking and unblocking Bluetooth
  • Connected devices with Browse Files (ObexFTP) support are now displayed in the file dialog's Places panel





Configure your Touchpad

A touchpad configuration module has been added






Application Menu can access contacts



Application Menu can show recent documents

Improved Plasma Widgets
  • Clipboard applet gains support for showing barcodes
  • The Desktop and Folder View containment codebases were
    unified, and have seen performance improvements

  • The Recent Documents and Recent Applications sections in
    Application Menu (Kicker) are now powered by KDE activities
  • Comics widget returns
  • System monitor plasmoids return, such as CPU Load Monitor and Hard Disk usage


Plasma Media Center - Tech Preview





Plasma Media Center

Plasma Media Center is added as a tech preview in this release. It is fully stable but misses a few features compared to version 1. You can log directly into a Plasma Media Center session if you want to use it on a media device such as a television or projector or you can run it from Plasma Desktop. It will scan for videos, music and pictures on your computer to let you browse and play them.







Plasma is now able to start a nested XWayland server

Big Steps Towards Wayland Support
  • Plasma 5.3 makes a huge step towards to supporting the Wayland windowing system in addition to the default X11 windowing system. Plasma's window manager and compositor KWin is now able to start a nested XWayland server, which acts as a bridge between the old (X11) and the new (Wayland) world. X11 windows can connect to this server as if it were a normal X server, for KWin it looks like a Wayland window, though. This means that KWin learned to handle Wayland windows in this release, though full integration is only expected for Plasma 5.4.

  • In addition KWin gained new output modes for Wayland allowing to start a nested KWin on X11 and to start KWin directly on a framebuffer device, which will be the fallback for the case that OpenGL and/or kernel mode settings are not supported. A rendering backend on kernel mode settings is expected for Plasma 5.4. More information about these new backends and how to test them can be found in the KWin wiki pages. Please keep in mind that this is only a development preview and highly experimental new code.


Desktop Tweaks - Press and Hold




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Press and Hold Tweak

A new Tweaks configuration option in Plasma allows you to enable or disable the desktop settings toolbox and enable a new Press and Hold mode for widget management. In this mode, widgets can be moved after pressing and holding anywhere on the widget, and the widget handle will only be shown after press and hold rather than on hover. When this mode is enabled, unlocking the desktop will show a helpful instruction notification (which can be dismissed forever from the popup).

Bug Fixes Galore

393 bugs were fixed giving fewer crashes and more reliable use.

Full Plasma 5.3 changelog


Live Images

The easiest way to try out Plasma is the with a live image booted off a USB disk.

Package Downloads

Distributions have created, or are in the process of creating, packages listed on our wiki page.

Source Downloads

You can install Plasma 5 directly from source. KDE's community wiki has instructions to compile it. Note that Plasma 5 does not co-install with Plasma 4, you will need to uninstall older versions or install into a separate prefix.

Feedback

You can give us feedback and get updates on Facebook or Twitter or Google+.

Discuss Plasma 5 on the KDE Forums Plasma 5 board.

You can provide feedback direct to the developers via the #Plasma IRC channel, Plasma-devel mailing list or report issues via bugzilla. If you like what the team is doing, please let them know!

Your feedback is greatly appreciated.

LaKademy 2015 to be in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil

Tuesday 21st of April 2015 04:06:01 PM

LaKademy 2014

The KDE Community in Brazil will host LaKademy 2015 June 3rd through 6th. The conference is an opportunity for KDE users and contributors to meet in person to make plans, work on software and other aspects of KDE technology. There will also be outreach to potential new contributors. The group is raising money for conference expenses and to offset travel costs for attendees.

Brazil has had great success with Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) initiatives, often due to the leadership of KDE people. LaKademy is a way to continue this advocacy, while making technical advances and strengthening the KDE presence. Certainly LaKademy provides local benefits. But the value created also has wider consequences. Brazil joins Spain and India in promoting the global reach and stature of KDE technology.

The fundraising goal is modest—R$ 10,000 (slightly more than € 3000). The LaKademy 2015 video features previous editions of LaKademy as well as more information about the upcoming conference. Please support this important event.

Information about LaKademy and donating in Spanish.

Dot Categories:

KDE Applications 15.04 Adds KDE Telepathy Chat and Kdenlive Video Editing

Wednesday 15th of April 2015 10:42:38 PM





Kdenlive is the leading video editor on Linux

Today KDE released KDE Applications 15.04 our suite of 150 applications. Notable additions in this release include Kdenlive the leading video editor on Linux and KDE Telepathy the chat application to unify your instant messaging.

Kdenlive is the most versatile non-linear video editing software available on Linux. It recently finished its incubation process to become an official KDE project and was ported to KDE Frameworks 5. The team behind this masterpiece decided that Kdenlive should be released together with KDE Applications 15.04. Some new features they included are the autosaving function of new projects and a much improved clip stabilization. For the future the team plans to refactor big parts of the application and to bring back the MacOSX and Windows versions.

KDE Telepathy is our app for instant messaging. It was ported to KF5 and Qt5 and is a new member of the KDE Applications releases. It comes along with KAccounts, bringing a centralized location for handling all your online accounts to Plasma Desktop.





KAccounts lets applications connect to internet accounts

The KDE Education team have been busy. Andreas Cord-Landwehr turned Rocs upside down: he heavily improved the graph theory core and reworked many other things. KHangman was ported to QML and given a fresh coat of paint in the process. Cantor got some new features around its Python support. And KAnagram received a new 2-player mode and the letters are now clickable buttons and can be typed like before. In addition several of the KDE Games were ported to KF5.

This release continues the new style of releases, introduced with the latest KDE Applications 14.12 release. Along with this release is KDE Workspaces 4.11.18 as part of the LTS version of our Plasma 4 desktop which will end in August and the KDE PIM applications in their 4.14.7 versions.

Half the applications have now been ported to KDE Frameworks 5 (KF5), bringing the total to 72. The complete list of the applications is available on the KDE Applications 15.04 release notes.

Looking forward to August it is planned to see the first KF5-based versions of Dolphin and the Kontact Suite.

See the full list of changes in KDE Applications 15.04.

KDE App Dragons

Spread the Word

Non-technical contributors are an important part of KDE’s success. While proprietary software companies have huge advertising budgets, KDE depends on people like you talking with other people! Even for those who are not software developers, there are many ways to support our community and our product. Report bugs. Encourage others to join the KDE Community. Or support the non-profit organization behind the KDE community.

Please spread the word on the Social Web. Submit stories to news sites, use channels like Delicious, Digg, Reddit and Twitter. Upload screenshots of your new set-up to services like Facebook, Flickr and Picasa and post them to appropriate groups. Create screencasts and upload them to YouTube, Blip.tv, and Vimeo. Please tag posts and uploaded materials with "KDE". This makes them easy to find, and gives the KDE Promo Team a way to analyze coverage for the 15.04 KDE Applications release.
Follow what is happening on the social web at the KDE live feed, buzz.kde.org. This site aggregates real-time activity from Twitter, YouTube, flickr, PicasaWeb, blogs, and other social networking sites.

Plasma 5.3 Beta Improves Power Management and Adds Media Centre Preview

Tuesday 14th of April 2015 11:18:13 AM
*/

Tuesday, 14 April 2015. Today KDE releases a beta release of Plasma 5, versioned 5.2.95.





Plasma 5.3 Beta

Highlights







Battery applet now informs what is blocking power saving



New energy usage monitor

Enhanced Power Management
  • Power management settings can be configured differently for certain activities
  • Laptop will not suspend when closing the lid while an external monitor is connected ('cinema mode', by default, can be turned off)
  • Power management inhibitions block lock screen too
  • Screen brightness changes are now animated on most hardware
  • No longer suspends when closing the lid while shutting down
  • Support for keyboard button brightness controls on lock screen
  • KInfoCenter provides statistics about energy consumption
  • Battery monitor now shows which applications are currently holding a power management inhibition for example ('Chrome is currently suppressing PM: Playing video')







The new Bluedevil Applet

Better Bluetooth Capabilities
  • New Bluetooth applet
  • Bluedevil was ported to a new library from KDE, BluezQt
  • Added support for blocking and unblocking Bluetooth
  • Connected devices with Browse Files (ObexFTP) support are now displayed in the file dialog's Places panel







Configure your Touchpad

A touchpad configuration module has been added







Application Menu can access contacts



Application Menu can show recent contacts

Improved Plasma Widgets
  • Clipboard applet gains support for showing barcodes
  • The Desktop and Folder View containment codebases were
    unified, and have seen performance improvements

  • The Recent Documents and Recent Applications sections in
    Application Menu (Kicker) are now powered by KDE activities
  • Comics widget returns
  • System monitor plasmoids return, such as CPU Load Monitor and Hard Disk usage


Plasma Media Center - Tech Preview





Plasma Media Center

Plasma Media Center is added as a tech preview in this beta. It is fully stable but misses a few features compared to version 1. You can log directly into a Plasma Media Center session if you want to use it on a media device such as a television or projector or you can run it from Plasma Desktop. It will scan for videos, music and pictures on your computer to let you browse and play them.







Plasma is now able to start a nested XWayland server

Big Steps Towards Wayland Support
  • Plasma 5.3 makes a huge step towards to supporting the Wayland windowing system in addition to the default X11 windowing system. Plasma's window manager and compositor KWin is now able to start a nested XWayland server, which acts as a bridge between the old (X11) and the new (Wayland) world. X11 windows can connect to this server as if it were a normal X server, for KWin it looks like a Wayland window, though. This means that KWin learned to handle Wayland windows in this release, though full integration is only expected for Plasma 5.4.

  • In addition KWin gained new output modes for Wayland allowing to start a nested KWin on X11 and to start KWin directly on a framebuffer device, which will be the fallback for the case that OpenGL and/or kernel mode settings are not supported. A rendering backend on kernel mode settings is expected for Plasma 5.4. More information about these new backends and how to test them can be found in the KWin wiki pages. Please keep in mind that this is only a development preview and highly experimental new code.
Bug Fixes Galore

348 bugs were fixed giving fewer crashes and more reliable use.


Full Plasma 5.2.95 changelog


Live Images

The easiest way to try out Plasma is the with a live image booted off a USB disk.

Package Downloads

Distributions have created, or are in the process of creating, packages listed on our wiki page.

Source Downloads

You can install Plasma 5 directly from source. KDE's community wiki has instructions to compile it. Note that Plasma 5 does not co-install with Plasma 4, you will need to uninstall older versions or install into a separate prefix.

Feedback

You can give us feedback and get updates on Facebook or Twitter or Google+.

Discuss Plasma 5 on the KDE Forums Plasma 5 board.

You can provide feedback direct to the developers via the #Plasma IRC channel, Plasma-devel mailing list or report issues via bugzilla. If you like what the team is doing, please let them know!

Your feedback is greatly appreciated.

Plasma Sprint 2015

Wednesday 8th of April 2015 10:38:13 AM

In February 2015 the Plasma developers met in the Blue Systems office in Barcelona to discuss and plan out where we would take Plasma over the duration of the next year. The sprint consisted of active Plasma developers and visual designers from around the world, from Canada to India.

The meeting consisted of equal parts hacking and group discussions about plans both in the near and far future in breakout sessions throughout the week.



Plasma Devs: CI supremo Rohan, Media Center hero Bhushan, Release Dude Jonathan, Creative Genius Ken, Akademy Mastermind Kenny, Elite Marco, Kai the Super Hacker, Sebas the supreme, Sprint lead David, Local saviour Aleix, shy Jens, the mobile Dan and searching Vishesh

Hacking Improved Developer Tools

One of the important parts of Plasma is making it as easy for others to contribute as possible. Marco worked on a tool making it easy for designers to explore, edit, create and assess the completeness of Plasma themes. Sebastian introduced "Cuttlefish", a tool for designers and application developers to examine the current icon set of a system. It can be used to display the icons available on the system, and how they are presented at various sizes. These will be released as part of the Plasma SDK which will be added to the 5.3 beta release next week.

Enhanced Power Management

Good power management has always been a fundamental part of the Plasma experience, during the sprint we experimented with restoring KInfoCenter to life to be a useful central hub of advanced information. This allows us to provide all sorts of extra information without cluttering the main desktop. This will make it possible to visually identify where your battery life is going.

In addition, several tweaks were made to the battery notifications and timeouts.

Plasma Media Center

Plasmashell was modified to allow it to boot directly into media center mode, allowing it to be launched directly from the login screen. We discussed moving it into the main Plasma released and it will be released with 5.3 which has a beta next week.

Design work

During the hacking time, designers Jens and Ken began producing and designing additional promotional material for our upcoming marketing needs. This included updated logos, vectorised Konqis, and other assets.

Planning For The Future

Much of the sprint was spent planning out future goals. We discussed KPurpose, the new framework for sharing actions and invoking actions across applications which we should hear more of in upcoming releases. We discussed the future of notifications for not only current instant notifications but calendar based alerts.

Work and initial prototyping went into unifying application header space and making use of window decoration space in applications.

Plasma 5 is about to become part of the mainstream Linux distributions and the press coverage is confirming it will continue to be the flagship offering from KDE. We have plans for the years to come and we welcome anyone who wants to take part joining us.

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EMC to open-source ViPR - and lots of other stuff apparently

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