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KDE development platform appears

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This Wednesday in KDE land sees the start of the Release Freeze for KDE 4.0, anticipating a final release in December. By then, KDE 4 will have been in development for two years and five months, counting from the aKademy conference in Malaga, Spain, in July 2005.

This freeze is significant for KDE development as evidence of an increasing professionalization in the KDE release process. Where past major releases like KDE 2 (2000) and KDE 3 (2002) involved a relatively close-knit group of insiders releasing a set of source tarballs for Linux distributions to package, the KDE landscape in 2007 is broader and much more diverse. Seventeen modules made up KDE 3.0, and that contained pretty much the entire desktop and all the software that most users would run on it.

During the lifetime of KDE 3, development has become decentralized and some of the most popular applications, such as Amarok, Kopete and KDevelop emerged. They formed their own developer communities who may have little overlap with the core group of KDE library and platform hackers.

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