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KDE Plasma 5.5: The Quintessential 2016 Review

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KDE
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It's the start of 2016 and over the past year KDE developers have brought numerous new features and improvements to the Plasma 5 desktop, some tangible with others more under-the-hood.

With the sun set on 2015 it marks the first full year since Plasma 4, a stable workhorse which many users still rely on for day-to-day computing, has been discontinued. Plasma 5 is on the clock for users who need to know if the widgets, settings, and some painful regressions have been sorted out to see if it's safe to embrace modern Plasma in the new year.

This review will cover the evolution of KDE Plasma and its applications since the release of 5.2, listing many of the biggest differences and examining if they have caught up with Plasma 4 to a satisfactory degree for everyday users looking for a supported daily driver. We will also look at the desktop from the viewpoint of users who are thinking of trying or returning to the KDE/Plasma ecosystem, and may not necessarily know about some of the core Plasma functionality.

While I have avoided bias to the best of my ability, for full disclosure I am a member of the KDE Visual Design Group.

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