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The KDE Community in 2017

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  • The KDE Community in 2017

    It's the time of year for recaps. We already talked about the advancements in KDE's software, and it makes sense we talk about that first. To many people and for many years, "KDE" was synonymous with a desktop environment and its applications. That is, KDE was its software.

    However, these days “KDE” stands for the community and the work we carry out – and that is more than just code. KDE sponsors students and budding developers, meets in events and works in sprints. All of this ultimately, yes, helps KDE produce more and better software. But more importantly, it encourages a large number of people to work together for the common good.

  • The power we have as bystanders

    Supporting free software is one of the things I do. Right now is a great time to help support KDE.

  • KDE Got a New Compass

    At the end of 2012, I started a series of post explaining the genesis of the KDE Manifesto. In that series, I pointed out that it took our community six years to go from the pains generated by our growth to creating the needed tool to solve them: namely the KDE Manifesto.

    It took us an awfully long time... but it looks like we're getting better at dealing with this kind of community changes. Indeed, this time it took us only three years between Akademy 2014 where Paul Adams delivered his wake up call about our loss in cohesion and Akademy 2017 where a group of old timers (including yours truly) proposed a way to federate our community behind common goal again. It's too bad Paul decided to retire before he could witness that change!

KDE and GNOME: KDE 2.*, Krita and GNOME.Asia

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  • You Can Experiment With KDE 2.2.2 & Qt2 This Christmas

    If you find yourself with some extra time this holiday season and want to dive into a classic codebase on your modern Linux desktop, KDE developer Helio Castro has been working on his porting skills by porting KDE 2.2.2 and Qt2 to work on modern Linux systems.

    KDE 2 was released in 2000 with the use of the DCOP communication protocol, the still-living KIO I/O library, KHTML that at the time brought HTML 4.0 rendering, and Konqueror came as the default web-browser.

    So far he's got kdelibs 2.2.2 working -- tests are passing, graphics are working, and overall a bit beyond a "proof of concept" stage. As part of this "KDE 2 Restoration Project" he's trying to maintain the original code as much as possible but along the way also replacing the Autotools build system with CMake.

  • Interview with Rositsa Zaharieva

    My name is Rositsa (also known as Roz) and I’m somewhat of a late blooming artist. When I was a kid I was constantly drawing and even wanted to become an artist. Later on I chose a slightly different path for my education and career and as a result I now have decent experience as a web and graphic designer, front end developer and copywriter. I am now completely sure that I want to devote myself entirely to art and that’s what I’m working towards.

  • GNOME.Asia Summit 2017

    Thanks professors from university give us very good panel discussion, thanks Emily Chen to host this great panel discussion.  
    It’s import to get support in university when we want to promote open source and freeware all the time.

KDE: kdelibs 2, Fundraising, and Martin Gräßlin's Ten Years of KDE

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  • And then kdelibs 2 is ready for base consumption…

    So again in the time for xmas, i basically done the base kdelibs 2.2.2 port. Is far from be perfect as stated on my, but can be perfected now due start to porting kdebase.

    If someone asked why i’m doing some ( alleged ) useless work, is because i’m really want to restore KDE 2 as well and improve my porting skills, since i think is a valuable skill for any programmer.

  • 10 days to go – KDE End of Year Fundraising

    Today I’m here to talk with you about the KDE End of Year Fundraising.

    I’m part of KDE community since the end of 2015. And my file it’s a LOT better because of it.

    I was able to grow a lot as a developer and as a person.

  • Martin Gräßlin's Ten years of KDE

    At the end of the year 2007 I sent my first patch to KWin. At that time 4.0 was about to be released, so that patch didn’t end up in the repo in 2007, but only in beginning of 2008 and was released with 4.1.

Best KDE/Plasma distro of 2017

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And the winner is …

Well, it’s kind of obvious. Kubuntu 17.04 Zesty Zapus is the uncontested king of this contest. It just did everything superbly – from the live session to prolonged, heavy use on several machines, it maintained and still maintains quality, elegance, flair and stability that no other Plasma rival – or for that matter, any rival – can offer. There are still some issues, like the Samba timestamp or screenshot shadows, and a handful of other papercuts, but the benefits outweigh these nuisances.

Kubuntu 17.04 is most likely the best KDE/Plasma release ever made, and it is a culmination of years of hard work. But then, It also sets a dangerous precedent, because once you have perfection, it is very hard to retain it, and consequently, the backlash is going to be ever more severe. As other tests show, including the Kubuntu family itself, it takes only a few short months to undo the stellar record with nothing more than some regressions and overstretched development resources.

But let’s stay in the happy zone. Kubuntu 17.04 is the perfect distro and the perfect Plasma desktop, and it’s the ultimate demonstrator of what this desktop environment can do, with a range of splendid features, great quality, deep forethought, excellent consistency, excellent ergonomics, and of course, all the fun stuff that people need. There’s little else that needs to be sad except lament the fact it’s not an LTS but just an interim release.


It is fun reading your own articles, and seeing how things change. And they did change. I believe that Plasma has progressed heavily since last year. Gnome went down, and Plasma went up. The cycle of Tux. I was rather cautious about Plasma, and it is still a volatile desktop environment. Good results are a gamble, but I believe that’s an outcome of shoddy QA and insufficient attention to details and less an integral failing of the Plasma desktop. As a whole, Plasma is a lot better than it was. But then, it’s also more difficult to put together than before. You either get amazing or horrible. There’s no middle ground. To be honest, I prefer that to gray mediocrity.

While Kubuntu 17.04 is the unrivaled star of the year, Mageia 6 also deserves a lot of praise. Like Antergos in the Gnome space, we have an underdog quietly slipping under the radar and delivering a bombshell. Quality, originality – such a rare trait nowadays – cunning, great ergonomics and then some. Side by side, these two show that Plasma is an excellent choice for the desktop. 2017, I am far more optimistic about Plasma even as my passion for other options is fading fast. You still need to be cautious and risk it, but the reward is so much higher than last year. Plasma is on a good trajectory, and hopefully it will continue into the next year. Meanwhile, you have some awesome distros to test and play with and sample the best of Plasma.

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KStars 2.8.9 is released!

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Here comes the last KStars release for 2017! KStars v2.8.9 is available now for Windows, MacOS, and Linux.

Robert Lancaster worked on improving PHD2 support with Ekos. This includes retrieving the guide star image, drift errors and RMS values, among other minor improvements and refactoring of the Ekos PHD2 codebase to support future extensions.

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KDE Applications 17.12.0

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  • KDE Ships KDE Applications 17.12.0
  • KDE Applications 17.12 Brings HiDPI Improvements, Rest Of KDE Games Ported To KF5

    KDE Applications 17.12 is now available as the newest six-month update to this collection of KDE programs making use of KDE Frameworks 5.

    KDE Applications 17.12 was the cut-off point by which only KF5-programs are permitted while those still making use of KDE4 libraries were forced to be dropped. That cleansing took place and Juk, KImageMapEditor, KMix, KGet, Kolf, Sweeper, and others were among those that saw KF5 ports while some older programs were dropped from the collection -- at least until seeing any KF5 port in the future.

KDE Partition Manager 3.3 and future work

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KDE Partition Manager 3.3 is now ready. It includes some improvements for Btrfs, F2FS, NTFS file systems. I even landed the first bits of new LUKS2 on-disk format support, now KDE Partition Manager can display LUKS2 labels. More LUKS2 work will follow in KPM 3.4. There were changes in how LVM devices are detected. So now Calamares installer should be able to see LVM logical volumes. Once my pull request lands, Calamares should also support partitioning operations on LVM logical volumes (although Calamares would need more work before installation and booting from root file system on LVM works). KPMcore library now only depends on Tier 1 Frameworks instead of Tier 3 (although, we will later require Tier 2).

Most of the work is now done in sfdisk branch. Currently, the only functional KDE Partition Manager backend uses libparted but sfdisk backend is now fully working (I would say RC quality). I would have merged in already but it requires util-linux 2.32 which is not yet released.

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Kdenlive 17.12.0 released

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We are happy to announce the latest Kdenlive version, part of the KDE Applications 17.12 release, making it the last major release using the current code base. This is a maintenance release focused on stability, while feature development is going in next year’s 18.04 version. Proxy clips were given some attention and should give you better seeking experience as well as reduced memory usage for images. Other fixes include fixes in timeline preview, a crash when using a Library clip and smoother seeking on rewind playback.

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KDE Applications 17.12 Lands with Dolphin Enhancements, HiDPI Support for Okular

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KDE Applications 17.12 has been in development for the past several months and it's now available as a drop-in replacement for the previous series of the software suite, KDE Applications 17.08, which reached end of life in early November. As expected, several of the included apps received various enhancements and new features in this release.

Among these, we can mention that the Dolphin file manager is now capable of saving searches, can limit the search only to folders, makes renaming of files easier by allowing the user to simply double-click on the file name, displays extra information about files like origin URL of downloaded file or modification date, and introduces new Bitrate, Genre, and Release Year columns.

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Also: KDE Applications 17.12 Brings HiDPI Improvements, Rest Of KDE Games Ported To KF5

KDE Ships KDE Applications 17.12.0

KDE: Randa Meetings and KDE Edu Sprint 2017

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  • Looking Back at Randa Meetings 2017: Accessibility for Everyone

    Randa Meetings are a yearly collection of KDE Community contributor sprints that take place in Randa, Switzerland. With origins dating back to a Plasma meeting in 2009, Randa is one of the most important developer-related events in the community.

  • KDE Edu Sprint 2017

    Two months ago I attended to KDE Edu Sprint 2017 at Berlin. It was my first KDE sprint (really, I send code to KDE software since 2010 and never went to a sprint!) so I was really excited for the event.

    KDE Edu is the an umbrella for specific educational software of KDE. There are a lot of them and it is the main educational software suite in free software world. Despite it, KDE Edu has received little attention in organization side, for instance the previous KDE Edu sprint occurred several years ago, our website has some problems, and more.

    Therefore, this sprint was an opportunity not only for developers work in software development, but for works in organization side as well.

    In organization work side, we discuss about the rebranding of some software more related to university work than for “education” itself, like Cantor and Labplot. There was a wish to create something like a KDE Research/Science in order to put software like them and others like Kile and KBibTex in a same umbrella. There is a discussion about this theme.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • Google Patches All Intel Chromebooks Against Spectre Variant 2 with Chrome OS 65
    Google released a new stable version of its Linux-based Chrome OS operating system for Chromebooks, build 65.0.3325.167 (Platform version: 10323.58.0/1) bringing the Meltdown and Spectre mitigations to more devices and a bunch of other improvements.
  • VIDEO: Cooking With Linux: Lots and Lots of Word Processors! The Tuesday Linux Journal Show
  • How to use netstat in GNU/Linux
  • Cutelyst 2 released with HTTP/2 support
    Cutelyst the Qt/C++ web framework just got a major release update, around one and half year ago Cutelyst v1 got the first release with a stable API/ABI, many improvements where made during this period but now it was time to clean up the mistakes and give room for new features.
  • Fedora 28 and GNOME 3.28: New Features for Eastern Europe
    This time this is not fake, edited, patched, nor a custom build from COPR but the real screenshots of the unmodified downstream Fedora 28 planned to be released on May 1 this year. Here is how the default calendar widget in GNOME Shell looks in Greek, Polish, and Ukrainian:
  • Stephen Smoogen: /usr/bin/whoami
  • Debian CEF packages
    I've created some Debian CEF packages—CEF isn't the easiest thing to package (and it takes an hour to build even on my 20-core server, since it needs to build basically all of Chromium), but it's fairly rewarding to see everything fall into place. It should benefit not only Nageru, but also OBS and potentially CasparCG if anyone wants to package that.
  • Reproducible builds folks: Reproducible Builds: Weekly report #151
  • Porting L4Re and Fiasco.OC to the Ben NanoNote (Part 1)
    For quite some time, I have been interested in alternative operating system technologies, particularly kernels beyond the likes of Linux. Things like the Hurd and technologies associated with it, such as Mach, seem like worthy initiatives, and contrary to largely ignorant and conveniently propagated myths, they are available and usable today for anyone bothered to take a look. Indeed, Mach has had quite an active life despite being denigrated for being an older-generation microkernel with questionable performance credentials. But one technological branch that has intrigued me for a while has been the L4 family of microkernels. Starting out with the motivation to improve microkernel performance, particularly with regard to interprocess communication, different “flavours” of L4 have seen widespread use and, like Mach, have been ported to different hardware architectures. One of these L4 implementations, Fiasco.OC, appeared particularly interesting in this latter regard, in addition to various other features it offers over earlier L4 implementations. Meanwhile, I have had some success with software and hardware experiments with the Ben NanoNote. As you may know or remember, the Ben NanoNote is a “palmtop” computer based on an existing design (apparently for a pocket dictionary product) that was intended to offer a portable computing experience supported entirely by Free Software, not needing any proprietary drivers or firmware whatsoever. Had the Free Software Foundation been certifying devices at the time of its introduction, I imagine that it would have received the “Respects Your Freedom” certification. So, it seems to me that it is a worthy candidate for a Free Software porting exercise.
  • Samsung Announces Galaxy Tab Active2, a Rugged Android Tablet for Mobile Workers
    Samsung announced today the Galaxy Tab Active2 rugged Android tablet designed for mobile workers conducting business outdoors in industrial locations, under harsh weather, and other difficult conditions.

Games Leftovers

  • Atari reboots Ataribox as Atari VCS, teases April pre-order date
    Legendary game company Atari set retro hearts aflutter last year when it launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for something called the Ataribox, a living room device running Linux and supposedly combining the features of a PC with a video game console -- complete with some Atari classic games. But the December 14 pre-order date Atari set was abruptly canceled after an unspecified technical issue, and it looked like the Ataribox would never reach any actual customers. This week, however, the company has emerged at the Game Developers Conference with some very similar hardware, albeit with a new name.
  • The Rocket League 'Spring Fever' event is live promising lots of flower power
    Ready to earn some more cosmetic items? The Spring Fever event in Rocket League [Steam] is now live and you can earn yourself some new items using Flowers you earn while playing like this:
  • Epic Games releases the assets from Paragon, for Unreal Engine developers
    In a move that's both surprising and rather welcome, Epic Games has decided to release the assets from their FPS MOBA Paragon for Unreal Engine developers, since they're shutting it down. This will include 20 AAA-quality characters, with their respective skins, animations, VFX and dialogue, along with over 1,500 environment components from Paragon. Here's where it's a bit insane, this all cost Epic Games around $12 million! It's pretty insane how much it costs to make AAA-like games now—eye watering.
  • Game engine Construct 3 adds a remote preview, new runtime is coming to improve game performance
    I'm a huge fan of drag and drop creation tools like Construct 3 [Official Site], that allow you to create games by building simple events sheets and it seems they've continued making Construct 3 more awesome to use.
  • Open-source re-implementation of RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 'OpenRCT2' has a fresh update
    Miss the days of playing RollerCoaster Tycoon 2? Miss them no more, as OpenRCT2 [GitHub, Official Site] is alive and well with a fresh update. Like many open source game engines, it allows you to play RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 on systems not designed for it—like Linux. Naturally, it comes with tons of improvements like user interface theming, fast-forwarding gameplay, multiplayer and so on.
  • Zombasite - Orc Schism, the expansion to the action RPG is out adding more content
    Here's one I sadly missed, released back in December (oh my!), Zombasite - Orc Schism [Steam, GOG] is an expansion to the dynamic zombie apocalypse action RPG.

GNOME: GitLab Migration and More

  • IMPORTANT: GitLab mass migration plan
    I know some fellows doesn’t read desktop-devel-list, so let me share here an email that it’s important for all to read: We have put in place the plan for the mass migration to GitLab and the steps maintainers needs to do.
  • ED Update – week 11
  • Reflections on Distractions in Work, Productivity and Time Usage
    For the past year or so I have mostly worked at home or remote in my daily life. Currently I’m engaged in my master thesis and need to manage my daily time and energy to work on it. It is no surprise to many of us that working using your internet-connected personal computer at home can make you prone to many distractions. However, managing your own time is not just about whipping and self-discipline. It is about setting yourself up in a structure which rewards you for hard work and gives your mind the breaks it needs. Based on reflections and experimentation with many scheduling systems and tools I finally felt I have achieved a set of principles I really like and that’s what I’ll be sharing with you today. [...] Minimizing shell notifications: While I don’t have the same big hammer to “block access to my e-mail” here, I decided to change the order of my e-mail inboxes in Geary so my more relevant (and far less activity prone) student e-mail inbox appears first. I also turned off the background e-mail daemon and turned off notification banners in GNOME Shell. [...] Lastly, I want to give two additional tips. If you like listening to music while working, consider whether it might affect your productivity. For example, I found music with vocals to be distracting me if I try to immerse myself in reading difficult litterature. I can really recommend Doctor Turtle’s acoustic instrumental music while working though (all free). Secondly, I find that different types of tasks requires different postures. For abstract, high-level or vaguely formulated tasks (fx formulating goals, reviewing something or reflecting), I find interacting with the computer whilst standing up and walking around to really help gather my thoughts. On the other hand with practical tasks or tasks which require immersion (fx programming tasks), I find sitting down to be much more comfortable.

OSS, Openwashing and FUD