This week in KDE: GTK CSD support and more!

I’ve got big news today. Something major landed: full support for the GTK_FRAME_EXTENTS_ protocol, which hugely improves the user experience for running GTK apps that use client-side decoration headerbars! This includes GNOME apps and an increasing number of 3rd-party GTK apps too. In particular, these apps now display window shadows and have proper resize areas without needing to use a thick border. Here’s how Gedit now looks:

It’s almost native-looking! And it fits right in with the rest of your apps.

I’d like to extend a big thanks for Vlad Zahorodnii who has been working hard on this for months! The feature lands in the upcoming Plasma 5.18 LTS.

But wait, there’s more…

More New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

Do you love KDE’s apps? Would you like to help develop for them? I knew you would. 🙂 It’s really fun, and you can have a major impact. Many of KDE’s apps are quite beginner-friendly; among them are Dolphin, Elisa, and Spectacle. See the full list here! These apps’ maintainers as well as KDE’s experienced developers are happy to help and mentor newcomers who want to contribute. For more information on how to get help and who to ask, see https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved#Start_Here.21

More generally, have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out more ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: Polishing it up

We’re nearing the release of the 19.12 versions of many KDE apps, and in the first third of the Plasma 5.18 cycle. With this week, all the major regressions from 5.17 that I’ve been tracking have gotten fixed! If you’re still suffering from other 5.17 regressions not listed here and not yet fixed, please let me know. We want to make sure that the 5.18 LTS release is as smooth and stable as possible.

New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

The KDE Frameworks 6 sprint is happening right now! Much work and planning for the future is being done. Alas, in just three days, all the work will not get done. This is where you can help! The KF6 workboard is chock full of small, manageable to-do items just begging for someone to knock a few out. Maybe you? 😉

More generally, have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out more ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: touchy and scrolly and GTK-ey and iconey

There are some neat things to report and I think you will enjoy them! In particular, I think folks are really going to like the improvements to GNOME/GTK app integration and two sets of touch- and scrolling-related improvements to Okular and the Kickoff Application Launcher, detailed below:

New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

Do you like icons? Of course you do! But more importantly, are you interested in helping to make them? I bet you are! And you should be, because there’s lots to do! Luckily, it’s actually really easy, and we have a page in the Human Interface Guidelines that describes the rules to help guide you along. Icons in the Breeze icon theme are vector SVG files, and we use Inkscape to make and edit them. I started doing it recently with no prior experience whatsoever in either icon design or the Inkscape program. My work was crude, but VDG members very gently and patiently helped me along, and you can do it too! Here’s how: https://community.kde.org/Guidelines_and_HOWTOs/Submit_an_icon

More generally, have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out more ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: 5.17 and beyond

We’re mid-cycle in Plasma 5.17 and still working hard to fix bugs and regressions, while planning for Plasma 5.18, our next LTS release! There’s also been continued work on our apps. Check it out:

New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

Qt 6 is around the corner! …And everything will need to be ported to use it. But don’t worry, the 5 -> 6 transition promises to be a relatively smooth one thanks to the Qt folks working hard on compatibility and us having already started the work of porting our software away from deprecated APIs. on that subject, it’s a great way to help out if you’re into backend work and appreciate a clean codebase. Check out the Phabricator workboard for the KF6 transition to learn more!

More generally, have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out more ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: bug squashing and more

This week we continued fixing bugs in Plasma 5.17! We know that it was a bit buggier than the 5.16 release was, and we strive to do better. If you’d like to help out with this, please test our Plasma beta releases by switching to the unstable/beta testing repos in your rolling release distro of choice. For example, Arch and openSUSE Tumbleweed. Beta releases of KDE apps will show up in these repos as well. It’s super fun! Try it, you’ll like it! 🙂

New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

I mentioned testing Beta releases earlier, but here’s something else! Do you like the idea of running a KDE-endowed free software operating system on your phone? I know I do. But did you know that KDE already has a mobile platform called Plasma Mobile? It’s real and it works and it needs your help to become mainstream! If this sounds like your cup of tea, check out https://www.plasma-mobile.org/findyourway/. You can read the Plasma Mobile project’s weekly updates in a format similar to this one here: https://www.plasma-mobile.org/blog/

More generally, have a look at https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out more ways to help be part of a project that really matters. Each contributor makes a huge difference in KDE; you are not a number or a cog in a machine! You don’t have to already be a programmer, either. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: Goodbye Noble Cashew

Plasma has a brand-new way to edit and customize widgets and panels: a global “edit mode” that can be entered using the context menu for the desktop and panel, or pressing-and-holding on the desktop with a touchscreen. While in this mode, widgets and panels are editable and movable. This solves a number of problems and yields the following improvements:

  • The Desktop toolbox (that little hamburger menu in the corner of the screen that nobody liked) is now gone forever!
  • The modes are now much clearer, with “Locked” mode being a mostly hidden thing for system administrators.
  • The panel toolbox button (the “two sliders” icon at the end of your panel) is now hidden unless you’re in the global edit mode, which means that the bottom-right-most pixel of the screen can be used to trigger the Present Windows widget, or any other widget you put at the very end of a panel.
  • Editing widget size and position is much faster while in this new edit mode.
  • The panel context menu has been made more useful, and now displays more panel-related actions.

Here’s a video of it in action:

This work was mostly done by Marco Martin, with assistance from Björn Feber, and ideas from many others in the KDE VDG. The remaining rough edges will be polished before the release of Plasma 5.18 (which is an LTS release, let us not forget). Overall I find it to be a huge improvement!

But wait, there’s more! Much, much more…

(Other) New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

Check out https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out ways to help be a part of something that really matters. You don’t have to already be a programmer. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.

This week in KDE: fixing all the things

Plasma 5.17 was released this week to glowing reviews! As with most new releases, our loyal users wasted no time in finding all the bugs we missed! So you know what that means, right? We all burned the midnight oil fixing the problems you found, and Plasma 5.17.1 will be released in just a few days with everything we’ve knocked out so far (detailed below) so never fear!

New Features

Bugfixes & Performance Improvements

User Interface Improvements

How You Can Help

Check out https://community.kde.org/Get_Involved and find out ways to help be a part of something that really matters. You don’t have to already be a programmer. I wasn’t when I got started. Try it, you’ll like it! We don’t bite!

Finally, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the KDE e.V. foundation.