Lots of work has being done this week to polish up the Plasma System Tray, both visually and functionally. See the overarching visual task at https://phabricator.kde.org/T10470. Lots more interesting work is in progress but not yet done, such as an effort to use the same UI component in System Tray items rather than having each one re-invent the wheel. That’s not done yet but should hopefully make it for Plasma 5.19.
Of course that’s not all! Yakuake and various apps also got some love, and many bugs were fixed too:
- Yakuake’s window can now be vertically resized by dragging on its bottom bar (Ryan McCoskrie, Yakuake 20.04.0)
- New tabs or split view panes in Yakuake can now start in the same directory as the current tab/split (Christian Muehlhaeuser, Yakuake 20.04.0)
- Elisa can now be configured not to use the Baloo file indexing service at all, even if it’s available (Elisa 20.04.0)
Bugfixes & Performance Improvements
- The System Settings Printers page will now prompt you for authentication when you try to add a printer but are not currently authorized to do so, rather than just failing (Nicolas Fella, Print Manager 20.04.0)
- The Printers applet no longer has weird mis-alignment and bad mouseover behavior (me: Nate Graham, Print Manager 20.04.0):
- Discover no longer crashes on launch under certain circumstances (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.18.3)
- Discover no longer crashes when you cancel the installation of a Flatpak package while its description page is open (Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Plasma 5.18.3)
- When editing a panel, the little pop-up to configure individual applets no longer sometimes disappears the moment you move your mouse over it (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.18.4)
- When changing the cursor theme, GTK3 applications now reflect that change immediately (Mikhail Zolotukhin, Plasma 5.19.0)
- Various parts of Plasma and KDE apps that use shadowed rectangles are now significantly more performant and less resource-intensive thanks to the use of a new custom shader implementation. Animated FPS has risen from an average of 26 FPS to 160! (Arjen Hiemstra, Kai Uwe Broulik, and others, Frameworks 5.59 and Plasma 5.19)
- Kamoso no longer has an extra hamburger menu that doesn’t do anything (Nicolas Fella, Frameworks 5.69)
User Interface Improvements
- The System Settings online accounts integration page has been completely overhauled, and now sports a clean modern UI with much more reliable functionality (Dan Leinir Turthra Jensen, kaccounts-integration 20.04.0)
- After installing Samba using the Properties window’s Sharing tab, it now recommends rebooting to make group membership changes take effect, and provides a button to let you reboot with one click (me: Nate Graham, Dolphin 20.04.0)
- The Clock applet’s popup has received a visual refresh and now shows world clocks (me: Nate Graham, Plasma 5.19.0):
- System Tray pop-ups now have a distinct “header” area where the title and Pin button live; you can see examples of it in other pictures of System Tray pop-ups in this blog post (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.19.0)
- The system tray popups for Bluetooth and Networks now use a prettier and more consistent highlight style (Niccolò Venerandi, Plasma 5.19.0):
- The system tray icon for Flameshot is now monochrome and matches the rest of the icons (Ariel AxionL, Frameworks 5.69):
How You Can Help
In Plasma 5.19, we are making a push on our Breeze Theme Evolution work. It’s proceeding, but would go faster with your help! There are tons and tons of mockups in the linked task and its child tasks, and what we really need at this point is people willing to help implement them. QML skills are helpful, and C++ is also useful for the needed work on the Breeze theme itself. If this sounds interesting to you, don’t be shy, step right up! Head over to the VDG channel to find out how you can get involved and coordinate work.
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!