JUL
12
2002

OSNews: Bringing KDE Closer to Joe User's Desktop

User Interface designer Eugenia Loli-Queru has written a thoughtful and well-illustrated article for OSNews where she discusses which parts of KDE are good and which ones could use some polishing. "What is a good User Interface? Well, in order to answer that, we will have to take into account that different people like different shapes, colors and functionality. This article is just my personal opinion, how I would like KDE to evolve in the future. I am sure that other users would like to see other, different types of evolution. However, we can't deny the fact that some basic rules of UI design should never be ignored." The developers have started a discussion (thread1, thread2) based on this article.

Comments

I prefer to keep at least 65% of the space open on my panel for the taskbar, myself. Which is what I think most users expect: ample taskbar (I don't know what the KDE types call this, if it's not the same) space. I've been using KDE since early 1.x, and have configured it this way ever since they merged it into the panel. But I never stopped to think (until reading this article) that the average Joe Shmoe won't take the time to do that right away, if at all.

Personally, I also prefer to keep icons off the desktop, but that is purely a personal preference. As of now, I have only the Trash bin on my desktop -- and would rather have it on the panel. This is because I'm one of those guys that has 10+ things running at a time, and can never see more than 15% of his desktop. For that reason, I also prefer my home button on the panel. Certainly, it does not need to be in two places, though. It's all a matter of preference. Myself, I would like to see KDE make the bold move of placing all essentials in the panel, removing all (except maybe trash and devices) from the desktop, and cleaning out the panel. That would make for a more elegant first impression, which, of course, is the most important thing in attracting new users.

KDE has a lot of features, and that's great -- but they don't all need to be flaunted from the start. The saturation effect on mouseovers, for example, was wise use of advanced features by default. It's time now to decide what's most important, what would make the desktop look best to the average new user, for whom the default is intended. Again, I propose that the KDE team polls first-time users (not experienced ones!) about what they prefer, and make educated decisions based on that. Not just web-based polls, but real person-on-person interaction. This is something that I'd be willing to volunteer my time doing.

...But enough of my rambling...


By dingodonkey at Wed, 2002/07/17 - 5:00am

I use the show desktop icon!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

and I use it a lot


By JOhannes Arnstad at Wed, 2002/09/04 - 5:00am

I don't think I would've known about the multiple desktops without the pager being on the kicker, so I'd say keep it in the default for sure. I personally can't stand not having multiple desktops anymore, but I would've never started using them without seeing the feature first. I also think that the show desktop is something a windows user would expect, and the terminal is something a Linux user just expects to see there, they they should both stay too. It doesn't take to long for an experienced user to remove the icons they are not using.


By anonomous monkey at Thu, 2002/07/18 - 5:00am

A small question. Is it possible to put the trash-icon in KDE onto the panel and then use it from there with all the functionality? Even in real life, I prefer not throwing the trash onto my desk.


By Alex Ivarsson at Wed, 2002/07/17 - 5:00am

I tested KDE2/KDE3 om a AMD 450 with 384 MB RAM, and it runs too slow to be usable. Windows 98 is faster.

Gnome 2's nautilus is much faster, Gnome apps are generally much faster than KDE/qt applications.

The KDE project should focus on optimizeing the code rather than implementing new features.

I use the Gnome desktop, and I use it to run the KDE apps I need.


By Øyvind Sæther at Thu, 2002/07/18 - 5:00am

I run KDE (2.2.2 I think) on a laptop (a fujitsu-siemens) with
266Mhz intel and 96MB ram. It works pretty ok. How frequently do
you usually start up new applications? Every second?


By OI at Thu, 2002/07/18 - 5:00am

I have a Celeron 300 and my kde runs a WHOLE lot faster than gnome does, but that's still not saying anything, win 9x NEVER ran so slow.

I did a pretty much default install of red hat 7.2 and I've tryed to turn off as many services as I can and I've still got pretty much a dog.

Anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks


By malcolm at Fri, 2002/09/13 - 5:00am

The default RedHat 7.2 Gnome install uses Nautilus1 as the default filemanager. Nautilus1 is the slowest app I ever seen, even Konqueror is way much faster.

Option1:
Install Ximian Gnome and use GMC (instant even on 100 MHz) as desktop/filemanger.

Option2:
Install the Rox Desktop (works great with Gnome1) from http://rox.sourceforge.net/ - it's also instant.

Option3:
Upgrade to Gnome2, where Nautilus is way optimized and nearly instant @400MHz.


By Øyvind Sæther at Thu, 2002/10/03 - 5:00am

I agree that KDE 3 is very slow and almost unusable on older systems like Pentium II. Win 98 is noticeably faster.

KDE may run smoothly on a beeding-edge machine, but I suggest that the KDE project use slower computer when programming KDE (eg: Pentium II) so they can realize that some part definitely need speed improvement. On a fast machine, it is harder to notice a badly designed algorithm.

They are still a lot of people using older systems.


By Daniel Lavoie at Fri, 2004/03/05 - 6:00am

I tested KDE2/KDE3 om a AMD 450 with 384 MB RAM, and it runs too slow to be usable. Windows 98 is faster.

Gnome 2's nautilus is much faster, Gnome apps are generally much faster than KDE/qt applications.

The KDE project should focus on optimizeing the code rather than implementing new features.

I use the Gnome desktop, and I use it to run the KDE apps I need.


By Øyvind Sæther at Thu, 2002/07/18 - 5:00am

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