KDE Commit-Digest for 4th November 2007

In this week's KDE Commit-Digest: Krushing day concludes with focused bug fixing for the KDE 4.0 release. Work on various "runners" in Plasma, with general work on applets and the addition of binary and fuzzy clocks. Consraints support in the Step physics simulation package. Work on icons across KDE Games applications. Support for the Scalix groupware server in KDE-PIM. Entry editing improvements in KOrganizer. Improved Blu-Ray format support in K3b. Solid gets support for Video(4Linux) devices. Kopete uses Solid for network detection and support of audio/video devices. Various progress across KOffice.

Dot Categories: 


by Louis (not verified)

>>changing slab thickness to 0.45 as 30 people confirmed on nuno's blog :)

There go those Oxygen devs doing things the "closed" way again! ;-)

by Borker (not verified)

hmmm, perhaps you should write a half-assed blog entry on this subject and then pretend it's journalism and publish it in an online magazine. You'd be doing community a solid one!

by Vladislav (not verified)

I'd like to point out that the original post appears to be a joke, but the reply is taking it seriously

by bluestorm (not verified)

I'd like to point out that the original post appears to be a joke, but the reply is taking it seriously

by anonymous coward (not verified)

i like the humour on the dot.

by nuno pinheiro (not verified)

hehehhe we are pretty closed arent we :)

by Matt (not verified)

Psh, artists... ;p

by Terracotta (not verified)

Really like the ideas presented here, though I like the simple kmenu from kubuntu, I dislike most other efforts in creating a menu, this one seems to look good, and work great, wel ok, only time will tell, but it certainly is promising.
Good luck chaps and keep up the good work.

by Richard Van Den Boom (not verified)

I'm not too sure about the approach of showing the most used applications in front (it's not specific to Raptor, of course, my remark even applies to Windows). Personnaly, I create short cuts icons in my taskbar and I would otherwise use the menu to get apps I don't use so often.
I would appreciate more a simple way of draging an app from the menu to the taskbar in order to create a shortcut.

by Terracotta (not verified)

I totally agree, but from the way I see it, they are organising the programs in catgories as well, so that you do can choose from categories. It's a bit bizar, but it's at least a bit better done than the suse stuff.

i got the opportunity to use windows XP for a while (job), and i liked the fact that frequently used apps show up in the startmenu for a while: the type of work changed, and i started to need other apps, and the start menu nicely followed. At the time i started to think a shortcut would be handy, it was already there for me to use.

on my kubuntu laptop, i still create launch buttons in kicker manually (and at least one of them is for an app i never use anymore)

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

You have "most used" or "recently used" applications in the K menu, at least in openSUSE.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

Minor point of semantics to avoid confusion.

In openSUSE (like KDE 4) they use Kickoff, which has "favorite" applications. I'm not sure if you manually select the favorites, of if it picks them from which you use the most. The traditional KMenu does not do this that I know of.

by Henry S. (not verified)

It did on Opensuse. It even had a built in search. (this was way before Kickoff)

by Yuriy Kozlov (not verified)

With the traditional KMenu, right click on the panel, go to Configure Panel > Menus, under "Quick Start Menu Items" select "show applications most frequently used" and select a number of apps to show.

by Will Stephenson (not verified)

They are manually chosen favourites. There's a default set of the usual suspects, then you can right click in the app browser or search results to add to favourites.

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

I use the traditional K menu on openSUSE. (Right click, Change to KDE style menu.)

by Manabu (not verified)

One problem with these auto-updating favorites is that you never know the exact localization of the aplication you are launching. You need to search to see in what position the aplication is on favorites before start to move the mouse pointer to clic there. And there is the possibilty that this aplication is not in favorites anymore, what will make you loose even more time.

In the case of shortcut icons in the taskbar, and the fixed kmenu, you aways know where the aplication is on the menu, and already have some degree of muscular memory to reach it quickly. From time to time it need some reorganization, but that is minor compared to time saved with fixed models. I would be more happy seeing on-menu drag-and-drop suport for editing than all those new concepts of menus... that may be beauty, and good for who don't have good control over the mouse, but are slower.

by Grósz Dániel (not verified)

You can create panel icons in KDE 3.5 by dragging from the (traditional) K menu to the panel (if it is not locked).

by Richard (not verified)

Raptor really reminds me of the Gnome menu in opensuse, which was the reason I don't use gnome, it is far quicker to have a normal menu, click to what you want than to type in and search for it. Nice work but I'll continue using the suse menu in kde4, it's far superior than this ancient idea of searching, and far less time consuming. Time is money, and this is just wasting time.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

The SUSE menu is also largely predicated on searching, and all the usability experts swear by it, even though I find it the absolute slowest menu interface I've ever used. To browse to an app normally in SUSE involves a click on the menu, a click on applications, a click on Games, a click on Card Games, and then possibly scrolling to the app, and then clicking on the app.

Whenever I mention how slow this is, I am told I should use the "Search" feature, which is also slow. So I just got in the habit of launching everything with Alt+F2.

Raptor doesn't look completely predicated on searching, though everyone is including search these days.

by Bobby (not verified)

Searching is not a bad idea and it's sometimes faster that the fastest clicker. This is one of the main reasons why I personally love the Suse Menu. It's also better arranged than the traditional Menu and if I use an application more often then all I need to do is to add it to favorites, with two clicks I am good. You just cant beat that with Alt+F2 no mattter how fast you can type so I don't see the Suse Menu as slow as you described. The only thing that is missing is eye-candy, it's not an attractive Menu but it's very usable.
I can't say much about Raptor because I haven't used it yet, all that I can say is that it's prettier than the Suse Menu. I would have to use both in order to make a comparison.

by dracorx (not verified)

Hello all

I'd like to point out that raptor is not only about search: it also offers the "traditional" categories and features a categorisation by means of TOM, so categorising it with TASKS rather than with application groups.

It will be possible to configure it working with TOM (task oriented menu), Categories (traditional) or any other plugin as default.

by Ivan (not verified)

Kick off already implemented all these things that Raptor is aiming to implement.

Could´n´t raptor dudes just join kickoof

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

Can Kickoff be placed anywhere?

Will Kickoff do smart searching that places more relevant options more prominently? Will Kickoff allow for click-less, quick navigation?

by Ivan (not verified)


Looks like just a little improvements that might be easy to implement in Kickoff.

It already provides search, that could be improved with integration to Nepomuk...

It already provides clickless navigation, that could be extended...

I'm not a Kickoff developer, just a user... It already passed the Grandma test for me (I upgraded to last Mandriva version two months ago, switched to kickoff in my mother's, my wife and my sister (diferent ages and homes) computers without warning them, they just started to use it and when I asked about the menu they said "It changed, no? Really better...")...

So I think raptor concept has good ideas, but can't see how this could not be implemented in kickoff.

by fooishbar (not verified)

Yeah go Raptor!

Raptor is the best.

by mark (not verified)

I'm not much convinced about that, the best menu is the one
allowing users start everything with less clicks,
and actually raptor instead:
-seems to require more clicks for mouse-only input
-requires both mouse and keyboard input (or keyboard + arrows)

I hope I'm wrong.

by nuno pinheiro (not verified)

Not with less clicks, but faster and less mind stressing.
we could do a only over/action menu that woud require zero clicks, but i gess that would be a pain...

by Soap (not verified)

I personally think the best menu is different for each user.

-The Run Dialog fits me best, because it's a quick hotkey, and a few characters to run any app. My left hand is usually oon the keyboard anyway.
-KMenu is tolerable for me, because I can quickly browse it for apps that I don't use often, or forget the name of.
-Kickoff (when I used it) got in the way with too many mouse-overs, and too much depth to the hiearchy where all previous context is lost. It just doesn't work for me.

I have high hopes for raptor being a better solution for me. I don't mind having to click once to go to productivity apps. A group for games might be nice too, though.

by Diederik van de... (not verified)

> Solid gets support for Video(4Linux) devices.
> Kopete uses Solid for network detection and support of audio/video devices.

Way to go! That would make it much easier to access webcam devices in KDE apps! I never understood why Kopete had to ship with it's own code for V4L support in the first place. Especially if all chat clients need to duplicate that code

by Will Stephenson (not verified)

It still ships a lot of v4l code for actually talking to the devices. This will go into Phonon at a later date.

The new code uses Solid (and its hal-backend) for detecting webcams as they are hotplugged and removed.

by nuno pinheiro (not verified)

heeaa beter one here http://www.nuno-icons.com/images/estilo/raptor/main menu.png :)

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

I can't wait to try both this and Lancelot out. They both look incredible.

Is there any chance we'll eventually see a theme that more closely resembles some of your early mock-ups and art? Is there a chance you could design a widget and window-decoration theme to more closely match the Plasma theme and glass borders?

I think your art and icons look fantastic, and Raptor is a breath of fresh air! Keep up the incredible work!

by mxttie (not verified)

solid supports video for linux now?! whoa! :)

by dario (not verified)

I'm actually very positive on the eventual outcome of the current K-menu dilemma -- if you can call it that. And I don't mean that purely on the perspective that a "Darwinian survival of the fittest" will lead us to the adoption of the strongest, most popular choice as the default KDE menu. Sure, that is also likely, but even more interestingly, a lot of cross-pollination is bound to happen between all these competing ideas. Therefore, rather than a single "winner", I am confident the KDE community will adopt the love child of all these interesting projects!

(Nevertheless, I am also sure we are bound to hear in this thread from the customary legion of complaints -- many bordering on trolling territory. How foolish they will eventually feel...)

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

As long as there is choice, I'm happy.

by christoph (not verified)

Open Source is all about choice. KDE 3 has multiple "third party" start menus, and there sure will be many for KDE 4, too.

And seeing how fast new plasmoids appear, they might even be developed within the 4.0 lifecycle.

by T. J. Brumfield (not verified)

At first it seemed that we might only have Kickoff at 4.0 and that worried me.

by dracorx (not verified)

Raptor in KDE 4.x

Hi all

The raptor team is damn too small. Therefore it's probably not ready for kde 4.0, I'm afraid. So it is more possible to come with 4.1 or so. Or even better - if you want to join our team so it is sooner ready, contact us on panel-devel, where siraj is reading ;-)

by Marco (not verified)

It's about 7 days that i can't compile kdebase.. What's happening? I hope to see kde 4 compiled from svn soon!

by Anon (not verified)

"What's happening?"

Well, it's hard to say if you don't tell us what the error is, or what you have re-installed ;) For the record, I compiled it fine yesterday.

by Hoàng Đ&#7... (not verified)

Come over to the #kde4-devel channel on freenode, we'll help out. I have been compiling kde4 from svn once every 3 days, no problem ever.

>Fredrik Höglund committed changes in /trunk/KDE/kdebase/workspace/krunner:
>Make it possible to move the krunner window by clicking on an empty part of it >and dragging the mouse.
>Diffs: 1, 2

It would be so cool to have this feature also for normal windows!

by Diederik van de... (not verified)

That already exists in X11 in some form. Hold the Alt button and you can move the window by hitting any part of it. Very convenient.

Yeah, I know.
Of course I means without holding [Alt]. IIRC Firefox on Windows had such a behavior.

Some Qt themes support this, IIRC. (But I can't remember Firefox doing this on Windows)

by Diederik van de... (not verified)

> Of course I mean [clicking on an empty part] without holding Alt.

Sounds like a really bad idea. It means applications have random hotspots which cause different behavior. Users don't trust computer systems which are unpredictable. Making random spots is just doing that. They won't get it.

This is one of the things I even have to say *it confuses people* _a lot_. And before you get me wrong, I typically dislike the GNOME approach of usability.

Heck, have you ever seen some stubled faces from a user who "lost all windows at the desktop"? They don't know what they did, just that they lost all windows. It was caused by an accidental flip of the scrollwheel at an empty desktop area. I have some "oh so convenient" settings enabled for "switch desktops using the scrollwheel at an empty desktop area" and "hide windows from other desktops in the taskbar". That combination was good enough to confuse smart people.

It opens your eyes to see intelligent people stumble at my desktop because of this unpredictable behavior. Random moving windows is one of those too. ;-)

by jospoortvliet (not verified)

with compositing and other new tech, you can make these things more intuitive: the scrolling desktops behavior, for example, could use an animation (does in Kwin if compositing is on) so the user sees what is going on.