The KDE Release Team has decided to release KDE 4.0 this coming January. The release was originally planned for mid-December. The KDE developers want to solve a couple of essential issues before releasing. Having solved some of those issues, among which were glitches in the visual appearance, and in Konqueror, the KDE community hopes to have a KDE 4.0 that will live up to the high expectations for it. Read on for more details.
Meanwhile, the progress towards KDE 4.0 is astonishing. Most parts, such as the KDE Development Platform and a lot of applications are considered stable and well-usable.
Some parts of the desktop experience do not yet meet the KDE community's quality standards and expectations for a stable release. There are also some issues which need to be addressed upstream, for example a bug in certain codecs of xine that cut off audio fragments prematurely. The developers are confident to be able to release a more polished and better working KDE 4.0 desktop in January. The changed plans involve releasing on January 11th, 2008.
At the same time, the release team's call for participation is repeated. To make KDE 4.0 a success, your effort is needed. An overview of current showstoppers can be found on Techbase, KDE's knowledge platform.
This is also a call to the wider Free Software community, and also to companies working with KDE. If you have the resources to contribute, assistance in fixing the remaining bugs is most welcome.
Comparing KDE4 to Vista ?
Its not even finished yet !! You know the team are doing the best they can to make the best software they can. You know they do it with passion. You know its not going to be like Vista and yet you spout this kind of crap. Its a complete waste of space. Seriously, you find KDE4 isn't ready for general release yet, that it has some issues and suddenly "oh gee its like Vista !!". I deal with enough idiots at work so its disappointing to find them on dot.kde.org as well... Try saying something constructive or go elsewhere you dumbass nubs.
I wasn't talking about the real state KDE 4.0, I was talking about the public perception of it's quality, and made that quite clear 24 hours before you wrote this impolite reply. my original comment was not clear, but you should have read my clarification.
I'm quite certain that when KDE 4.0 comes out it will be top notch quality within the features it offers, although from what I've heard there will be regressions in that regard as well as new features that were planned but whose implementation has been delayed to the 4.1 release.
My first major problem with Vista occurred on Friday. my computer became almost completely non-responsive for approximately 15 minutes. before that I was quite pleased with the implementation of Vista, although I think it's design is far from perfect. I experienced no performance problems what so ever, except for randomly and mysteriously not being able to use my computer for about 15 minutes.
The only mistake that was made is to try and "sell" this as an "RC1" version. (Remember, release dudes: "RC" is means "Release Candidate". And a Release Candidate of a software is meant to say to its prospective users: "We, the developers aren't aware of any major bugs any more [apart from the one or two we've documented in the release notes, and which we will fix before the '$Final']. Now you, dear users, tell us what we overlooked so far. If you don't, we'll release as-is [plus, the bug-fixes we promised in the release notes]. And, users! Be damned if you miss to tell us the remaining bugs in time...". Why, oh why does this primitive release naming rule need to be hammered home to the KDE release dudes??)
Other than that, David: this isn't 'crap'. It's just a technology preview. Something that soon may be called an alpha or even a beta. And after some more time, even a "Release Candidate". It's not crap, it's the best what can be expected. And the result of hard work of many developers. And something that is the basis to grow a magnificent KDE4 platform from, no doubt about that!
> The only mistake that was made is to try and "sell" this as an "RC1" version.
What do you think how many time is left for "real" release candidates!? ;-) Even the postponed release date in january doesn't match my idea of a decent (pre-)release cycle, given the current state. I think the dot zero release will actually be the release candidate.
Yes, it is the "RC1" part that causes me the frustration. I would have been much more lenient if it has been a tech preview or even a beta. But this is supposed to be a *release* candidate, which means the core developers think it's ready.
I went and rebuilt last night on ArchLinux (so as to avoid any kubuntu weirdness), and while some of the minor issues had been fixed, it larger usability issues are still there. In addition, core components were crashing every couple of minutes.
> And something that is the basis to grow a magnificent KDE4 platform from, no doubt about that!
Well, up to know, from what I've seen I'd like to complain about things here and there and remain sceptic, especially about the default interface. But saving my energy for actually contributing to 4.1, I have to totally agree with this statement. KDE4 is about to be the best desktop ever done, whatever its current state. Let's go and do this.
1) - 3) are already solved, 5) is work-in-progress, the other two are useless rants (useless as in too vague to do something about it, or just not above 'eh sucks' level of quality). Also, calling it crap and the apologizing for being negative, and then calling it crap again doesn't score you any credibility points.
So you switch to blackbox, and we get _productive_ people to use bugs.kde.org instead of ranting on the Dot. Makes both of us happy. And as a 'side-effect', those that *really* care will be more considerate towards those that put lots of work and energy into KDE.
Really, if those people that are so negative would:
- think twice about how they say things (Hint: Imagine someone comes with the exact same wording ranting about your work, what would you think?)
- Channel their stop energy into assisting developers to fix problems
- Get their hands dirty and just start fixing things
- or at least try to explain the problem in detail, along with (a proper bugreport) so there's a straightforward way to fix it
So yeah, you can all complain because you fear that your pet peeve is not addressed, that something doesn't match your taste or that things are simply a bit different, but at the end of the day, it counts how you communicate that.
Ranting drives people away, it kills motivation to fix bugs. Constructive feedback, using the right channels (BKO for example!) and being actually interested in fixing stuff and not just venting some rants is what makes the release stable and users happy.
So stop pissing off people, start doing something for "a desktop you love".
I personally think what drives people away is the attitude that all comments must be positives, slap on a fake smile, and pretend comments, and that anything that isn't positive is point down. There was nothing wrong with the original posters comment except people like you go and have a little tantrum if the post isn't kissing your butt.
You can have real posts or you can fake the world and only have positive posts.
As for reporting bugs, I would place money that the vast majority of KDE users now, who are not geeks or nerds, but have come over from windows, know nothing of the bugs reporting method as all they are used to is windows. It's prolly something that dot could have an article on and explain to people. Instead of people like you getting all anal when some one makes a post like above.
Positive and constructive are two very different things.
Actually any criticism on the dot has been uniformly blasted for months that I've seen.
See, I don't mind people pointing out problems, I *do* mind how we communicate with each other. That's why I'm pointing out the problems of the tone of the original post. And it's not just me, it's about being nice in general. An important point of our community is 'being nice to each other', 'being productive and getting things done' is another attitude you encounter very often within the KDE community.
On the other hand, I think calling our work 'crap' repeatedly is something that just does not cut it when it comes to 'being nice'. So you enter the KDE community via the Dot, then you see people insulting other people's work, this does not reflect what KDE is. It's fine if you as a poster don't care about the wording, but it's important to respect other's feelings and how you represent (as a poster on the Dot) the KDE community.
You started this by communicating a release that wasn't an RC as an RC. Do you know what RC is? Send the right message in the first place and maybe you'll get better response... basic marketing, ya?
Except that if it hadn't been labeled RC, the amount of testers would have been much less. Note, I don't know if that was the rationale for choosing it, but I think it's the most logical (and understandable) ne.
P.s.: Care to vaoid such messages? I don't think anything productive will be gained by this attitude.
> Except that if it hadn't been labeled RC, the amount of testers would have been much less.
Lying about the stability of the code to trick people into testing it for you is hardly good communication.
There are lots of people willing to test something that is almost finished to sweep up the remaining minor bugs. Presenting them with something that is half-finished only alienates them and makes it far less likely that they'll be willing to test release candidates in future.
The release has been delayed now, ie, you got what you wanted. Can't you just leave the developers to their work? What more do you want?
Huh? Luca made a silly excuse and I disagreed with it. Am I not allowed to talk? How am I stopping the developers from working?
People are beating the same dead horse over and over again here about stuff which is now past history. If you keep doing this you are just sapping people's motivation to work on the project.
I am singling you out, by the way, because you continue to try to cast a bad light on this RC naming issue. There was no conspiracy to deceive and nobody lied. Not to mention that naming it an RC did achieve an actual result - it became clear that it wasn't ready for release and therefore the release date was moved.
Do we really need to discuss this any further?
> People are beating the same dead horse over and over again here about stuff which is now past history.
Imagine that; a story about the release being postponed, and people are discussing why it happened. How outrageous!
> I am singling you out, by the way, because you continue to try to cast a bad light on this RC naming issue.
Sure I do. I think the release schedule for KDE 4.0 has been abysmal, it has burned a lot of bridges, disappointed a lot of people and resulted in nothing but pain. The KDE project has used up a lot of good will and it will be difficult to regain that trust.
And if I see people making excuses for it, damn straight I'll reply to disagree. If you don't like that, don't make excuses for it. You can't express your opinion and deny me the right to mine.
Hopefully lessons will have been learnt from this and future releases will not become the debacle this one has.
> There was no conspiracy to deceive and nobody lied.
Luca said that it was the most logical and understandable rationale for what happened. I replied saying why I thought that was bad. If it's your opinion that this didn't happen, then simply disregard my comment, I was talking to somebody who does think that trying to maximise testers in this way is a good approach, so my point stands regardless of whether or not it actually happened.
> Not to mention that naming it an RC did achieve an actual result - it became clear that it wasn't ready for release and therefore the release date was moved.
If you think this wasn't clear already, you are kidding yourself. At no point have the developers considered Plasma-based components feature complete, it's *still* listed as "work to do". The developers already knew that RC1 wasn't a release candidate.
> Do we really need to discuss this any further?
Apparently so, because you are still playing apologist. If you don't want to discuss it any further, stop making poor excuses that don't hold up to the slightest scrutiny. But don't expect to say what you like without any kind of rebuttal.
OK, Jim, let me put this to you another way: either you are trying to help, or you are just trolling. If you are trying to be helpful, then let me tell you directly: you are not helping. Right now you are not saying anything that nobody else hasn't already said _including yourself on multiple occasions_. So please, just stop.
> ither you are trying to help, or you are just trolling.
Or I'm thinking about what people say and responding with my opinion.
> Right now you are not saying anything that nobody else hasn't already said _including yourself on multiple occasions_.
So? I am limited to saying something once now? Just because I've said it before, it doesn't mean that Luca or anybody else reading this thread has read it. What you and Luca have said is also unoriginal, but that didn't stop you or Luca, did it? If Luca repeats something people have already said that I disagreed with, I'll repeat what I said when I originally disagreed with it.
Stop trying to shut me up by calling me names and guilt-tripping me. It won't work. What you seem to want is a place where people can defend this atrocious situation ad nauseum, but anybody who disagrees should just be quiet. That's not going to happen.
++ from me.
We're seeing some weird behaviour on the Dot of late: first of all, there was the Rise of the Whinging Critic, where there was a sudden surge of people throwing tantrums and making threats to stop using KDE(!) unless they got their way: rightly, people discouraged this kind of behaviour, as it is wholly unconstructive and just pointless.
But now pendulum has swung too far, and some people seem to find that any dissent at all - no matter how civilly expressed, or well-argued - also needs to be squashed and the devs "shielded" from it, and so we get the bizarre apologism of Paul et al.
Hopefully once 4.0 has been released (and probably mildly publicly savaged by reviewers, both professional and armchair) and the devs start hacking on the rough edges and integrating everything for a much, much improved 4.1 we can look at 4.0 as what it really is - the difficult *beginning* of an awesome KDE4 cycle, of historical interest only, and get some semblance of sanity here on the Dot.
> first of all, there was the Rise of the Whinging Critic
You know what, I'm usually one of the first to argue against whinging. I do that with other projects. I used to do it with KDE. I'm certainly no fan of it. I think the "Rise of the Whinging Critic" is in large part a direct response to how more reasonable criticism has been handled throughout the latter part of KDE 4.0's development.
People like to say that there was whinging for previous major releases, but it was absolutely nothing compared with this. Sure, there will always be whingers regardless of what you do, but the sharp increase in whinging didn't come out of nowhere, and some of the KDE developers and fans seem to be writing off this criticism without looking at the causes behind it, and if you try to talk about the causes you get flamed. Sometimes it feels like people need to praise the developers if they want to talk about problems without being called a troll.
I had hoped that lessons would be learnt for the next release, and the delay is an encouraging point in that respect, but the attitudes of some people make me worry that exactly the same thing is going to happen in future.
And you started saying that KDE is not in RC state, when *most* of it, really is. Sure, Plasma is not as mature as the rest of KDE, and is the most visible part (because is the first thing you see), but the libraries, and many many many applications are in a really good shape.
You are correct. The libraries seem to be in great shape. But I titled my post "Usability nightmare". The "visible part" is indeed relevant.
Get real. There is nothing wrong with negative comments if they are constructive, and I saw nothing in the response that I would call a rant. On the other hand, the original poster was definitely ranting. Calling someone's work "crap" isn't constructive, and it isn't merely negative. It is downright disrespectful.
But since you don't see a problem with the original poster calling the hard work of the developers crap, it shouldn't bother you much when I say your post was crap.
Dude, come on. David is a long time poster here. I totally trust his judgment and input. Instead of getting angry about it, you should read what he is writing and his frustration.
You're a marketing a guy, so I'll put this in marketing terms -- You opted to call this an RC. This is the result. Call something that should be alpha an RC just for publicity and you'll put yourself under scrutiny.
David did the right thing. I'm glad he voiced his frustrations because I don't want KDE4 to be a piece of garbage like GNOME2 was.
I'm sorry, but in no way he should be allowed to call it "crap" and hoping to get away with it, long time poster or not.
People, do you understand you're bashing the work of volounteers? There are other ways to express criticism without affecting morale.
I'm sorry, but in no way should we call it an RC and hoping to get away with it, long time project or no.
Calling something "RC" instead of "Beta" has no negative meaning. "Crap" on the other hand, does have a disrespectful meaning.
"Calling something "RC" instead of "Beta" has no negative meaning.""
What? Really?? What about misleading the user base and raising confusion among the developers on the intent of the release? Was it meant as a release candidate, or as a beta build?
But sure, I guess this is one of those things that have negative implications if Microsoft does it to push a product. Then it's always wrong if they call a beta a RC. Always.
the fact you consider it Alpha and we consider it RC doesn't make anyone wrong. You just seem to have a different standard here. We've tried to communicate that everything except a few parts of KDE is ready for testing. Has been for a while, but the users didn't seem to test it so we didn't get much useful feedback (besides from ppl calling it crap, but that's pretty useless feedback). Now we decided 95% of KDE is in RC mode, so we released an RC. And some feedback came, though still mostly 'it sucks'. At least we got SOME bugreports, besides all the time-wasting ranting...
I've been using KDE as my primary desktop since 0.99. I did not use the word "crap" lightly. In retrospect I agree that it was too provocative a word. But that does not diminish the fact that this "RC1" looks and feels like a pre-alpha snapshot, with many poor or questionable usability decisions.
It all depends on what part you are testing. As has already been said, 95% of KDE4 is quite RC quality. I am posting this from Konqeror 4 and have a quite good experience.
He may have done a pretty bad job of communicating, but I agree with his overall point. KDE4 is not of "Release Candidate" quality, and I think the KDE community is doing itself a disservice (and disappointing a lot of users) by calling it so.
"Release Candidate" is supposed to imply feature-complete and mostly bug-free. Even aseigo notes that Plasma is not feature-complete, and Plasma is a pretty central part of KDE4.
I've been trying to use KDE4 (built from SVN) as my desktop on and off for the past few days. Each time I've given up and gone back to KDE3 after about 15 minutes. Contrast this with the KDE3 RCs, which I was using stably and productively for days at a time.
For example, Plasma crashes constantly (there are a few specific cases -- I'm still trying to pin them down and convince gdb to give me a usable backtrace so I can file a proper report). Konqueror still doesn't work on a number of websites (in particular, it can't view any LiveJournals -- again, going to try to narrow it down). The IMAP ioslave "quits unexpectedly" when I try to get my mail with KMail.
When I have time, I'll be tracking these down and filing bug reports (or generally helping to get them fixed). I'll do my best to provide productive feedback.
But the simple fact remains that KDE4 RC1 is just not of Release Candidate quality. And I think a lot of us (or at least, I do) feel misled by the developer community for calling KDE4 something it's not.
So I would urge you and the rest of the developers not to take criticisms like these personally -- ranting right back at him isn't at all useful.
For people like me that read the Dot and the Planet, the fact that this RC1 is in fact a "Beta 5" was not a surprise but instead a well established fact. I therefore didn't approach RC1 as release candidate at all, and I fully expected things to break here and there. I was therefore not disappointed.
However, this does not detract from the fact that calling this an RC was SERIOUS BLUNDER. In fact, I expect that most of the "bad vibes" that've been circling around the dot and the Planet are in large part because of this.
KDE is an open-source project, for goodness sake! It should be ready when it's ready (within reasonable limits, of course!). Though I understand that the release team would like for things to be on schedule, sometimes that's just not possible. I am confident that people would've been understanding if the release team would have chosen to issue still a couple of more betas and to delay the RC until it was in fact a RELEASE CANDIDATE! By calling the current version a RC, you have made a mockery of well established practices and lost a lot of good will from the community.
Point is that most of KDE (eg 95%) is in RC mode, just some parts aren't. And we need feedback. So we had to call it RC to get ppl to seriously try and test it... The mockery is only that 5%, and frankly, I don't care about that. If we would have decided to call it another beta, there wouldn't be as much feedback, and we would just be wasting time for all those apps which are ready and need some user input!!!
> Point is that most of KDE (eg 95%) is in RC mode, just some parts aren't.
That in my eyes does not merrit it calling a RC, unless those 5% are well hidden and not likely to be encountered. No, I take that back. If those 5% are well known, then unless you plan to release those the way they are, it should not be called RC.
> And we need feedback. So we had to call it RC to get ppl to seriously try and test it...
Aargh. I seriously ponder now if I should try and test it again at all. After all, by testing I am also volunteering time. And seriously, I do not like it if people try to trick me into it by labeling things differently than they are. I might just decide to not trust them anymore and spent my time on something different. And by reading the dot, I do get the impression I am not the only one not liking this form of marketing. You might - for a single time - trick some more people into testing it. At the same time you might alienate a large part of those gained (there might be a reason why they did not test it before) and loose them for the future. Being honest usually is the better thing in the long run.
And something else about the missing feedback:
I have been compiling the source once a week for maybe half a year by now. I always did so with the hones wish to test it and report things I find. Each and every time until very recently, I was just driven away by the state of plasma and oxygen at once. If I stayed a little longer, I usually found that
the application I am usually using were in a pretty bad state as well (from konqueror, konsole, kmail, kopete, akregator and knode only konsole worked nice from the beginning, the others all had issues a week ago that would prevent me from calling them a release candidate). Since there were a lot of really visible problems I usually wondered what I should actually try to report, as chances were pretty high that I would report a dupe. Thus I was driven away from further testing.
And I guess I am not the only one driven away by the state of the desktop itself. It is unfortunate, but I guess if kwin and plasma (I do not know if the overall slowness is a kwin or a plasma problem) would have been in a better state earlier, you would most likely have had a lot more people actually testing kde4.
It is a long time since then and my expectations might be different now but trying and using kde 2.0 betas did not seem to be nearly as bad. In the past I always switched to the new kde version somewhere in the betas and never went back. Now, for the first time ever I have not even done so with the first RC, the desktop just feels to much like an obstacle. I did not (and do not) mind beta applications crashing or a glitch here and there, but windows opening below others (even some which I needed to access next to continue working with that application), a slow desktop (I get 5-6 fps with glxgears, as opposed to 9800 at my kde3.5 install), invisible boxes (within konqueror), nonconfigurable taskbar (and no selfexplanatory way to have the finally working pager in there) just does not do it for me.
Seriously though, calling something that is not quite ready (and known to be so) a RC just in order to get more users testing - that seems quite disrespectful to me, if not lying. And it is quite discouraging. Did you even consider the idea that the lack of testing might have some other reasons than the name of the release?
I agree that using the word "crap" was rather harsh. However I am a long time <1998> kde user and I simply love the project, I just don't have enough skills to contribute any meaningful code but I have done my share of converting many a user and company to linux/kde. Recently however I don't know what has happened to kde I call it gnomification coz its beginning to feel a hell of a lot like gnome - restrictive and unacrobatic, taking away from the original beauty of kde. For exapmle I have tried hard but unsuccessfully for a long time to convince myself of the wisdom of creating dolphin as a default filemanager and okular as documnent viewer instead of adding enhancements to konqueror - new kde users just love konqueror's abilities, and love the single app that can make their lives so much simpler. kde3 has a beautiful philosophy, why reverse this unique philosophy in kde4?
> Hint: Imagine someone comes with the exact same wording ranting
> about your work, what would you think?
that I must have done something really wrong if he is so pissed off ...
but no, this idea does not ever come to your head, you just say that he is impolite and uncostructive so it is not worth to take his opinion into account, while you are the perfect one, sigh
This is why it is delayed. (Btw some of the problems are already fixed, try a more recent build.)
For the love of God can some take that menu setup out back and shoot it.
KDE does rock, and thanks
Who really cares about the menu anymore? The run dialog has been beefed up. I doubt I'll find myself clicking that blue K more than once per month.
It's so much faster to hit a few keys instead of hunting through menus.
But they did a usability study!
I think the menu is terrible, and so do most people who use it, but everyone throws that study out there.
The study was a joke. I'm just glad we'll have menu alternatives in time.
Is the problem that most people think that it is terrible, or is it the minority of people who think it is terrible are really vocal? How many times do people go around posting what they *do* like vs posting what they don't like.
criticizing is more fun!
but seriously, when people point out the bad, I think the hidden assumption is that everything else is OK, which is why I would count any post of a person who tried out the release candidate and complained about something but didn't complain about the menu as someone who at least doesn't find it a notable or bothersome problem and can live with it when using KDE. I think maybe there should be a poll of what is the all-time favorite KDE menu that people want to see in their KDE. maybe include main menus frome other desktops as well in the poll.
The majority of people think it is bad. They just do not post about it. Fact is in the middle of trying to post about how bad it is most people just sigh and give up. It is like they have lost the will to live. Please bring us back the 90s menu we all so love. Please.
... just after they got their 90s menu back, they started to grow fur and climbed back on their trees.
Happy to stay there, waiting for the things to come and complain about
I, personaly, will just wait and see. I'll try the new menu for a month or so and if i cannot get used to it i'll install the classic-menu-port wich most likely is created by someone by then. I might even attempt to port it myself :D
Seems like all the critique is either "the new menu sucks" (should be fixed within a month or so after the release, if it turns out to be a problem), "the RC was a really beta" (marked UNFIXABLE) and random bugs already fixed.
Logically, how can something that hinders productivity be a boon for usability?
It is slow, cumberbsome, and difficult to navigate. Everyone says, "but it has search!"
So add search to Kmenu like Suse did, or develop a new menu with search. But Kickoff, while it looks good in a screenshot, is an absolute pain to use.
I agree 100%. In fact I hereby ask the Kickoff supporter's to STOP saying that its design has been validated by user testing. It hasn't. The tests that were done have ZERO statistical significance, and the methodology used has serious flaws too. The problem with developers repeating the "it has been tested for usability" mantra is that they come across as a) not really knowing much about usability testing, b) not knowing much about statistics, and c) not having a mind of their own.
It would actually be very helpful to this discussion if a new (independent!) usability test could be done on Kickoff. And remember kids: if you want people to take you seriously instead of just coming across as a cargo-cult usability tester, make sure you read on your statistics!
Having said that, I actually think there is some goodness in Kickoff. It's only that insane navigation menu that kills the whole thing. It honestly feels like I am playing Doom inside the menu, navigating through mazes like a mad man looking for the exit! (and obviously often getting lost in the process). Have you at least considered adding a couple of demons to shoot? That would make the menu navigation in Kickoff slightly less boring.