Friday continued the Akademy 2020 BoFs, meetings, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrap-up session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
Watch Friday's wrap-up session for the last BoFs of the week in the video below
Wedneday continued the Akademy 2020 BoFs, meetings, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrap-up session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
Watch Wedneday's wrap-up session in the video below
Monday was the first day of Akademy 2020 BoFs, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrap-up session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
Akademy 2020 is getting closer and the KDE Community is warming up for its biggest yearly event. If you are working on topics relevant to KDE, this is your chance to present your work and ideas to the community at large.
Akademy 2020 will take place online from Friday the 4th to Friday the 11th of September 2020. Training sessions will be held on Friday the 4th of September and the talks will be held on Saturday the 5th and Sunday the 6th of September. The rest of the week (Monday - Friday) will be Birds-of-a-Feather meetings (BoFs), unconference sessions and workshops.
If you think you have something interesting to present, tell us about it. If you know of someone else who should present, encourage them to do so too.
Talk proposals on topics relevant to the KDE Community and technology are:
KDE In Action: use cases of KDE technology in real life, be it on mobile, desktop deployments, embedded, and so on
Overview of what is going on in the various areas of the KDE community
Collaboration between KDE and other Free Software projects
Release, packaging, and distribution of software by KDE
Increasing our reach through efforts such as accessibility, promotion, translation and localization
Improving our governance and processes, community building
Don't let this list restrict your ideas though! You can submit a proposal even if it doesn't fit in this list of topics as long as it is relevant to KDE. To get an idea of talks that were accepted previously, check out the program from previous years: 2019, 2018, and 2017.
The KDE Community will be hosting Akademy 2020 online between Friday 4th and Friday 11th September.
The conference is expected to draw hundreds of attendees from the global KDE Community. Participants will showcase, discuss and plan the future of the Community and its technology. Members from the broader Free and Open Source Software community, local organizations and software companies will also attend.
Akademy 2020 Program
Akademy 2020 will begin with virtual training sessions on Friday 4 September. This will be followed by a number of talk sessions held on Saturday 5 Sept. and Sunday 6 Sept. The remaining 5 days will be filled with workshops and Birds of a Feather (BoFs).
A Different Akademy
Due to the unusual circumstances we are living through and the need to keep the KDE Community healthy, thriving, and safe, the Akademy Team have decided to host Akademy 2020 online. During the program organization period for this year's activities, we took into consideration multiple timezones to ensure that, regardless of physical location, every member of the KDE Community can participate in as many conference activities as they like.
Despite not being able to meet in person this year, KDE members will be able to reach an even wider audience and more people will be able to attend and watch the live talks, learn about the workings of the technology and the Community by participating in Q&As and panels.
Registrations and Call for Papers will be opening soon!
Another thing to check out are the previously announced BoF wrapups letting you know what went on during the week following the talks
Here are some talks recommended by attendees:
For most of the year, KDE - one of the largest free and open software communities in the world - works online by email, IRC, forums and mailing lists. Akademy provides all KDE contributors the opportunity to meet in person to foster social bonds, work on concrete technology issues, consider new ideas, and reinforce the innovative, dynamic culture of KDE. Akademy brings together artists, designers, developers, translators, users, writers, sponsors and many other types of KDE contributors to celebrate the achievements of the past year and help determine the direction for the next year. Hands-on sessions offer the opportunity for intense work bringing those plans to reality. The KDE community welcomes companies building on KDE technology, and those that are looking for opportunities. For more information, please contact the Akademy Team.
Wednesday continued the Akademy BoFs, group sessions and hacking in the morning followed by the daytrip in the afternoon to Lake Como, to have some fun, get away from laptops and get to know each other better. Thursday was back to BoFs, meetings and hacking culminating in a wrapup session at the end covering the last two days so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
Watch Thursday's wrapup session in the video below
Tuesday continued the Akademy BoFs, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrapup session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
Monday was the first day of Akademy BoFs, group sessions and hacking. There is a wrapup session at the end of the day so that what happened in the different rooms can be shared with everyone including those not present.
The KDE Plasma and Usability teams recently converged on the beautiful Spanish city of Valencia for a combined development sprint. The teams admired Valencia's medieval architecture and stayed up until midnight eating sumptuous Mediterranean food. But of course, the real purpose was work!
We camped out in the offices of the Slimbook company, which were generously made available for the sprint. The aim was not only to hack on Plasma and the Usability & Productivity initiative, but also to benefit from the cross-pollination opportunities provided by hosting both sprints at the same time and place.
Present for the Plasma sprint were Kai Uwe Broulik, David Edmundson, Nicolas Fella, Eike Hein, Roman Gilg, Aleix Pol Gonzalez, Marco Martin, and Bhushan Shah. They had quite a busy agenda:
Plasma 5.16's new notification system received a great deal of polish
Fixed a ton of bugs in the Plasma Browser Integration
Rewrote the widget positioning code for the desktop, making it much more robust, future-proof, and usable on touch:
Started work on making the Task Manager understand window stacking order, which will allow it to implement new interaction modes for grouped windows (e.g. bring forward the last-used window when clicked)
Worked on architecture improvements for the Task Manager to unify its different presentation modes and improve code robustness
Worked on a variety of architecture improvements for KWin to make it more future-proof, which, among other things, will improve multi-screen handling
Improved the user interface for the System Tray's settings window
Added calculator and unit conversion functionality to Kickoff and Application Dashboard
In addition to making technical progress, the Plasma and Usability teams got together to discuss a number of long-standing Plasma issues, and figure out how to resolve them:
We wanted to make it easier to test a custom-compiled version of Plasma. To do so, we implemented changes that allow you to integrate your custom-compiled Plasma into SDDM by running a single command, after which you can log into it normally. For more information, see this article.
We thought it would be a good idea to make more it obvious and discoverable that Plasma is made up of widgets, and show how they are configured. To do this, we decided to create a new "global edit mode" that's triggerable from within System Settings, as this is where new users generally expect everything to be configured. In this global edit mode, all widgets become visibly configurable, editable, removable, etc. We also want to make it easy to change the wallpaper in this mode. With all that done, we'll be able to remove the Desktop Toolbox as it currently exists.
There was a need to unify the disparate scaling methods, so we decided to visually connect the scale factor chooser with the "Force Fonts DPI" setting, since the former actually affects the latter, but not the other way around. This should make it clear that the scaling slider is the primary way to scale the screen, and the "force fonts DPI" control is nothing more than a way to tweak things further.
We needed Plasma to respect the system-wide scale factor on X11, so we came up with a path forward and a plan for getting it done!
We planned out how to add power actions to the lock screen. We concluded that not only does this make sense, but it will be necessary for Plasma Mobile anyway. In a multi-user environment, the user will have to enter an admin password to shut down or restart the machine when other users are also logged in.
Over in the Usability & Productivity room we had Méven Car, Albert Astals Cid, Noah Davis, Filip Fila, Nate Graham, and David Redondo. The agenda was similarly jam-packed, and included the following:
We ported Spectacle to use KGlobalAccel and away from KHotKeys, made the quit-after-copy feature finally work, and added support for drawing annotations on newly-taken screenshots
We implemented user-configurable sort ordering for wallpaper slideshows
Dolphin received human-readable sort order text and an auto-play-on-hover feature for media files
We added inline name feedback when creating new files or folders
Users can optionally close windows in the Present Windows effect with a middle-click
Many user interface improvements have been made to the Purpose framework, which implements sharing support in many apps (Dolphin, Spectacle, Okular, Gwenview as of recently, and so on)
We started working on improving the default selection of pictures available for user account avatars
Initial work has been done on a new "Recently used" feature for Dolphin and the file dialogs that will pull its data from a single consistent location and actually notice everything
We also came to some significant conclusions related to higher-level goals. For example, we plan to pay for professional user research to generate new "personas" and target user groups that represent the people using our software. We will use these personas as the basis for professional usability testing for Plasma, Dolphin, Gwenview, Okular, and other components of a basic desktop.
Additionally, we discussed how we can add release notes data to our apps' AppStream data, so that it shows up in software center apps like Discover. The big blocker was getting the required translations added to the tarball. We've started a dialogue with AppStream maintainer Matthias Klumpp regarding a new feature to pull translations from a remote location, which would support our workflow. The conversation is proceeding nicely so far.
Finally, VDG member Noah Davis dug deep into Breeze to work on visual consistency improvements related to selection highlights. Given his growing familiarity with the code, he's well on his way to becoming the next Breeze maintainer!
All in all, it was a very productive week. KDE Plasma and apps are in a great place right now, and the team's effort to further improve things will reach you in upcoming versions, so stay tuned!