2012 Randa Report [with updates]

“From the hacking rooms, we hear the whistle of the train as it travels up and down the Matter Valley. Most of us arrived on that train, and soon will be leaving. Another amazing mass KDE sprint is coming to an end, and again a lot has been accomplished.”


Who is Randa for?

The Randa sprint starts on September 21st. The fundraising drive has just a few days remaining. Randa is important to the KDE Community, which includes everyone who contributes, participates, supports and, most importantly, uses KDE software. Two key KDE developers—Aaron Seigo and Martin Gräßlin—have shared insights about Randa.

The value that KDE software delivers to millions of desktops all over the world is mind-boggling; made more so because the cost to users is zero. This is possible because the KDE Community thrives by giving, not taking. It is the epitome of Free and Open Source software. Many people donating small amounts will make a big difference. As part of the KDE Community, would you please consider donating?

A few days ago, there was a Dot story about twin brothers from Greece who will be part of Randa for the first time. In that story, Giorgos wrote about what Randa means for him personally and mentioned being inspired by his brother to be part of KDE. Below is what Antonis wrote about Randa.


Randa Makes a Difference

21 year old twins from Greece are two of the dedicated people headed for Randa, Switzerland to work on KDE software. Giorgos and Antonis Tsiapaliokas are working on Plasmate, the KDE Software Development Kit for Plasma Workspaces. Giorgos wrote about his KDE background and what is motivating him to be part of the intensive coding in Randa.


Support the 2012 KDE Randa Meetings: Inspired and Intense

The KDE Randa Meetings are a small gathering of KDE contributors in the village of Randa, Switzerland. For the fourth year, the intense Randa sprints will include key KDE projects and top developers, all collaborating concurrently under one roof, isolated from noise and distractions. Funds are being raised to support the meetings.


Plasma Active Three Sprint

Plasma Active Three sprint - (top left to bottom right): Aleix Pol,
Martin Gräßlin, Marco Martin, Martin Klapetek, Martin Brook,
Sebastian Kügler, Laszlo Papp, Alex Fiestas, Dario Freddi,
Maurice de la Ferte
Not shown: Cornelius Schumacher, Fania Bremmer, Seif Lotfy,
Thomas Pfeiffer. (click for larger)

Last week, a group of Plasma Active hackers and designers met in basysKom's office in Darmstadt. The officially dubbed "Plasma Active Three Sprint" had as its goals to plan the next release of KDE's device-spectrum user experience, define work needed to accomplish this release, design user interfaces for new features and enhancements, and of course get cracking. Another point of focus was to work on a few things that need to be done before the launch of the SPARK, the first consumer device featuring a fully free and openly developed software stack, running KDE software.


KDE e.V. Sprint - Making KDE Possible

Over the weekend of 19 and 20 November, KDE contributors met in Berlin for the KDE e.V. Sprint—the first ever. KDE e.V. is the non-profit organization that represents KDE in legal and financial matters and provides funding to assist KDE development and promotion. We aimed to work on some key areas to form a strong foundation for KDE e.V.'s future development, including:

  • The Individual and Corporate Supporting Membership Programs
  • KDE's policy on providing public thanks to donors of money, hardware and services
  • Budget and goals for 2012
  • Setting up a better method for approving sprint financing, planning and reporting

KDE Harmattan Sprint Makes Advances in the Mobile Space

Over the last couple of years the KDE Mobile project has been evolving as it targeted many embedded platforms. Currently, the focus is on the shiny Nokia gadgets (N9 and N950) running the platform called Harmattan.


Gluon Sprint - Fall 2011

From the left, top: Hanna, Arjen, Ralf,
bottom: Laszlo, Stuart and Leinir (click to biggen)

Over the last couple of years it has become almost a tradition to have a Gluon sprint prior to Qt Developer Days in Munich. This year was not different. Through much effort, a sprint was pulled together for the Gluon team, in part commemorating the first of these sprints two years ago, where the Gluon Vision was first laid down, and in part to assist in the work towards the next release.


From Platform to Frameworks -- KDE hackers meet in Switzerland

Randa Group Photo

In early June 2011, a sizable group of KDE hackers met high up in the Swiss Alps. In Randa, four co-located meetings took place to further KDE technologies. One of these groups, Platform 11, had as its goal to take the KDE development platform to its next level. This group consisted of about 25 people who work on and around kdelibs, the build-system, distributions, and 3rd party developers, and was intended to represent needs and wishes as completely as possible, while trying to find better ways to organize the KDE development platform.


WebWorld 2011: Building the Next KDE Web

Randa was not the only place to welcome KDE contributors at the start of June. In an altogether warmer part of the world, nine contributors with an interest in KDE's websites gathered outside Essen in Germany at the world famous Linux Hotel (page in German).

Attendees included members of KDE's design, web, promotion, UserBase and sysadmin teams, bringing a healthy mix of creativity and pragmatism. We looked at technical, design and promotion issues facing the kde.org website and the UserBase (and, to a lesser extent, the other KDE wikis).