Set a goal and help shape the future of KDE for years to come

Following the “tradition” adopted by the KDE project in recent years, it’s time to update the votes or, without being so complacent, update the project’s goals for the next two years. Well, the novelty here is the unequivocal call for the participation of all who want it.

An explicit call because implicitly it’s always there: the KDE project continues to be a community affair that everyone is welcome to join and contribute to, although the call is different than usual in that it’s about helping to shape the future. KDE, no less. Do you have any idea about this?

According  to the KDE Blog, “The KDE goals set direction for the community and help focus efforts on areas that the KDE community itself considers important. New targets are selected every two years to reflect current community priorities.”

We have had several examples of this initiative since they started it. Thus,  three goals were set in 2017 : first-level usability and performance for the core software, privacy software, and easier onboarding of new employees. Have they been fulfilled? While the latter is difficult to define without being part of the project, the other two are covered in a relative way. Or, in other words, much more could be done.

In 2019  , the goals were updated to include the need to improve Wayland support, software consistency, and give apps the value they deserve in an environment like KDE. It is worth asking again, did you do it? Again, the answer is relative, because there are areas where it is, and others where it is not so noticeable.

In 2021  , the operation was repeated, but in a slightly different way, with more specific goals for this year, such as further improving Plasma support for Wayland, maintaining consistency, this time with a visual aspect, with features such as authentication support. by fingerprints … Let’s say the outbreak of a pandemic in our lives disrupted the setting of goals that were as ambitious as they were ambiguous.

Analyzing all these proposals from the point of view of a heavy user of KDE software, I could say that the progress has been significant, but there is still much to be done beyond the proposals, and in relation to what they mark, some of them are so complex that even in private competitions were not achieved.

There’s a bit of everything here: Wayland’s support, for example, has improved the world in recent years, but it’s still not quite ready for production, which was the goal. Or not at the same level as  X.Org  in all cases. This is my experience. Has the first level of usability and performance been achieved for the underlying software, or the desired consistency? Again, it all depends on how you look at it.

In terms of consistency, especially in design and usability, the traditional UI/UX binomial has made a very important leap, although there is still a lot to be done and, in fact, it is being done. But other goals, such as those related to performance or privacy, I think have received less attention than we would like. However, an in-depth analysis will require more dedication, and now is not the time.

It’s time to share ideas for building the future of KDE; background ideas to work on over the next few years, and for that you must enter the contest in question by registering with  KDE Phabricator  and contributing your own. At the moment there are several different types, certainly interesting ones. For example, improve the accessibility of tools, improve documentation…

Personally, I liked KDE developer Nate Graham’s talk the most about  professionalizing KDE  at all levels, while there are also much more mundane ones, such as making Flatpak a top-notch method for distributing KDE applications when it’s not directly laughable, like improving visual themes. and themes of third party icons.

Opinions… what profound and ambitious improvement could be used in the KDE project? You can leave a comment here, but if you’re serious, go where you belong. For me, with a strong influence on what has already been raised, I see consistency in design and usability, I agree.

if you’re interested in the latest KDE news, this is KDE Plasma 5.25 , the latest desktop version released just a few days ago.

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