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[News] Major Plasma Additions to KDE4, Special Effects

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KDE Commit Digest: 3rd August 2008

,----[ Quote ]
| The Plasma "extenders" project is merged into kdebase, with initial 
| integration into the kuiserver applet. Continued work on the 
| systray-refactor, and more work on the "Weather" Plasmoid. A whole load of 
| bugfixes for Kicker 3.5.10. A new "Magic Lamp" minimize effect, and a rework 
| of the "Grid" effect in kwin-composite. Support for extracting artwork from 
| iPod's, tag editing and removing files from MTP devices, and scriptable 
| services (including a "web control" script), and lots of other developments 
| in Amarok 2.0.        


Configuring the Plasma Panel

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| One area that could use improvements in documentation is configuring panels 
| in Plasma. Sebas did a good job but he only dedicated one paragraph to it in 
| the documentation and it didn't have any pretty pictures. Most people react 
| to visuals more so I decided to supplement the documentation.   



Proof of concept: Google Gadgets on Plasma

,----[ Quote ]
| Now this list was extended by a new set of widgets: the Google Gadgets. The
| following screenshot shows that Google Gadgets can be run on Plasma...


Converting any window into plasmoid

,----[ Quote ]
| Despite all current limitation, I think this approach still has its own
| use-cases, for example when you want quick access to some of your
| applications from Dashboard (for example Konsole) or if you want something
| not-yet-available as plasmoid on your desktop (for example video player,
| advanced calculator, web-browser with your webmail, a game from kdegames,
| googleearth, ...).


KDE’s Plasma Project aims to find out who their users really are

,----[ Quote ]
| Plasma is KDE’s way of making the ‘desktop’ a better user experience by
| letting users decide what ’shape’ it is. I think that KDE wants to empower
| its users by making the panel, the desktop and other components customizable
| in so many ways and yet make them work together seamlessly. The concept is
| quite different from the usual desktop because you will have plasmoids and
| stuff which you can tweak so that they will behave according to what you
| prefer.      


Amarok 2 Alpha - An Early Look at What's Going On

,----[ Quote ]
| Currently, it's very obvious Amarok 2 is in the alpha phase. The major thing
| that changed is the interface, which looks nicer and more modern now, with
| the collection browser located in the left and the playlist itself located to
| the right side of Amarok's window.


The Power of Plasma theming - a gallery of 23 themes

,----[ Quote ]
| One of the most often mentioned concerns at the KDE booth at LinuxTag was the
| question if Plasma would force the user to have a black panel. While we did
| have a second machine showing another theme to resolve all doubts it showed
| that not all users now yet the power of Plasma theming.


Your Rough Guide to Plasma.

,----[ Quote ]
| So I've chosen to become Shane's Personal Plasma Steward. This in turn makes
| me much more aware of things, that I personally take for granted which aren't
| so natural (yet) to others. One of those things is "How does this thing
| work?" (for "plasma" as value of thing). Let me explain on a high level how
| you can use Plasma and make the most of it, starting with a default Plasma
| desktop.


on the recent libplasma changes

,----[ Quote ]
| So if you are concerned about the recent changes made impacting stability, I 
| thank you for your concern and empathize with how one could arrive at such a 
| conclusion. Thankfully, these changes have been made specifically to answer 
| your concerns, as well as mine, about stability and feature completeness both 
| in 4.1 and beyond.    


... on scripting

,----[ Quote ]
| The solution? Well, I don't know if there is just one solution per say, but 
| here's mine: we're going to have two different kinds of APIs. One for ninjas. 
| One for myspacers. Plasma's design allows for that, even using the same 
| programming language for both since we differentiate based on target API not 
| implementation language. As a neat side effect, it turns out that the 
| myspacer style API is also a hell of a lot easier to secure.     
| So there you have it: my very long winded explanation for why there will be 
| multiple scripting APIs in plasma. It all starts with the question of who our 
| audience is and the moves on to how to stand a chance of capturing them.  

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