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KDE 4.1 from the Eyes of a KDE Addict

I have been a KDE user for 8 years. KDE 4.1 was only released some weeks ago and I thought about testing and writing about it shortly. I will probably wait though.

I realise that the project has many critics at the moment. Bruce Byfield already handles the controversy side of it.

KDE sees a transformation that’s a simplification. Version 4 is different, very different. It’s revolutionary, not just evolutionary. It’s designed to attract new users rather then scare or overwhelm them and also to integrate a raft of attractive visual elements.

KDE as a power user’s environment will face pressure against change. ‘Toolbox mentality’, where the file manager, Konquerer, is also a Web browser, an FTP client, a photo gallery generator… you get the picture… this needed to end or a substitute offered. Dolphin is now there by default, but Konquerer is still available, so nothing is lost. Why complain?

At this early stage, the latest release (4.1) is available in the form of a Live CD or updates from the repository and it will earn a permanent place on my hard-drives once it is integrated into a major GNU/Linux distribution.

All changes are hard. They require learning and adjustment. Many Mac and GNU/Linux users have gone through the process of change. It now needs to be coped with also at a level of desktop environments, not just operating systems. At the end, you look back and wonder why you liked that old environment all that much. You accept a new home.

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