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Qt/KDE: RSIBreak 0.12.12, "App" Stores, Icons and KDE Web Development

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KDE
  • RSIBreak 0.12.12 released!

    All of you that are in using a computer for a long time should use it!

  • KDE in app stores

    If you use KDE software, there is a good chance you’re on a Linux distribution and you download the software from your distribution’s repositories. But the fact is you can get KDE software from a number of sources on different platforms. As project coordinator for KDE e.V. helping with KDE Goals, I was tasked to look at app download statistics. Join me in my quest to understand how popular KDE apps are in various app stores.

  • New Icon theme

    Like everyone else, I am also in quarantine, and during this quarantine I got closer to the program that I love, inkscape. I started to make smartphone mockups again, which I published on my Instagram profile (maybe I will also make posts here). But I started a new icon theme , since I have many free hours a day, I have a lot of time to devote to this project.

  • This month in KDE Web: March 2020

    This month KDE web developers worked on updating more websites and some progress was made in a new identity provider and a lot of other exiting stuff and a lot of background work was also done.

Changelog: Nitrux 1.2.7

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GNU
KDE
Linux

Today is the day! — Nitrux 1.2.7 is available to download

We are pleased to announce the launch of Nitrux 1.2.7. This new version brings together the latest software updates, bug fixes, performance improvements, and ready-to-use hardware support.

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KDE: Latest Improvements

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KDE

  • This week in KDE: The calm before the storm (of new features)

    This week we worked really hard on a lot of important backend stuff that’s not so user-visible but will pay dividends down the road, such as launching applications using cgroup slices. We also did a ton of work on the Breeze Evolution project, however most of it is still in heavy development and not ready to be announced. It should trickle in during subsequent weeks, but until then, have a look at what did get landed...

  • KDE Developers Wrap Up March By Working On Back-End Improvements

    This week in KDE land there weren't too many new features introduced but a lot of low-level work to foster future features.

    Some of what did come about over the past week includes:

    - Easier switching of time zones from the clock applet.

    - Support for launching applications in Cgroup slices.

Kdenlive Beta and Development

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KDE

  • Mirrors for kdenlive-20.04-beta1-x86_64.appimage
  • Kdenlive 20.04 Beta Released With Continuing To Improve The Open-Source Video Editor

    Open-source video editors over the years have generally fallen well short of the stability and feature set offered by proprietary video editing solutions but in recent years at least there has been some measurable progress to the likes of Kdenlive and OpenShot. Out this weekend for testing is the Kdenlive 20.04 beta.

    Kdenlive 20.04 is being prepared as part of the "KDE Applications" 20.04 milestone for next month. For those wanting to help in spotting any last minute bugs, the Kdenlive 20.04 beta is available. For easy convenience across distributions, the AppImage is available of this first Kdenlive 20.04 beta.

  • Season of KDE 2020 and GSOC

    The first thing that one has to do before beginning to contribute to an organization is to build the code of the application from the source. And if this is the first time a person is building an app then he/she should be ready to do a lot of googling and praying for the CMake to compile successfully.

    Kdenlive works with the help of a lot of dependencies and libraries. For the CMake to compile properly the system should have all these libraries installed in it.

    First things first, I got the Kdenlive source code from the GitLab instance of KDE, invent.kde.org. It is always best to checkout from the master to a new branch to prevent committing incorrect changes and spoiling your whole branch. Then I created a build file and ran the CMake code. This returned a LOT of errors when the required libraries and dependencies were not found in my system. Most of the errors were solved when the following command was executed:

Plasma Bigscreen: KDE Announced Plasma for TV

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KDE

Plasma Bigscreen is KDE's interface for big TV screens which is announced based on KDE Neon image. Plasma Bigscreen is suitable for single board computers and large TV screens. KDE says that Plasma Bigscreen will provide media-rich applications suitable for TV and also the traditional KDE Plasma desktop applications.
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Latte bug fix release 0.9.10

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KDE

Latte Dock v0.9.10 has been released containing important fixes and improvements!

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Krita 4.2.9 Released

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KDE

Today we’re finally releasing Krita 4.2.9! It’s been one of the most complicated releases we’ve ever attempted. When we updated the version of Python that’s embedded in Krita, scripting broke on Windows. When Apple updated its notarization protocol, building broke on macOS. And then we updated to a newer version of some of the libraries we build Krita on, and that broke all kinds of things. In fact, Windows Store users need to have a bit of patience: Microsoft has deprecated the appx installer format for Windows Store packages and broke the DesktopAppConverter, replacing it with a new tool, which, however, only generates packages that the Windows Store validator refuses. We’re working on that!

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KDE Themes for Sites and Deepak Kumar's Season of KDE Report

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KDE
  • How do most KDE websites use the same theme?

    Nearly all KDE websites use a unified theme across the board. This is part of the consistency goal, chosen as a KDE goal at the last Akademy in Milano (Italy).

    [...]

    KDE is using the Aether theme. This is a theme designed and initially developed by Ken Vermette, the talented artist that is also behind most of the Plasma wallpapers and some interesting design concept like DWD.

    This theme was originally based on one of the first Bootstrap 4 alpha version and later rebased on a stable Bootstrap 4 version. Using Bootstrap has its advantages and disadvantages.

    The biggest advantage is that it has a large community and a lot of bootstrap themes exist for CMS and static site generators. It can be easily adapted to your specific needs without starting from scratch every time.

    Another advantage is that Bootstrap is built using SASS and is designed to be extendable with tons of variables a developer can modify to globally change colors, layouts and a lot more. You can also specify the modules you want to use, and add your self-made components. For those interested in extending a Bootstrap theme, the official documentation is a great start. These capabilities were sadly not used when creating the Aether theme, but we are slowly moving to use more of the Bootstrap theming capabilities over time.

    The problem with Boostrap is that, because it is so popular, in its default from it looks like a generic website without any personal identity. Changing only the colors won’t help to make your website more unique.

    [...]

    We always need help with the websites, fixing papercuts, upgrading old websites to the new Jekyll/Hugo infrastructure, making sure information on the website is up-to-date, creating new beautiful home pages for your favorite projects and a lot more.

  • Season of KDE, 2020

    Finally, I am going to write about my experience as a student of Season of KDE 2020. A winter learning new things, learning what matters is not just writing code but writing good code. I would like to thank GCompris and KDE for giving me such an opportunity to be a part of the community and to try to bring happiness to people and kids using it around the world.

  • Season of KDE Final Report, 2020

    SoK ended finally on 17th February 2020. I am happy to share that I have completed the project “Add multiple datasets to several activities” and passed the final evaluation!!!

Asus Vivobook - Long in the tooth, going strong

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GNU
KDE
Linux
Hardware

For a brief while, I did ponder reinstalling the system from scratch, but then decided against it. The problems I encountered were small (if annoying), and I was able to resolve them quickly. The system works well, it's fast enough. Not bad for a 2013 laptop that was made to be frugal to begin with. Now ideally, there should be no niggles and no upgrade ghosts, but there you have it. As far as the road test goes, I had everything I needed in strange and foreign places, and the Vivobook + Plasma did their job dutifully.

I will probably follow up with one or two more articles of this nature in the future. I'm not sure how extensively I'm going to be using the Ultrabook, but then, its age will be an interesting factor to reckon with. My older laptops are handling the brunt of passing years fairly well, but they were also in a higher cost category when new. With this machine in the mid-price range, I don't really know how things are going to evolve. That's about it for now. The end.

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Plasma Bigscreen

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KDE

  • Plasma Bigscreen – A Dive Into Mycroft Skills, Voice Applications & More

    In this blog post I would like take you through an introduction to Mycroft GUI Skills and Voice Applications technology on Plasma Bigscreen and showcase some of the interesting stuff I have been working on for the Plasma Bigscreen Project which are available on the beta image release for the Raspberry PI 4. This beta image show cases not only media-rich voice applications but also applications specialised to fit the Bigscreen experience all developed under an open process, more information on them in the sections below.

    Plasma Bigscreen is the free open-source user interface experience for those big TV Screens, It consist of KDE Plasma technology powering the User Interface with Mycroft AI’s voice assistance technology packaged together on the image to provide a Smart TV platform and is based on KDE Neon.

    The experience when sitting 10 feet away from your TV just isn’t complete without having the ease of access to control it and that’s exactly the space in which Mycroft AI the open-source voice assistant experience fits right in to provide you with that hands free easy interaction.

  • Plasma Bigscreen

    Today I want to introduce a project I have been working on together (mostly in the background) with some colleagues of mine… Now with beta status reached, it’s time to more publicly talk about it: enter Plasma Bigscreen.

    Smart TVs are becoming more and more complete computers, but unfortunately there the experience tends to be a tight walled garden between proprietary platform, services and privacy-infringing features. Features which are very cool, like voice control, but in order to not pose a threat to the user privacy should be on a free software stack and depending less on proprietary cloud platforms where possible.

    Plasma BigScreen is a platform intended to use on smart TVs (trough a powerful enough small computing platform, such as the Raspberry Pi4, or any tiny computer if you need more power) with big remote-friendly UI controls, and Voice activation. What technology did we use for it? Plasma (of course!) and Mycroft.

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Games: Debian-Based SteamOS, Lutris 0.5.5 and Critters for Sale

  • SteamOS Isn’t Dead, Just Sidelined; Valve Has Plans To Go Back To Their Linux-Based OS

    It’s big news for any PC gamer that has been frustrated with Microsoft’s erroneous-laden grip on operating systems for as far back as 1995; with it comes a monumental blow to privacy, not to mention mere control of your PC; updates have a tendency to start when they want to, new OS licenses must be purchased if you change hardware configurations, and applications that Microsoft doesn’t want you using are notoriously finicky to get working. Of course, users can simply switch over to Linux if they have had their fill of Microsoft. That switch comes with a slew of changes, however, and dropping reliable applications is a part of the grieving process that must take place when attempting to switch over your OS. Linux does host a plethora of open-source tools that can take the place of past applications; GIMP in lieu of Photoshop, for example. Yet the old applications are never truly replaced 1 for 1; it’s more of a bandage than anything else. Even with WINE and other techniques developed over the years to help users with Linux use Windows software, there are plenty of pitfalls and inconveniences that stymie any attempts to maintain Linux over Windows.

  • Lutris 0.5.5 Linux Game Manager Adds Humble Bundle Support, Initial VKD3D Support

    Lutris 0.5.5 is out today as the newest version of this Linux game manager to assist in installing both native and emulated games on Linux. Lutris continues to expand the scope of its "runners" for improving the Linux gaming experience. While the version 0.5.5 number may not seem like a big deal, there is actually a lot to find with the Lutris 0.5.5 update. Among the changes with Lutris 0.5.5 are: - Initial support for Humble Bundle integration.

  • Try out 'Critters for Sale', an exhilarating short horror visual novel with two episodes out now

    The absolutely exhilarating short horror visual novel Critters for Sale, which was originally released the first day of 2019, had its second chapter ("Goat") available for some time (Jun 2019, actually). Considering how such a hidden gem it is I was going to write about it, but Liam ended up doing it first in this GOL article. [...] It still maintains the same fever-dream like visuals, game mechanics and layout, consisting on a left HUD with some key information, a central upper section where all the images and animations are displayed, along with some point and click elements, and finally a center lower section where you see the dialogues and options to advance the story in the available directions. However, regarding the premise, now it features other characters and a different setting, but since this is one of those games where the less you know the better, I will only say that although we're only grasping the surface of the whole mystery, and while the tone of the story still keeps a personal scope, at this point it's clear that those responsible for the plot's main threat not only have enough power to influence the entire world, but also directly encompass the whole history of mankind...

Linux Kernel: Linux 5.7, Linux Security and Intel Gen9 Graphics On Linux

  • AMD Sensor Fusion Hub Laptop Driver Unlikely To Land For Linux 5.7

    While we were hoping to see the AMD Sensor Fusion Hub driver introduced in Linux 5.7 for improving the AMD Ryzen Linux laptop experience, that now looks quite unlikely. This driver has been sought after by AMD Linux laptop customers since 2018 for supporting the accelerometer, gyroscopic sensors, and other functionality on modern AMD laptops, similar to the Intel Sensor Hub. Patches for the AMD Sensor Fusion Hub (AMD-SFH) driver for Linux were posted in January and underwent a few rounds of review.

  • Amazon Engineer's Patch For Flushing L1 Cache On Context Switching Revved

    Earlier this month there was the proposal by a Linux kernel engineer for Amazon to flush the L1 data cache on context switches as another safeguard against the ever increasing CPU vulnerabilities. The motivation for flushing the L1d cache on context switches is driven as a result of Intel's data sampling vulnerabilities and this safeguard would be an opt-in feature for those paranoid about system security. Flushing the L1 cache would ensure the data is not being snooped or leaked following a context switch but with all of the cache flushing could significantly hamper the system performance.

  • HDR Display Support Coming To Some Intel Gen9 Graphics On Linux

    For the very common Intel "Gen9" graphics found on pretty much all current pre-Icelake hardware that is available through retail channels, high dynamic range (HDR) display support could soon be enabled under Linux for a subset of devices.

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