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Gpg4KDE & GPG4win Approved for Transmission & Processing of National Classified Information

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KDE
Security

Something that may have slipped you by: Back in November, the German Federal Office for Information Security approved Gpg4KDE and Gpg4win for the transmission and processing of national classified information.

Gpg4KDE is the encryption system that you use each time you encrypt and sign messages in KMail. Gpg4win, used for encrypting and signing emails on Windows, is built upon KDE's certificate manager Kleopatra. The German Government has now ranked both secure enough to be used when transmitting messages with VS-ONLY FOR SERVICE USE (VS-NfD), EU RESTRICTED and NATO RESTRICTED levels of confidentiality.

In view of the recent Rubicon/Crypto AG/CIA scandal, this is further evidence that FLOSS encryption technology is the only reliable encryption technology.

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Education With KDE

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KDE
  • GCompris an educational suite for the youngest in the family

    GCompris is an educational suite that offers more than 100 activities for children from 2 to 10 years old. Some activities are game-oriented, but still educational. Here is a list of activity categories with some examples:

    Discovering the computer: keyboard, mouse, touch screen…
    Reading: letters, words, reading practice, typing text…

  • Season of KDE

    Since my last blog, I got really busy with my college and got less time to work on the website. I took some screenshots whenever I got the time and planned the work to be done.

    After 40 about days of coding, taking screenshots, writing documentation, the caligra website is ready, Well almost ready. The only thing that remains is the component selector in the navbar. The task of adding the selector is not that difficult, the difficult part was to add it to the KDE Jekyll theme so that it could be used by all websites old and new.

    I have managed to complete the task and submitted a merge request on the jekyll theme repository. My mentor will check it and hopefully it gets merged soon.

Plasma 5.18 LTS review - The good, the bad ... and yeah

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KDE
Reviews

Here we go. The KDE team has released the latest version of Plasma, numbered 5.18. This also happens to be a Long Term Support (LTS) release, which in Plasma parlance means two years of support. Since I'm an avid user, and even have Plasma deployed in my production setup via Kubuntu 18.04 running on a Slimbook Pro2, it's time to set scopes on the future, and see what gives.

I did my testing on Lenovo G50, which happens to be my hardware scapegoat de jour. Also, I have KDE neon installed there, Developer Edition (Stable), so I get to see all the little changes and fixes and whatnot almost as soon as they are introduced. This means I had a chance to sample Plasma 5.18 since the earliest build, and now that we have the official release, I must share me experience. Avanti.

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KDE: Cutelyst 2.10.0 and SimpleMail 2, Okular Examined, FOSDEM & Plasma Mobile Sprint

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KDE
  • Cutelyst 2.10.0 and SimpleMail v2 released!

    Cutelyst the C++/Qt Web framework and SimpleMailQt just got new releases.

    Cutelyst received many important bugfixes and if you are compiling it with View::Email it also requires SimpleMail 2, the latter got an Async API which is on production for a few months, allowing for a non-blocking send mail experience.

  • Okular is an open source universal document viewer for Windows, Linux and macOS

    Wouldn't it be nice if you had one program to view them all? That's exactly what Okular does. It's an open source universal document viewer for Windows, Linux and macOS. The program is made by KDE, a name Linux users should be familiar with, among other creations they are the ones behind the popular Kubuntu (Ubuntu + KDE Software) distro.

    Let's begin touring the interface. The sidepanel on the left can be used to jump to the Contents, Thumbnails, Reviews and Bookmarks sections. Select one of the options and the list of corresponding items are displayed in the panel to the right of the sidebar.

    The Contents option lists each section/chapter in a document, along with the sub-items, page numbers, etc. The Thumbnail mode pane displays a preview of each page in the document, you can scroll through it and click to go to the selected page. The Reviews pane contain the annotations that have been made on the document. If you don't have any, you can add some by hitting the F6 key or from the Tools menu > Review. Bookmarks are custom links that you have added, i.e., if you bookmark a page it will be displayed in the side-panel for future reference. Hit Ctrl + B to bookmark a page.

  • FOSDEM & Plasma Mobile Sprint

    Last week I decided to take KDE Itinerary for a test tour. Between the train rides there was also time for some KDE stuff.

    FOSDEM

    After writing an exam on Friday afternoon I took a train to Frankfurt. I did so not to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the area around Frankfurt central station at night but to be able to catch an early train towards Bruxelles for my first time at FOSDEM.

    It has been a great experience to meet so many people interested in what KDE does at the KDE booth. It also was awesome to meet all the folks that are working hard on making Linux on the phone become a thing.

KDE: This Week in KDE, KDE Plasma 5.18 and Videos From KDE Talks at FOSDEM

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KDE
  • This week in KDE: Plasma bug-fixing and Samba bug-squashing

    Plasma 5.18 has been released! A ton of work went into this release and we’re very proud of it. However I’d like to apologize for it being a bit buggier than we’d have preferred. We’ve gone balls-to-the-wall off the chain bananas fixing the issues you folks are reporting! Almost all of the highest-profile issues are fixed already, to be released with Plasma 5.18.1 in a few days! And we’ve got the less major regressions in our sights too! But still, we know that stability hasn’t always been our strong suit and we’re aiming for a higher standard next time, discussing how we can get there. So thank you for your patience and understanding, and enjoy Plasma 5.18!

  • KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS Offers Better Integration With GTK/GNOME Applications

    The KDE community has come out with the new release of the open-source KDE Plasma Desktop environment, which is also the LTS (Long Term Support) version designed to run on GNU/Linux distributions.

    Offering a host of new features, Plasma 5.18 succeeds the aging Plasma 5.12 LTS.

    With the latest version, users can look forward to much better integration with GTK/GNOME applications. It also includes a varied change-log with tweaks affecting almost every part of the desktop experience.

    The developers behind Plasma 5.18 said that this new version of their favorite desktop environment is “easier and more fun” and also allows you to do more tasks faster.

  • Videos From KDE Talks at FOSDEM

    How QML, a language prominently used for designing UI, could be used to create title video clips containing text and/or images. The videos can then be rendered and composited over other videos in the video-editing process. Kdenlive's Google Summer of Code 2019 project tried to achieve this and is still under active development.

    QML is used primarily for UI development in Qt Applications. It provides an easy way of designing and creating interactive, clean and a modern UI. Kdenlive is a popular non-linear open-source video editor and it currently makes use of XML to describe title clips -- clips which contain text or images used to composite over videos. XML requires more processing in the backend as one needs to explicitly write code for, say an animation of the text. Using QML eases this restriction, making the backend more robust and maintainable as rendering in QML makes use of a dedicated Qt Scene Graph. Kdenlive's Google Summer of Code 2019 student Akhil Gangadharan Kurungadathil tried to achieve this by creating a new rendering backend library and a new MLT QML producer which is still under active development. Owing to the dedicated scene graph while rendering, this could also possibly lead to greater overall performance.

Qt 5.15 Alpha Released

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KDE

I am happy to inform you we have released Qt 5.15 Alpha today.

Qt 5.15 new features page is listing new features etc coming with Qt 5.15 release. But please remember it is still under construction and some items are still missing. The Feature list should be complete by beta release coming within a few weeks.

Please start testing Qt 5.15 Alpha immediately & report your findings to jira. Your feedback is essential in our journey towards Qt 5.15.0 release.

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Also: Qt 5.15 Alpha Released With Various Improvements To Qt 3D, QML, Core, New Qt PDF Module

KStars v3.4.0 is Released

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KDE

Celebrate Valentines' Day with some KStars Love! Happy to announce the release of KStars 3.4.0 on February 14th, 2020 on Linux, MacOS, and Windows.

What's new with this release?

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KDE and GNOME: KUnity, Presentations, GitLab and Flatpaks

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KDE
GNOME
  • A year as a KDE developer | The KUnity Setup

    It has been more than a year that I had push rights for all the KDE repositories. So this is an obligatory anniversary post.

    I got introduced to Linux while searching for development environments that came with all sorts of compilers & interpreters by default and I don't have to manually install those stuff. It was 2012 as far as I remember, Ubuntu 12.04 just came out and it was the first solution suggested by the search engines. Though the unavailability of a proper internet connection meant, that I had to wait a couple more years when one of my friends downloaded a copy of Ubuntu 14.04 for me.

  • FOSDEM and Plasma Mobile Sprint 2020

    This was the 20th anniversary for FOSDEM, I first attended 15 years ago, but this year was the first time I actually managed to present a talk there. The subject was, unsurprisingly, KDE Itinerary. You can find the slides and the video recording on the corresponding FOSDEM talk page.

    KDE had a very busy presence at FOSDEM, Plasma Mobile draw a lot of attention, as did efforts for truly free and user-controlled mobile platforms in general. I’m particularly happy seeing the cross-community collaborations going on in that space.

    FOSDEM is a great place to connect and coordinate with other communities, and by now that’s probably one of the main reasons for me to attend. The collaboration with Nextcloud on integrating itinerary extraction into Nextcloud Hub started there last year for example.

    FOSDEM two years ago saw the first successful flight using a KDE Itinerary rendered boarding pass, this year we had the first ever Thalys ride with a ticket presented in KDE Itinerary. We also made a bit of progress with decoding Thalys binary barcodes, more samples would help a lot here though.

  • Presentations Archive

    Some time ago I ran across remark-cmake, a CMake framework for building remark.js-based presentations. Since I’m a sucker for CMake I started using it, even if my presentations are rarely big-and-complicated enough to warrant a build-system.

    Since then I’ve submitted a few pull-requests to remark-cmake, but also given eight (8) presentations using that framework at four (4) different conferences in four countries on two continents. Current scheduling suggests that one more continent and at least four more talks will be added before summer.

  • Clean and linear history with GitLab

    Many GNOME projects still use clean and linear commit history without merge commits even after porting to GitLab. That means that each commit represents one comprehensive feature or bug fix and there are not any side branches. I am not about to discuss the pros and cons of this approach here, you can find many and many posts on this topic on the internet. I would like to explain some common issues for newcomers when using GitLab forks.

    To make some contribution, one has to create a fork of some repository, push desired changes in a new branch and create a merge request to the original project. Please be sure that the “Allows commits from members who can merge to the target branch” checkbox is checked when creating the merge request (or later using the “Edit” button on the top of the page). This is needed to simplify the consequent workflow for the contributor (and maintainers as well). One of the reasons, why this is needed is the fact, that the changes need to be often rebased before they can be merged (to ensure the linear history). Maintainers can’t do this when this feature is not enabled and have to ask contributors to do so. Another reason is that the maintainers can do some changes when the contributor needs help or doesn’t have time to do the changes itself.

  • Robocode and others

    As expressed in a previous post, I prefer to spend my free time with my kids than with technology (for technology I already have my job). However, when there is an exception to that, I do like to do some sort of smaller projects, like “porting” stuff to Flatpak.

    I did my share of Debian and RPM packaging in the past, and honestly I have never enjoyed it (for a number of reasons not really interesting for this post). But “flatpaking” stuff is completely different to me. Maybe it’s my early involvement with it, or maybe it’s my admiration for how its designed, but the feeling when making a Flatpak is of reward, rather than a chore.

KDE neon 5.18

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KDE

KDE’s flagship project Plasma has released 5.18 LTS. That means we’ve crunched the code and ran the QA and slid out the packages and installable images.

Upgrade your KDE neon to get Plasma 5.18. Download the ISOs to install the live images. And to give it a try run the Docker images with neondocker.

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Plasma 5.18 is out: easier system settings, interactive notifications, emojis, wallpapers and more

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KDE

A brand new version of the Plasma desktop is now available.

In Plasma 5.18 you will find neat new features that make notifications clearer, settings more streamlined and the overall look more attractive. Plasma 5.18 is easier and more fun to use, while at the same time allowing you to be more productive when it is time to work.

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Also: KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS Released After A Lot Of Polishing, New Features

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