PlasmaWhat is new in Plasma? Maybe the fact that you can use a lot of type of Plasmoids: you can use as a plasmoid:
- Google Gadgets
- MacOS' Widgets
- Enlightenment gadgets
- plasmoids written in a large set of programming languages (like Python, Ruby, I don't know what else)
|Some of the type of plasmoids installables|
- keyboard bindings: all the plasmoids now support keyboard bindings (setting a global key to open the plasmoid, like Alt+F1 for opening the KDE K Menu (the same combination of key that you use to open the GNOME Application Menu, if I'm not wrong)
Keyboard bindings settings
- different view size: it means that if you're using the plasmoid in a panel large/height just 30px, maybe the plasmoid will simply show you a button on a panel, and when you'll press the button (or the key assigned to the plasmoid) you will show all the plasmoid. It is very useful for example for showing the weather on the panel the way GNOME does (showing simply the icon of the weather, e.g. a cloud for me... Milan's weather is really shitty today :( ). The most nice thing is that when you try to spread the panel it will make the icons bigger, and when it will be large enough for showing the plasmoid entirely, it will simply show :) . If you use the plasmoid added on the desktop, it will show in all of its size
As you can see, the same plasmoid in the small panel is showed as an icon, and when you click on it it will show in its full size
- reinvented plasmoids: about all of the plasmoids received a lot of love from the KDE4 developing team, and even the systray did! As you can see in this screenshot (taken from the Aaron Seigo blog)
KDE 4.2 systray and taskbar
The comic plasmoid now support other comic sources, and you can add them using KDE-apps.org (or directly from the options of the plasmoid).
- panel improved coolness: it is true: now you can have panels that autohide! And you will even get a very cool thing: when a panel is hide and you move the mouse pointer near the place in which the panel is staying hidden, you will see a little blowing color coming from the panel, as if it is saying "hey, mr, I'm here! please, come here!" :) Other than that, there's a more simple way to move and change panels' height and width, so now they are really usable
- desktop activities: don't you like the normal plasma desktop? Do you want your icons back? Now you can do it chaning the desktop activity in the appearance options of the desktop, choosing for example to use the Folder View as the main desktop. Are you happy now, or you want your plasmoids-based desktop back? You can have and use both of them, changing from one to the other using the Activity plasmoid :)
- desktop backgrounds: are you sick of using always an image as desktop background? Now you can use a slideshow, a fractal image autogenerated, a pattern, or even the Earth showed by Marble!!! What a cool update!
KWin and OxygenOther things that changed are certainly the Oxygen theme, that was almost reinvented: finally a good-looking scrollbar! I'll soon add some screenshot, I assure you. Other than that, KWin finally has a lot of beautiful and useful effects, making it cooler than Compiz Fusion in some ways... Certainly because it support more hardware (allowing you to use XRender other than OpenGL, for example) and even because some effects are really better than what they are in Compiz! I would name the Present Window effect, for example... Other effects added are the so much asked effects used while changing workspace, showing you your desktop as a Cube, Sphere, Cylinder :)
Dolphin now has a slide below it allowing you to make icons bigger or smaller in no time, and even the Folder View plasmoid now has the capability to show the icon preview. Now I can't remember what else they added, I'm sorry :(
|Dolphin File Manager|
Akonadi and KDE-pim applicationsDon't you know what Akonadi is? It is the manager of pim sources (as a iCalendar, vCard for contacts, etc.), and now it works correctly with about all KDE-pim applications, that changed really a lot, expecially KMail. It isn't so easy to say in words how much cooler now KMail is... It supports changeable visualizations (and if you want more than one it supports tabs too :D ), but this isn't too easy to explain without screenshots...
I'm sorry guys, I can't use my KDE4 build now... I'll add some information asap. For now, bye!