Tag Archives: planet

Plasma Active, the stage is yours

Thanks a lot to Intel for passing around the ExoPC at the AppUp workshop yesterday. Its kind of nice hardware to start developing for Intel based tablets, whereas for normal use, the battery life and weight is kind of problematic. I really like the idea to be able to write nice and shiny Qt applications which run both on MeeGo and Windows and the AppUp store is really open in respect to allowing distribute open source software.

But…

After playing a bit with it last night (it runs some preloaded MeeGo image with the table UX from Intel), for me it is clear, Plasma Active is here the way to go.

The pre-installed tablet UX is really, lets say, interesting. Already the startup is kind of weired: your X comes up, you see the ugly X11 default cursor and then, after some flashing around small windows, the UX is there. Some triangle at the right let you go to the main screen. But no, you not drag at it, you need to click. If you then start using the UX, you get kind of scared away by either rendering artefacts, lags or really interesting design concepts (to go back to main screen from an application, you need to touch the left/right upper corner, without any visual hints, kind of confusing, I am dumb, I just rebooted several times to come back to the main screen). In addition, at least this MeeGo version doesn’t seem to be able to handle multi-touch, which really kills off any fun on using, you can’t even zoom your pictures (or just the applications don’t support it, in any case compared to this, Nokia’s N9 has really a powerful UI).

The good thing is: You need not to use the default MeeGo installation. The hardware is really open in the sense that driver support is no issue (the nice thing with mostly standard Intel hardware). So, go fetch your most recent and flashy Plasma Active image and have fun.

Plasma Active has really a big chance here! Given the current state of the “default” MeeGo table UX, Plasma Active is BIG step into the right direction. I hope the Plasma and KWin developers keep on improving this.

A shiny Wayland based KWin + Plasma combo might really be a game changer here (presentation about KWin + Wayland).

I hope more people and perhaps companies (like basysKom, which did a real nice job with the above shown Contour shell for Plasma Active, short article here) step up and start pushing this effort even more.

Therefore: Thanks again to Intel, I guess they will see more MeeGo apps around soon and lets hope that Plasma Active will get a nice boost, too. Intel will benefit from a better UX in any case!

Maintainer Needed: Kate – External Tools Plugin

The “External Tools” plugin is one of the oldest plugins of Kate. A big hug to Anders Lund for writing it years ago, a lot of people enjoyed using it.

It allows the user to specify own commands (aka snippets of shell programs) to be executed with the text of the current document or the current file.

Basic stuff you can do with it:

  • Create you a little command that shows an Git/SVN/… diff of current file
  • Sort the file with command line sort program (or more advanced scripts)
  • Pipe the text of the document into your most loved perl script

Unfortunately there is no maintainer for it at the moment. Therefore it will be disabled for KDE 4.8, as a lot of bugs sneaked into it during the late 3.x and whole 4.x life-cycle. (Mostly because of bad porting done by me and others and no time to fixup any real bugs)

If you want to step up for maintainer ship, please contact me (cullmann@kde.org) or kwrite-devel@kde.org.

Thanks a lot in advance ;P

Btw., some of the bugs (now no longer valid but interesting for future maintainers):

  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=117946
  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=181528
  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=261210
  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=97569
  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=110485
  • https://bugs.kde.org/show_bug.cgi?id=153963

Code Folding Updates

As you may know the Kate code folding implementation gets some love these days. The last days, several bug fixes dropped in by our GSoC student. And the good news is that if all works well, we’ll be able to backport these fixes so that the code folding is much more robust in our beloved Kate even in KDE 4.7.x. These changes probably fix several crashes that were around since 2005 as well. I believe the word we’re looking for is: owned! :-)

Kate Vi Input Mode – GSoC 2011

I want to introduce you my GSoC-2011 project. I was working on improvement the vi input mode for the Kate part.

There are a lot of improvements for normal mode. Now it’s able to use jump list by pressing ctrl-i/ctrl-o in normal mode like in vim. And now not only registers but also marks, and jumps stored in the config of the session. H, M and L commands moves cursor to the first(Home), Middle and Last line of the screen. To go to the any percent of the document you can use the % command by typing the number of percent(1-100) before it. gk and gj motions will make you able to go visual(display) lines up and down. It’s useful when you using line wrap.

You can split the screen vertically and horizontally by ctrl-s and ctrl-v shortcuts and move around them in different directions using ctrl-w{h,j,k,l,w} or also ctrl-w{←,↑,↓,→}.

In insert mode added commands ctrl-r+[register] to insert the contents of a register and ctrl-o to switch to the normal mode only for a one command and automatically get back to insert. The ctrl-a, ctrl-x command now increase and decrease the negative numbers too.

There are also some new command-line features. Now you can use the marks for a command ranges. It’s possible to add and subtract line numbers in the ranges many times. For example command :.+3d will delete the third line after current position and the command :’a,’b-1y will yank the line-wise range between the line of mark ‘a’ and the one line before the line of ‘b‘ mark.

Also there a some new basic vim commands:

  • :d or :delete – delete range;
  • :c or :change – change range;
  • :j – join all the lines in range;
  • :> – indent range;
  • :< – unindent range;
  • :y or :yank – yank range;
  • :ma or :mark or :k – set mark;
  • :bn – switch to next buffer(document);
  • :bp – switch to previous buffer(document);
  • :bf – to first buffer;
  • :bl – to last buffer;
  • :b [N] or :buffer [N] – to Nth buffer

Text objects are also improved and fixed. There are new objects: ( a{ , i{ , a< , i< , a` , i` ). And now they normally works with nested objects. So for now the i( object (for position of multiply symbol *) will be “(1*2/(2+3)–4)” instead of “(1*2/(2+3)–4)”. Some of the objects like (),{},[],<> works with several lines.

Visual mode now is integrated with mouse, so the mouse dragging starts the visual mode. All kind of Kate-way selection is also starts the visual mode. For example if you use “Select all” menu line or shortcut ctrl-a(by default) this will starts visual mode with the selected text and waits you for a command to execute :) . One point mouse click will exit the visual mode. Kate selection and vi mode selection is actually the same thing now. So you can, say, to select a bloc by using the Visual Block mode (ctrl-v), to do a context menu on them and to copy them to a clipboard :). When you exit visual mode the ‘< and ‘> marks have a start and end position of selection. It useful when you want to execute some command line command on the selected text. Just press the “:” when you select something and it automatically fill the command line with “‘<,’>” to have a quick access to selected area.

Vi marks and Kate bookmarks are integrated too. If you set the mark then this line becomes bookmarked by Kate. And vice versa: if you set a Kate’s bookmark and there no vi marks on this like vi mode sets the vim mark on this line and zero column, and shows you what letter for this mark is used.You can see the position of all vi marks in the bookmark menu in the menu bar or also in the context menu.

I hope this features will make you feel even more comfortable while using Kate. You can try it now in the git version of Kate.
Any notice or bug report are welcome !