Some of the folks behind the KDE Linux desktop environment are putting their heads together and trying to come up with a new interface designed especially for netbooks. The goal is to have something ready to go by the time KDE 4.4 is released (The latest version of KDE is KDE 4.2.2). According to developer Aaron Seigo, here are some of the goals:
- The interface will be specific to netbooks, and not just designed for computers with small screen displays (This could mean integration with web services, or something else altogether. It depends on what Seigo and his colleagues consider to be the purpose of netbooks).
- Support for the KDE Plasma interface
- There should be a full screen interface, presumably both for any sort of program launcher and for the applications themselves
In the comments of his own blog post, Seigo mentions that he sees netbooks as devices that are designed to run “specific types of tasks, usually one at a time.” Honestly, it sounds to me like Seigo is confusing netbooks with cellphones. As much as I’d like to see more people working on unique interfaces for netbooks, part of what makes them special is the fact that they are computers that can handle multi-tasking responsibilities better than any cellphone on the market.
If you want to listen to music while instant messaging your friends with Pidgin, checking your email with Thunderbird, and surfing the web with Firefox, you can do that on a netbook. There may not be enough screen real estate to comfortably accommodate all of those windows at once, but it should be easy to flip back and forth between running programs. That doesn’t have to mean using a Windows style taskbar or an OS X style dock. But I’m hoping that when Saigo talks about “one at a time” tasks, he’s not ruling out the possibility of easily running tasks in the background and flipping back and forth.
via Netbook News.de