Saturday, April 23, 2005

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So, after a small diversion to watch a slightly amusing troll ply his trade in #kde, I got to work on reviewing the tips database for ktips. Unfortunately, it seems not to have received much love lately, and there are stacks of cool features of KDE that aren't advertised there. I also want to plug the docs a bit with relevant links in the tips. Seems logical too.

First step was to go through the existing tips, and check them for accuracy and usefulness. I was pleasantly surprised to find that, modulo some changes in GUI texts, even the tips dating back to 2.0 days are still relevant. I guess that shows that the KDE framework was useful when KDE was started, and still is now, or something. I'm sure one of the more astute bloggers on planet KDE could come up with an analogy involving trees to illustrate the point more elegantly :-).

Next step was to think of what's missing. Fortunately, I had Fabrice Mous and Lauri on my side, so I didn't really have to think of very many myself. 45 minutes later, and I've got about 30 more neat features to write little tips for.

And, wow - I use KDE every day, yet there are all these features that I never knew about, like:

  • Hold Ctrl and scroll the mouse wheel in Konq to change font size

  • Hold Shift and scroll the mouse wheel for fast scrolling in any app

  • Middle mouse button on desktop for a window list

Plus a few that I knew about previously, but which still rock:

  • Web shortcuts in Konq

  • Konq's image gallery handling - the photobook plugin, and the image gallery creator.

  • Ability to use 'servicemenus' to modify various context menus

So now I have a big list of features to write little tips for, and the need to find some time to do it in. Hrm. There are a few more issues to look at: Most of the tips relate to apps included in kdebase. I guess there's no reason they shouldn't also include apps from all official KDE modules, but I guess I should check with core-devel.

And now Lauri has me reading the Epic of Gilgamesh (or "Gigglemesh" for any 5-year-old readers)...


At 1:13 AM, Blogger ruurd said...

Hmmm. You might even include tips about where to find KDE stuff, that one can contribute to translations, that kind of stuff....

At 4:38 AM, Blogger Aaron J. Seigo said...

i don't know if this is still the case, but tips tended to be fairly random in order.

it would be nice if the first tip told the user something about the what application they just launched does. offering an advanced tip the first time is probably not the most useful thing.

and then it would be nice to order the rest of the tips in a roughly beginner->advanced progression. it may even be possible at that point to offer the ability to skip over the beginner tips if you've already got some basic competency with that particular application? *shrug*

At 5:29 PM, Blogger pipitas said...

Hoover mouse pointer on kicker clock and use scrollwheel to change timezone.

Use scrollwheel to change tab in Konqui.

[Shift]+[Arrow-Down] (or
[Shift]+[Arrow-Up] make Konqui autoscroll slowly and smoothly. Repeat to accelerate. [ESC] to stop.

Change focussed window with scrollwheel while mousepointer is in taskbar.

Change virtual desktop with scrollwheel while mousepointer is in mini-pager.

Middle-clicking on any "arrow"-icon (or the "Home"-icon) in Konqui's main toolbar opens location in new tab.

At 8:51 PM, Blogger Philip Rodrigues said...

ruurd, which KDE stuff were you thinking of? Where to find KDE files in the filesystem, where to find new themes, etc, ...?

Aaron: I *think* (though haven't looked at the code, so I'm not sure) that the tips are shown in the order they appear in the 'tips' file. So, ordering by the intended user level should be easy to do. I'll try to put the main KDE tips in a rough progression, although this may already have been done. As for skipping tips, I guess that's something best left for the coders :-)

pipitas: thanks for the tips; they look great! I'll add them to my list of tips to write :-)

At 3:40 AM, Blogger usa said...

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At 4:27 AM, Blogger ioio said...

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