Pythonaro blog

30 November 2009

If you can't fix it, rebrand it

The reputation of the KDE ecosystem was tarnished by a crappy release process for KDE4. Essential desktop components simply weren't ready for release in 4.0 and 4.1 (some of them still are mostly vaporware) after a huge barrage of hype had massively raised expectations, and this generated a lot of (well deserved) bad publicity. The answer?

Go and rebrand it, so that the development process can be broken up more easily and people will be persuaded to blame the right developers for each component. And while we are at it, let's throw out KDE's well-earned reputation for deep integration, the idea of the DE as a complete platform for users and developers. Let's give users the idea that KDE is just a "compilation" of bits and bobs thrown together for no particular reason, on the way overlapping as much as possible with the concept of "distribution", making it fun for companies to explain the difference and for developers to understand what they can and cannot rely on for their apps. Now KDE is supposed to be just a "community", a "club" of like-minded (C++) people hanging out in Gran Canaria and the like.

Yeah, that will be fun.

Honestly, I've been a big KDE fan for ages, but the development process for KDE4 was clearly wrong on so many levels. Developers' reactions to user feedback in the last two years have been astonishingly patronizing, and this is just another instance of it. Just admit that errors were made and get to work, please, instead of wasting time jet-setting from one "conference" to another (preferably in remote islands with good nightclubs), talking about marketing b*llocks.

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posted by GiacomoL @ 8:17 AM   0 comments links to this post