2012-05-06

Featured Comments: Week of 2012 April 29

There was one post that got a few comments this past week, so I will repost most of those.

Review: Kubuntu 12.04 LTS "Precise Pangolin"

Reader DarkDuck said, "Mine findings on Kubuntu 12.04 are rather different. I am preparing my review of it. :-)"
An anonymous commenter said nothing more than "700 megabytes?! Wow."
Reader Brian Masinick had this experience to share: "I originally started with Kubuntu 12.04 Daily Build from a 02/25/12 build. A couple of times, I ran into intermittent issues where dialog boxes would appear, indicating that some back end feature in the Plasma desktop (usually indexed searching) was not working properly. Very early in my testing cycle, the Rekonq Web browser also malfunctioned, but by release it was working great and most of the dialog warning and error boxes disappeared. I ran into another problem when my final upgrade, bringing me to the 04/24/12 release was ready. Unplanned, and without any warning at all, the default desktop changed from the way I had it set up, which was with the Classic Style Menu and the classic, traditional "K" menu, rather than the classic slab menu. But when I started, I was greeting with a netbook-oriented Activity Style View! It actually worked without any issues, but it took me a couple of days to locate the System Preferences Menu in the Activity View. Once I was able to locate it, I was able to change back to the Classic Style View, and moreover, I was able to use a combination of traditional KDE work spaces and mix in the Activity Views as well. I view the combination of traditional work spaces and activities as a great advantage. I suspect that the reason that the final installation update configuration defaulted me to the Activity View was because I am using a laptop computer, albeit a large 17" display laptop, which I always use as if it were a desktop, not a laptop at all. After all, this beast, while a mobile computer, is hardly a laptop - I call it a mobile portable; it's heavy. I can, yes, I really can, put it in my lap, but it's sure a lot easier to use when it's on a movable stand, card table, or other fixture, rather than on my lap! For me, then, the Kubuntu 12.04 installation and configuration, upgrading from the daily builds to the final release, had some real surprises in it. My personal opinion is that for upgrades, whatever configurations were previously used ought to remain the default. If it REALLY wants to alter the appearance and function that much, it should at least allow you the choice to make that change or retain the previous behavior. Being able to change it back, but having to research in order to even locate the setting, at least to me, is a significant regression in friendly user behavior. Since KDE gives you the choice, at least make that choice obvious. The intermittent dialog box errors still seem to occasionally appear, so there are still some Plasma infrastructure issues looming beneath the surface. Perhaps they are artifacts from the transition from daily builds to release. If that's the case, then the transition configurations are defective and should be fixed. I'd give the overall experience a "B" grade. Once it's actually running, it runs quite well; it can be quite disconcerting to unexpectedly encounter the behaviors that I've mentioned, and that's the reason for a "B" instead of an "A" grade."

Thanks to all those who commented on this past week's posts. This coming week, I don't have anything planned, and I may not be able to write anything anyway because I will be quite busy with exams and other work. Anyway, if you like what I write, please continue subscribing and commenting!

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