[kde-community] finding a clear vision for KDE - first draft for discussion

Martin Graesslin mgraesslin at kde.org
Mon Feb 8 08:31:56 UTC 2016

On Friday, February 5, 2016 10:03:27 AM CET Lydia Pintscher wrote:
> On Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 8:20 AM, Martin Graesslin <mgraesslin at kde.org> wrote:
> > On Wednesday, February 3, 2016 10:10:27 AM CET Lydia Pintscher wrote:
> >> The first draft reads as follows:
> >> "KDE, through the creation of Free software, enables users to control
> >> their digital life. KDE software enables privacy, makes simple things
> >> easy and complex scenarios possible while crossing device boundaries."
> > 
> > In the world of IT we see again and again the introduction of disruptive
> > technologies which change the field of computing. In the past KDE as a
> > community mastered some of them great, some of them badly. When KDE
> > started
> > the world was in the middle of the disruption known as the Internet. KDE
> > handled it great. Today basically every person connecting to the Internet
> > is using a KDE technology for that.
> > 
> > The next disruption "mobile" wasn't handled well, though. We were years
> > too
> > late and still haven't really got there. From our hundreds of applications
> > only 3 are available on the most important distribution channel for mobile
> > application. We clearly missed this disruption.
> > 
> > Currently we are again in an disruptive stage. We have the cloud and
> > social
> > networks. Again we are moving slowly and are not adapting to the
> > disruptive
> > change. But we had good cards for cloud with e.g. ownCloud. Overall I
> > don't
> > see any strategy on how to move our applications into the cloud and how to
> > integrate the cloud better. We were great in the Internet age, but are not
> > catching up. Similar the social net is not integrated at all into our
> > products. Thus I would conclude that we are missing this disruption just
> > like the last one.
> > 
> > Personally I think that we missed them because we didn't have a clear
> > vision on where to go and were too focused on the good old things.
> > 
> > Thus now my question: How will this vision provide us guidance for the
> > next
> > disruption? How will we be able to use this vision to be a leader in the
> > next disruption? Please explain why you think that the vision will help
> > in the next disruption. If you don't think that the vision is for that
> > please also explain why you think that. E.g. if you think we shouldn't
> > care about the next disruption, please explain the reasoning for it.
> That's an excellent question, Martin!
> I think we absolutely should care about the next disruption. Let's
> take a look at what Wikipedia has to say about disruptive innovation:
> "A disruptive innovation is an innovation that creates a new market
> and value network and eventually disrupts an existing market and value
> network, displacing established market leaders and alliances. The term
> was defined and phenomenon analyzed by Clayton M. Christensen
> beginning in 1995. More recent sources also include "signi´Čücant
> societal impact" as an aspect of disruptive innovation." I think this
> last part is crucial to answer your question.
> Innovation (disruptive in the true sense or not) after innovation we
> see over the last years makes our digital life easier, more things
> possible and social connections across cultural and social barriers
> more easy and immediate. At the same time we see two very disturbing
> trends: technology gets more closed - at least the ones adopted on a
> large scale by consumers and we more willingly accept being spied on
> for our own or other's perceived good. We seem to more readily accept
> that the book on your Kindle can't easily be shared with your friend -
> or that it might vanish the next day. We seem more ready to accept
> that we can't repair our own car anymore. This has a huge impact on
> society. So how do I see KDE fit into this? I believe in two ways.
> 1) We are there to provide a viable and even better alternative for
> every-day people. We need to show that we can have all the benefits
> technology brings us while not having to give up control and
> sovereignty. This starts on your personal devices you use every day to
> do work and enjoy life.
> 2) We need to be there to show people that they can tinker. We need to
> show them that they don't have to accept closed systems but that they
> can actually meaningfully alter their personal world and how they
> interact with the rest of the world. The shift towards more and more
> closed systems in consumer technology is only going to change if
> people demand it. We need to remind them that they can.

Thank you for the well elaborated answer!

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