[kde-edu]: KDE Edu & KDE4

Noel Bush noel at x-31.com
Thu Aug 11 05:13:11 CEST 2005

Speaking as an outsider to the whole ethos, culture, worldview, 
paradigm, what-have-you of the world of KDE -- that is, from the point 
of view of a person who just looks for applications that I want to use 
-- I have always found it immensely weird that all these applications 
get globbed together in these huge bundles.  At times that I've had to 
deal with low bandwidth, it's basically kept me from staying up to date. 
  At times when I've wanted one particular app, and have been forced to 
download 15 others at the same time, it's been pretty annoying.

And thinking from the point of view of an application developer, I can't 
imagine why it would be pleasing to have the release schedule of my 
completely independent app dependent on some "master schedule".  I asked 
about this on this list once, and the reply suggested that it was really 
great to have someone else do this for you, and just a fact of life to 
have to wait for your app to be translated into 50 other languages....

I guess I just tend to think that each application is an individual 
entity, with its own rhythms of growth and so forth.  The tools out 
there (apt, yum) for keeping up to date are absolutely fine for dealing 
with a world of thousands of apps.  Wrapping them up in these 
super-packages just seems silly.

But maybe I just don't "get it" in the KDE way of seeing things.  I have 
to admit, I really don't like all those "K"s everywhere to begin with. 
Repeated "K"s have bad connotations for most Americans....

Anyway, just wanted to say that there are some excellent applications 
that pretty much get lost in the shuffle with this whole KDE packaging 
scheme.  My vote, for what it's worth, would be for scrapping the whole 
approach and letting each app shine (or not) on its own.

George Wright wrote:
> Given that discussions are now raging for KDE4 and how KDE should change for 
> it, I would like to propose some changes for the KDE Edu module.
> In my opinion, the module is far too big and confusing. The compressed tarball 
> for the module weighs in at a hefty 28MB; bigger than any of the other KDE 
> application modules, which is a bit ridiculous.
> I did a quick check on the amount of space each application in the module is 
> taking (from the recently released 3.5 alpha tarball), giving the following:
> 848K    ./klatin
> 1.7M    ./khangman
> 752K    ./kpercentage
> 660K    ./libkdeedu
> 740K    ./kturtle
> 912K    ./keduca
> 3.1M    ./klettres
> 2.6M    ./ktouch
> 1.4M    ./kwordquiz
> 3.4M    ./kgeography
> 2.4M    ./kvoctrain
> 12M     ./doc
> 1.3M    ./kmplot
> 23M     ./kstars
> 3.9M    ./kig
> 6.7M    ./kiten
> 1008K   ./kmessedwords
> 936K    ./kverbos
> 3.8M    ./kalzium
> 564K    ./kbruch
> 73M     total
> From this it is clear that KStars is the largest of all the applications. This 
> is because of its huge data files which total 16MB uncompressed. This, when 
> compressed using bzip2, takes up 5.6MB, which is about 20% of the 
> distribution tarball. This, in my opinion, is far too big to be shipped 
> within the module. Would it be better to provide the absolute minimal data 
> needed for very basic usage, then making the bulk of the data an optional 
> download at the user's request?
> Then we come to the other applications. Many of them are inundated with large 
> graphics which take up lots of space. Are these really necessary within these 
> applications? Of course, converting the graphics to SVG will really help in 
> this scenario, but I fail to see the necessity of many of these graphics, 
> apart from to provide annoying and obstructing "eye-candy" for the user.
> I feel that KDE Edu is trying to tackle too broad an audience, with its target 
> area being from pre-education (klettres, khangman) right the way through to 
> higher education (kalzium, kmplot). In addition, some of the applications fit 
> better into the gaming category than the educational one (such as khangman). 
> I feel it is necessary to reorganise the module and perhaps split it up into 
> kdekids/kdeedu which would reflect more accurately their contents.
> We also have many applications which are far too specific; kbruch, kmplot and 
> kpercentage, for example, which should really be combined into a single 
> application - kmath or something. The same applies for some of the language 
> based programs.
> The last thing is that many of the applications duplicate each other's 
> functionality. Take, for example, the issue of kvoctrain and kwordquiz. Both 
> have very similar functionality, but both coexist in the same module. Surely 
> it would be better for these two applications to merge and their development 
> teams work together instead of duplicating each others efforts? 
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