100 Paperkuts

James Tyrer jrtyrer at earthlink.net
Mon Feb 22 00:58:57 GMT 2010

Celeste Lyn Paul wrote:
> Many of you may have heard about Canonical’s new 100 papercuts
> project [1,2,3]. The goal is to fix 100 minor usability bugs for the
> Karmic release. Although the primary focus is Ubuntu, Kubuntu can
> benefit from this program as well.
> A papercut is easy to fix, will improve the user experience for a lot
> of users, and is present in Kubuntu Jaunty 9.10. For example, a
> papercut could be improving a bad label or icon, fixing a HIG
> violation, 

I don't think that it was called HIG in KDE-3, but I have to tell you 
that I tried to do that and people were not very happy about it.  I was 
specifically told not to fix the menu issues in KView. :-(

Is there a process that should be followed for KDE paper usability issue 
patches?  I am still willing to work on this if there is some assurance 
that my work won't simply be a waste of time like it has been in the past.

> or rearranging a configuration dialog to make more sense,
> A papercut is not a new feature request or change requiring more than
> a few likes of code.
> Papercuts are like fleas on a dog. A single flea is no big deal, but
> many fleas are quite annoying. The more papercuts we fix, the greater
> the effect on the overall Kubuntu experience.
Excellent idea!  To blow my own horn, this is something I have advocated 
for KDE for some time.  For KDE it would probably be more like 1000 
paper cuts.  The new version 4.4 is much improved but there are still a 
lot of little thing that need improvement.

I understand that these ruff edges and small usability issues are 
important, but I get the impression that many of the code writers don't.

When KDE-4.3 was released, I had a list of problems from KDE and I was 
to work on them to first be sure that I had the issue correctly defined 
and then file a bug report and possibly submit a patch to fix it.  But, 
I received very negative comments from the list moderator, so I didn't 
do any further work on it.

This is a sad situation where the group think is that there aren't any 
problems and that there is no help wanted.  It is nice to see that 
Canonical has the right culture to fix problems.

There is much to be learned from Toyota.  Despite the Japanese 
manufacturing culture of constant improvement, they were in denial about 
the existence of problems in their product and their reputation has 
suffered as a result.  IMHO, KDE's reputation has also suffered as the 
result of premature release and/or incorrect numbering of KDE 4.  Fixing 
all the little issues is what is needed to regain our reputation.

James Tyrer

Linux (mostly) From Scratch
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