Ayatana notifications for Plasma

Martin Gräßlin kde at martin-graesslin.com
Wed Sep 23 18:04:54 CEST 2009

Am Mittwoch 23 September 2009 16:48:00 schrieb Aurélien Gâteau:
> Hi,
> I would like to present to you some work I have been doing for Canonical
> regarding notifications in Plasma.
That just saved you from a rant about it on planetkde from my side ;-) I 
wanted to blog about some things I don't like. Most important I don't like 
that Canonical is reinventing the wheel. KDE has a great notification system 
which could be improved but developing a second system is IMHO completely 
wrong and doesn't look like a good Upstream/Downstream relationship.
> An important point: While the patch is integrated in Kubuntu, the
> default behavior is to use KDE notifications. The user can switch to
> Ayatana notifications through an option of the system tray configuration
> dialog (there are even preview buttons to help the user decide).
> http://people.canonical.com/~agateau/plasma-ayatana-notifications/configura
> tion.png
Sorry have you ever considered how that looks to the user? Which user does 
know about Ayatana? That is a technical term which should not be presented in 
a UI. Why should a user switch to something else than the KDE notifications? 
The dialog is completely missing any information on what the notifications 
provide, what's the difference between the two and in the end it will come down 
to the one provides different possible positions while the other doesn't (btw 
the last time I tested Karmic the edges monitor didn't get disabled when 
switching to KDE notifications). If you wanted to give an easy way to test this 
system while not destroying user experience you should have made this a hidden 
config file option.

Some personal notes: adding strings to the user interface is realy bad if the 
distribution is Kubuntu. From my experience of four years using Kubuntu there 
has never been any release where the custom additions made by Kubuntu were 
translated and given the history and the fact that there is no community left 
which will translate the strings I doubt they will be translated. There is 
IMHO nothing worse to the user experience than broken translations. That's of 
course in no way your fault, I just wanted to make you aware of the problem 

And I am realy afraid that there will be the time when Kubuntu switches from 
KDE notifications to those Ayatana notifications. I realy hope that will never 
happen. There might be good things about it and it would be great to bring 
them into the normal KDE notifications but all together I don't want the 
system. I have spoken to many Ubuntu users and nobody has said a good word 
about notifiy-osd, the most common saying was "broken by design". Just so when 
Kubuntu switches to Ayatana, I will switch to a different distribution. I don't 
want a distribution which doesn't use the upstream implementation in a very 
centric part of the desktop environment.
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