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Linux and Main: KDE Opens the Doors to 3rd Party Developers

Aug 21, 2002, 18:00 (11 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Aaron J. Seigo)

"The exact combination of software that belongs by default in a desktop environment is very much a matter of personal opinion. Some feel that a basic desktop should be just that: basic, lacking frills and features. Others feel it should come bundled with all sorts of useful tools, utilities and applications.

"KDE has had an official position on this matter since the inception of the project, namely that KDE should provide all the basic tools needed to be immediately productive. Rather than shipping the typical plain-vanilla desktop consisting of a panel and a file manager, KDE includes email and news readers, calculators and floppy formatters, image viewers and media players, text editors and minigolf. As the word processor and spreadsheet has become an integral part of the modern desktop experience, KDE has even gained its own integrated office suite. Which applications should be excluded from such a 'full featured' desktop is a topic that has inspired many spirited discussions.

"In pursuit of 'completeness' the official KDE distribution has grown considerably in size over the years. The binaries are now dozens of megabytes in size and building everything from source requires a few hundred megabytes of spare disk. This isn't surprising given the number of programs and libraries that comprise KDE: some 2.6 million lines of code worth!

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