just got out of another oxygen meeting, this time specifically about icons. ken will be blogging about it in more detail so i won't steal his thunder, but i do want to note that what's really nice about the oxygen process is that it's one that encompasses developers, artists and usability people.
so something i'm doing today is cataloging the icons used in kdelibs so that we can ensure coverage of them. in the process we'll be using work Riddell (yes, the kubuntu guy =) has done on mapping our icon names to the ones in the freedesktop.org spec.
the idea is that for the next developer release we'll have at least oxygen icon coverage for libs and, hopefully, the workspace apps. this should give some of those visual improvements people are wailing for as well as help get wider testing of the icons. thus, we are prioritizing the work in that direction.
when will that developer release happen? sooner rather than later, i hope. and with the newly forming release team i expect to see plans emerge in the new year once everyone's recovered from xmas and new years partying.
from art to file managers, i thought i'd also post a quick note about the point of dolphin and how it fits into the scheme of things as those of us who work on those bits are concerned. btw, david faure is a huge part of that "us"; i think he occupies three or four complete slots in that line up actually, kind of like that bugs bunny cartoon where he plays every position in the baseball team ;)
so, what is the point of dolphin? first, i think it's obvious to everyone that konqueror kicks some pretty serious ass. the downside is that it's really tuned for a particular category of power users. our plan is therefore to introduce a file manager that is aimed at the rest of the masses and tuned specifically for file management. where does this leave konqueror? as a power user's app and generally useful multi-function tool. i expect we will continue to ship konqueror in its current form, modulo kde4 improvements to the ui and guts.
and its the guts that are really exciting: most of them are being shared between konqueror, dolphin and even the file dialog. so as core features become available they are showing up across all the apps. this limits the concern that everyone focuses on dolphin and konqueror bit rots, or vice versa. sharing code through libraries and loadable components has always been a strategy in kde, and one that has worked well for us in the past. expect to see similar fruits borne from the revamping of our file management core functionality, with konqueror and dolphin being two front ends to it all that are built for two different audiences both of whom are important to us.