Want to ensure the next stable release of the KDE Plasma desktop environment is as good as can be? Plasma 5.19 Beta is out.
I have to say, I'm loving the attention to the small details and overall consistency that the KDE team having been doing for the last year or so. KDE is my daily driver, and there have been lots of rough edges to it and they're making great progress on cleaning it all up. They said their actual priority for this release is exactly that, to make it "more consistent" by "correcting and unifying designs of widgets and desktop elements". Additionally they "worked on giving you more control over your desktop by adding configuration options to the System Settings; and improved usability".
Here's some highlights:
- Improved the panel spacer so that it can automatically centre widgets.
- The System Monitor widgets have been rewritten from scratch.
- Plasma now has a consistent design and header area in system tray applets as well as notifications.
- GTK 3 applications immediately apply a newly selected colour scheme and GTK 2 applications no longer have broken colours.
- Default Applications, Online Accounts, Global Shortcuts, KWin Rules and Background Services settings pages have all been overhauled.
- The Display settings page now shows the aspect ratio for each available screen resolution.
- The Info Center application has been redesigned with a look and feel that is consistent with the System Settings.
- The new subsurface clipping for Wayland greatly reduces the flickering in many applications with the KWin Window Manager
- Flatpak repositories in use are easier to remove now in Discover
You can find the full announcement here. Going by the roadmap, Plasma 5.19 is due to be fully released on June 9 so there's a little while to get your testing done. You can also read about more work being done on KDE developer Nate Graham's blog.