KDE to Celebrate 15th Birthday

by Ostatic Staff - Oct. 05, 2011

KDE is having a global birthday party to celebrate 15 years and everyone is invited. Well, since we all can't actually get together in one spot, they'd like to inspire a bunch of parties happening simultaneously across the globe on October 14.

It all began much the way Linux began, with a message to a Usenet usergroup. Matthias Ettrich posted, "Programmers wanted!" for a "New Project: Kool Desktop Environment (KDE)". The rest is history. 15 years ago Ettrich was looking to create an interface for endusers - the regular desktop user and he and his fellow developers succeeded. KDE became the most popular desktop environment for free Unix desktops and remained so until the rise of Ubuntu propelled GNOME into that position. It will be interesting to see where the dueling desktops end up in the coming years.

Ettrich said at the time, "The idea is to create a GUI for an ENDUSER. Somebody who wants to browse the web with Linux, write some letters and play some nice games." But it became much more. It really became a complete graphical computer environment. It added applications and improved configurability to the point where one might consider it the consummate package.

KDE and Me

I recalling testing some early versions as I attempted to make my transition to Linux. Version 1.x was used in the distros I first tested and coming from Windows I felt so lost and confused. But when I was finally able to make the switch with Mandrake 7.2, KDE 1.99 was the shipped version (yes, Mandrake 7.2 shipped with a developmental version). I often give Mandrake the credit for facilitating my move to Linux, but KDE deserves a large share of that credit. Its good looks and ease of use paved the way. After I became more proficient using Linux, I looked forward to compiling every new KDE release - each better than the last. I was a fan.

KDE 2.x Desktop, December 2001

Back to the Party

KDE wants you to "help make it a BIG EVENT. The entire KDE community can't get together in person. So we're partying virtually. All day, all around the world, on October 14th."   Suggestions:

● Have a party
● With a KDE birthday cake!
● Celebrate your commitment to freedom with Kool photos
● Go big like they're doing in Spain
● Bring the KDE community to your party with status updates and other social media
● Email your plans, photos and event happenings to 15@kde.org
● Volunteer to translate the October 14th and follow up Dot stories. Think global. Party local.
● Invite others in your community to share the bounty and beauty of KDE
● Test 15 bugs to see if they're still relevant
● Make a gift of €15 or contribute in some other way
● For 15 minutes-test an app and file bugs, update KDE userbase, answer questions on the forum, hang out at #kde on freenode IRC
● Use hashtag #kde15 to share your plans and partying

Happy Birthday KDE!

In related news, KDE 4.7.2 was released with improved Kontact performance.