Ivan Čukić

Brainstorms for the activities in the desktop plasma needed

I’m no longer sponsored by basysKom to work on Active (the Contour project ended), so I can focus some of my coding to the desktop. Most of the things I’ve been doing are independent from Plasma Active, but had a small UI overlay written specifically for it.

Now is the time to bring some of the features that proved to be useful to common Plasma users, and, for this, I’ll need help from everyone, be it brainstorming or even coding. This post is meant to introduce to you what technologies are going to be available to build upon.

You should post all your ideas to the KDE Workspace Vision part of our forums.

Linking the documents to activities

Background: One of the purposes of activities is to link documents (including web pages, images, etc.), applications, contacts etc. that are related to the activity so that you can access them faster. Apart from manually telling the system which resources belong to an activity, the goal is to have the system score the documents based on the number of times you’ve used them in a specific activity*.

So here are some of the ideas I plan to make reality.

  • Manual linking of files by right-clicking them in dolphin.
  • Linking via Share-Like-Connect applet – eventually, when most of our applications get patched to report the documents they open to the activity manager, we’ll know which document is in focus at any given time. This way, we’ll have global (in the panel) buttons to share the document, bookmark it, link it to the activity.
  • Linking contacts from Kontact, Telepathy and similar
  • Linking the highest scored documents automatically or semi-automatically
  • Have the favourite applications section in menus dependent on the activity
  • Rank krunner results according to the scores
  • Browsing the resources that belong to the activity with Dolphin (and file open/save dialogue)
  • Showing all that in the Shelf applet

* actually, it is a little bit more complex than that, but it is irrelevant for this purpose.

Other simpler things

  • System settings module for advanced activity configuration – the name and icon setup plasma provides is a bit underwhelming
    • Setting the basic activity info, creating and deleting
    • Setting whether the activity is private (requires a password to be unlocked, data is encrypted) – see Encryption in KDE SC
    • Setting whether the usage statistics should not be collected in a specific activity at all, or only for certain applications

Dreams

  • Automatic grouping of documents that relate to each other based on the usage statistics (for example, the literature you used while writing a scientific paper)

Help

So, the thing that I need from all of our awesome users is to polish these ideas, create new and more awesome ones, etc.

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