I’m on Patreon now

Howdy everyone! So many folks have asked me to set up a Patreon page that I’ve gone and done it: https://www.patreon.com/ngraham

By supporting me on Patreon, you’re helping me provide the focus, direction, support, and technical contributions that work to turn the KDE software suite into a lean, mean, bug-free productivity machine, and get it distributed well so that our users have great options for getting our software.

Of course, I’m only one man; what really matters is not me, but rather you! KDE’s greatest strength is its passionate community of developers and users, who work tirelessly to develop, improve, polish, promote, and use KDE software. I truly couldn’t do this without all of you, and in fact, I wouldn’t even want to! All of you are the reason why I work so hard on KDE software. Thank you, so very much.

Become a patron

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18 thoughts on “I’m on Patreon now

    1. Thanks for your vote of confidence! There actually are full-time paid people working on KDE, but they’re not hired by KDE itself. They mostly work for Blue Systems. I think a few work for the C++ consulting firm KDAB, but I don’t know if they have total leeway to do whatever they want for KDE. I agree that KDE itself needs some full-time paid employees.

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  1. I just pledged. My one piece of feedback: try to get KDE to do less. Focus on the core desktop platform. Long-term, many of the apps at the periphery are replaceable by outside alternatives and KDE will not be able to compete with the whole universe of apps for a particular apps.

    For example I’ll be using Hyper over Konsole, and VSCode over Kate. Don’t waste time on a browser (please give up on Konqueror).

    Keep up the good work!

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    1. “universe of apps for a particular apps” -> “universe of apps for a particular purpose”

      One more piece of feedback: how is KDE doing on end-to-test and integration tests? I hear that KDE is the default for openSUSE, but in looking at https://github.com/os-autoinst/os-autoinst-distri-opensuse/tree/master/tests/x11 and https://github.com/os-autoinst/os-autoinst-distri-opensuse/tree/master/tests/x11regressions it seems like GNOME might be better covered.

      Also, I’m not sure that I agree with working on Kubuntu. I feel like Kubuntu’s brand has declined significantly. I would prefer to see a new brand name and automated testing. I’m planning to switch to openSUSE because they are focused on tests. Also, your Patreon says “Kubuntu Product manager”, but I don’t see you on the team page (https://kubuntu.org/the-kubuntu-team/).

      Until there is solid high-level test coverage, KDE will be playing the game of whack-a-bug. I don’t have patience for it, which is why I’m running macOS and only run KDE in Virtualbox.

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      1. We have code coverage for our own software, and a CI that runs them. The OBS integration tests are very valuable too. This can always be improved, of course–you can never have enough testing. But it’s of little value if you don’t have the resources to fix test issues. Testing is important, but where we’re at right now is in the state of needing more people writing code.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Cool, I just read https://blog.martin-graesslin.com/blog/2017/06/running-kwins-auto-test-suite/ which looks like an awesome approach to testing – very integration-oriented – and dove into one of the CI results at random (we use Jenkins at work) and saw a failed test (https://build.kde.org/view/Plasma/job/Plasma%20discover%20kf5-qt5%20FreeBSDQt5.9/146/testReport/).

          Hopefully I’ll find some time to contribute, probably focused on the quality team.

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            1. Actually, as I explore desktop automation tools (a critical need for me), I’m learning about how xdotool is no longer supported and I’m rather disappointed. Lots of discussion about this and userland fragmentation driven by Wayland over at https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comments/7bm9az/what_cant_be_done_on_wayland_still/ and I’m beginning to feel like this guy (https://github.com/octalmage/robotjs/issues/333#issuecomment-338424053: “And that is the main reason why I left Linux. If I can’t control anything, what’s the point.”

              I guess xdotool is disabled because it’s a security risk, but I used it for years without being hacked. Driving is a safety issue, but I’m not willing to give it up.

              macOS has powerful automation tools such as http://www.hammerspoon.org/ (among others) and it looks like I’ll be doubling down on macOS because of it.

              I did notice that the Sway folks seem to be more focused on interoperability (at least they point to https://github.com/swaywm/sway-protocols) but their maintainer says “patch Sway” if you want to do automation (https://github.com/swaywm/sway/issues/719).

              Going deep down the rabbit hole, I found https://github.com/myfreeweb/evscript – but I doubt automation is going to be elegant. As the author of that notes, ‘Wayland compositor authors could have agreed on a protocol like this one to allow all this useful functionality, but with secure access control, just like on macOS where this requires ticking a checkbox in accessibility settings. But no, their attitude has been “screw you, because security”.’

              Ultimately, I suspect that the Wayland compositor which allows for automation will gain market share, possibly forcing the others to go along with it. Or maybe Wayland will push more folks to macOS as the technical automation-minded people see what they’re missing over there.

              Possibly I’m misunderstanding or reading FUD (Fear, uncertainty, doubt) and the problems aren’t as deep as they sound. I hope that’s the case – maybe you could write a blog post about it.

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              1. IIRC PipeWire is the proposed solution to handling this safely. In the future Wayland compositors should be able to supply a video stream of the desktop through PipeWire and allow remote input via SPICE. Progress on that front may not be as fast as it could be, but I don’t think the future of Wayland is as bleak as you think.

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    2. Thanks! This is all hard-hitting, but valuable advice. In general I agree with you. There doesn’t really need to be a K-app for everything. But here’s the thing: KDE is a decentralized community. People work on what they feel like. There isn’t top-down authority who can really make those decisions. The best we can do is try to focus on the core, which is what my Usability & Productivity initiative is all about. This isn’t about telling people what to to, but rather generating excitement about something that our users really, really want. My hope–which is so far borne out–is that people are attracted to this excitement and decide to work in polish and usability on their own because it seems to be important, not because anyone told them to.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I want support your efforts on patreon monthly. I’d like to know, what are you working on for your main income currently, and if you become “fully” sponsored on patreon, how do plan to do the transition? And another idea: would it be possible to directly pledge you for example via SEPA transfer (to save paypal (very high for small amounts)/patreon/.. fees)?

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    1. Thanks! I am currently employed, but hoping to make the transition using Patreon. I’ve added LiberaPay and PayPal for folks not wanting to use Patreon. Thanks again for your encouragement and support!

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  3. Would love to see you ’employed’ by the KDE community. One needs a lot to get by, though, so many people would have to pledge if you were to make this even a part-time job. But for now, keep up the good work.

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