Sunsetting XRandR Brightness

For a change, let’s talk about a topic other than notifications. More than five years ago (can’t believe how time has passed) I took over maintainership of PowerDevil, Plasma’s power management service. While I did a lot of cleanup and feature work in the beginning, there haven’t been many major changes for some time.

Bar-like popup informing of a screen brightness change
“Blast from the Past” – just casually sneaking in the more compact volume/brightness popup we’ll have in Plasma 5.20 to get your attention

One of the first features I added back then was smooth brightness changes. PowerDevil supports three ways of changing screen brightness: through XRandR configuration, through DDC (display data channel, for desktop monitors, experimental and not built by default), and by writing to sysfs (/sys/class/backlight or /sys/class/leds). Since the latter requires privileges and uses a helper binary through KDE’s KAuth framework, I only implemented the animation for the XRandR code path, which was executed in the same process.

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Venturing out

Plasma 5.18 LTS Beta has been released, which brings many exciting new features to a computer near you, especially if you’re upgrading from our previous LTS release, Plasma 5.12. Of course for us developers this now means that a stable git branch has been created and we can work on new stuff on master to eventually become Plasma 5.19, scheduled for an early June 2020 release. This blog post is less about KDE code, though.

Plasma notification popup with a chat message and a text field to send a reply from inside the popup
No need to rub your eyes: Quick reply with Telegram on Plasma 5.18!
Continue reading Venturing out

What’s up in Notifications?

With the end of the year approaching in some parts of the world and already half a year since I announced the notifications rewrite, I thought I’d give you an update on some of the things I’ve worked on since. While Plasma 5.17 only saw minor changes, most notably automatic do not disturb mode when screens are mirrored during presentations, there are some very exciting new features that will arrive in the upcoming Plasma 5.18 LTS to be released early February next year.

Notification popup with a message from a chat group with text field in the notification popup inviting to "Type a reply..."
Replying to conversations directly from the notification popup
Continue reading What’s up in Notifications?