While Gnome meta-morphed into a tablet/touch based desktop environment, which initially created some ripples, KDE has adopted a more mature approach. The free and open source project is working on what is called Plasma Active.
With Plasma Active, KDE project has shown how you can take customize the DE for different class of devices — while traditional desktop users can use the ‘future’ perfect and advanced Plasma Desktop, space restricted netbooks can take full advantage of Plasma Netbook, the Plasma Active emerges as a great solution for touch based devices.
The project has just announced the Plasma Active Two, which boosts performance and adds new features. Plasma Active One was released in October 2011, providing early adopters the first opportunity to experience Activities on a tablet. Since then, the design and development team behind this open source touch interface has been hard at work on an update. The fruits of their labor were released today, December 14, 2011 as Plasma Active Two.
Some of the changes, while small, make a big difference―for instance, the top bar is much easier to drag down to expose the Window Peek and App Launch areas. The presentation of documents, applications, widgets, contacts, images and other resources were harmonized, giving a more pleasant and consistent experience to Plasma Active.
In addition to tweaking presentation, the team paid attention to performance. Listing documents, applications, widgets and contacts were optimized for a more fluid experience. In some cases, they are more than 10 times faster than Plasma Active One, claims the project.