What is KDE

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Greetings stranger! Welcome to the wonderful world of KDE. KDE is a worldwide project dedicated to bring the best software to you - for free. Read on and find out what we can offer you and what you can do for us.

An International Community

KDE is more than just software. It is a community made up of programmers, translators, contributors, artists, writers, distributors, and users from all over the world. Our international team is committed to creating the best free software for the desktop and mobile. And not only contributors, but users and fans of KDE software can be found throughout the entire globe, giving help to other users, spreading the news, or just simply enjoying the experience.

A New, Shiny Workspace

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KDE started life as a desktop environment over 20 years ago. As activities have grown, KDE is now an international team that creates Free and Open Source Software.

What this means in practice is that the many programs from the KDE community work together to give you the best possible computing experience. Does that mean you can't use a KDE application if you don't use the KDE desktop? Not at all. With the help of one or two extra libraries the applications can be used on almost any Linux desktop. What's more, increasingly that software runs on a variety of other platforms. You can now find many KDE applications running under Windows and Mac OS or other devices such as smartphones and tablets.

There are a variety of programs to suit any user's needs, from simple yet powerful text editors, to rocking audio and video players, to the most sophisticated integrated development environment. Plus, KDE applications follow a consistent look and feel across the desktop, giving you a comfortable and familiar experience when using any KDE program.

KDE software has several other features that makes it a top-class working environment, such as:

  • A beautiful and modern desktop
  • A flexible and configurable system, letting you customize applications without too much editing of text files
  • Network transparency allows you to easily access files on other networks and computers as if they were on your own computer
  • A software ecosystem of hundreds, even thousands, of programs
  • Availability in over 60 languages

Tons of Free Software

KDE software isn't just any software. It is Free Software. As a user, this is an important fact, even without getting deep into technical or legal considerations. Why? Because as free software, you are free to use KDE wherever you want and in whatever manner you want, no activation keys and no installation limits. And you're free to share it with others as well! So not only do you have in your hands great and powerful software, but you can also give your family and friends the opportunity to enjoy it, too.

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Information
Curious about Free Software? Read more about it on the Free Software Foundation's website.


Components

A diagram of the various aspects of the KDE Platform

KDE is a huge community of people who create software. We all have in common that we're building upon an infrastructure we have developed over the years: the KDE Platform.

  • the Plasma workspace - the user interface element, customized for different devices such as PCs, notebooks, or mobile devices
  • the KDE Frameworks - most KDE applications are built with the help of a unified framework. Do you also want to write a killer app? The KDE Frameworks can help you with that!
  • KDE Applications - software programs that are written to utilize the platform

More information can be found on KDE TechBase

Getting KDE Software

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If you are using Windows or Mac OS, a growing number of KDE apps such as Krita or Kdenlive are available for you to download and install. You'll find installers on their pages.

As of right now, some KDE software is for various reasons only on Linux, a free operating system that you can try right now. The community produces KDE neon, a downloadable Ubuntu Linux-based operating system which includes the newest version of KDE.

Helping KDE

KDE can only exist because thousands of dedicated contributors from around the world have given their time. You can help too! There is a task for everybody, and we are looking forward to see how you are going to make KDE better.

Back to the Introduction page

This page was last modified on 25 November 2018, at 15:03. Content is available under Creative Commons License SA 4.0 unless otherwise noted.