This is the work blog for the KDE Visual Design Group a group of dedicated designers striving to improve community participation in design for KDE as well as design work in general for KDE applications and Plasma.

måndag 20 januari 2014

The Brilliant Bits

In which we talk about all the things that rock with KDE. Our hero (me) apologizes for coming off as the grumpy swede he is, what where awesome is being told and then we tie the whole bag together. We start with a photo of Marco hugging, I think, a man I don't recognize as an illustration for cooperation.

Photo by Matthias Welwarsky (CC BY-SA)

So the last post came off negative - thats my fault assuming wildly that everyone had read my post on Google Plus where I gushed praise on the Plasma Devs and I didn't want to embarrass them twice. I'm honestly sorry for that. So to rectify this is what I thought was genius:


Workflow is king,queen and supreme leader for life in all situations where a group needs to do something complex together. You can't beat the devs of KDE in this department. In the last post I mentioned having survived several meetings at Ad-agencies and in Editor rooms with both legs and honor intact. That wasn't ment as high praise for me but a comment on how the situation often is in highly competitive and ego-driven environments. Everyone is trying to steal the lime light, there are internal conflicts stemming from massive ego's clashing and a constant need to justify your presence. 
Not so in Blue Systems Barcelona office. They moved effortlessly from joking and jovial to focused and exact. They moved as a team with people backing each other up constantly and they did it with grace. An idea was thrown out because the person with it thought it was good and he (it was just guys there this time) did it without fear of being put down or having the idea stolen or ignored. Everyone was as confident as you can be when you feel safe in the situation.

This is something that I often (not always) find lacking in design areas AFK (not-Open Source related) and an attitude and behavior we should strive to foster within all aspect of work within ... well within all aspects of Open Source development and usage.

It is also something that comes from the way the work is organized - its not a magical "lets all be friends" attitude, even though the guys there where all friendly as could be (and charming - as a smoker, I can only say that the best anti-smoke harangue I have ever been given was Alex Fiestas lecture on tobacco damage).

They where actively inclusive to the point of dumbing down their discussions to include me. How often does that happen in the often faux-subjective subject of design where everyone tend to have an opinion? 


This is what I want to copy in design work - that self-assurance that you get to say an idea because you thought it was cool without fearing a put down at the end.
Further I should also say that I didn't mean there is no design team or that they don't do anything. They do. They do allot of work and allot of good work.

My point is just, I think that if they had a system of work made to have their backs a tad more - a situation where newcomers could easily step in and help out - their job would be easier.

Hence the wish for a reorganization - not as a form of criticism towards the great work done by others - not as a random FUDD-granade tossed at KDE, but rather the opposite:

"You guys rock and I have this idea how to make work easier for you!"

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