KDE community has elected to put Consistency as a main goal for the coming years.
Consistency here is meant as implementing the same type of user interface elements in the same way across apps. For example, sidebars in settings windows should all have the same appearance and behavior.
Benefits of consistency include:
- Better software usability: users will recognize patterns across KDE applications, making each one easier to use and master.
- Use of consistent visual elements throughout KDE software improves KDE branding, and users will be able to quickly recognize KDE Apps.
- Reduced code redundancy and easier maintainability of the codebase.
- Reduce difficulty of writing new software because re-usable components are available, with high enough quality that nobody will want to create their own implementations.
There are various ways to help to improve consistency, regardless of anybody's level of technical expertise.
A very important task is to actually find the inconsistencies to fix in KDE Applications. This can be done by any user, even with limited or no knowledge about coding. Helping with this task is as easy as using multiple KDE Applications and trying to find visual elements that are implemented in different ways. When an inconsistency is found, it can be reported to the bugtracker or a task can be created on the Consistency phabricator workboard.
Designing consistent elements
When an inconsistency is found, it's the Visual Design Group's (VDG) job to design an element that can be used consistently throughout all KDE Applications. It's really easy to join the VDG to help with this task! Find out more about joining the KDE documentation team.
Defining clear Human Interface Guidelines
When there is consensus regarding the new design, this should be documented clearly in the Human Interface Guidelines (HIG) in order for future developers to know how they should implement their applications. Again, it's not necessary to have coding skills! It's possible to read the current HIG in its webpage and propose changes in its repository.
Finally, it's now time to implement the new design in all KDE Applications. This requires some development skills, but in the process you'll learn portable, industry-standard skills like C++, Qt, and CMake, and collaborate with people from all around the world. It's a challenging and fun experience. Find out more about becoming a KDE developer.
There's a specific channel for consistency-related topics on Matrix in which everybody can join and help. Furthermore, it's also possible to follow consistency improvements and tasks in its phabricator project.