Plasma Active Gains New eBook Reader, Performance Gains


Plasma Active, one of the most innovative things to appear in the tablet space in some time, reaches version 3 today.  With it comes a truckload of goodies.

From the project page:

KDE has released the 3rd stable version of Plasma Active, KDE’s device-independent user experience. The Plasma Active user interface is touch-friendly and works well across a range of devices. Its Activities function gives users a natural way to organize and access their applications, files and information. Plasma Active Three noticeably improves the user experience with its enhanced and expanded set of apps, improved performance and a new virtual keyboard.

The Goods

Other than the fact the the video below looks completely amazing, we’re mostly excited about all of the new apps and updates to apps that make this version the first version to offer a complete tablet experience.

Okular Active

This is the big one folks.  As far as I’m concerned, it’s not a good tablet unless you can read books on it.  In fact — and I understand that I’m not everyone — I’m mostly using a tablet for reading and a laptop for everything else.  Okular has long been a fast, friendly document viewer, and the gains of this spin-off version that make it a suitable application for reading books, are immense.


Having a file manager native to a tablet is key for any power user.  Why a decent file manager is not made available by default in Android is beyond me, so it’s refreshing to see a good one make an appearance anywhere without having to suffer through an additional download.  Though it should be noted the ‘Files’ is not dolphin.  I must admit that I would rather have a version of Dolphin tailored for tablet that what is on offer.  Here is their description:

Files is a new default application in Plasma Active. It is a file manager, but, unlike most others, it isn’t based on folders; rather users can search for documents by file type, creation time and semantic information such as Tags. Files does not use the file system directly; it organizes documents with Nepomuk, Plasma Active’s underlying semantic engine.


While Calligra (Koffice) has been on offer for sometime, there is much debate about it’s usefulness when compared against something like Libre Office.  Though on a tablet, a specialized office suite tailored to the particulars of this platform is an absolute necessity.  This may be the first platform where Calligra gets a real chance to shine.

Hold Your Excitement

While Plasma Active 3 is real, and by the looks of it perfectly usable, there is still no official word when this will debut on official hardware.  Aaron Seigo and company have had some troubles with the Chinese manufacturing market that made the first iteration a bust, but we are excited for the moment when all of this is resolved and some official hardware a solid appearance.

We wish the Plasma Active team the best of luck.

Source | Plasma Active

About Dean Howell

Aside from being a huge Sega fan, Dean is an LPIC certified Linux professional with over a decade experience. In addition to spending his free time burning through the classics from Sega and evangelizing open source, he's also the editor-in-cheif of The Powerbase.
  • Thomas Pfeiffer

    Thank you for the wishes!
    Yes, there is no hardware coming with Plasma Active preinstalled yet, but it’s really easy to get it running on a Wetab, ExoPC or Archos, so I’d encourage everyone interested to get one of those devices and give it a try!
    About Files: Yes, Dolphin is really an amazing file browser, but Files is what really gets the most out of Nepomuk. It makes a lot more sense to organize your files by semantic information instead of their position in the file system. Plasma Active is a good place to start with radical new thinking, because on their desktop machines, people already have their folder hierarchy in place and it would cost effort for them to adapt. On their new tablet, however, they can immediately start ditching a folder hierarchy in favor of using semantic information like tags, which are more flexible than folders. Files is not perfect yet, of course, but we think it’s pretty amazing for its first release, so you should try it out!

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