After getting things up and going, and seeing how KDE 4.2 was stable enough to get some work done, i thought i could commit myself to using it. For a while, it seemed to work, but i realized i wasn't using half the features coming in. The incremental improvements were nice, and i saw the beginnings of a very interesting foundation that had alot of potential. But then since the past few months, lots of little issues started creeping up. Every time i would suspend my laptop, resuming it would take longer and longer before i got control of the keyboard back. Sometimes the only button that would be reactivated was the handy power button. Going into standby would take longer and longer. Leaving an X session running for more than a couple of days would get really slowly. The kicker panel that used to show up instantly started to take seconds and then minutes even to show up. It would also break the focus in weird ways. All the akonadi bits would start to get in the way. The panel would graphically glitch all the time making itself less than useless. I wanted my desktop back.
If i were a KDE or Gnome developer, i would have been thrilled to have the chance to be able to dogfood and fix alot of these bugs. My current role is a system administrator, though, and all of these things just get in the way of solving problems fast so i don't miss my deadlines. I don't mean this criticism as something bad about any of the decisions of the developers or the Fedora package maintainers, but simply, this is why it didn't work out for me.
Instead, i decided to set a different sort of challenge for myself. After watching the challenge between Ryan Rix and Mel Chua to use each other's favourite desktops, i challenge people to start with their own minimal desktop. This does not mean starting with XFCE or LXDE and calling it quits, though those are both two fine projects unto themselves. I mean, start from scratch with just your own .xinitrc file. Then put in everything you need. Figure it all out for yourself. Do this for a month and see if your survive. It's sort of like that intial Linux challenge. Can you use that for a month as a sole OS.
Over the next while, i think i'm going to post updates on some of the different components i'm using to build up my desktop. I've been using tools following the suckless principles as starters and exploring all the different options.