First of all: I always prefer and love KDE for his elegance, customization, easy-usage, great applications and now because is really interesting for programming. I use KDE in my everyday work: Konqueror (now Dolphin), konsole, k3b, Amarok, kate, Konversation, Kopete and other ones.
When KDE 4.0 was published many people criticize it very hard: A lot of bugs, different look and concept of desktop, different panels, new applications menu, widgets, etc, etc were some features that made most KDE users unhappy. However, KDE developers always said in the announcement page, blogs and mailing lists that KDE 4 is a work in progress and they will be working, coding hard to release new versions of KDE (4.1, 4.2… ) with a lot of improvements.
KDE 4.1 was much better than KDE 4.0(many bugs killed and improvements,more stability, applications,speed), but KDE 4.2, in my opinion, is a version, that give us a stable desktop with cool, interesting, features not only for users but also for developers. This KDE version was named: “The answer” because it minimize negative, destructive. comments and people who didn’t believe in the KDE community and team. I consider these people don’t know appreciate the innovation and great effort.
Congratulations to the all KDE Team for the hard-work they made. I am really impressed about how can you customize your desktop, add new features and the KDE 4 development way.
In this video you can see the KDE 4 presentation in Google Campus where Aaron Seigo a famous KDE hacker member of the core-team talk about the KDE 4 technology and how KDE innovation can make current desktops obsolete.
Nepomuk, Decibel, Plasma, Oxygen, Solid, Phonon, Akonadi are some parts of KDE 4 that introduce new behaviours and will make a big change in KDE. I am particularly interested in Plasma and Nepomuk for development and deciding in which project participate for this Google Summer of Code. But I need more reading and practicing about how these work. If you make a Gsoc proposal without researching, reading, practicing and talking to mentors you probably will fail. In this page, you can see the initial process to start your KDE 4 development environment.
In general KDE 4 has as main goals: Improve the desktop user experience, have better applications and development platform and make our desktop a central place to be more productive. That is my impression and for now on I will continue researching and folowing the KDE development process.