Getting things back: Comics


After the system monitor, today another neat little toy that was gone in the KF5 port returned in Plasma for 5.3: The comic applet.
One thing that I really felt missing for the desktop to be really completed, is an XKCD always on the desktop: how can you live without an XKCD comic always there? I certainly couldn’t 😉
It’s a pretty much straightforward port of the Plasma 4 version: the UI is identical and all options are still where you left them.
I’m pretty happy how it is and how it behaves right now, so personally I consider it in bug fix mode. However, if someone has big ideas on it (and wants to execute them) that would be awesome as well.
The neat thing is that since all the comic plugins were written in JavaScript, all the old ones that can still be downloaded with Get Hot New Stuff still just work(tm).

4 thoughts on “Getting things back: Comics

  1. Benjamin Middaugh

    I’m glad we’re getting this back. This has been one of my all-time favorite plasmoids, and was one of the first I began using when I moved to KDE 4.x. (After GNOME decided to abandon reasonable desktop UI in favor of tablet-esque UI that eliminated many useful things that shouldn’t have disappeared, but before Cinnamon had matured enough for me to want to use it.)

    Comics on the desktop are an essential feature of a productive desktop.

    Now, as I am shopping for a tablet to put Linux on, how will this fit in Plasma Active?

  2. thegh0st

    Great but I have a UI suggestion, I don’t know if it’s the applet or plasma but on the right side at the icons (close, resize etc.) there is the left margin missing. Could you add a left margin that is similar to the right one ?

  3. Mike Lothian

    The only thing that annoyed me about this applet when I used it in the early 4.x days was it didn’t resize to fit different sized comics

    I’d love if the applet itself changed size / ratio to display different sized comics better

  4. Arucard

    TL;DR It would be nice to support authors with the comics plugin. Ads might be an option but will likely be ugly and ineffective. Adding patron and backer links in the context menu could be effective and easily implemented.

    I’ve always liked the comics plugin and I’m happy it’ll be available in plasma 5 this soon. One thing I’ve always thought was a downside of the comics plugin, is that it doesn’t generate any ad revenue for the comic authors. I know the behaviour of the comics plugin is pretty much the same as when people use an adblocker or the rss feed to retrieve the comics, but i was wondering if the comics plugin could generate ad revenue for the comic authors. I’m not suggesting any kind of click fraud, just that it might be beneficial to the comic authors if we allow showing the ads in the plugin, maybe just the top banner. Of course, this might make the whole thing uglier, less usable and if revenue is generated per ad click, it probably won’t even make a difference. But I felt it was worth mentioning.

    Alternatively (or additionally, and much more realistically), we could allow some more context menu items to support the author. This would be similar to how the “Visit the shop website” item is already shown. I assume the item would not be shown in the context menu if it is not defined (or if empty) for any specific comic, so this would be backwards compatible with current available comics.

    I would suggest adding the following items:
    – Become a Patron: This would send the user to the comic’s Patreon (or similar) site. Since this is likely to remain the same in the long-term, this could simply be added to the comic like the store URL.
    – Become a Backer: This would send the user to the comic’s Kickstarter (or Indiegogo or similar) site. This one might be available temporarily, e.g. when an author wants to publish a book or start another project. This is about supporting the author, not the comic specifically, so projects from the same author but not related to the comic could also be allowed. It could either be scraped from the site (preferred, but not always possible) or added to the comic like the store URL.

    The comic author may make these links available in a consistent manner so they can be scraped and they can have control over which patron or backer projects are shown to the users.

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