KDE surprises

On my desktop I keep a slightly experimental system (no SuSE 11.1 though, due to Compiz issues), including KDE Factory. Last night Xanthippe greeted me with a noticeable KDE makeover - hiding icons in the system tray, button grouping in the task bar and a pretty transparent copying progress dialog. At that point I grew suspicious and checked my KDE version, which was in fact KDE 4.2.0, which has been released on Jan 27. Lots of features I am itching to try out: integrated power management, more and improved desktop effects, a configuration makeover, revamped Dolphin and file dialogs, a new krunner… check out the visual guide.

We seem to have a case of the old KDE4/openSuSE dilemma (compare the 4.0 to 4.1 switch): Major new KDE versions are shipped with new OS releases and are kept in Factory (unsupported) more or less up to the release date. While this is very reasonable from a developer's point of view, it's a bit hard on the user: at the moment, every KDE release is significantly more stable and complete than its predecessor, while the KDE and openSuSE release cycles are shifted by half a year. At the moment, KDE4:Factory provides a nice and apparently stable KDE 4.2 at the price of a few resolvable package conflicts, but you have to keep in mind that it's still a development snapshot and might land you with 4.1.3 beta at some point in the future.
Understandably, the developers wouldn't want to move the whole community to an unsupported KDE 4.2 right now, but couldn't they copy the KDE 4.2 stable release from the Factory repo to a separate branch at this point?

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