Update 19/11/2014 : A new post is available !
Some news from Xfce, my favourite Desktop Environment, that I use since something like 2006.
The development is relatively slow (the last stable version, 4.10 was released in April 2012). There is not so many developers, 1 or 2 "core" devs, and less than 10 contributors (who are generally distributions maintainers, from debian, xubuntu, gentoo, arch, thanks to them !).
There was a roadmap for 4.12, where it was planned to release 4.12 mid-2013. But, hey, it's open source, it will be out when "it will be ready" :-).
Some weeks ago, it was decided to establish a list of "critical bugs" to be eradicated in order to release xfce 4.12.
You can find the list here : https://wiki.xfce.org/releng/4.12/roadmap/critical-bugs.
Xfce 4.12 will still use gtk2, with some support of gtk3 for better integration.
Port to gtk3 will maybe be done for the next version.
What will be new in xfce 4.12 ?
All major components are already available in development version (4.11), here are a small list of what to expect :
- Zoom mode. I wrote about this cool new feature in december
- New, themable tabwin (alt+tab)
- Changelog at http://git.xfce.org/xfce/xfwm4/tree/NEWS
- The display settings have been much improved with supporting extended desktop mode for 2 monitors and an improve minimal dialog.
- Changelog at http://git.xfce.org/xfce/xfce4-settings/tree/NEWS
- Lot of works on xfdesktop, already 6 pre releases!
- Per-workspace wallpapers support (finally !)
- Better multi monitor handling
- Changelog at http://git.xfce.org/xfce/xfdesktop/tree/NEWS
- Support of gtk3 plugins
- Better behavior of buttons/menus
- Changelog at http://git.xfce.org/xfce/xfce4-panel/tree/NEWS
And lot of works on other components, like xfce4-power-manager (systemd support), xfburn, xfce4-mixer etc There is still some works/tests to be done on upower or systemd support for example.
Update : You can see lot of screenshots of new features on the Xfce forum, by ToZ : https://forum.xfce.org/viewtopic.php?id=8945
It's easier to copy the mail from Simon Steinbeiß to explain this part :
To get to the point: we see bountysource as an easy way to offer the community with a way to financially support Xfce. There are two avenues a backer can choose from. 1) Set a bounty on a specific bug (we've pulled in all the reports for many components already, so you can easily find them on bountysource.com) 2) Back the Xfce team
Update: More explanations about bountysource: https://mail.xfce.org/pipermail/xfce4-dev/2014-July/030807.html
So if you are interested yo help Xfce, go to the contribute wiki page !