The KDE development community has issued the first official KDE 4.1 beta. This release includes the Kontact PIM suite and significant improvements to KDE's Plasma desktop layer. Many of the components in beta 1 are extremely unstable and subject to frequent crashes, but the overall level of polish and functionality in the environment is increasing at an extraordinary pace.
We have been closely watching the evolution of the Plasma interaction layer during the 4.1 development cycle and have seen the addition of many exciting features. There are some particularly intriguing Plasma improvements in beta 1 that deserve scrutiny.