Considering that simon was designed to be as easy as possible, someone who just downloads and installs simon might say that we failed.
To many new users the concepts behind simon are - at first - too complicated and simply getting the recognition to work seems needlessly hard.
However, those that stick with it seem to "get" the ui pretty soon and it proves very powerful for expert users.
This is why one of the goals for 0.3 was to make this initial learning curve as flat as possible at get simon up and running quickly.
After I released the first alpha of 0.3 about a month ago, I posted a review request to the KDE Usability mailing list asking them for ideas of how to improve our interface. I got great feedback (thanks!) and it quickly became clear that it would be best if simon provided an assistant on the first start that would guide new users through an initial setup.
Some users might remember this concept from 0.1. Back then we had a first run wizard but it took ages to complete because it consited of dozens of pages with quite complicated instructions.
In 0.3 however, with the introduction of scenarios and base models we designed another such wizard. It now includes just 5 pages (including welcome and finish pages) and includes short but precise instructions for every step. If the users follows through, they will be rewarded with a completely functional simon within minutes.
We are still fine tuning the wizard (updating the descriptions, everything is already fully functional) which is why it still resides in its own branch ("hci") for those of you who want to check it out.
The wizard will be included in the next release.
Thanks again to the KDE usability team for their valuable input!