Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 11th Jun 2008 08:14 UTC
Gnome The KDE project saw the writing on the wall. They saw that they had reached a certain limit when it came to what could be done with the KDE 3.x series - they named it the "big friggin' wall", and decided that in order to get over that wall, incremental updates wouldn't do - they needed massive changes, a big jump, and they went for it. It's been a rough road, but it seems as if KDE 4.1 is showing signs of the vision becoming a reality. And it now seems as if several people within the GNOME community are seeing the writing on the wall too: GNOME 2.x has reached its goal - now what?
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"Exciting"?
by FooBarWidget on Wed 11th Jun 2008 09:21 UTC
FooBarWidget
Member since:
2005-11-11

Why should GNOME, or any desktop, be "exciting"? A computer is a tool to get work done. A desktop is supposed to be usable, productive and friendly, not "exciting". If you want excitement, go play games.

Reply Score: 2

RE: "Exciting"?
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 11th Jun 2008 09:27 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Because excitement is about so much more than just flashy effects or whatever it is that you're thinking of. Go read Wingo's entries and you'll realise: excitement can also be looked at from a developer's perspective, for instance. What's more fun for most devs, being in maintenance mode, or working on new ideas, new features?

And what delivers better code, an excited developer, or a not-so-excited developer?

Reply Score: 19

RE[2]: "Exciting"?
by marafaka on Fri 13th Jun 2008 06:40 UTC in reply to "RE: "Exciting"?"
marafaka Member since:
2006-01-03

Yeah great! So you have ads here, because you want us kept excited and thus productive?

Reply Score: 1

RE: "Exciting"?
by SlackerJack on Wed 11th Jun 2008 09:30 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

Like your work place should be fun and nice to work with and for, people use their desktop not just for work. People say that a nice environment makes them more productive, i'm a very visual person and thats important to me when working.

I think GNOME needs to modernize, what they have does the job for now but thats about it.

Reply Score: 10

RE[2]: "Exciting"?
by marafaka on Fri 13th Jun 2008 06:47 UTC in reply to "RE: "Exciting"?"
marafaka Member since:
2006-01-03

Your personal likes and dislikes and being a visual person or not has nothing to do with the Gnome lifecycle.

Do you enjoy in vocalizing words or feeling the sensation of punching your fingers into the keyboard? Or you do it on an unrelated purpose?

The ideal interface is invisible.

Reply Score: 1

RE: "Exciting"?
by Noremacam on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:26 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
Noremacam Member since:
2006-03-08

Ditto Ditto Ditto! The fact the article argues against the HIG(as though exciting-ness somehow trumps usability), made me roll my eyes.

I love gnome just the way it is, and I love the incremental improvements. The fact it gets the job done and gets the heck out of my way is it's greatest testament.

I don't do much programming lately, but if I understand gtk to be difficult to program for, and has a too limited toolkit, then I'd love to see a gtk 3, if nothing more than to potentially increase the number and quality of gnome applications. But I don't want my desktop radically changed around just because the old way isn't flashy enough. In my opinion, the HIG isn't broken and doesn't need fixed.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: "Exciting"?
by ephracis on Wed 11th Jun 2008 15:17 UTC in reply to "RE: "Exciting"?"
ephracis Member since:
2007-09-23

I've said it before and I am saying it again: incremental releases are not enough for ever. You need to brake API sometime. As I feel it, GTK+ has one big limitation from growing: it's API. It needs a break.

I love Gnome for it's beauty and elegance, something that made me switch from KDE to Gnome not so long ago. But the problem when developing for Gnome and GTK is the limitations in the old API. When working with QT4 you feel that Trolltech knows what you want and gives you the tools. Just look at Qt 4.4 and how we finally get widgets inside the Graphics View, something that was much needed when working with Plasma for KDE4.

There are stuff that you CANNOT implement if you stay by the old API. Just plain simple. So I vote for a break, soon.

Reply Score: 7

RE: "Exciting"?
by RGCook on Wed 11th Jun 2008 16:30 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
RGCook Member since:
2005-07-12

There is excitement in every aspect of our lives. It adds value to our way of life. We should strive to stoke passion in the creation and use of all that we do. We are not the machines we create!

Reply Score: 3

RE: "Exciting"?
by ljgshkg on Wed 11th Jun 2008 17:14 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
ljgshkg Member since:
2008-03-25

Excitment is important to keep things going sometimes for a normal person. When you're in touch and see so many "looking good/fancy" desktop managers or more fancy look in mobile devices, and then look back at the relatively boring GNOME or Windows 98 look and feel, you'd just feel... bored.

At work, may be it's ok because work may be bored for many people anyway, or they may be too busy for any "excitment" that're not related to work. But when you're back home and relax, some stimulation and fun by look and feel is never bad.

Besides, some "excitment" that seems to be useless at first may turn into something useful later on, just like many seemingly useless mathematical theories, which ultimately turned into the foudnation stone of some exciting and useful new technology. GNOME can't always stay in its ancient look when everyone's moving on in look and feel.

Edited 2008-06-11 17:18 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: "Exciting"?
by ebasconp on Thu 12th Jun 2008 01:38 UTC in reply to ""Exciting"?"
ebasconp Member since:
2006-05-09

Excitement, passion is what makes this world turn.

Reply Score: 5

It's about GNOME !
by jacquouille on Wed 11th Jun 2008 09:35 UTC
jacquouille
Member since:
2006-01-02

KDE has nothing to do with this, this is purely a GNOME story, so why mention it at all in the story... My fear is that mentioning KDE in the story will encourage trolls -- this topic has a *massive* trolling potential! So please people let's focus on GNOME while commenting here ;)

That said my background is from the KDE/Qt ecosystem.

Here are my 2 cents:

- it's great that part of the GNOME devs are realizing that they need to develop a desktop primarily for themselves, as that's more motivating, and nothing prevents it to be flexible enough to adapt then to other categories of users. I think this realization can do a lot of good to GNOME. See the "audience" paragraph here: http://wingolog.org/archives/2008/06/10/regarding-decadence

- regarding the base language/platform debate (C, Mono, Vala, XUL...) I firmly believe that Vala is their best bet. It is a smooth upgrade path from C. It retains the performance and no-overhead of C. It is object-oriented with special attention paid to GObject. They have full control over it. The idea of a preprocessor sounds scary at first, until one realizes that it has been doing a lot of good to Qt, so why not to GTK. Of course Vala does more since it also seems to replace the role played by the C++ compiler front-end in the Qt stack.

I hope the GNOME community can organize efficiently towards the goal of renovating GNOME and GTK, sure it's exciting times ahead.

Reply Score: 5

RE: It's about GNOME !
by renox on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:35 UTC in reply to "It's about GNOME !"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

I firmly believe that Vala is their best bet.


I'm not so sure: it's a language that only Gnome dev will use, so there is a risk that there would be less developers because they wouldn't care about learning a language specifically for Gnome.
GNUstep has been in the limelight for a very long time without much traction, it's possible that this is because they're using Objective-C..

Maybe D would be a better choice, but it is very immature having not one but two standard libraries (which are not compatible AFAIK) or Scala which has a better syntax but it's running on the JVM..

Reply Score: 5

RE: It's about GNOME !
by matt_mph on Fri 13th Jun 2008 15:55 UTC in reply to "It's about GNOME !"
matt_mph Member since:
2008-06-13

I'm not so sure it's not about KDE tbh. I think there are a bunch of GNOME devs that are getting a "grass is greener" feeling when looking at the new toys the KDE4 people are playing with.

Personally I am against re-writing things just for the sake of making them shinier. I agree wholeheartedly with Michael Meeks on the subject tbh

http://www.gnome.org/~michael/blog/2008-06-12.html

it really does just seem like another example of the CADT development model and that sucks.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by agrouf
by agrouf on Wed 11th Jun 2008 09:46 UTC
agrouf
Member since:
2006-11-17

"His idea? Launch a sort of GNOME skunkworks, a place where hackers can hack along for themselves, and fail, too - but if an idea is liked by a wider audience, it can be put to use somewhere more stable."

Isn't that what libegg is about?
Anyway, before you look for a solution, find the problem. It's too vague to say 'need to modernize'. I don't feel the need to modernize. It doesn't mean anything. Revolution is meaningless if you don't know where you want to go. This is void. Talk about what problem you have and maybe we'll find a solution.

Edited 2008-06-11 09:47 UTC

Reply Score: 11

RE: Comment by agrouf
by dagw on Wed 11th Jun 2008 11:43 UTC in reply to "Comment by agrouf"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

This is void. Talk about what problem you have and maybe we'll find a solution.

You need to do both, like the original article talked about. Yes you need one team fixing incremental problems as they show up and generally maintaining GNOME. But you could also use a second team that just tries semi-random things without a coherent road map or set problem just to see what they can come up with. Many discoveries throughout history have come from people just trying things until they stumble upon something cool.

The define your problem then set your parameters then find a solution that fits those parameters approach might be good way to do engineering, however it isn't necessarily a good way to invent new concepts.

Reply Score: 5

v hard...
by collinm on Wed 11th Jun 2008 10:04 UTC
RE: hard...
by Kwitschibo on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:41 UTC in reply to "hard..."
Kwitschibo Member since:
2006-01-17

kde isn't amazed for users... it's a shock... the gap to gnome is big? yes... the usability und stability gap. kde is far far away from the quality tha the gnome desktop reached.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: hard...
by dagw on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:04 UTC in reply to "RE: hard..."
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

the gap to gnome is big? yes... the usability und stbility gap.


Are you talking about KDE 3 or 4? As someone who generally uses GNOME, I don't find the latest KDE 3.5 lagging in either usability or stability. Is it different than GNOME, sure. Are there things with it that I find less than intuitive, sure, but no more so than in GNOME. There are things I find easier in GNOME and things I find easier in KDE, and non really have the edge. My current Linux setup currently tends to be the GNOME desktop (from mint Linux) with the KDE4 dolphin file manager. Unconventional I'll admit, but it works for me.

When it comes to KDE4 you admittedly have a point on both the stability and usability front, but then again KDE4 is still very much beta software and everybody involved will admit that it has quite a bit to go. However if the KDE team actually pull of everything they've talked about I can not only see myself switching, but KDE jumping into the usability lead. Of course it won't appeal to everyone, especially those people who are of the opinion that dwm with 4 open xterms is the ultimate in usability.

Reply Score: 8

RE[2]: hard...
by irbis on Thu 12th Jun 2008 07:46 UTC in reply to "RE: hard..."
irbis Member since:
2005-07-08

the usability und stability gap. kde is far far away from the quality tha the gnome desktop reached.

If only that was really the case but I'm afraid it may not be quite like that. At least on my PC it is not a rare case at all when GNOME gives some error messages (some panel applet(s) not loading after I've started GNOME - despite having plenty of free memory, etc.). Especially in the stability front GNOME may still have a lot to do. Maybe the core GNOME technology is quite well tested and stable, but especially extra apps and add-ons like panel applets may not be of the same quality.

I don't need extra bling for bling's sake every half a year, and thus - for the time being - I might actually be happy with incremental only GNOME releases - if that would mean ultra stability and streamlining the desktop and apps so that they would be faster and less resource hungry. Unfortunately GNOME has become quite a resource hog despite its supposed goals of simplicity.

Edited 2008-06-12 07:50 UTC

Reply Score: 3

How to revolutionise?
by waynej on Wed 11th Jun 2008 10:05 UTC
waynej
Member since:
2007-07-04

This is a very interesting read but in my opinion actually shows a bigger problem. In this day and age, how does one revolutionise?

I use XP, KDE and Gnome and I think we have seen, in the last 5 - 10 years, is that yes there are differences in approach and implementation but a reasonably savvy logical person can move from one to the other with no show stopping problems.

We are into the area of the law of diminishing returns.

In order for Gnome or any of the others to revolutionise there needs to be a greater acceptance of the need to make mistakes publically and not be hauled over the coals. When KDE 4.0 came out the bile, spite and invective aimed in the direction of the KDE developers was almost overwhelming. If Aaron had told everyone to F*** Off and shove their opinions up their collective a***s I, for one, would not have been surprised.

Ok it wasn't perfect, no-one said it was going to be perfect when it came out, but the expectation of perfection and the refusal to accept anything else was really out of order. OK, some of the articles were written by non-native English speakers but the tone of a surprising number articles was rather abusive.

For Gnome to revolutionise, there needs to be a more open mindset on the part of the users and community at large and an acceptance that in order to change there can be, will be and must be failures.

My tuppence.

Reply Score: 13

v RE: How to revolutionise?
by Nossie on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:00 UTC in reply to "How to revolutionise?"
RE[2]: How to revolutionise?
by grat on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:36 UTC in reply to "RE: How to revolutionise?"
grat Member since:
2006-02-02

I think if KDE had came out and said look this is going to be our new codebase for 4 but its not feature complete to be called KDE4 ... things would have been far easily accepted


Well, actually, they did. "KDE4" is the rewrite of the KDE libraries and tools, and includes such ideas as phonon, solid, etc.

"KDE 4.0" is the first iteration of a desktop based on the KDE4 libraries, and as such, should be treated as "not really production", although openSuSE 11 has a pretty nice KDE 4.0.x desktop.

Even if they'd called it "kdelib4" and "KDE 4.0", people would have gotten confused, because they can't be bothered to learn the difference.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: How to revolutionise?
by Nossie on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: How to revolutionise?"
Nossie Member since:
2007-07-31

so why a milestone release if its not nearly feature complete?

I do actually agree with you but the majority of the world doesn't see it that way and saying otherwise is the equivalent of RMS saying "its GNU/Linux not Linux ffs"

On first announcement KDE announced it as 'KDE 4' not KDE 4 preview not KDE 4 beta...

I just dont understand the logic behind the decision when open source is notorious for having so many products not having hit a 1.x release

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: How to revolutionise?
by theorz on Wed 11th Jun 2008 19:49 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: How to revolutionise?"
theorz Member since:
2006-01-08

The same reason Apple released Mac OS X 10.0 and 10.1 even though they were rough around the edges and not nearly feature complete.

In order for a new platform to be usable it needs to have applications and 3rd party support. One strategy to get developers to start using your platform is to have an early release. Is it the right way to do things, I do not know. But if you look at how Mac OS X progressed we can at least see that it is possible to be successful with it.

Reply Score: 3

RE: How to revolutionise?
by renox on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:26 UTC in reply to "How to revolutionise?"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

When KDE 4.0 came out the bile, spite and invective aimed in the direction of the KDE developers was almost overwhelming.

Except that the reason why there's was so much turmoil wasn't only about the changes but also because KDE developers pulled a 'dirty trick' on users by naming it KDE 4.0 instead of 'developer release/alpha' to get more people to try it..
People don't care about 'explanation of what KDE4.0 is' no more that they read manuals, so naming correctly KDE4.0 for what it was in the first place would have reduced a lot the flames.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: How to revolutionise?
by hobgoblin on Fri 13th Jun 2008 12:22 UTC in reply to "RE: How to revolutionise?"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

but if they had not, they could risk that they would never get to slap a x.0 at it at all...

look at what happened to linux around the 2.5/2.6 time. new stuff was tossed into 2.5 over and over, until the distros started backporting stuff to 2.4 because 2.4 was going stale and 2.6 was a no-show.

in that sense, one should not really use beta designations in open source projects, as one is living one large beta. every update of the source is out there on some CVS or ftp. there is no internal/release split like there is in a closed source project.

instead one is looking at unstable, stable and mature features of the project. so one should have some way for the people building the binaries to say that they only want the stable or maybe only the mature features, and leave the rest out. and as time goes by, the unstale bits move over into stable.

development by evolution, not repeat revolutions...

Reply Score: 3

Not buying it
by cmost on Wed 11th Jun 2008 10:15 UTC
cmost
Member since:
2006-07-16

I'm sorry, but I don't buy the rationale that Linux has to be "sexy" or flashy to intice new users. If your sole reason for switching from Windows or Mac to a Gnome or KDE based Linux system is black, glass and flash then you must not use your computer much. Once you download the ISO, install the system, spend many hours configuring it to resemble your friend's flashy box then what? What do you do with it? Sure, it looks pretty but everything you're used to is gone including all your familiar applications, familiar file system hierarchy, and the ready help of your friends and neighbors. My point is that switching operating systems is not a task to be undertaken lightly or without serious consideration and anyone who makes the switch flippantly because of some glamorous desktop is an idiot.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Not buying it
by waynej on Wed 11th Jun 2008 10:28 UTC in reply to "Not buying it"
waynej Member since:
2007-07-04

You're totally right.

This fixation on eye-candy has been a distraction for too long. Yes, it's impressive but ultimately pointless. If the underpinnings of Compriz, beryl, etc can be used to truly enhance the users experience, productivity, etc great. But if the technology is merely to make something look good what does it truly bring to the table.

While I prefer KDE, I do like and appreciate Gnome's clean, clear look but I would never swith based on looks - functionality is key.

Better to have something functionally excellent and add eye-candy later, than to compromise functionality to get eye-candy in the first place and spend forever trying to get the functionality you need. (hope that came out properly)

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Not buying it
by MaxKlokan on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:03 UTC in reply to "RE: Not buying it"
MaxKlokan Member since:
2007-12-04

...But if the technology is merely to make something look good what does it truly bring to the table...

Beauty?
Pleasure?
I agree with you that functionality is more important and it has higher priority for me too. But if you can add beauty to a functional system, what's wrong with it? Beauty is valuable, in my eyes.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Not buying it
by l3v1 on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:31 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not buying it"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

Beauty is valuable


True. Yet, beauty can also come from the inside, not just from the looks. If anywhere, people around here should value that more than just the looks. Also, with "beauty" in the guts the beauty of the looks comes easier.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Not buying it
by danieldk on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:26 UTC in reply to "RE: Not buying it"
danieldk Member since:
2005-11-18

This fixation on eye-candy has been a distraction for too long. Yes, it's impressive but ultimately pointless.


If it is purely eye candy, I agree. But the platform itself is not developing rapidly as well. I am not an Apple fanboy (although I do have an OS X machine), but I'd love to have something equivalent (and stable) to the Core technologies. They make it easy to create stunning applications.

The emphasis should change from the desktop as a bunch of applications to a full platform. Of course, GNOME provides platform libraries, but it is nowhere the same experience as e.g. OS X or possibly KDE 4 (I haven't looked at it in detail yet).

Edited 2008-06-11 13:27 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Not buying it
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 11th Jun 2008 16:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Not buying it"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

This fixation on eye-candy has been a distraction for too long.


Except going "wow" has absolutely nothing to do with flashy effects. I've never had a flashy effect that made me go "wow". What does make me go "wow" is a really nice feature that requires major backend work.

When I first loaded up Mac OS X Tiger, the ONE thing that made me go "wow" was hitting Apple+space, entering "Saf", and instantly see "Safari" as the first hit, allowing me to press enter and load the app. THAT made me go "wow", and Apple was the first to deliver that. By the time GNOME and the others got similar technology, it no longer made go "wow" - it made me go "finally! Why did that take them so god damn long?"

Another one of those things is Quicklook in Leopard. Being able to simply hit the spacebar to get an instant live preview of EVERYthing, with full content, without ever opening an application, is what makes me go "wow". And I just KNOW that a few releases from now GNOME will implement something similar and all I will think is "finally!"

And that's the problem right there with GNOME. It never makes me go "wow, what a geat new feature!" - there's just a lot of "finally" moments.

In other words, GNOME isn't delivering any exciting features. And no, that doesn't mean flashy effects (although some effects are useful, like Expose, which I can no longer live without). GNOME is a whole lot of "me too!", but never the trendsetter that comes up with truly useful new features. And that needs to change in order for GNOME to grow.

The GNOME project knew that back in the 1.x days, Apple knew it during the OS8 days, and the KDE guys knew it during the 3.x days. I hope that starting today, GNOME will start to realise it too.

Reply Score: 7

RE[3]: Not buying it
by OlympicSoftworks on Wed 11th Jun 2008 18:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Not buying it"
OlympicSoftworks Member since:
2008-06-11

Ok, lets look at the funcionality that underlies the two things you mention. Quicklook. In order for this to work an engine that understands how to use the various file types needs to be loaded at all times. This is bloat.

While it may be nice to have a switch for an 'enhanced mode' for beefy machines that have the extra memory they want to dedicate to fluff like this but it would likely get limited tracktion and therefore limited use and therefore limited devs working on it. There are lots of nice ideas that Apple can implement because they sold you the hardware you are running the software on and can therefore expect you to have the resources to allow implementation of fluff like this.

Part of my organization's efforts is recylcing older computers to give to homes that can't afford a new machine. We use of course GNU/Linux, Ubuntu specifically, and we give weekly training meetings to help retrain folks to use their new computers. Many if not most of these machines are slower and don't have robust memory or hard drive space, they run GNU/Linux quite well would choke on this kind of added burden.

And for Expose it's funcionality seems to be present in
Compiz/Fusion. Granted it took a while to make it to our neck of the woods, mainly because of video driver quality lagging for so long. That is no longer a concern however as we have enough purchasing power to entice the hardware guys to work with us now. I noticed this on wikipedia when I looked up Expose:

>Exposé makes extensive use of undocumented features of the Core Graphics framework.

So typical of proprietary offerings, I guess even Apple is not above this.

These features are kinda cool. I myself don't use Compiz/Fusion even though my machine is more then capable, GNU/Linux has had for a very long time now the idea of virtual desktops. I pretty much organize my work onto several of these and life is good.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Not buying it
by MORB on Thu 12th Jun 2008 15:25 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Not buying it"
MORB Member since:
2005-07-06

Ok, lets look at the funcionality that underlies the two things you mention. Quicklook. In order for this to work an engine that understands how to use the various file types needs to be loaded at all times. This is bloat.


No, it isn't. If it's never queried or accessed most of the time, it'll just be swapped away on the harddisk.

As for why gnome fails from a development point of view, well, it's built on gtk and glib, which are horrible c-based implementations of oo-programming and containers, using macros and all kind of other disgusting shit.
This is bound to make for some shaky, pointlessly complicated and difficult to maintain foundations.

Before some clown tells me that the end result is the same and that it's a matter of taste, it's not.
There's no notion of type safety in C, there's no notion of scoped resource allocation (which forces you to write redundant cleanup code for all exit path of your functions, which mean that you can get it wrong, omit stuff etc), and you essentially have to learn a bunch of gtk-specific idioms to accomplish things that can be expressed in a standardized way in other languages.

There no single good reason to do OO programming with a non-OO language in this day and age.
It's just unecessary complication, and unecessary complexity is the enemy of efficiency and ease of maintenance.

The "language bindings are easier to write for c" argument is quite bogus as well, as demonstrated by the amount of bindings existing for Qt and KDE.

Reply Score: 5

RE[5]: Not buying it
by OlympicSoftworks on Thu 12th Jun 2008 17:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Not buying it"
OlympicSoftworks Member since:
2008-06-11

Granted, if written correctly things like these can be pushed out to the swap and take up space there instead. It's still bloat. Features like Quicklook, and hovering over a music file to play it are really something that needs to be thought about twice before implementing into a profissional desktop interface imho. They create more code that is rarely used and simply offers more maintenance time to keep working for limited returns.

Gnome is liked by those that like it because it is very straightforward and easy to use. Nothing ambiguous about it. I personally use it simply for the fact that it is more stable then KDE in my use, part of that is the fact that there is so much that KDE does it makes maintenance all that much more of an issue. I personally like the way KDE handles multiple monitors much better then the GNOME way, but I have gotten into the habit of the virtual desktops now and I get the same funcionality that way for the moment.

If Gnome is to grow, it should grow in usefull ways that enhance what it does best; offer a clean looking visual environment that doesn't get in anybodies way. Adding better support for multiple monitors and/or viewports is good, but that is all back end stuff.

And your point of how the something as modern as GNOME is written in plain C is very well taken, and is really what I think the crux of the matter is here for most of these folks posting. It is more difficult to add a feature to GNOME directly, or write an app with GTK then it needs to be. And with precious volunteer dev time being spent working around coding issues, it's no wonder adding things is slow going.

If an revolution is to occur, a fork to take the GNOME codebase fully into C++ would be a worthy project and the best way to move forward. A year later and the ap could be fully re-written. Once something is working it pretty much just keeps working in true OO languages, that is why they are used.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Not buying it - are you still using TWM?
by jabbotts on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:22 UTC in reply to "Not buying it"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I assume your then using TWM predominantly? I kinda found it limiting and for technical reasons I had to move on through a few different desktops over the years. My prefered has plenty of bling but it's the other advantages that keep me from changing.

The only exception for me has been Enlightnment which was initially for the bling but "wholes" through window frames where the mouse click actually hits the window behind is mind-blowing to someone who grew up on MS interfaces.

Having been a modder in the day, once you've made you or your friends machine as pretty as you can, you enjoy it. Maybe it lasts a week, maybe a month or maybe until your next clean install. Maybe you move on to doing the case. For the modding croud it's expression more about creating the thing than the final presentation.

What get's me is the people who claim to be hard core modders but won't touch anything but windows (yeah, cause you can really customize that out the wazoo huh..). Those are generally the Gamer primary Modder secondary though and they are perfectly happy that way.

Reply Score: 5

tupp Member since:
2006-11-12

The only exception for me has been Enlightnment which was initially for the bling but "wholes" through window frames where the mouse click actually hits the window behind is mind-blowing to someone who grew up on MS interfaces.

This is the first time I have ever seen someone mention this amazing usability benefit of window borders with transparent sections. The ability to click through these sections is very useful when one has a small screen with windows maximized.

Enlightenment is not the only WM to offer this capability. I enjoyed it for years in the Golem WM, but I am pretty sure that this capability is automatic in any of the other WMs that allow configurable,transparent window borders: Sawfish, Oroborus, IceWM, PekWM, Openbox, etc.

By the way, this capability can be just as "mind blowing" to someone who grew up on Mac interfaces as it is for some one who learned on MS interfaces. However, it usually takes the Mac users much longer to make such a realization.


What get's me is the people who claim to be hard core modders but won't touch anything but windows (yeah, cause you can really customize that out the wazoo huh..).

I am fairly sure that now there are some fancy, highly configurable WMs that run natively on Windows (and OSX, too).

Edited 2008-06-13 16:55 UTC

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Hehe.. True, proper transparency has come to most modern WM. Enlightenment was around Mandriva 9 or so for me and At the time it was the most advanced and theme able WM I was aware of; I wasn’t aware of much back then. GNOME and KDE where far off my radar though I enabled KDE support in E by habit until I just switched over to KDE fully (still can't break my Eterm habit though). It was the first and only WM I’ve chosen because of pretty themes though I found functional advantages like the click-through bit and smaller screen space needed for Eterm. These days KDE does what I need but I watch Enlightenments progress too.

For alternative WM; I’ve heard of a few for Windows but haven’t bothered mucking with IE replacements since my long ago University days when I had the time for it. Sadly, I can’t even remember the name of that replacement other than it required editing the system INI. I’ve heard tell of others available at reasonable pricing. Even then, I’ve never seen one that integrates as seamlessly with Windows back end; does MS officially support any of them or are they still hack-arounds?

I think there’s less chance of finding WM replacements for osX due to Apples preference to keep the complete hardware/software package closely controlled. I haven’t even considered looking previously since the osX manager does it’s job very well and I’m past my theme modding days. We will have to see though if the rumors of osX being released under an OSS license continue; I hear they’ve released source for some of the Apple icing already.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Not buying it
by ephracis on Wed 11th Jun 2008 15:30 UTC in reply to "Not buying it"
ephracis Member since:
2007-09-23

Revolutuion != More bling, and I don't think that anyone has ever said "we need to move Gnome to 3.0 for one reason: we need to make it more flashy".

What does major versions mean for Gnome? What does minor versions mean? API and ABI compability maybe?

Perhaps the purpose of a Gnome 3 would not be to make a more flashy desktop but to make a more functional desktop?

I think so.

Please... *sigh*

Reply Score: 3

Disagree
by J.R. on Wed 11th Jun 2008 10:24 UTC
J.R.
Member since:
2007-07-25

Although I cant argue with the fact that Gnome is less flashy than Vista, OSX, and now KDE4, this is why I am using it! As someone suggested in a previous comment here, users needs to look at Gnome and say "I want that", but I DO NOT want bells and whistles, animations and "3D" everywhere. I use Gnome exactly because its clean without all that stuff, and I suspect I am not the only one! As an example, although I have seen a lot of people be impressed by compiz and desktop effects in Gnome I have also seen people be disgusted by it...people are different, and if every DE (including Vista and OSX) is going down the same path, then a lot of us are going to have a problem finding a DE that suits our taste!

If KDE4 has a feature, why implement the same in Gnome? Why don't let Gnome choose a different path. There is nothing wrong in using KDE4 if it has the features you want!

Edited 2008-06-11 10:27 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Disagree
by dagw on Wed 11th Jun 2008 11:57 UTC in reply to "Disagree"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

There are other things than wobbly windows that can make people go "I want that". Things like new and effective ways to manage all your various data or neat inter-app communication tricks that improves your work flow. I don't know what these would be, but if someone came up with something that worked and showed me video demoing them, I and many others would probably go "WOW, I want that" despite there not being a single 3d effect anywhere in sight.

In fact I'm considering switching from GNOME to KDE 4.1 (or 4.2 depending on how 4.1 turns out) despite all their flashy silliness, simply because some of their back end technology looks genuinely useful.

Reply Score: 7

Change for the sake of change
by jaylaa on Wed 11th Jun 2008 11:14 UTC
jaylaa
Member since:
2006-01-17

Maybe people who think Gnome needs a revolutionary change should think about what they want changed and do something about it. It's likely that the change would still be possible without requiring a 3.0 release.

Note that there will be no 3.0 until a API break is needed.
http://live.gnome.org/ThreePointZero

I like the idea of a hackers' sandbox where radical ideas can be tried. But the ideas in that blog kind of scare me. Gnome is finally used by many people and companies, and here are calls to totally change everything just because.

Reply Score: 5

I don't know but...
by Bully on Wed 11th Jun 2008 11:36 UTC
Bully
Member since:
2006-04-07

Im not even using linux. so what do i care.. or know.
But i would think the only thing to focus on for projects like gnome is being as responsive as posible and as little bugs as posible.
Adding 'revolutionair' new features will not do that.

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Features are not always related to the display and effects. Sometimes, features refers to stuff under the hood.

A "revolutionair" feature in the back end that greatly improves data management but does not effect graphic display could very easily improve responsiveness and usability. I think someone gave the examples of managing data in memory between programs and similar functions. Sometimes it's better to build a new framework rather than do a horrid overhaul on part of the old framwork to enable a new feature.

Reply Score: 3

Bully Member since:
2006-04-07

That's true i guess. I don't think that's what most have in mind when they think about new features though.

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Very true, the discussion has had a few people focusing on "features" as only the visual changes and then only effects rather than potential layouts that may improve use. I thought it was worth expanding the definition scope.

Reply Score: 2

v Just rewrite whole Gnome
by Karitku on Wed 11th Jun 2008 12:35 UTC
RE: Just rewrite whole Gnome
by SlackerJack on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:00 UTC in reply to "Just rewrite whole Gnome"
SlackerJack Member since:
2005-11-12

Must be hard, it's having the time and resources to do it, I asked a Qt dev for svg blur and he said they didn't have noone or time to do it, there's your answer.

Reply Score: 3

now what?
by Kwitschibo on Wed 11th Jun 2008 13:39 UTC
Kwitschibo
Member since:
2006-01-17

I can tell you... gnome should still maintain a very stable and usable desktop enviroment. Thats the goal. And such a goal is never reached cause you get still a little evolution with every new version. I hope that the gnome devs do not make the same misstakes like the kde devs.

Reply Score: 1

Its all about eye candy....
by dindin on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:03 UTC
dindin
Member since:
2006-03-29

Whether you like it or not, the looks are one of the main attractions. Nop. Looks are every thing - granted must be of practical value. How many people bought an iPhone because it made better quality voice calls than other cell phones or had bells and whistles others could not live without?

Gnome should focus on new models of application development and functional enablement. Cross platform is going to be very critical. Is the GTK OS X port ready yet? (No wonder VLC went to Qt - not that they are going to use it in OS X).

The one thing I would welcome (in all tool kits) is the removal of of standard icons. Dumb idea. Why the hell did everyone copy windows for this one?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Its all about eye candy....
by dagw on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:22 UTC in reply to "Its all about eye candy...."
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

How many people bought an iPhone because it made better quality voice calls than other cell phones or had bells and whistles others could not live without?

Well to be fair, most people who bought an iPhone did so for the features, as well as its looks. What they bought was some of the best web browsing, voice mail and media playback you could get on a cell phone all wrapped in a very sexy easy to use package. Had apple just had the features or just the sexy package they wouldn't have sold anywhere near as well as they did.

People may come for the eye candy, but they stay for the features.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Its all about eye candy....
by TLZ_ on Thu 12th Jun 2008 07:37 UTC in reply to "Its all about eye candy...."
TLZ_ Member since:
2007-02-05

"How many people bought an iPhone because it made better quality voice calls than other cell phones..."

My experience from being on the phone when the other end is using iPhone and from what I've heard from iPhone users is that the sound quality of it is quite sub-standard when using the handset. (Handfree gives quite ok sound though.)

I completeley agree regarding native OS X, GTK really need this.

Reply Score: 1

Maintenance != Decadence
by renox on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:04 UTC
renox
Member since:
2005-07-06

I disagree with the author that maintenance is the same as decadence: evolution instead of perpetual revolution is a better way to improve a desktop..

That said, there are evolutive change which could bring huge advantage to Gnome if they were able to do those things:
- responsiveness and boot time: this is not normal that desktops feels so sluggish compared to what BeOS provided a long time ago, the problem of course is that it's a 'systemic/thousand cuts' issue so it's very hard to fix.

- multitab GUIs should be improved so that:
+ any tab cannot freeze the main window
+ there should be a way to show resource usage of each tab so that you can know which tab use 99% of the CPU (perhaps by providing a drop down view of all the tab as in Opera and adding CPU and memory usage for each tab) and close it.

- global undo-ability and data persistence: this is very important for users to be able to try whatever they want knowing that 1)they can always undo their action, 2)and even in the case of a crash they won't loose data.

Those are not "sexy GUI/new feature" things, so it's very unlikely that this will happen but this would truly improve the usability of a desktop.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Maintenance != Decadence
by superstoned on Wed 11th Jun 2008 17:58 UTC in reply to "Maintenance != Decadence"
superstoned Member since:
2005-07-07

I suspect these things would require major work, in other words, not something you'd want to do evolutionary. Unless you bolt it upon the current code, making it harder to understand & debug.

That's why KDE did 4.0 - big jump needed to do these kind of things. Have you seen the performance difference, to name just one thing?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Maintenance != Decadence
by OlympicSoftworks on Wed 11th Jun 2008 19:09 UTC in reply to "Maintenance != Decadence"
OlympicSoftworks Member since:
2008-06-11

Renox, you have the idea:

>evolution instead of perpetual revolution is a better way to improve a desktop..

Responsiveness is important, but I think this is more a function of the underlying system and what it's doing at any given time. A desktop is just a GUI shell after all. That said, the fine tuning of code is paramount to any project.

But what I don't agree with specifically are requests for multitab GUIs. I have seen this argument before and I counter with virtual desktops. We already have them, they are stable, and are built into the desktop at a very low level. I am not trolling, you articulated well enough to maybe shed more light on how this would be useful in light of us already having multiple work spaces.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Maintenance != Decadence
by renox on Wed 11th Jun 2008 21:40 UTC in reply to "RE: Maintenance != Decadence"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

Maybe my text was unclear, with multitab GUI in fact I mean multi-tab GUI applications like Firefox, Konqueror,etc which use multitab..

The problem is that currently all these applications use differently the multitab which lacks coherency and lacks feature, so IMHO there could be a 'model application'/canvas that all the multi-tab application would be encourage to use to improve coherency..

Reply Score: 2

v ...
by Hiev on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:18 UTC
Please not another Vista
by MiRoCK on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:24 UTC
MiRoCK
Member since:
2006-09-14

I have used Gnome more so than KDE. While KDE offers useful tools and sets for getting the job done, Gnome has always just got the job done period. The small changes to the desktop environment has been good but with all the talk of needing a "exciting" change scares me into thinking another Vista castastrophe will happen.

The point with moving to Linux for me was to get rid of the bloat and the useless "eye candy". The Gnome community could look at ICEwm or Enlightenment for a direction and take the mindset that sometimes LESS IS MORE.

I am a musician who using 64 studio for recording and having less running is more for me. Having less eye candy is more productive. I stick with Gnome because it offers just enough to balance that factor out...Just the way it is!

Reply Score: 2

GNOME is a Shell
by byrc on Wed 11th Jun 2008 14:32 UTC
byrc
Member since:
2006-02-18

Gnome /can/ be advanced and beautiful and featureful, all GNOME itself needs to do is allow for other to build against it. IMO, the problem with KDE has been the fact that everything is made by the people of KDE, and third party apps sometimes have issues integrating with KDE. GNOME, on the other hand, has always been very flexible and able to accept third party apps into its environment.

My GNOME desktop is beautiful. I have compiz-fusion runnning my pretty effects, avant for my docklike launcher. Emerald for my pretty windows... Etc.

My point is, instead of trying to be a super-model from the start, GNOME should just walk outside naked and say, "here I am, now make me what you want of me." This sort of mind-set allows distros to tweak GNOME and add beauty to the plain shell that exists already.

Reply Score: 1

RE: GNOME is a Shell
by segedunum on Wed 11th Jun 2008 18:41 UTC in reply to "GNOME is a Shell"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

IMO, the problem with KDE has been the fact that everything is made by the people of KDE, and third party apps sometimes have issues integrating with KDE. GNOME, on the other hand, has always been very flexible and able to accept third party apps into its environment.

I hope you have some examples to back that up, because cross-desktop application integration is all one-way traffic at the moment - from the KDE and Qt side. KDE developers came up with QtGTK so that GTK applications inherited the theme, look and feel of the native Qt and KDE environment, and Trolltech has recently done some work so that Qt applications inherit the Gnome look and feel under Gnome.

The work from the Gnome and GTK side has, thus far, been very non-existent, nevermind disappointing. The extent of integration of 'third party apps' has been to rewrite at least the front-end of another application in GTK. All the Bugzilla conversations I've seen, amongst other things, about better integration of Qt, KDE and applications written with 'other' toolkits has been met with a pretty steadfast blow-off.

Reply Score: 6

renox Member since:
2005-07-06

GNOME went on because enough developers liked GNOME, that's all, and what's the relevance with the current article?
None! So I consider your post as a troll..

Reply Score: 3

My limited experience
by Yamin on Wed 11th Jun 2008 15:56 UTC
Yamin
Member since:
2006-01-10

I've gotten Ubuntu, which uses gnome desktop by default. I've tried kubuntu and others and there are a few things I've noticed.

1. The Gnome desktop itself is fine. I like the clean look. It's simple.

2. Gnome still needs a lot of refinement. For example, editing menu items is not as simple as a right click. In the file manager, when you right click, you can copy...but there is no option to paste...weird. you have to know the kb shortcut or go through the edit menu.

3. This one surprised me a bit. I thought KDE=more flashy so it would take up more memory. Apparently not strangely enough. Gnome is heavier on memory. At least that way my exeperience. Had i known that, I might have went with KDE from the start ;) My laptop is quite old and crippled with a mere 512MB ram.

4. KDE looks a heck of a lot easier to develop for. This is probably due to QT being a professional toolkit. Not to mention their attempt to unify the multimedia architecture. making the programmers job easier. I think that's wonderful from a developers perspective. If I'm thinking long term, this might push KDE over the top if it continues to make developer's lives easier.

This is really where gnome needs to put its emphasis. I hope they don't change the look and feel of gnome. I love it actually. Yet, it certainly is missing a lot of refinement and the developer tools are better with QT/KDE. That is a big one... any wonder what a large part of windows's success is. DEVELOPERS DEVELOPERS DEVELOPERS.

Reply Score: 4

Flashy-ness
by Novan_Leon on Wed 11th Jun 2008 16:48 UTC
Novan_Leon
Member since:
2005-12-07

I don't think "flashiness" necessarily refers to pretty visuals. To me "flashy" for a desktop envinroment to me means ease of use, functionality and features that are innovative, useful and unique. The kind of things that others will eventually copy because users love them so much. This is what Linux needs to pull users from other operating systems... that, and the software.

Reply Score: 1

Weeman
Member since:
2006-03-20

I support huge breaking changes in GNOME and a new GTK+ to be able to introduce flashiness where possible.

I said "able".

It isn't so much that doing something WPF/Clutter-esque as an UI toolkit introduces extreme flashiness or anything by default. But it's nice to have flexibility. What one considers moronic graphical topping is another's productivity enhancement.

Edited 2008-06-11 17:10 UTC

Reply Score: 2

GTK could use better documentation
by atezun on Wed 11th Jun 2008 18:30 UTC
atezun
Member since:
2005-07-06

As someone who is relatively new to development Qt is miles ahead of GTK for jumping into. Possibly this is just my experience, but when I wanted to start developing for Linux I had wanted to start in GTK because I use gnome; however, I soon became frustrated without any easy to find tutorials or easy to understand documentation that gradually introduces the newbie developer to the GTK way of doing things. Qt on the other hand publishes an professionally printed book that does exactly that.

I don't know if GTK needs an API break, but if they made it easy and more welcoming for new developers to not only learn GTK once they've gotten the hang of programming, but learn to program their first GUI apps in GTK, Gnome might get the fresh ideas and innovation that some have been craving. Sometimes all you need is a bit of fresh blood.

Edited 2008-06-11 18:31 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Fix X and Gtk+, gnome itslef is fine
by Almindor on Wed 11th Jun 2008 20:41 UTC
Almindor
Member since:
2006-01-16

I've used both Gnome and KDE, Qt and Gtk+ and programmed in both toolkits.

I like gnome because of it's "clean" apps. They always have only exactly the required minimum of clutter in them, something KDE (no flame intended, this is IMHO) can't get right with all those useless buttons in each app.

But the underlaying technologies suck. Gtk+ is a shame, it's a horrible piece of junk. X isn't best either, but at least it has the excuse of age.

Seriously, you need to get Gtk+ drawing via hardware. Yes I know this isn't just a Gtk+ issue, but Gtk+ is the turtle of widgetsets, it's slow, it's ugly and illogical to use (at least on the C API level).

I think they should concentrate there. I'd love a gtk3.0 with backwards compat module (like Qt has), but with fresh new main API (can be C, C is fine, it's cross-language, easily adaptable, but it has to be cleaner, the "quasi" inheritance they have now is illogical and incomplete).

Edited 2008-06-11 20:42 UTC

Reply Score: 7

diegoviola Member since:
2006-08-15

X is fine, and it's progressing nicely.

You clearly have no clue of what you are talking about.

Reply Score: 2

Almindor Member since:
2006-01-16

Hmm you must've missed the whole X article a few blocks below. But even if we skip that, X is a fossil which should have died ages ago. I mean come on, manual xorg.conf in 21st century? Sure, it's irrelevant in the big picture but the thing is just getting rewritten over and over.

Reply Score: 2

sakeniwefu Member since:
2008-02-26

X is fine, and it's progressing nicely.

If you are still using a computer from 1984. Do you know Quartz? Do you seriously think X is anywhere near that? Apple obviously didn't think so.

"I'll give you my xclock when you take it from my cold, dead hands"
Okay boy. Calm down.

Reply Score: 1

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

X is fine, and it's progressing nicely.

X is progressing, but that's about it:

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=xserver_141&num=...

It's a very large, old and incoherent codebase that could do with a bit of revolution, and even evolution, itself.

You clearly have no clue of what you are talking about.

Hmmmmmmmmm.

Reply Score: 2

stabbyjones Member since:
2008-04-15

X is an absolute pain and is having serious issues progressing, (especially if you read two articles below.)

for me GNOME is my favourite desktop. i have no problems using compiz for my effects or not, the option is there.

GNOME doesn't need a revolution or more eye candy, it needs a better base to keep evolving the desktop GNOME users love. While i enjoy using GNOME as my default desktop i don't think GTK in it's current state has the legs.

Reply Score: 1

Coral Snake Member since:
2005-07-07

The problem with radically improving GTK+ is that it is really NOT GNOME's library. It was originally (and still is) the GUI library for the GIMP graphics application and that app has priority over GNOME where GTK+ development is concerned.

My Answer to this problem therefore would be to build GMOME 3 on another LGPL library if GNOME wants to keep
to a F/OSS + Prporietary closed source ecosystem.

Possibilities might be the X-11 only version of wxWidgets or FLTK 2. (Both of these libraries use their own widget set ala QT rather than GTK+ but still have GTK+'s LGPL status but in an even more liberal form that allows static linking in proprietary software.)

Reply Score: 2

Gnome is fine as it is.
by hussam on Thu 12th Jun 2008 00:09 UTC
hussam
Member since:
2006-08-17

You guys aren't going to like this but I think Gnome should steer away from so called "future visions".

Instead they should focus on:
- Continuing to Fix bugs and improve performance.
- Removing libgnomeui, libgnomeprint(ui) and libgnomecanvas.
- Port the rest of the applications to gio/gvfs.

New small usability enhancements are however welcome as long as it is nothing groundbreaking.

Reply Score: 2

My 2cents Worth
by kaiwai on Thu 12th Jun 2008 03:57 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

1) Future languages, I'm not a language expert, but I do feel that if a language is going to be chosen - it has to be one with mass appeal, accessible to new comers, and most importantly - not riddled with patents to the point that things could get nasty at a later date.

I know some people will giggle at this - but what about Objective-C 2.0?

2) Before falling into the trap of excitement; I have a feeling that the debate seems to be more about having a grand vision rather than necessarily adding more eye candy. If there is a target to move towards or atleast some sort of vision, then programmers will have the excitement and buzz of moving towards that goal.

3) There needs to be a defining line between what should be part of the desktop - and what should sit under the title 'applications for the GNOME desktop'. The last thing I want to see is a situation like there is with KDE where there are multiple versions of each tool. Although nitpicking, one really does need to define what is the bare bones desktop.

4) GTK+ needs improvement just like Xorg, and like Xorg it is an unsexy foundation component of an operating system. There is really no way to make a toolkit sexy - its like trying to make a spanner sexy, its not going to happen. This is where it is necessary for vendors such as Red Hat, Sun, HP, IBM, Novell and numerous others to each dedicate something like 5 full rime programmers each to basically live, breath and eat GTK+ all day and night.

5) In its current form, I don't think there is actually too much wrong with GNOME; sure, it doesn't set the world alight in terms of eye candy or sexiness, but like the first poster, the desktop is merely a springboard for me to load my applications. There has to be enough features to make the desktop useful but not too much as to make it dominating to the point of overwhelming the user.

Reply Score: 2

I support a clean break....
by obsidian on Thu 12th Jun 2008 09:02 UTC
obsidian
Member since:
2007-05-12

... and by that, I mean a *complete* break.

The person a few posts back who said that Gnome is limited because it uses Gimp's toolkit was exactly
right!

Big difference - Qt (which KDE uses) is a **generic** toolkit. It was not built for just *one* application.

Gtk, on the other hand, *was*. It was originally built for the Gimp. The Gnome devs have done pretty well in adapting it for Gnome, but the point remains -
Gtk is now being asked to do tasks that it wasn't designed to do. An example? Theming. Try doing that in Gtk. Shouldn't a graphical toolkit be able to do that?
( and yes, I know the G in Gtk means Gimp, not Graphical. )

I will quote Eric S. Raymond and his comment on Perl (he was comparing it with Python at the time) -

"Perl shows all the signs of a language that has reached the limits of its functional envelope".
- Eric S. Raymond

*Exactly the same thing* can be aid for Gtk (as it relates to Gnome). I am fine with it still being used for Gimp - that's what it was designed for. It is its use for Gnome that I am questioning.

Gtk has done sterling service in the past for Gnome, but now it's surely time for Gnome to adopt a more generic toolkit. A toolkit that is truly capable of doing the tasks that Gnome demands of it, now and in the future.

Edited 2008-06-12 09:22 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Beauty, speed and productivity
by darrelljon on Thu 12th Jun 2008 11:11 UTC
darrelljon
Member since:
2008-05-29

OSNews readers seem to want a desktop environment with varying combinations of three features; beauty, speed and productivity. A decent desktop environment needs at least two of these. For me, GNOME's strength is only simplicity. KDE has productivity and beauty. Enlightenment has speed and beauty. IceWM has speed and productivity.

The downfall of focusing on beauty is sacrificing both speed and productivity as in the case of Vista. Look up Brutal File Manager for a particularly bad example of the current trend for 3D desktops. GNOME needs to avoid this pitfall if it wants to focus on beauty as well as simplicity.

Reply Score: 1