Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 27th Jul 2012 12:41 UTC
Gnome Honest question. Do you think the GNOME project is as healthy today as it was, say, 4 years ago? Benjamin Otte explains that no, it isn't. GNOME lacks developers, goals, mindshare and users. The situation as he describes it, is a lot more dire than I personally thought.
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Not only Gnome
by Auzy on Sat 28th Jul 2012 22:29 UTC
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It's not only the gnome project. KDE has the same problem too. The problem is 3-fold:

1) The most vocal users in the Linux community are poison to Linux. They think they are helping, but they aren't. They are destroying Linux. Developers cannot make major changes without worrying users will freak out, and they blow tiny stuff out of proportion with glitzy phrases like "DLL hell" or "popup hell".

If a change to an old Linux standard is proposed, they freak out, because they refuse to accept that the standard had a different purpose at the time (like the filesystem hierarchy, which mainly made sense in 1MB HDD drive days). And yes, they are happy to try to destroy the project without any consideration.

Finally, for them, its always "CLI is uber powerful" or "oh,you can do it in bash, its really efficient". CLI isn't THAT efficient, and I've seen a Linux guru trash their home directory once with "rm -rf . /DIR". If it can be done by CLI, apparently, any GUI addition is "bloat".

2) I've noticed that on platforms like iOS or Android, users happily donate for the parts of a project which has been done. On Linux however, users only donate if they feel that the money will be used well in the future. Since the future is always uncertain, users rarely donate. I make more money in a week than KDE or Gnome make in some months..

3) Because there are barely any donations , projects can afford very few full time developers, and can't reward developers in any way. Those who love programming, probably have a programming job and often are too tired to go home to code. Those who are hobbyist, don't have much time available. I'm not saying sell out, but, with more donations, a lot more could be accomplished, and developers could stop working for proprietary companies.

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