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

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 Parent Score: 6

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

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

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 Parent Score: 5

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

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 Parent Score: 3

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

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 Parent Score: 3

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

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 Parent Score: 7

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

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 Parent Score: 2