Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 8th Feb 2010 13:23 UTC, submitted by kragil
Graphics, User Interfaces You may remember that back in November last year, I wrote about the lack of a decent Paint.NET-like application for Linux (or, more specifically, for Gtk+ distributions, since Qt has Krita). As it turns out, this compelled Novell employee Jonathan Pobst to code a Paint.NET clone in Gtk+ using Cairo. Version 0.1 is here, and it's remarkably advanced for something so young.
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RE[2]: Linux
by Laurence on Mon 8th Feb 2010 14:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux"
Member since:

I've actually modded you back up, because while it might hurt it's the truth. It's not that we don't have alternatives in the Linux world, but for some reason if you say you're going to clone something from the Windows world it get headlines. Go figure.

Aside OOo, none of the Linux software I use regularly / every day is a Windows clone:
* Dolphin looks and behaves nothing like Windows Explorer
* k3b only look vaguely like Nero in the sense that nearly every other CD burning package also looks just like that.
* Firefox and Opera are cross platform anyway
* Kmail feels nothing like Outlook aside having the generic e-mail layout underpin.
* Eclipse (aside being cross platform) feels nothing like Visual Studio
* Kopete feels very different to MSN aside some very basic generic layouts

People keep harping on about how GNU/Linux copies from Windows / OS X, but in truth there is usually just one or two logical layouts for an application of a specific function and you'll often find that numerous applications of that genre will all mostly follow the same layout regardless of platform (eg every instant messenger has the same 'contact list' and 'chat window' set up. every e-mail client - inc. cloud mail - will have a 'folder list' (inbox et al), 'folder contents' (e-mails) and the 'item preview pane')

And you can hardly complain about "copying" when a gap in a market is filled on one platform because they see a product neatly fill a gap in the market on an opposing platform (which is essentially what's happened here - albeit with a little push from OS News).

If you didn't allow for products to "copy" in that sense, then quite frankly we'd either only end up with one product per genre. eg:
* 1 type of TV set,
* 1 type of MP3 player, etc
or we'd end up with lot's of competing products that are massively incompatible. (eg
* several TV sets that all receive different radio transmission standards,
* different portable music players that have their own patented media that no-other media player can play.

This is why I think the problem mainly arises when details are cloned, like how Microsoft's ribbon bar is considered for OOo. This is because it's the details that sets one product apart from another - the rest is just common sense and usability. eg it makes sense for all TVs to decode the same RF signals and for all portable digital music players to support MP3 (or at least come with software to convert MP3 to a natively supported file format) and it makes usability sense for all instant messengers to have a 'contacts list' and a 'chat' window.

Sorry for the lengthy post by the way.

Reply Parent Score: 10

RE[3]: Linux
by Kroc on Mon 8th Feb 2010 16:56 in reply to "RE[2]: Linux"
Kroc Member since:

All I saw was this:

* File manager
* CD burner
* Web browser
* E-mail client
* IM client

Different names and functions, but it’s all the same stuff. Where’s the real innovation? Where’s the stuff that Windows and Windows software cannot do? Where’s the paradigm shift?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Linux
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 8th Feb 2010 16:58 in reply to "RE[3]: Linux"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:

Different names and functions, but it’s all the same stuff. Where’s the real innovation? Where’s the stuff that Windows and Windows software cannot do? Where’s the paradigm shift?

How about the fact that it's Free? And open?

That's a pretty big feature to me.

As I've said before, Microsoft and Apple don't really innovate, and I personally do not expect FOSS to do so either. They take other people's ideas, and make them marketable.

Edited 2010-02-08 16:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Linux
by Laurence on Mon 8th Feb 2010 17:31 in reply to "RE[3]: Linux"
Laurence Member since:

All I saw was this:

* File manager
* CD burner
* Web browser
* E-mail client
* IM client

Different names and functions, but it’s all the same stuff. Where’s the real innovation? Where’s the stuff that Windows and Windows software cannot do? Where’s the paradigm shift?

I appreciate what you're saying, but I think you've missed the point of my post.

I'm comparing like for like. If I described functions Linux can do that Windows couldn't (or visa versa) then it wouldn't be a very good example of software copying software.

Sure there's real innovation in Windows, OS X and Linux, (though personally I'd argue that we're on a plateau in terms of software innovation*) but I'm talking about everyday bog standard applications that real people use and use regularly.
Sadly, for the most part and in terms of standard applications, the scope for real innovation (and I mean original ideas rather than evolutionary ideas like taking the toolbar and making it prettier - as per the ribbon bar) is limited as GUIs are 2 decades old and usability dictates a certain degree of layout.
Thus, in todays computing, it's usually the details that makes or breaks a least, that's been my observations

* that said the problem with innovation is it always seems so obvious in retrospect yet impossible to think up at the time.

So to summarise (because this post has be a bit of a mess with a number of random thoughts):
* You've missed the point of my post.
* The reason I chose generic applications is because I'm discussing software copying software - thus it would be pointless to compare a Windows application against a Linux application that doesn't perform the same functions.

Edited 2010-02-08 17:33 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[4]: Linux
by No it isnt on Mon 8th Feb 2010 22:35 in reply to "RE[3]: Linux"
No it isnt Member since:

KDE's Plasma desktop is fairly innovative. Not very different, the way you normally would use it, from any other desktop, but in the way it's designed so that the user can relatively easily mold it and adapt it into whatever s/he likes. Considering how radical it actually is, I think the fact that so many (though only a few) people complain so loudly about the "cashew" says a lot about its success: the small, cosmetic niggles irritate some people, but they don't even notice that they use something entirely different.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: Linux
by dagw on Tue 9th Feb 2010 14:36 in reply to "RE[3]: Linux"
dagw Member since:

Writing off anything that isn't a paradigm shift as just "the same stuff" is stupid. Everything in computing is just a slight variation on the same stuff. Where is anything in any OS that you cannot do in any other OS? We're not going to see a anything close to a paradigm shift in desktop computing until augmented reality takes off and even then most people will write it off as a pointless variation on what went before.

As long as something makes one thing I do slightly easier than it was before then that is more than good enough for me.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[4]: Linux
by boldingd on Tue 9th Feb 2010 23:55 in reply to "RE[3]: Linux"
boldingd Member since:

Sometimes, the present paradigm works well enough. Open Source projects certainly do innovate, I dare say as much as Windows or OS X (tho I expect some will disagree). It's just that, sometimes, every now and then, the tools you already have right now are the best solutions for the problems you want to solve.

Edited 2010-02-09 23:58 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2