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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The desktop is only a mean, not an end
by another_sam on Fri 27th Jul 2012 21:24 UTC
another_sam
Member since:
2009-08-19

I want the desktop to access folders and files. To configure my printer. To configure my wifi. And that's about it. The rest of the time the desktop should simply get out of the way.

Wrong reactions from a desktop:

- User: Load yourself.
- Desktop: Give me 800 MB of RAM.

- User: Open this folder.
- Desktop: Let me make a cute animation before, that will eat your battery and make you wait a little bit more.

- User: Delete this file.
- Desktop: Your current virtual user is not the same as the one that owns this file, and I don't know whether you know her password, and I won't ask you for it either. Instead I'll let you know that "You don't have permission to delete this file".

- User: (Decides to type a shortcut but in the process she hesitates, so she) presses the "Alt" key without actually pressing a second key.
- Desktop: Let me take the focus of your app and put it on a unwanted box that, by the way, won't give you access to bookmarks nor files but to the configuration of your screensaver and other utterly irrelevant things.

Now I use LXDE. The best desktop I've used is GNOME 2.32. I think it would be a good idea to release GNOME 2.34 being basically the GNOME 2.32 experience with the GNOME 3 technology.

Edited 2012-07-27 21:30 UTC

Reply Score: 2

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15


- User: Load yourself.
- Desktop: Give me 800 MB of RAM.


If you don't like how much RAM a modern DE uses then you should probably use a non-modern one. There are perfectly valid, technical reasons for using RAM, like e.g. supporting languages and scripts not based on our Roman left-to-right connotation, supporting multiple kinds of input devices and so on.

- User: Open this folder.
- Desktop: Let me make a cute animation before, that will eat your battery and make you wait a little bit more.


Animations are inherently useful as they can steer one's attention to a point of interest, they may provide extra insight into what is happening, and often without an animation you wouldn't even know if the computer is doing what you directed it to do.

- User: Delete this file.
- Desktop: Your current virtual user is not the same as the one that owns this file, and I don't know whether you know her password, and I won't ask you for it either. Instead I'll let you know that "You don't have permission to delete this file".


I agree only partially: the system should ask for the credentials of the owner file/folder so that you can perform tasks on it, but that's all the system should do. It should not let you access stuff that doesn't belong to you and it should make the fact of it not belonging to you so bleeding obvious that even Average Joe would understand it.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Animations are inherently useful as they can steer one's attention to a point of interest, they may provide extra insight into what is happening, and often without an animation you wouldn't even know if the computer is doing what you directed it to do.


On top of that, E17 can do some amazing things including 60fps animations and compositing with very little RAM and CPU usage, and consequently very little impact on the battery compared to static environments. I've put E17 on a 400MHz thin client with 128MB RAM and only the barest of 2D acceleration, and it performed flawlessly.

Reply Parent Score: 2

gilboa Member since:
2005-07-06

- User: Load yourself.
- Desktop: Give me 800 MB of RAM.


Sorry, but I must strongly disagree.
I ran Fedora 17 w/ KDE 4.9rc on a low-end Asus 1201N w/ 2GB RAM, and my idle memory usage (DE only) is under 300MB. (And Fedora is not really "slim").
Granted, Firefox / Chrome increase the memory usage dramatically when you start opening multiple tabs, but all in all, KDE 4.9 uses ~70-100MB more than XFCE 4.10.

- Gilboa

Reply Parent Score: 3