Linked by Howard Fosdick on Sat 7th Jun 2014 00:53 UTC
Xfce Over the past several years, mobile devices have greatly influenced user interfaces. That's great for handheld users but leaves those of us who rely on laptops and desktops in the lurch. Windows 8, Ubuntu Unity, and GNOME have all radically changed in ways that leave personal computer users scratching their heads.

One user interface completely avoided this controversy: Xfce. This review takes a quick look at Xfce today. Who is this product for? Who should pass it by?
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Who's definition of "traditional"
by MacMan on Sat 7th Jun 2014 04:11 UTC
MacMan
Member since:
2006-11-19

I find it really annoying how a lot of people use the word "traditional" to refer to the Windows95 user interface.

Well, here's some shocking news:

WINDOWS 95 WAS NOT THE FIRST OPERATING SYSTEM OF EVERYONE ON THE THE PLANET.

Some of us consider "traditional" to be SunView or Indigo Magic Desktop (SGI), which, hello, look nothing like Windows 95.

To me, the Windows95 interface is about as alien as it gets as I've never had to use one for any length of time.

Reply Score: 5

MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

FYI, my primary desktops happen to be Window Maker on Ubuntu 13.04 and OSX 10.6.

WindowMaker is my interpretation of traditional as it works like NeXT. I've been using WindowMaker since the late 90's.

Edited 2014-06-07 04:15 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

windowmaker on my dev machines but xfce on my laptops. I just use my dev box, others also use the laptops.

Reply Parent Score: 2

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

To me, the Windows95 interface is about as alien as it gets as I've never had to use one for any length of time.


You most likely belong in a minority there. Definitions such as this always go with the majorities, not the minorities, and it's pointless to get all upset about that.

Reply Parent Score: 14

project_2501 Member since:
2006-03-20

As someone with experience of said non-western rich countries, I can tell you with authority that no-one wants unstable, half-polished, unpredictably changing, desktops that don't work on half the hardware.

What they want is something that works. Cheap and not working is not acceptible. It is condescending to think that poor non-westerners can put up with broken unstable barely supported technology.

Look at Nokia. Closed. But solid, and cost-effective.

If you are right - what is the uptake of OSS desktops in that world? Almost zilch. The market has spoken.

Bottom line: "they" which includes "me", will take closed but working, over broken but "free".

Reply Parent Score: -1

MacMan Member since:
2006-11-19

Yup, I do realize that I'm in the minority.

However, this is OSnews where one would expect that users here have an interest in things not Microsoft.

I was just bringing up the point that words like traditional, conventional, etc should not automatically be inferred to mean "looks like Windows95".

In some parts of the galaxy, drinking warm fish juice for breakfast is considered traditional (5 pts to whoever can identify this place). I for one prefer my fish juice cold.

Reply Parent Score: 2

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

I find it really annoying how a lot of people use the word "traditional" to refer to the Windows95 user interface.


When I think of 'traditional' desktops, I think of a desktop background that you can put icons on, some sort of taskbar/dock, a recycle bin, etc. I'm not sure if Win95 was the first to put all of these elements together, but I think it was the first widespread 'mainstream' desktop environment that most can identify with. So, I think referring to it as the defacto 'traditional' desktop is pretty accurate, since most of us have been using it for nearly 20 years.

Reply Parent Score: 10

puenktchen Member since:
2007-07-27

"I find it really annoying how a lot of people use the word "traditional" to refer to the Windows95 user interface.


When I think of 'traditional' desktops, I think of a desktop background that you can put icons on ..
"

Yes - and without a "Start Menu" - like LisaOS, MacOS, GEM, TOS, AmigaOS, Nextstep, RiscOS, Windows before 95, OS2 - everyone who used a GUI before 1995 still knows how a traditional GUI looked like for more than ten years before MS screwed it up.


On Topic: I still always liked Xfce

Edited 2014-06-07 10:17 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Its traditional, not because it was first, but because it was so popular with so many people for so long.

Reply Parent Score: 5

gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

To me, the Windows95 interface is about as alien as it gets as I've never had to use one for any length of time.

For me, if a desktop can't tile and/or doesn't come with dmenu, then it may as well be toilet paper. The whole "traditional" clicky-clicky desktop is beyond me.

Thing is, we're a minority. No one gives a toss about us, and they really shouldn't. We just whine too much for our own good, to be frank.

Edited 2014-06-07 18:31 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

WIMP: Windows, Icons, Menus, Pointer. It's older than Windows 95, it's even older than the Mac. It goes all the way back to Xerox PARC, where both Microsoft and Apple got inspiration for their first mouse-driven interfaces.

That's not so say minimalism and non-standard interfaces are bad things; I've found a happy medium between minimalism and features in Openbox, but it's not for everyone.

Reply Parent Score: 4

SeeM Member since:
2011-09-10

Some of us consider "traditional" to be SunView or Indigo Magic Desktop (SGI), which, hello, look nothing like Windows 95.

To me, the Windows95 interface is about as alien as it gets as I've never had to use one for any length of time.


While I like Win'95 for gaming I always preferred Program Manager over Start menu. Maybe because dos installers don't create start shortcuts anyway.

From this perspective it's Ubuntu Unity that went back to the roots, as it's very similar to Amiga Workbench 3.x, NeXT and older MacOS. I like that inspirations and a fact that a commercial Linux desktop developers saw something outside Windows world. Something that free OSS devs from KDE and older Gnome sadly didn't realize.

Reply Parent Score: 2