The completely new theme for Ubuntu 8.04 has been deferred to the following release. The original plan was to have a fresh theme for every long-term-support release, starting with Ubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron. Now it has been decided to put off the redesign until Ubuntu 8.10. Many theme concepts can be found in the Ubuntu Artwork wiki.
New Theme for Ubuntu 8.04 Pushed Back
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2008-02-07 2:47 amsbergman27
AFAIK same thing happened to either Feisty or Gutsy (maybe Edgy?) only it was usplash among other things.
Probably Edgy. Back then Ubuntu’s startup looked like crap, but considerably better crap than the “Now we’re in text, now were in X, Nope! Back to text, X again, then sort of graphical text… now enter your login name and don’t worry about all that scary stuff that didn’t make any sense and that you didn’t understand, even though this was really a typical startup” fare that other distros were serving… and still do serve. (Hi, Fedora!)
Functionality is more important than theme, at this stage, for Ubuntu in their segment of the market.
Doesn’t it make more sense to release a new theme outside of a LTS? That way any possible minor issues that crop up or just minor needed improvements can be applied to the next release (up to and including the LTS).
It makes sense to change the theme in the release after each LTS.
That being said, I am looking forward to the theme update, and I’m sorry to see that I may have to wait a little longer to have it.
Edited 2008-02-07 02:01 UTC
2008-02-07 3:18 amEthyriel
You know what? That’s what I say about this entire release. Why are PulseAudio and Policy Kit being introduced with an LTS release? Things like this should be introduced the first or second release after LTS so they’re more mature by the time LTS rolls around. These supposed long term releases should be almost like an MS service pack. Give me tons of bug fixes, tighter integration and interface tweaks, and minor feature enhancements to existing technologies.
2008-02-07 7:23 amUltraZelda64
Canonical is a for-profit company… so obviously they’re going to add at least some of what you may think is “unnecessary polish” even to a version of their distro that is supposed to be as bug-free as possible (ie. LTS). Anything to make it look even more fresh and flashy to grab more users. As a company.. you really can’t blame them.
Then again, maybe they really do feel that these new features *are* stable enough? Who knows. At least (so far, and hopefully it stays that way) they’re not taking this stuff to the low, low levels that Microsoft does.
Edited 2008-02-07 07:25 UTC
2008-02-07 12:24 pmDeadFishMan
You know what? That’s what I say about this entire release. Why are PulseAudio and Policy Kit being introduced with an LTS release? Things like this should be introduced the first or second release after LTS so they’re more mature by the time LTS rolls around.
What’s funny is that they have no problems dismissing KDE 4 for a Kubuntu LTS release saying that it is too new and possibly unstable for such a thing but they can and will add these technologies that are currently under heavy development into Ubuntu… Different strokes for different folks, indeed!
2008-02-07 12:43 pmcrimsun
It would be interesting to note that “waiting for maturity” was one of several factors in delaying the introduction of PulseAudio in Ubuntu. PA, as implemented in Ubuntu 8.04, is not a wholescale replacement of any sort – more like maintaining compatibility with ESounD for LTS migrations. For instance, there are no plans to use its alsa-lib plugin by default for all users, and the Ubuntu developers and maintainers are still working on integrating PA’s per-stream volume utilities into the desktop.
2008-02-07 5:49 pmtoogreen
I totally second that. I find it very strange that something as simple to change as a THEME needs to be delayed when they are going forward with DRASTIC new technological features such as PolicyKit and PulseAudio… I mean these things haven’t been tested at all on a large scale, how can they be ready for an LTS!?
I don’t mind delaying the theme, but then I would delay the LTS release as well… I think 8.04 should be a normal release, in order to fully test drive the new technologies and architectural changes, as well as apply all the bug fixes, before releasing an LTS.
I’m truly intrigued by these strange decisions. A new theme should be no big deal at all… no?
That thinks that this theme looks a bit like the KDE 4 theme which lacks lines/borders etc under menu bars.
I don’t particular like it myself but hey not a big deal as its easy to change themes.
2008-02-07 2:58 amsbergman27
That thinks that this theme looks a bit like the KDE 4 theme which lacks…
It’s unfinished. They decided not to release an unfinished product. 😉
GOOD!!! Because wasting time on STUPID ****ING CRAP LIKE THEMES… GAH.
Seriously, with all the work there is to do in other areas, do we REALLY NEED another crappy reskinning? ALL of the operating systems seem to be knee deep in this bullshit, and it’s getting outright annoying.
But again, if my 97 year old grandma can figure out winXP, you are ****ING DONE with the UI, leave it the hell alone and instead concentrate on fixing the actual underlying OS.
Edited 2008-02-07 02:54 UTC
2008-02-07 3:34 amHappyGod
Why comment on an article you’re not interested in?
I for one feel that the default UI of an OS is critical to its success. If an OS looks dated it will sell (or in Linux’s case: ‘download’) badly.
Broaden your mind to the fact that others might find something interesting even if you don’t.
No surprise here. The impression the devs are trying to give is that they won’t have the time or resources to implement something as *complicated* as a new theme! The fact of the matter is that this is simply yet another excuse to continue with the hideous and extremely dated crap browns and oranges many of us have come to loath about Ubuntu. Obviously the devs like this look and will stick with it at all costs. Many people don’t remember that an entirely new theme was developed for Ubuntu 6.10 (a.k.a. Edy) but scrapped at the last minute and with very little in the way of a good reason. I for one I’m sick and tired of my default desktop looking like crap…literally. Thankfully, the new Linux Mint 5.0 (a.k.a. Elyssa) will follow shortly after Hardy’s release and you can bet your next paycheck that it will be stunningly elegant and pleasing to use while offering many things that Ubuntu fails to deliver in its default install. Linux Mint is quickly becoming what Ubuntu could be if it dropped its attitude problem. One only needs to see how quickly Linux Mint has climbed the rankings at Distrowatch.com to know people are beginning to prefer it.
Edited 2008-02-07 03:09 UTC
2008-02-07 3:34 amSoulbender
I for one I’m sick and tired of my default desktop looking like crap…literally.
I for one am really sick and tired of push-my-distro-of-choice posts.
Also, Mint looks like crap. When will the devs make it orange and brown like *I* want it?
2008-02-07 11:33 amcmost
“I for one am really sick and tired of push-my-distro-of-choice posts. “
Then you must be on your death bed my friend. I can’t imagine how you manage to look at any tech sites these days, what with Ubuntu being pushed in everyone face on a nearly daily basis. Every fan boi with a blog and an Internet connection seems to feel the need to write an in-depth article every time an Ubuntu dev breaks wind.
2008-02-07 5:10 ammiscz
Creating or even modifying GTK2 theme engine isn’t that simple. It has major impact on speed and stability of every app and it’s a smart choice not to toy with it in LTS release.
Was there even anyone seriously working on that? There was a plan to change theme, some amateur concept works were submitted, some pixmap-based stuff was posted on gnome-look.org, nothing else AFAIK.
2008-02-07 10:48 amgetaceres
There are some GOOD and MATURE engines that are a lot better than the dated Ubuntulooks engine. Murrine and Clearlooks are two examples.
So introducing PulseAudio is possible but taking Clearlooks and changing the colors is a though task. Well, I gess that PulseAudio will cause a lot more bugs than Murrine could have caused.
2008-02-07 11:49 ammiscz
I doubt that taking some engine and painting it in brown/orange was the visual refresh developers had in mind.
2008-02-07 11:54 amgetaceres
As far as I know, they were talking to Cimi (the author of Murrine and the new Clearlooks) to develop a new engine based on Murrine. Then they dropped the idea of the radical change but anyway, using a modern theme like one of those would not harm Ubuntu.
2008-02-07 2:45 pmapoclypse
I see Murrine getting in when they release the .6 verson with transparency. It would be too cool to not put in at that point. Also don’t forget the Aurora theme engine.
2008-02-07 6:05 amnedzweet
“Linux Mint is quickly becoming what Ubuntu could be if it dropped its attitude problem. One only needs to see how quickly Linux Mint has climbed the rankings at Distrowatch.com to know people are beginning to prefer it.”
My god, Gump, you’re a statistical genius! Further evidence: when you put ‘mint’ into Google you get way more hits than ‘ubuntu’. Truly incredible!!
But wait .. when I go to distrowatch and check out the stats for the last 3 months ,or last 30 days, it shows Mint going down and Ubuntu going up. What gives!? Surely its a mistake! Maybe .. maybe .. its just the “attitude” of Mint.
2008-02-07 2:41 pmapoclypse
ummm, the theme used in Edgy was even moew brown, and poo like. I personally did not like it and liked what they developed afterwords instead which was a pinkish brown. They started getting more orange with Feisty.
I just find the art team to be too disorganized compared to other distros. Though I actually like the human theme and they’ve been doing an okay job with the icons.
Like that Gelatin concept. Like all themes though, you would have to try it out for a while.
One thing people have to realize is that Ubuntu really needs to get the theme right the first time it tries. At the moment, when people compare it to Fedora and SuSE, they only compare the ease-of-use, integration, and functionality. No one bothers to compare graphic arts because well it’s brown, it’s ugly, but it’s supposed to be. Once the theme is changed, Ubuntu will have to compete on this front too and people might realize that Fedora and SuSE are better polished in certain ways.
AFAIK same thing happened to either Feisty or Gutsy (maybe Edgy?) only it was usplash among other things.