Sorry for the delay on this one – it’s been a… Busy weekend for me personally, so I’m only just now catching up with most of the news from the past few days.
Codenamed “Zesty Zapus”, Ubuntu 17.04 continues Ubuntu’s proud tradition of integrating the latest and greatest open source technologies into a high-quality, easy-to-use Linux distribution. The team has been hard at work through this cycle, introducing new features and fixing bugs.
Under the hood, there have been updates to many core packages, including a new 4.10-based kernel, and much more.
Ubuntu Desktop has seen incremental improvements, with newer versions of GTK and Qt, updates to major packages like Firefox and LibreOffice, and stability improvements to Unity.
This is possibly the last release to feature Unity, which makes it oddly notable. Interesting, too, how that lines up with the Z name.
Unity was a noble experiment. At a time when both Unity and Gnome3 were nascent and immature, I tried both. Eventually, the polish and completeness of Gnome3 drew me over. I can’t say that I dislike Unity, just that it always had some odd quirks for a Linux desktop that kept getting in my way. There were always practical limits to how many terminal sessions and how many desktops could be put to use at one time. In large debugging sessions, Unity becomes a high hurdle to jump over every time some critical piece of information was needed from the multiple terminal sessions. Your workflow may have been suited to Unity, mine wasn’t.
It feels much better to have the scarce free software resources concentrating on the same essential core GUI. I hope that the Unity devs who may not be interested in contributing to Gnome3 find some new projects.
Shuttleworth put a lot of funds and people behind Unity to pursue a unified UI design. Undoubtedly, there will be new projects that get funded from the demise of Unity.