EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

01.14.14

GNOME’s Leadership and Old Misconceptions About Diversity

Posted in GNOME, GNU/Linux at 12:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Back are the claims that we need just one “universal” GNU/Linux

GNOME is a very active project that involves hundreds if even thousands of developers (GNOME is a set of applications, not just a desktop environment/shell). The project’s Bugzilla statistics (not for 2013 alone) reveal about 46,000 open bug reports [1]. In 2013 many bugs are carried on from prior years (including duplicates) and resources for managing them are pooled because several environments are derived from GNOME and they share code (bug fixes can be pushed upstream). Now that 3.11.3 is available for testing [2] and bugs are being squashed [3], new features are added [4], and the underlying framework improves [5] we can expect a good, diverse future for the GNOME family (with about half a dozen branches/forks). Allan Day, a GNOME designer, recently gave an interview [6] and to quote the interviewer, Day’s “design workflow is also wonderfully straightforward and helps to address the concern that good design work can’t be done on Linux.”

GNOME is a simple environment to use. Some try to simplify it further to improve the overall experience (same thing Android backers are doing on phones, desktops, and tablets). GNOME cannot be treated a one-size-fits-all solution because it runs on many different types of devices. It is possibly even simpler to use than Mac OS X and Windows (depending on how they are judged). The GNOME Activity Journal, an important component that simplifies operations and logging, is now approaching version 1.0 [7] (stable) and one pundit asserts [8] that GNOME is the “key to Linux desktop unification”. He makes the common mistake of assuming that lack of diversity would be pleasing to more users and attract more people to GNU/Linux. It’s not so-called ‘fragmentation’ that weakens GNU/Linux on the desktop (in terms of adoption). People typically fail to explore GNU/Linux due to biased information in the corporate media, or complete lack of information. There are other aspects too, including anti-competitive practices.

Uniformity is important within a particular desktop environment (that’s what developer guidelines are for), but it’s not the same across desktop environments, which can vary in order to accommodate the requirements of different types of users (e.g. advanced users as opposed to beginners). Beware those who try to convince everyone in the Free Desktop world that having one “universal” GNU/Linux distribution (with one kernel, one desktop environment, one set of application) is what’s needed. What makes GNU/Linux strong and attractive to developers is diversity, not authority.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. GNOME Ended 2013 With 46k Open Bug Reports

    Earlier this week Andre Klapper shared the annual GNOME Bugzilla statistics for 2013. The GNOME project ended out 2013 with 46,130 open bug reports, compared to 43k bug reports at the end of 2012 or 44k bug reports at the end of 2011. Of the 46k bug reports open at the end of 2013, 25k of them were opened in 2013 while 22k were closed in 2013.

  2. GNOME 3.11.3 Is Now Available for Testing

    The third development release towards the highly anticipated GNOME 3.12 desktop environment has been made available for download, bringing many updated core applications, libraries, and updated translations.

  3. Glade 3.16.1 UI Designer Repairs Numerous Bugs
  4. GNOME Settings Daemon 3.11.3 Adds Bluetooth Killswitch Support
  5. Client Side Decoration Improvements Land In GTK+

    These improvements landed for the GTK+ 3.11 development series and will form the basis of the GTK+ 3.12 stable release in March. Overall GNOME 3.12 is shaping up to be an interesting GNOME update with GNOME Shell and Mutter improvements, greater Facebook integration, the GNOME Terminal finally has text rewrap on resizing, and there will be much better support for Wayland.

  6. The Linux Setup – Allan Day, GNOME Designer

    Part of the reason GNOME is such a successful project is the focus and dedication of its members. I’ve interviewed a few of them and common strands always emerge — ideas like GNOME as an operating system, GNOME staying out of the user’s way, and GNOME as a way to enhance Linux. Allan, a designer for the project, touches on a lot of these points. His design workflow is also wonderfully straightforward and helps to address the concern that good design work can’t be done on Linux.

  7. GNOME’s Zeitgeist Finally Nears v1.0

    The Zeigeist framework that is responsible for much of the logging responsibilities in the GNOME world and powers the GNOME Activity Journal is finally nearing version 1.0. The 1.0 milestone comes after landing a number of improvements recently and after nearly a half-decade of development work.

  8. GNOME: Key to Linux Desktop Unification?

    One of the greatest differences between an open source operating systems and those that maintain a proprietary code structure is the flexibility in customizing each one.

    While Windows and OS X offer a set-in-stone desktop environment, Linux enjoys a robust number of desktop environments from which to choose from – including the highly popular GNOME. Some may even argue that having a limited number of desktop environments would allow those distributions to hone in on gaining a larger market share. And perhaps that’s true, though I believe that most Linux enthusiasts chose Linux because of its diversity. In this article, I’ll look at where GNOME came from, where it is now and the end goal I think it’ll reach within the next couple of years.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. The Death of Software Patents and Microsoft's Coup Against Yahoo! Made the Company Worthless

    A look at what happens to companies whose value is a house of software patents rather than code and a broad base of users/customers



  2. Munich Attack Mentioned by EPO But Not Ansbach

    The EPO does the usual right-wing thing (exploiting disaster/emergency for domestic crackdowns), but some bemoan the omission of the explosion at Ansbach (also in Germany)



  3. Kluwer Thinks People Are Clueless About the Unitary Patent System and Pretends It's Business as Usual

    Flogging the dead UPC horse at times of great uncertainty (enough to bring the UPC to a standstill)



  4. Almost Everything That the Government Accountability Office Says is Applicable to the EPO

    The Government Accountability Office in the United States produces reports which can serve as a timely warning sign to the European Patent Office, where patent quality is rapidly declining in order to meet 'production' goals



  5. Microsoft Says It Loves Linux, But Its Anti-Linux Patent Trolls Are Still Around and Active

    Highlighting just two of the many entities that Microsoft (and partners) use in order to induce additional costs on Free (as in freedom) software



  6. Links 26/7/2016: Microsoft Growing Desperate, Linux 4.8 Visions

    Links for the day



  7. Links 25/7/2016: Linux 4.7 Final, PostgreSQL 9.6 Beta 3

    Links for the day



  8. Leaked: Boards of Appeal Face 'Exile' or 'Extradition' in Haar After Standing up to Battistelli

    A look at some of the latest moves at the European Patent Office (EPO), following Battistelli's successful coup d’état which brought the EPO into a perpetual state of emergency that perpetuates Battistelli's totalitarian powers



  9. The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) Comes Across as Against Software Patents, Relates to the EPO as Well

    Some analysis of the input from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) with focus on the EPO and software patents



  10. In the US, Patent Trolls Engage in Patent Wars and Shakedowns, Whereas in China/Korea Large Android OEMs Sue One Another

    Highlighting some of the differences between the US patent system and other patent systems



  11. Links 24/7/2016: Elive 2.7.1 Beta, New Flatpaks and Snaps

    Links for the day



  12. Links 23/7/2016: Leo Laporte on GNU/Linux, Dolphin Emulator’s Vulkan Completion

    Links for the day



  13. Links 22/7/2016: Wine 1.9.15, KaOS 2016.07 ISO

    Links for the day



  14. Haar Mentioned as Likely Site of Appeal Boards as Their Eradication or Marginalisation Envisioned by UPC Proponent Benoît Battistelli

    Not only the Staff Union of the European Patent Office (SUEPO) is under severe attack and possibly in mortal danger; the increasingly understaffed Boards of Appeal too are coming under attack and may (according to rumours) be sent to Haar, a good distance away from Munich and the airport (half an hour drive), not to mention lack of facilities for visitors from overseas



  15. EPO Attaché Albert Keyack Viewed as Somewhat of a Mole, Reporting From the US Embassy in Brazil Until Shortly Before the Temer Coup

    Public responses to the role played by Albert Keyack on behalf of the United States inside the European [sic] Patent Office



  16. EPO Insiders Explain Why the EPO's Examination Quality Rapidly Declines and Will Get Even Worse Because of Willy Minnoye

    Public comments from anonymous insiders serve to highlight a growing crisis inside the European Patent Office (EPO), where experienced/senior examiners are walking away and leaving an irreplaceable bunch of seats (due to high experience demands)



  17. Patents Roundup: BlackBerry, Huawei, PTAB, GAO, Aggressive Universities With Patents, and Software Patents in Europe

    Various bits and pieces of news regarding patents and their fast-changing nature in the United States nowadays



  18. Glimpse at Patent Systems Across the World: Better Quality Control at the USPTO Post-America Invents Act (2011), Unlike the EPO Post-Battistelli (2010)

    While the EPO reportedly strives to eliminate pendency and appeal windows altogether (rubberstamping being optimal performance as per the yardstick du jour), the USPTO introduces changes that would strengthen the system and shield innovation, not protect the business model of serial litigants



  19. Blockstream Has No Patents, But Pledges Not to Sue Using Patents

    Blockstream says that it comes in peace when it comes to software patents, which triggers speculations about coming Blockchain patent wars



  20. Links 21/7/2016: Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS, Linux Mint 18 “Sarah” Xfce Beta

    Links for the day



  21. Links 21/7/2016: An Honorary Degree for Alan Cox, Looks Back at DebConf16

    Links for the day



  22. EPO USA: Under Battistelli, the 'European' Patent Office Emulates All the Mistakes of the USPTO

    Conservative Benoît Battistelli is trying to impose on the European Patent Office various truly misguided policies and he viciously attacks anyone or anything that stands in his way, including his formal overseers



  23. Links 19/7/2016: ARM and Opera Buyout

    Links for the day



  24. Large Corporations' Software Patenting Pursuits Carry on in Spite of Patent Trolls That Threaten Small Companies the Most

    With unconvincing excuses such as OIN, large corporations including IBM continue to promote software patents in the United States, even when public officials and USPTO officials work towards ending those



  25. Battistelli Has Implemented De Facto EPO Coup to Remove Oversight, Give Himself Total Power, and Allegedly Give UPC Gifts (Loot) to French Officials

    Benoît Battistelli's agenda at the EPO is anything but beneficial to the EPO and suspicions that Battistelli's overall agenda is transitioning to the UPC to further his goals grow feet



  26. EPO Social [sic] Report is a Big Pile of Lies That Responsible Journalists Must Ignore

    A reminder of where the EPO stands on social issues and why the latest so-called 'social' report is nothing but paid-for propaganda for Battistelli's political ambitions



  27. Links 18/7/2016: Vista 10 a Failure, FreeType 2.7

    Links for the day



  28. Exploiting Perceived Emergencies/Disasters, Suspending the Rule of Law, and Suspending Judges: How Erdoğan is Like Battistelli, Except the Coup

    Pretexts for crackdown on law-abiding people or figureheads who are remote and independent the hallmark not only of Erdoğan but also the EPO's President, Benoit Battistelli



  29. The Impotence of Gene Quinn

    Attacking the enforcer of Alice v CLS because it's doing harm to his source of income, which makes him angry



  30. After the FTI Consulting-EPO Reputation Laundering Deal's Expansion in Germany Süddeutsche Zeitung 'Forgets' That the EPO Even Exists

    Relative apathy if not complete silence regarding the EPO at Süddeutsche Zeitung following reports of FTI Consulting's deal expansion (media positioning in Germany), with hundreds of thousands of Euros (EPO budget) thrown at the controversial task


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts