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. Battistelli's Club Med at the EPO – Part I: EPO Validation Agreement With Angola

    A series contemplating Benoît Battistelli's sudden interest in Angola, a country with no European Patents but plenty of connections to António Campinos



  2. PTAB Supreme Court Case (Oil States) is a Case of Patent Parasites Versus the Producing Industry

    Ahead of the decision regarding Oil States (probably months away, some time next year), various influential sites confront the misleading and self-serving propaganda from the patent microcosm, e.g. law firms (to whom patent quality is a threat)



  3. Fake News About Software Patents in the United States

    Spinning and twisting the facts (for so-called 'alternative facts'), the patent microcosm is trying to give the impression that software patents are still fine in the US



  4. IBM and IPO Continue Working Behind the Scenes to Undermine Alice and Promote Software Patents

    The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), together with IBM (Manny Schecter, Marian Underweiser and others), is still trying to overturn Mayo and Alice



  5. The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) Gradually Champions Patent Quality, in a Spectacular Reversal on Its Past Ways

    Some of the latest actions and decisions from the Federal Circuit, which originally brought software patents to the United States and is now taking them away, gradually



  6. The Mohawk-PTAB Fiasco Threatens the Tribe's Reputation More Than It Threatens PTAB

    In an effort to dodge scrutiny from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), Allergan Plc offloaded a lot of negative publicity onto the Mohawk people, owing primarily to the Mowhawk Tribe's general counsel, Dale White



  7. Latest EPO Rumours Allege That Benoît Battistelli Rigged the Process of EPO President's Selection

    António Campinos is quite likely the next EPO President, as insiders suspect that many applications for the job got rejected politically



  8. Links 23/9/2017: Mesa 17.1.10 RC, Samba 4.7.0, KStars 2.8.4

    Links for the day



  9. Courts Are Losing Patience for Gilstrap's Unbridled Support of Patent Trolls

    The man whose court has become a trolling ‘factory’ is being refuted (but not reprimanded) by the CAFC, which certainly can see that something is amiss and serves to discredit the system as a whole



  10. Intellectual Ventures, GNU/Linux/Android/FOSS Patents, and the Ascent of European Patent Trolls

    The existing status of GNU/Linux in a world full of patent trolls, which not only target OEMs from Asia -- typically in the US -- but are also dragging them into Europe, aided by the EPO's 'patent bubble'



  11. Shelston IP Blames “Well-Organised and Appropriately-Connected Open Source Lobby” for Ban on Software Patents

    The activism is working and foes of programmers are feeling the pressure, for software patents are being more explicitly banned in some countries



  12. The EPO's Latest Lies About the UPC and SMEs Unraveled, Long-Term Plan Described as Daunting

    The vision of Battistelli and the latest lies (about SMEs) are being criticised anonymously -- for fear of retaliation -- as Europe braces for impact with patent trolls from all around the world



  13. In an Effort to Push the Unitary Patent (UPC), EPO and the Liar in Chief Spread the Famous Lie About SMEs

    The EPO wants people to hear just a bunch of lies rather than the simple truth, courtesy of the people whom the EPO proclaims it represents



  14. Links 21/9/2017: Red Hat's Open Source Patent Promise; Qt 5.6.3, Kali Linux 2017.2 Release

    Links for the day



  15. East Asia's Patent Peril and the Curse of Patent Trolls

    The high cost of China's new obsession with patents and the never-ending saga of Samsung (Korea), which gets dragged into courts not only in the US but also in China



  16. USPTO Starts Discriminating Against Poor People, and Does So Even When They Rightly Point Out Errors

    Even though the burden of proof ought to be on one who grants a monopoly, the legal costs are being offloaded onto those who challenge an erroneously-granted monopoly (even if the court sides with the challenger)



  17. Ambrose Chan Enters Document Security Systems (DSS), a Partly Patent Troll Entity

    The Board of Directors of DSS enlists a man from Singapore, whose lack of technical background suggests that the company is still more of a bully than an innovator



  18. UPC Threatens to Weaponise Software Patents in Countries That Forbade These

    The reality of software patents in Europe and what a Unified Patent Court (UPC) would mean for these if it ever became a reality



  19. The Latest Lies About the Unitary Patent (UPC) and CIPO's Participation in Those

    Team UPC continues to overplay its chances, conveniently ignoring simple facts as well as the Rule of Law



  20. The Patents Policy of Facebook is Causing an Exodus

    Yet another major player walks away from Facebook's code because of software patents



  21. Links 20/9/2017: Wine Staging 2.17, Randa 2017, Redox OS 0.3.3

    Links for the day



  22. When Google Used Alex Converse to Raid the Public Domain With Software Patents

    In its overzealous pursuit of software patents, Google is now turning public domain methods into private 'property' (in defiance of critics)



  23. Mark Kokes, the Man Behind BlackBerry's Patent Aggression, Leaves the Company

    The man behind the patent troll-like behaviour of BlackBerry is leaving



  24. WordPress Demonstrates That Facebook's Patent Strategy is Deterring/Alienating Developers

    React is being dumped following Facebook's attempt to restrict distribution/derivatives using software patents



  25. Links 19/9/2017: Pipewire, Mir Support for Wayland, DRM in W3C

    Links for the day



  26. Links 18/9/2017: Linux 4.14 RC1, Mesa 17.2.1, and GNOME 3.26 on Ubuntu Artful

    Links for the day



  27. Patent Trolls Update: Eolas, Conversant (MOSAID), Leigh Rothschild, and Electronic Communication Technologies

    Patent trolls are still being watched -- as they ought to be -- even though some of them shy away, hide from the media, engage in dirty tricks, and file more lawsuits



  28. Microsoft is Promoting Software Patents in India in Another Effort to Undermine Free/Open Source Software, Microsoft-Connected Trolls Are Still Suing

    The ongoing patent threat to Free/libre Open Source software (FLOSS) and the role played by Microsoft in at least much of this threat



  29. Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Under Attack by IBM and Other Patent Parasites Who Undermine Patent Quality

    The PTAB, which has thus far invalidated thousands of abstract/software patents, is under a coordinated attack not by those who produce things but those who produce a lot of lawsuit



  30. Why the Mohawk Tribe Should Fire Its Lawyers and Dump the Patents Which Now Tarnish Its Name

    In order to dodge the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) with its Inter Partes Reviews (IPRs), the Mohawk tribe is being exploited -- very much in direct detriment to its reputation and status


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