Bonum Certa Men Certa

Please Don't Replace the GIMP with F-Spot (Mono)

What Microsoft has
What Microsoft has



What Microsoft wants
What Microsoft wants



Summary: Addressing a new danger that the GIMP gets replaced by Mono, by default

A few days ago we wrote about the brand new proposition that GIMP should be removed from the default installation of Ubuntu, the most ubiquitous desktop distribution of GNU/Linux. The justification for this was that a Mono-based application can serve as an acceptable replacement. A closer look reveals that this proposal came from a former Microsoft employee. Here's a fragment:

# Lead Program Manager at Microsoft # User Experience Manager at Microsoft

[...]

Usability Engineer, Usability Manager Microsoft

(Public Company; 10,001 or more employees; MSFT; Computer Software industry)

March 1998 — May 2005 (7 years 3 months)

Usability engineer, and later usability manager, for Microsoft's Visual Studio family of products. Lead user centered design efforts across the suite of of developer tools.


"Visual Studio," eh? A good deal of Mono hype tends to come from Microsoft employees or pro-Microsoft reporters, as we have shown many times before. Interestingly enough, anti-Linux trolls love to extol the virtues of Mono, which is telling. They just try to spread it.

But why replace the GIMP with .NET/Mono in the first place? F-Spot is hardly suitable as an image editor. There is already opposition to this move.

How to I scale an image in f-spot ? If there’s a way, I have not been able to find it (same for red eyes). How do I annotate an image (putting text somewhere) ?

Yet people ask “Gimp is cool but.. should it belong to LiveCD?” I’ll give you a better question: what should belong to the LiveCD ?

Removing GIMP from the LiveCd fully defeats the showing off purpouse of the LiveCd and lives you without any handy tool to perform basic manipulation on images. Now, it can be just me, but I can’t find anything useful in that regard inside Jaunty’s f-spot.

I can’t see how f-spot belongs to the live cd more than the Gimp. And sure the Gimp UI sucks (at least, I hate it. Not that I love f-spot’s though) but it can take burden of tasks that nothing else provides. Should we leave our users without even basic image manipulation, just like OS X users ? Shouldn’t Ubuntu be better than that ?


Another person wants to remove F-Spot (altogether) from the LiveCD.

We all know that it's as tight on the LiveCD as a metro during rush hour. It's almost impossible to fit something else on it, most of the times you'll have to sacrifice something for it.

Unfortunately localisation of the LiveCDs is something that can't be supported because of a lack of space. It's one of the many things that can't be put on the CD because of a lack of space.

Ubuntu would look a lot more professional if it would actually use the language you selected on boot. Looking professional is essential. In my eyes the LiveCD should show the best what we have to offer. F-Spot isn't exactly the epitome of supreme look & feel and is useless on the LiveCD since there are no photos to use it with.


The threat of Mono is not just perceived or exaggerated, it is very real and sometimes very explicit. Here is another new article which debunks Mono myths. Like anyone who 'dares' to criticise Mono, the author of this article is often attacked viciously rather than his message.

Shields makes a claim that Mono is hundreds of times faster than Python - but offers no benchmarks to back up this incredible claim.

He makes no mention of the fact that Microsoft first tried to corrupt the Java standard and then, and then only, came up with C#. a language similar to Java.

And, above all, he avoids mentioning the fact that .NET is wholly Microsoft technology and therefore the chances that it holds patents on the same is much higher than in the case of any other technology on which it claims to have patents.


Mono is good for Windows, so it is hardly surprising that the Microsoft crowd advances it [1, 2, 3]. It's time to say "No more", not "Mono".

No more



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