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Old 08-29-2011, 08:08 PM
"David L. Gehrt"
 
Default I think we need a discussion

These are a few thoughts that have been fermenting in my mind, but I view
this email as only a possible set of discussion topics. Anyway, I feel
better having said this.

I am a long time user of UNIX/Linux distributions: Slackware, RedHat,
Fedora, Suse and Ubuntu. I am of the opinion that Linux may be at or close
to a crossroad moving from a computing genre in which the users and
developers make cooperative decisions on alternative development paths to
one in which changes are imposed by developers. In my view this represents
A move from an open computing environment to a closed (or more closed) one.

For me it is not just that the Gnome2 environment is being replaced with a
new version, it is that this new version, Gnome3, was seemingly developed
without much consideration of how the former version, Gnome2, was being used
and then imposed on users.

If I am off base here I am confident that this forum will point out the nature and extent of the perceived errors.

I have long hoped for a future in which the UNIX/Linux computing environment
would become a more significant player in the desktop world of user
currently stuck with Microsoft Windows. But what seems to be happening is
that the user interfaces (UI) being developed being developed for the Linux
future are trending towards UI in Microsoft Windows.

What this seems to imply is that in the future the mainline Linux UI will be
characterized features imposed, and by lack of flexibility. This lack of
flexibility means that users are presented with a computing environment with
features thought desirable by developers and which provide little or no way
for users to modify their computing environment in ways that meet their
needs and preferences.

I suspect without knowing that this is someones idea of how to turn a profit
by moving Linux to more profitable place on corporate desktops. I am not
directing this criticism solely at the Gnome3 developers or the RedHat role
in the Fedora background. One need only look at the Unity desktop with
which Canonical is trying to replace its version of the Gnome desktop. It
seems to suffer some of the same inflexibility and misfeatures as I see with
Gnome3.

I say a pox on both these developments. At least in Ubuntu you have the
option of selecting the "classical" (Gnome2 or Gnome2 like) desktop on log
in. Having started an experiment with Ubuntu on a laptop to see if Windows
users might find it more usable than Fedora, I have now converted my laptops
to Ubuntu while waiting to see if there is anything left of the flexibility
and utility I used to see in the UNIX/Linux UI. If not, I despair.

As a footnote: I have observed over my decades using and developing
computing environments to replace a manual system or formerly use software
which users had used, any number of developed systems that were unused
because the people using them were not consulted about the new system.

There any number of expensive developments in the Government that have
failed because developers failed to consider the actual job to be supported
by software. The recent failed (or failing) computing system being
developed for the FBI. The beauty of Federal Government computing projects
is that their failures make news. I suspect business entities are more
successful at concealing the failures. he bottom line is that in he absence
of consultation with users s/w developers are not very good at meeting the
needs of users

As a country is the US becoming incompetent? The aforementioned s/w
development failures, NASA sending the Hubble up without checking the
collimation of the telescope first, the poor performance of our schools and
the failure to produce the scientists and engineers we need now. This does
not seem to be an exhaustive list of problems we face.

dlg

David L. Gehrt Land Line: 805.541.2390
1865 Wilding Lane Cell Phone: 805.704.5890
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401-3044 Internet: dlg@inanity.net

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Old 08-29-2011, 08:43 PM
Robert Myers
 
Default I think we need a discussion

On Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 4:08 PM, David L. Gehrt <dlg@inanity.net> wrote:
> These are a *few thoughts that have *been fermenting in my mind, *but I view
> this *email as *only a *possible set *of discussion *topics. *Anyway, I feel
> better having said this.
>
> I *am a *long *time *user of *UNIX/Linux *distributions: Slackware, *RedHat,
> Fedora, Suse and Ubuntu. *I am of *the opinion that Linux may be at or close
> to *a *crossroad moving *from *a *computing genre *in *which *the users *and
> developers make *cooperative decisions *on alternative development *paths to
> one in which changes are imposed *by developers. *In my view this represents
> A move from an open computing environment to a closed (or more closed) one.
>
> For me it is *not just that the Gnome2 environment is *being replaced with a
> new version, *it is that this *new version, Gnome3, *was seemingly developed
> without much consideration of how the former version, Gnome2, was being used
> and then imposed on users.
>
> If I am off base here I am confident that this forum will point out the nature and extent of the perceived errors.
>
> I have long hoped for a future in which the UNIX/Linux computing environment
> would *become *a *more significant *player *in *the *desktop world *of *user
> currently stuck with *Microsoft Windows. *But what seems *to be happening is
> that the user interfaces (UI) *being developed being developed for the Linux
> future are trending towards UI in Microsoft Windows.
>
> What this seems to imply is that in the future the mainline Linux UI will be
> characterized features *imposed, and by *lack of flexibility. *This *lack of
> flexibility means that users are presented with a computing environment with
> features thought desirable by developers *and which provide little or no way
> for *users to modify *their computing *environment in *ways that *meet their
> needs and preferences.
>
> I suspect without knowing that this is someones idea of how to turn a profit
> by moving *Linux to more profitable *place on corporate desktops. * I am not
> directing this criticism solely at *the Gnome3 developers or the RedHat role
> in the *Fedora background. * One need *only look at *the Unity *desktop with
> which Canonical is *trying to replace its version of *the Gnome desktop. *It
> seems to suffer some of the same inflexibility and misfeatures as I see with
> Gnome3.
>
> I say *a pox on both *these developments. *At *least in Ubuntu you *have the
> option of selecting *the "classical" (Gnome2 or Gnome2 *like) desktop on log
> in. *Having started an experiment with *Ubuntu on a laptop to see if Windows
> users might find it more usable than Fedora, I have now converted my laptops
> to Ubuntu while waiting to see *if there is anything left of the flexibility
> and utility I used to see in the UNIX/Linux UI. If not, I despair.
>
> As *a *footnote: *I have *observed *over *my *decades using *and *developing
> computing environments to *replace a manual system or *formerly use software
> which *users had *used, any *number of *developed systems *that *were unused
> because the people using them were not consulted about the new system.
>
> There *any number *of expensive *developments *in the *Government that *have
> failed because developers failed to *consider the actual job to be supported
> by *software. * The *recent *failed *(or *failing) *computing *system *being
> developed for the FBI. *The *beauty of Federal Government computing projects
> is *that their failures *make news. * I suspect *business entities *are more
> successful at concealing the failures. *he bottom line is that in he absence
> of consultation with *users s/w developers are not very *good at meeting the
> needs of users
>
> As *a *country is *the *US *becoming *incompetent? *The *aforementioned *s/w
> development *failures, *NASA sending *the *Hubble *up *without checking *the
> collimation of the telescope first, *the poor performance of our schools and
> the failure to produce the scientists *and engineers we need now. *This does
> not seem to be an exhaustive list of problems we face.
>

There is absolutely nothing new in any of your complaints. Hardware
and software developers have been arbitrarily imposing inexplicable
and often incomprehensible changes on users for as long as I have been
using computers, which is a very long time.

All large enterprises: commercial, non-commercial, government, and
non-government are beset by the basic design flaw that no one has
figured out how to do them without involving fallible human beings.

There have always been competent and incompetent people in every
profession that ever existed.

The world of Linux has been haggling over user interfaces ever since
there were user interfaces in Linux to haggle over.

On the whole, Fedora is a pretty good deal, and there are lots of
other choices out there.

Robert.
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Old 08-29-2011, 08:50 PM
Sam Sharpe
 
Default I think we need a discussion

On 29 August 2011 21:08, David L. Gehrt <dlg@inanity.net> wrote:

> For me it is *not just that the Gnome2 environment is *being replaced with a
> new version, *it is that this *new version, Gnome3, *was seemingly developed
> without much consideration of how the former version, Gnome2, was being used
> and then imposed on users.

Gnome3 is what it is and while you may disagree with it, the Gnome
developers had reasons (which you may or may not agree with) to make
that shift. At this point, it is too late.

You have two options:

1) Work with Gnome to mold Gnome3 into something that works for you
(i.e. contribute)
2) Go elsewhere.

Personally, I chose to go elsewhere, as I don't need the shiny effects
and they don't play well on my triple-head setup, but that was my
choice - you may choose option 1, as I would have done if Gnome3
actually partially worked for me.

--
Sam
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Old 08-29-2011, 08:50 PM
Sam Sharpe
 
Default I think we need a discussion

On 29 August 2011 21:08, David L. Gehrt <dlg@inanity.net> wrote:

> For me it is *not just that the Gnome2 environment is *being replaced with a
> new version, *it is that this *new version, Gnome3, *was seemingly developed
> without much consideration of how the former version, Gnome2, was being used
> and then imposed on users.

Gnome3 is what it is and while you may disagree with it, the Gnome
developers had reasons (which you may or may not agree with) to make
that shift. At this point, it is too late.

You have two options:

1) Work with Gnome to mold Gnome3 into something that works for you
(i.e. contribute)
2) Go elsewhere.

Personally, I chose to go elsewhere, as I don't need the shiny effects
and they don't play well on my triple-head setup, but that was my
choice - you may choose option 1, as I would have done if Gnome3
actually partially worked for me.

--
Sam
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:13 PM
Fernando Cassia
 
Default I think we need a discussion

On Mon, Aug 29, 2011 at 17:43, Robert Myers <rbmyersusa@gmail.com> wrote:
> There is absolutely nothing new in any of your complaints. *Hardware
> and software developers have been arbitrarily imposing inexplicable
> and often incomprehensible changes on users for as long as I have been
> using computers, which is a very long time.

And in the brave new world of fog computing, er, Cloud Computing, you
no longer have any say on the features of the software, it's decided
by "experts" in their ivory towers. Google is the best example... they
change features, move user interface elements around without any
questions to the users, and remove features just because they can.

In the words of Midnight Oil "Some say that's progress, I say that's cruel".
FC
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Old 08-29-2011, 11:34 PM
"Peter G. "
 
Default I think we need a discussion

David L. Gehrt wrote:

> I am a long time user of... RedHat, Fedora
me2

> I am of the opinion that Linux may be at or close
> to a crossroad moving from a computing genre in which the users
> and
> developers make cooperative decisions on alternative development paths
> to
> one in which changes are imposed by developers.
did consumers ever have a say in development? Wasn't it always just providing
what apple and windows had, or racing to keep up with hardware developments?
people seemed to be satisfied with this.

> For me it is not just that the Gnome2 environment is being replaced with
> a
> new version, it is that this new version, Gnome3, was seemingly
> developed without much consideration of how the former version, Gnome2,
> was being used and then imposed on users.
Does a desktop environment have to remain static? Cannot it evolve with time
and with the developments in the greater world of computing? There are those
who think that the pinnacles were reached with kde3 and gnome2. I am not among
them.

> What this seems to imply is that in the future the mainline Linux UI will
> be
> characterized features imposed, and by lack of flexibility.
There are also countless other window managers/desktop environments in the
fedora repos, the most evolved being xfde and lxde.

> This lack
> of flexibility means that users are presented with a computing environment
> with
> features thought desirable by developers and which provide little or no
> way
> for users to modify their computing environment in ways that meet
> their needs and preferences.
You want to modify? I guess you haven't tried kde! I love it.

> I suspect without knowing that this is someones idea of how to turn a
> profit
> by moving Linux to more profitable place on corporate desktops.
Unlikely. Most corporations use windows and even more rarely update their
software. My last employer was still using windows 2000 and a subsequent one
windowsXP, without any of the service pack updates, for fear of a need for an
expanded IT department.

> The bottom line is that in he
> absence
> of consultation with users s/w developers are not very good at meeting
> the needs of users
Such consultation is certainly welcome, but I as a user am sometimes stumped
when asked what I would like to see, as I don't know what is possible and I
have no way to imagine the not yet realized.

> As a country is the US becoming incompetent?
no comment


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