[CS-FSLUG] Linux Today - Is desktop Linux too fragmented to succeed? A friend tells it like it is!!

Fred A. Miller fmiller at lightlink.com
Sun May 3 17:57:03 CDT 2009

Timothy Butler wrote:
>>>    I can't imagine giving up my iPod! (Although I refuse to walk around
>>> in public with headphones in my ears, let the record show.)
>> Hehehehehehehe.......here, you don't want to get caught with both ears
>> plugged or covered with "anything," or it can cost you a bundle in fines 
>     Sounds sensible!

I meant to make it clear "when driving any mode of transportation." ONLY
hands-free cell phone use is allowed here, and that SHOULD be the law
everywhere, IMHO!!

>>>    Actually, I'm an iPod addict -- I have three. Four, if you count the
>>> iPhone. Although, admittedly, I was given two and won one. If only my
>>> car had an iPod dock. But, the Beetle come with either a satellite radio
>>> or an iPod docking cable; mine came with the satellite radio. The
>>> mini-headphone jack suffices.
>> I'll take a good CD/DVD player anytime. ;)
>     I actually do make the most use of my CD player, mostly because I
> don't want to have to figure out what to do with my iPod when I leave
> the car. But the iPod is nice since it has a lot more music on it.

I just don't have the need nor inclination to want music all the time,
and when I do, I only want to hear "classic" Christian or classical
music. Most anything else to my ears is noise. ;)

>     It's really nice for parties. When we have family get-togethers, I
> setup my iPod and we have commercial free, nicely shuffled music for the
> whole night. :-)


>>>    I hope so. I think the danger is the "release it broken, and then
>>> fix it" mentality. That's what Microsoft did with Vista, too.
>> Yes....agreed. FIX it first, the best that can be done anyway. Another
>> factor that we often don't take into account, is that the economy has
>> taken it's toll on devs. as well.....not as many as there once was nor
>> do they have the time to devote to it.
>     Yup!
>>>    If you make it so they can generate a profit, perhaps starting with
>>> netbook focused apps, they will come. Look at the iTunes app ecosystem.
>>> You had no iPhone developers at all two years ago; only "greymarket"
>>> ones a year ago -- now you have the biggest mobile app ecosystem in
>>> existence. A lot of it, I think, is the promise that Joe Appdeveloper
>>> can make a nice bit of cash at $.99 for an app without having to deal
>>> with the headaches of billing, etc.
>> That WOULD be an advantage. 'Sure would make MickySoft sweat, eh? :)
>     I think so. I think that would make them very, very worried.

I certainly do look forward to that!

>> 'A minority, to be sure, with no criticism intended, even as much as we
>> like to bust each other's chops. ;) I haven't spent a lot of time on
>> Macs, but the newer models with the latest OS seem to me to not be like
>> any other OS in design nor philosophy. I like much of what Apple has
>> done, but sorry, I don't see Gnome as being even close in any way.
>     Indeed, GNOME is not caught up with OS X. It actually mirrors Mac OS
> Classic more than OS X. But, both do the following things:
>     1.) Minimalist configuration windows (only offer key options, not
> every option, from the GUI).
>     2.) Automatic activation of changes. Many dialogs do not include OK
> or Cancel. The changes are live immediately.
>     3.) Nice visual effects, but done subtly so they flow naturally
> rather than being an immediate "gee whiz."
>     4.) Open/save dialogs that hide most of the details until you expand
> them.
>     5.) Rhythmbox clones iTunes, basically. Nautilus's rather simple
> design mimics Finder.
>     6.) Most GNOME apps are simple, one function apps (e.g. like the old
> UNIX command line apps). Mac OS typically follows a similar approach.
> Really, KDE is coming around by dividing the browser from the file
> manager...

'Needed doing.......browser needs too much work on it to be hampered by
the code to be a file manager. However, Dolphin is NOT anywhere as good
a file manager as Konq!!

>     GNOME definitely hasn't made it all the way, and was more focused on
> copying Mac OS X in the early part of the 2.x series...

I don't see anything changing in that regard for a long time, if ever.

>> Now, having said all that, IF Gnome had the configurablity and features
>> I expect from a desktop, I'd give it a much more serious look, but it
>> doesn't so I won't.
>     I would note again that GNOME is very configurable, many of the
> options are just hidden from the GUI. (Which, make sense: you and I
> don't mind mucking around a bit; but the average user doesn't care if he
> or she can set emacs to check the latest stock information and pop up a
> notification that the toaster has finished toasting.)

Well now, how do you know what the flakes in academia want?! I'm near
Cornell & Ithaca College, ya know! ;)

>     I can't think of a significant task I cannot do in GNOME but I can
> do in KDE (each DE, obviously, can do some things the other can't...).

No......I can't either. But, that's NOT the point at all.

>     Oh, that reminds me: GNOME uses an XML-based configuration format,
> not entirely unlike the XML-based plist files Mac OS X uses.

That's nice. ;)

>     Here's a wild one: what if we dumped both legacy DEs? I think it
> wouldn't be too bad of idea to build an entirely new DE on top of
> GNUStep and Objective C. GNUStep's relation to Cocoa on Mac OS X means
> that many developers already use to developing for the iPhone or Mac OS
> X could program on Linux without a major learning curve.

Not a bad idea, as long as it doesn't the look nor feel of Gnome. :)

>     I think GNUStep/NeXTSTEP/Cocoa also are closer to the Haiku/BeOS
> architecture. Which brings me to another wild point: perhaps if everyone
> refocused on developing Haiku that would be a better return on
> investment. It seems like with some fit and finish it could be far more
> interesting than GNOME or KDE.

I can't share your excitement....sorry.

>     Now, go a step farther. A Cocoa ABI layer. Imagine running major Mac
> apps on Linux! It probably would be too difficult, but given the UNIX
> roots of both, if the layer existed, at least the apps would feel like
> they fit in, rather than being fish out of water.

That's true, but better yet, are native Linux apps. we need, which
really aren't that many.

>> NO disagreement there. If I were a dev., I'd want to mimic the Mac
>> interface LONG before Vista/"7", and not just because of my dislike for
>> anything from the, IN TRUTH, "evil empire," but because the design and
>> philosophy of the Mac is superior in every way.
>     Yes, that does seem puzzling. It isn't as if people talk about how
> much they like the way Windows looks!

ONLY the most simpleton 'Bloze user would think that.

>> I want very much to say something at this point, but can't except hope
>> isn't lost..........yet. ;)
>     Don't lose hope. Actually, I'm feeling better about the Linux
> desktop than I did -- as I said a few weeks ago, the last time I
> installed Ubuntu on a computer at church, it was the first time I ever
> had someone excited to get to try this beautiful new OS, rather than
> questioning what this strange thing I was using was.

Reread what I said, and it has NOTHING to do with Ubuntu., etc. ;)

>     It's more the bumps they'd run into if they kept using it, my
> original list, that would scare them off. I think Linux is ready enough
> for use under a system administrator in an office environment, though.

Of course, it has been for sometime as I've been doing it for sometime.
;) SuSE, of course.


Gun-toting Americans are clearly more self-sufficient than the sissy
Europeans. This is great news for everyone except Barney Frank, who's
always secretly wondered what it would be like to be taken by a Somali
--Ann Coulter

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