What Killed the Linux Desktop (by GNOME founder Miguel de Icaza)


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Haggis

I thought Unity looked ok personally lol

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threetonesun

Given the size of Google / Twitter / Facebook, et al., I can imagine they have 0 interest in dealing with licensing issues from Microsoft or Apple.

More interesting would be to see Bing, who doesn't have to worry about Microsoft's costs, switching to Linux.

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ichi

Given the size of Google / Twitter / Facebook, et al., I can imagine they have 0 interest in dealing with licensing issues from Microsoft or Apple.

Who would have thought, going by Microsoft's ads and GetTheFacts you would think Google, Twitter, etc... would go with their lower TCO :shifty:

More interesting would be to see Bing, who doesn't have to worry about Microsoft's costs, switching to Linux.

That would do wonders for customers' confidence :D

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simplezz

Installed Ubuntu latest number. I have to say, defending that user interface is like calling your diarrhea an artistic masterpiece that the whole world should see.

And you think Windows 7 or 8's default user interface is "an artistic masterpiece"? Yeah right. Ubuntu's UI isn't meant to be a masterpiece. It's meant to be functional, easy to use, and aesthetically pleasing, a goal which I say it has achieved. If you don't like the default, you're certainly welcome to customise it. And it's certainly much easier than customising Windows. And if you're still not happy, then there's a multitude of alternative desktop environments and window managers. Good luck trying to get that level of choice in Windows's UI.

I guess the problem stems from the fact that in Windows you're basically stuck with same UI, and so when people see a GNU/Linux UI, they think they're limited in the same way, but that's not the case at all. Customise to your heart's content, and no unofficial hacks are required like in Windows ;)

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f0rk_b0mb

Linux users, always the bitter, irrelevant, dirty mouth less than 1% marketshare.

I rarly cuss and I just got out of the shower, and it's better than following the crowd. Thanks for playing tho.

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ArialBlue

And you think Windows 7 or 8's default user interface is "an artistic masterpiece"? Yeah right. Ubuntu's UI isn't meant to be a masterpiece. It's meant to be functional, easy to use, and aesthetically pleasing, a goal which I say it has achieved. If you don't like the default, you're certainly welcome to customise it. And it's certainly much easier than customising Windows. And if you're still not happy, then there's a multitude of alternative desktop environments and window managers. Good luck trying to get that level of choice in Windows's UI.

I guess the problem stems from the fact that in Windows you're basically stuck with same UI, and so when people see a GNU/Linux UI, they think they're limited in the same way, but that's not the case at all. Customise to your heart's content, and no unofficial hacks are required like in Windows ;)

Working easy to user solution VS. you can customize it until it works.

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f0rk_b0mb

How's that sound card installation going for you? Its been 6 months already, have you heard any beeps yet?

Oh so, Windows doesn't have hardware/driver issues? LOL!

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Max Norris
I guess the problem stems from the fact that in Windows you're basically stuck with same UI, and so when people see a GNU/Linux UI, they think they're limited in the same way, but that's not the case at all.

Why would you assume that? You're not stuck at all, you can change it, including the shell itself.

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n_K

You can change it, you know. You aren't forced to use Unity.

I have to say yeah, you CAN change it, but let's be honest, the majority of first-time desktop linux users get ubuntu. Do they have a CLUE about how to use package managers? What to do to change desktop? If it's even possible? (If you've used windows or mac all your life you probably wouldn't even know changing it can be done).

So what if that's you? You see something that's clumbsy and horrible, are you going to attempt to change it when you don't think it's possible, or from that instant just poo-poo linux and go back to windows/mac and forget linux ever existed?

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simplezz

What's so cancerous about something that is an open standard like C# is?

It's not an open standard, any more than OOXML is. Microsoft controls and dictates what the specification is, and many of the API's are proprietary.

Then there's the question of patents and licences. We've all seen how Microsoft uses patents on industry standards like FAT to attack FOSS and Android by extracting very high royalties. And now we're just supposed to trust Microsoft's word that they won't sue or extract royalties in the future? Ha yeah right. Microsoft has already shown itself to be an aggressive patent litigator when anyone tries to compete with it. I wouldn't use any of their technology ever again.

Plus what is incredibly wrong about having another language to use? Folks didn't complain when Python, another open language, was created, or Ruby...so why complain about C#?

Python, Ruby, et al are true cross-platform, non-proprietary, non-patent encumbered, non-precarious development platforms, and are not controlled by a an aggressive patent litigator, unlike C#, dotNET.

If you ask me the one thing that's killing Linux are these idiot FOSS purists who claim that anyone who likes making money with the code they write, is an evil baby killer who eats puppies for breakfast.

Nothing's killing GNU/Linux, it's alive and well and thriving.

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threetonesun

I have to say yeah, you CAN change it, but let's be honest, the majority of first-time desktop linux users get ubuntu. Do they have a CLUE about how to use package managers? What to do to change desktop? If it's even possible? (If you've used windows or mac all your life you probably wouldn't even know changing it can be done).

Considering Windows 8 and OSX now come with "package managers", I suspect (or hope) they do know how to use them.

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n_K

Considering Windows 8 and OSX now come with "package managers", I suspect (or hope) they do know how to use them.

But do either allow you to completely change the desktop and interface? No. So why would joe bloggs think that's possible?

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threetonesun

But do either allow you to completely change the desktop and interface? No. So why would joe bloggs think that's possible?

They both allow some amount of customization, it's not beyond the grasp of the average user that there's probably a control panel somewhere that allows you to tweak the desktop, especially now that all the major OSs have "panel" areas and multiple desktops.

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ViperAFK

It's not an open standard, any more than OOXML is. Microsoft controls and dictates what the specification is, and many of the API's are proprietary.

Then there's the question of patents and licences. We've all seen how Microsoft uses patents on industry standards like FAT to attack FOSS and Android by extracting very high royalties. And now we're just supposed to trust Microsoft's word that they won't sue or extract royalties in the future? Ha yeah right. Microsoft has already shown itself to be an aggressive patent litigator when anyone tries to compete with it. I wouldn't use any of their technology ever again.

Python, Ruby, et al are true cross-platform, non-proprietary, non-patent encumbered, non-precarious development platforms, and are not controlled by a an aggressive patent litigator, unlike C#, dotNET.

Nothing's killing GNU/Linux, it's alive and well and thriving.

On the subject of mono, I share your concerns about mono, but on the other hand it does really annoy me when some people openly bash software and the software author just because they used mono. Its not like MS is going to go after some random media player or irc client with patent attacks. Stuff like a a one off app using mono, or a distro including one or two small apps that happen to use mono really isn't a big deal as people make it out to be, but I can see people not wanting their entire DE or distro heavily depending on mono, which is something that will never happen anyway :)

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ichi

What's so cancerous about something that is an open standard like C# is? Plus what is incredibly wrong about having another language to use? Folks didn't complain when Python, another open language, was created, or Ruby...so why complain about C#?

You can code whatever you want using C#, what we don't want is Mono becoming a structural part of Linux.

While most of Mono is based on ECMA specifications and hence subject to Microsoft's Community Promise, some other parts aren't.

Also if you read the terms of the Community Promise you'll see that Microsoft can revoke the promise at any time if you participate in a patent infringement lawsuit against Microsoft. Building core Linux components over such a promise is akin to letting a trojan in, as you are giving MS rights to use all of your IP as they see fit, and for free.

But again, there's nothing wrong with coding apps with C# as long as it's restricted to stuff that can easily go to the dustbin if things get ugly.

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.Neo

Installed Ubuntu latest number. I have to say, defending that user interface is like calling your diarrhea an artistic masterpiece that the whole world should see.

Funny, I think the same thing every time I see Windows 8. ;)

The interesting part is that Ubuntu might seem more familiar to Windows users now Microsoft is shifting towards Metro. Too bad app support is nowhere near the level of either OS X or Windows.

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Max Norris
So why would joe bloggs think that's possible?

Again, why wouldn't it be possible? You've been able to swap to a different shell in Windows for years, don't know why people are saying that you can't. And yes, even in Windows 8. Same goes for the theme engine, there are replacements.

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.Neo

Again, why wouldn't it be possible? You've been able to swap to a different shell in Windows for years, don't know why people are saying that you can't. And yes, even in Windows 8. Same goes for the theme engine, there are replacements.

I think it has more to do with the fact that generally taken people just aren't aware of these options. The vast majority tends to choose a product that offers the best out-of-the-box experience rather spending countless hours tweaking every aspect of an operating system. They don't go looking for it either.

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javagreen

I have to say yeah, you CAN change it, but let's be honest, the majority of first-time desktop linux users get ubuntu. Do they have a CLUE about how to use package managers? What to do to change desktop? If it's even possible? (If you've used windows or mac all your life you probably wouldn't even know changing it can be done).

So what if that's you? You see something that's clumbsy and horrible, are you going to attempt to change it when you don't think it's possible, or from that instant just poo-poo linux and go back to windows/mac and forget linux ever existed?

I attribute that to the spoon-fed generation pioneered by Apple. Also, it's kinda amusing that most of the Linux dissers are Mac users who're used to being spoonfed by Apple.

It helps to step out from under the palm of the great messiah sometimes ;)

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Chicane-UK

For me there are several reasons why I've just never bonded with Linux on the desktop, despite repeated attempts over the years.. and I don't see, in my case, there ever being an easy fix.

1) Apps. Whatever way you look at it, you get used to certain applications and unless something REALLY annoys you about a certain product or platform, you ain't going to jump ship and try using alternatives. For example Adobe Creative Suite - I use Photoshop and InDesign. I simply cannot be bothered to learn using (and I hate to say it) inferior alternatives.

2) Hardware support. Graphics vendors have done a great job in getting support for their cards. Virtually everyone else sucks. I've lost count of the amount of times I decided to have a go with Linux for a while, and immediately ran into some huge hardware incompatibility or some lacking functionality. I don't say this to dismiss it because I'm anti-Linux at all!

Who's to blame for this? The hardware vendors and the big software companies. The Linux developers really can't do any more - it's a total open system that anyone can develop for / on. Hardware and software companies won't take the risk of wasting resource on a gamble and it's classic catch 22... not enough users to justify porting big applications, and not enough big applications to warrant shifting over to Linux.

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HawkMan

Nothing's killing GNU/Linux, it's alive and well and thriving.

What's the percentage of desktop users running Linux again?

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simplezz

What's the percentage of desktop users running Linux again?

http://www.linuxinsi...port-74186.html

It's not the percentage that matters but the growth rate. Isn't that what WP fans keep saying? GNU/Linux is growing 100% per annum. That's huge. Apple's desktop OS X is also growing well year on year. Windows might have a desktop monopoly but its position is in decline. It's losing market share year on year, just like in mobile.

The future looks rosy for GNU/Linux and FOSS, with upcoming mobile OS's like Firefox and Tizen. Competition is good for all of us. Windows users get more features and better prices. You should be welcoming the success of Linux.

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Max Norris
http://www.linuxinsi...port-74186.html

It's not the percentage that matters but the growth rate. Isn't that what WP fans keep saying? GNU/Linux is growing 100% per annum. That's huge.

Well that's odd. Looking at the source cited that article, specifically NetMarketShare, going over their entire range of data, it's never broke 2% in the 5 years of data it's been collecting. In fact, just this year alone, per that same source, Linux dropped from 1.56% in January (the same month as that article) down to 1.10%, even going under 1% for a couple months. The rest of those sources cited are just blog articles, zero facts.

What growth rate?

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threetonesun

I attribute that to the spoon-fed generation pioneered by Apple. Also, it's kinda amusing that most of the Linux dissers are Mac users who're used to being spoonfed by Apple.

It helps to step out from under the palm of the great messiah sometimes ;)

I've used all three, I prefer OSX, because if I want a useable, cohesive GUI it's there, and if I just want to bang around in Terminal, it's got that too.

IMO if you've used OSX beyond watching things bounce in the dock, Linux seems relatively familiar. Windows is the odd ball of the three.

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n_K

Again, why wouldn't it be possible? You've been able to swap to a different shell in Windows for years, don't know why people are saying that you can't. And yes, even in Windows 8. Same goes for the theme engine, there are replacements.

So if you were to go into 15 random high schools and ask who's used a different windows shell or who thinks it's possible, what percentage do you think would reply yes? 1%? If that?

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