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GNOME 2.12 Previewed

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the sweetness dept.

GNOME 437

An anonymous reader writes "Davyd Madeley has completed his Prerelease Tour of GNOME 2.12. Scheduled for release on September 7th, 2005, GNOME 2.12 has picked up a new theme, some features popularised by Apple's System 7, some new multimedia tools and plenty of bug-fixes."

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omfg (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206760)

omfgfplol

Gnome 2.2 ey? (0)

jondt (870495) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206761)

A preview of Gnome 2.2 ey? So what about a reflection on Gnome 3 then?

Re:Gnome 2.2 ey? (1)

nijk (781345) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206840)

How can such a beautiful person be so stupid?

Will this fit into my $100 budget (-1, Troll)

Tim_F (12524) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206762)

My buddy and I only have two weeks and $100 to outfit our server room. If we don't we stand to lose countless customers and may no longer be able to support all the computers that are in need. Others do this for thousands of dollars. We only have 2 weeks and $100.

BSD ? (4, Funny)

mbyte (65875) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206769)

Is this some subtile joke by the editors among the BSD is dying trolls ?

Re:BSD ? (1)

TummyX (84871) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206776)

Or perhaps it's cause Gnome works on BSD?

Re:BSD ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206782)

So does most of what gets mentioned on Slashdot.

Re:BSD ? (2, Informative)

trollzor (858973) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206804)

I have seen other GNOME stuff listed under the BSD section a couple of times. It's all a bit of BS if you ask me. Because the G in GNOME stands for GNU. Perhaps timothy mistakenly believes GNOME is a BSD project, I dunno, anything is possible with these editors. I don't mind the BSD guys using LGPL stuff or GPL stuff, hell I use the OpenBSD derived ssh stuff which totally kicks ass (ubuntu lists it as OpenBSD derived in the bootup and shutdown I believe), but credit where credit is due.

Re:BSD ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206856)

Yes, the most popular SSH implementation is OpenSSH [openssh.org] , maintained by OpenBSD. OpenBSD is also paranoid about security, so as a result, Linux distros get a paranoid-level secure SSH daemon.

OpenBSD is great, by the way. You should give it a try. I use it on my laptop. It supports my laptop better than Linux does. For example, in Linux, my laptop won't suspend. On OpenBSD, not only does it suspend, but it also hibernates. Also, Centrino wireless is much more annoying to get working on Linux. But on OpenBSD, everything works great, with little modifications needed.

Moving to OpenBSD as my primary platform also got me closer to real Unix roots. Got me away from bash, which was causing me to do really unportable things in shell scripts. Got me away from glibc, so I don't do as many unportable things in C programs anymore because I'm no longer reading GNU manpages. And, my Makefiles aren't nearly as atrocious as they once were, now that I'm not using GNU make.

The BSD experience really is different from the Linux one. IMHO in a positive way. If you're presently a Linux devotee I recommend you give some other form of Unix a good solid try. It might just change the way you think about the whole deal.

Re:BSD ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206904)

Bash was causing you to write unportable shell scripts? Or was it you inability to follow POSIX Sh standards?

Re:BSD ? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206918)

Netcraft Confirms: GNOME is dying.

The current number of servers Netcraft reports as powered by GNOME now stands at zero. It's official. GNOME is dead. Upon hearing the news, creator Miguel de Icaza was seen working at Taco Bell, depressed, sweeping the floor, and muttering the words, "ay carajo..." The KDE dragon was unavailable for comment.

Or something. I don't quite have the knack for these.

Friendly (-1, Redundant)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206771)

It still doens't look friendly enough...

What about Beagle? (3, Insightful)

rekrutacja (647394) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206778)

Is this mature enough to include it as standard? Desktop search is key missing feature in Linux...

Re:What about Beagle? (2, Informative)

ralinx (305484) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206797)

as long as Red Hat is opposed to distributing Mono, Beagle (written in C#) will never be in the default Gnome Desktop... at least not the one Red Hat will ship. So who knows... there may be another high profile fork (red hat gnome vs novell gnome) coming up soon.

Re:What about Beagle? (3, Informative)

KeyserDK (301544) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206876)

To be honest, the widespread porting of the lucene engine(beagle backend) is the highest amount of forking i've ever seen.

There exists a port for every language, it just doesn't make sense. The basic algorithms for searching, and storing indexes hasn't changed for quite some time.

In the digital library space there even exists quite old (10 years) open source software such as zebra[1] which can handle large indexes fast. There are actually open standards[2] for information retrieval (IR), but nobody in the open source desktop space seem to know about it(?).
[1]http://www.indexdata.dk/zebra [indexdata.dk]
[2]http://www.loc.gov/z3950/agency/zing/ [loc.gov]

Re:What about Beagle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206933)

You know, with the magic of the internet [w3schools.com] , you can actually cite references inline. It's kind of the whole point of hyperlinking.

Re:What about Beagle? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206939)

Might be because of too many school papers, they brainwash you.... also /. puts the domain inside the text so it disturbs the reading.

Re:What about Beagle? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206801)

no beagle is only a trojan horse done to justify
mono as default platform into gnome.
i've heard that someone are working to produce a beagle replacement in python
http://img185.echo.cx/img185/2971/pybeagle47ya.png [img185.echo.cx]

Re:What about Beagle? (1)

dalutong (260603) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206970)

I understand that Ubuntu will have it included by default in their next release (which will probably be on the same day as the release of GNOME.)

GNOME? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206779)

Is that a fork of KDE?

Re:GNOME? (-1, Troll)

Tim_F (12524) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206791)

No, but strangely the icons in Nautilus are looking more and more like they were ripped straight off from KDE. Come on guys, if you're going to rip ideas (and artwork ideas no less) from your only direct open source competition, at least have the balls to admit where the idea came from. If Gnome used QT perhaps the icons and the window decorations wouldn't make me gag, but until that point I'm stuck using KDE even if it did come from Germany.

Re:GNOME? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206827)

Oh my! This is a poor attempt at a troll.

Gnome has had a consistent icon theme, mainly developed by jimmac, for a really long time. It is really quite different then the crystal icon theme in KDE and I actually think that it is the foremost icon theme in all operating systems today. I dont have a clue how you can see something that has been ripped from KDE.

And by the way, both KDE and Gnome are developed by international communities so if you want an "all american" desktop please use something from a large software vendor instead.

nice headline... (4, Funny)

w4rl5ck (531459) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206780)

for a second I was... "hey I have to install that imme... wait... I already did... I... *click* 2.10... [strange feeling]... ah, 2.12..."

can someone correct the headline or something? :)

Re:nice headline... (1)

etrnl (65328) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206794)

Emailed the on-duty before it got posted, but... *sigh* Apparently noone was watching...

nautilus default behavior (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206784)

I've acctually installed breezy on my laptop and the default behavior of nautilus seems the browser view.
is the spatial navigation replaced again or is only an ubuntu feature ?

Gnome vs. KDE (0, Troll)

John Seminal (698722) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206787)

I don't want to troll, but I have always wondered...

Why are there two major windows manager projects? Not like lots of other smaller projects like IceWM. It seems that so much time is put in KDE and Gnome, that if the two teams worked together, they might make something superior to what they made on their own. Does KDE and Gnome have the same goals, or are they very different?

And which is better? I know "better" can be a subjective term. What is the difference between them. They are both rather large compared to smaller WM that can run on older machines.

I personally have alwyas liked Gnome more. If you asked me to tell you why, I don't think I could, except to say I like the look and feel of it. KDE does not look as nice. But every now and then, when I use KDE, I will find a cool little tool or application that Gnome does not have, at least not from a clean instal.

This is my guess, correct me if I am wrong. KDE has more developers and money. Gnome has fewer people, but more creative people. KDE will give you everything and the kitchen sink. Gnome will find ways put a twist into things, to make it fun.

Of course, those thought above are just my feelings, not facts.

I wonder what people like about their WM that is not available in other flavors??

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206798)

I don't want to troll, but I have always wondered... Why are there two major windows manager projects?

I don't want to flame, but I always wonder... how do people like you manage not to have seen this question discussed to death in every single previous Gnome or KDE-related discussion here on Slashdot since the dawn of time?

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206850)

I remember once there was a war, but since then there has never been another war because as a species humans learnt their lesson.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

bnitsua (72438) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206974)

Obviously, he's a time traveller from the year 1996, so the whole concept of "Slashdot" confuses him. He seems to understand Karma Whoring pretty well, though.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Informative)

Rapsey (241302) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206816)

I dont think KDE has more money. I dont know of any company that puts money into KDE, but a few that put money into GNOME.
They do have more developers. Simply because its much easier to develop programs for KDE than it is for GNOME.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Insightful)

stilborne (85590) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206878)

> I dont know of any company that puts money into
> KDE

SUSE/Novell, Trolltech, Mandriva and Linspire all pay people to work on KDE directly, to name just four companies you probably know by name. i could also name a bunch of small you companies you don't know who each fund part of a developer to several developers, ranging from co's like kitty hooch who funds quanta developers to KDAB who does a ton of work with KDE and groupware..

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

twener (603089) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206896)

> I dont know of any company that puts money into KDE

You then can learn something at 1 [kde.org] , 2 [osdw.org] , 3 [kde.org] and 4 [kde.org] or in incomplete summary: HP, Intel, Novell, Trolltech, Linspire, Mandriva and countless medium-sized businesses.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

twener (603089) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206919)

Add IBM to above, not really medium-sized - no, just missed to copy it.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Informative)

bhalo05 (865352) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206819)

It seems that so much time is put in KDE and Gnome, that if the two teams worked together, they might make something superior to what they made on their own

Sigh. There's no way they'd be working together anyway. Gnome devs love C and GTK. KDE devs are C++ experts and like QT.

Besides that, Gnome users like Gnome. KDE users... well, like KDE. They can choose because both are different and there are many different kinds of users, you know...

There's not going to be a single desktop environment. Period.

Not so simple! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206968)

> Besides that, Gnome users like Gnome. KDE users... well, like KDE.

I'll say MHO, but I suspect many will have similar opinions, given the still knowledgeable nature of Linux desktop users.

First, on a purely usability point of view, things are not so clear. Gnome certainly has a better "human factors" approach, while KDE is or looks more coherent -- which itself makes it look more "usable" than Gnome (see kioslaves, e.g.).

In fact, each DE is so well done now that, in my case, I use very questionable criteria to choose KDE:

1) I favour object-oriented (OO) over procedural, because I believe this leads to more correct code. Though I dislike C++, I _think_ it allows for better programming than C. I'm not talking about my personal perception! This already has been reasonably well discussed. OO code has been verified to be better.

2) There have been too many paranoid laws in the USA (I won't judge them, I'm a foreigner). Corporations also are having a too intensive role in law/lobby activities. This is not going to end well. I'm sorry to say all this, but as economy changes shape, it seems that places once open are getting closed more and more.

OTOH, Gnome blows KDE out of the water when it comes to looks. I'm not talking about simplicity or other BS we always get from you-know-who (hint: it's not Voldemort). Gnome icons, walls, decorations etc. rock.

Certain guys, like Jimmac and Tiger are incredible.

But in the end, it's like pretty girls: great looks are, well, great -- but contents are what matters as years go by.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Insightful)

Internet_Communist (592634) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206828)

well to start gnome is written mostly in C and KDE is mostly in C++

so right there is a major difference in both coding style and what not...You couldn't exactly "integrate" them.

I also prefer the looks of gnome but I know just as many people who like the look of KDE better. It's very subjective.

My biggest concern is my programs not matching. Seeing as I like GTK themes better then most KDE themes, and nothing exists to match GTK themes on KDE (just the other way around) I'm stuck with just attempting to match my colors...Sure this is all apperance and doesn't say much about function but it's still pretty annoying...

Little annoying things like that are my main issue, and that's mostly just GTK/QT differences, not really kde/gnome....I don't actually use a DE, though I use a few gnome programs and thus have gnome installed, well partially anyway. I have konqueror installed so I can test my webpages with KHTML as well, plus I have a few apps which are QT only...etc..

so yes it's daunting but I don't see anything happening any time soon

and that's not to mention XFCE which is written in c++ but uses GTK libraries through it's own wrappers or something like that....

but in the end the question is, who do you really want using linux anyway? Do we really want your average joe on linux? Or trying to install/configure it? In the work place that's not so important, someone can set it up, put some big firefox/word processor icons on the desktop, and that's the end of it...

so what's really going on here? trying to dumb linux down enough to home users who don't want to take the effort to learn it?

I just don't see that happening.

and please note that gnome and kde are not window managers, they just include one. You can use any window manager you want with gnome or kde. Gnome uses metacity by default, and used to use sawfish before that. KDE uses kwin. There's a pretty big difference between toolkits like GTK or QT and window managers like *box,windowmaker,metacity,etc...Your comment makes me think you have no idea what a window manager does.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Insightful)

kelnos (564113) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206923)

and that's not to mention XFCE which is written in c++ but uses GTK libraries through it's own wrappers or something like that....
Bzzt! Xfce [xfce.org] is written in straight C using GTK+ directly. We have a couple support libraries with utility functions and custom widgets, but there are no "wrappers or something like that".

There are currently C++ [xfce.org] and Python [xfce.org] bindings, but the desktop itself is all written in C.

Explanation of the basics? (1)

rduke15 (721841) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206949)

Your comment makes me think you have no idea what a window manager does.

Neither do I, really.

I always wondered, and would very much like to find a good and simple explanation of these things.

What are exactly all these pieces, and what are the relations between the OS, X (are there alternatives to X on Linux?), GTK/QT/other?, Gnome/KDE/others?, Window managers, "Desktop environments", etc.

If someone knows a good page giving an overview of all this, that would be nice. And how this architecture is comparable to or different from the ways Windows and Mac manage the GUI, would be interesting too.

I'm really missing a broad understanding of this subject.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

Elranzer (851411) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206960)

My biggest concern is my programs not matching. Seeing as I like GTK themes better then most KDE themes, and nothing exists to match GTK themes on KDE (just the other way around) I'm stuck with just attempting to match my colors...Sure this is all apperance and doesn't say much about function but it's still pretty annoying...
Isn't that what the whole Bluecurve project was all about? Making Gnome and KDE apps look almost like they were the same interface? The final version of it (in Fedora Core 3 and RHEL 4) seemed to pull it off nicely.

Too bad that starting with Fedora Core 4, Redhat is switching the default theme to that ugly-ass Clearlooks and it's light-blue/light-brown color scheme. I guess since Fedora is suppossedly no longer a fork of Redhat, they have to pull the plug on redhat-artwork which means R.I.P. Bluecurve. :(

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (2, Insightful)

lasindi (770329) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206884)

Why are there two major windows manager projects? Not like lots of other smaller projects like IceWM. It seems that so much time is put in KDE and Gnome, that if the two teams worked together, they might make something superior to what they made on their own. Does KDE and Gnome have the same goals, or are they very different?

I'm no expert by any means on either KDE or GNOME; this is all from what I've gathered as a KDE user, so don't quote me on any of this. I personally wouldn't want the two to become one because they do seem to go into different directions. A perfect example is their file browsers. I've always loved Konqueror, especially since it means I get to use tabbed file browsing. Nautilus, on the other hand, decided to use a "spatial browsing" interface, which opens a new window for each folder you open. Personally I can't stand this, but it was decided on after much deliberation by the GNOME people, so apparently some people like it. KDE also behaves a lot more like Windows than GNOME does. Some people dislike the Windows interface, but for newcomers to the Unix world it is useful to have this to ease the transition. So long as you can use KDE apps in GNOME and GNOME apps in KDE, I think there's no problem keeping the two projects separate.

This is my guess, correct me if I am wrong. KDE has more developers and money. Gnome has fewer people, but more creative people. KDE will give you everything and the kitchen sink. Gnome will find ways put a twist into things, to make it fun.

I'm not sure if GNOME or KDE has more people; I've always been under the impression that they have about the same number. As far as corporate sponsorship goes, though, companies like Novell are going for KDE, whereas Red Hat has poured a whole bunch of resources into GNOME. As far as putting a new "twist" into software, yeah I'd say that's true of GNOME. The difference is that, IMHO, the twists just make the software harder to use. But again, this is all in the eye of the beholder. Different people like different features, and that's why I'm fine with two different desktops.

For me, the difference boils down to this. GNOME does what it's supposed to do very well, and it's lighter-weight and cleaner. But what GNOME is supposed to do isn't what I want (like spatial browsing). KDE is supposed to do what I want, but it feels slower and there are weird bugs that can be annoying (example: my desktop icons magically rearrange themselves sometimes).

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

Mad Merlin (837387) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206894)

...that if the two teams worked together, they might make something superior to what they made on their own.
I doubt it. To make a comparison, if you have two trains facing opposite directions and you stick them together, what happens? No, they don't end up getting twice as far, they end up hindering eachother's progress, and the final combined result is less than what they could have accomplished on their own. While they may seem to do similar things on a very superficial basis, they have very different goals and very different ways of getting there.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

twener (603089) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206930)

> Why are there two major windows manager projects?

Because GNOME was started as reaction to Qt not being GPL licensed in ancient times.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

grumbel (592662) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206944)

In the beginning it was a license issue, KDE was based on the non-free QT while Gnome was purly based on LGPL stuff. However in the meantime stuff has changed, QT is now free and the goals have shifted. From what I can tell KDE tries to go the feature-bloat and customization aproach, implement whatever seems usable care about sorting stuff later and give the user the freedom to configure pretty much anything. Gnome on the other side tries to develeop the desktop environment for your grandma, if a configuration option might be not totally necesarily it gets moved into gconf (aka Gnomes Registry clone) or even removed completly. Gnome people also try to get it right, instead of basing to much of their stuff on existing UI principles, so you get for example the different button order in dialogs in Gnome.

Both of the aproaches are pretty much incompatible, you have a hard time getting stuff extremly simple and at the same time full of features and configurablity. So in the end I am very happy that we have both. Beside from that they don't work against each other, they just try different routes. When it comes to important core concepts they actually follow the same standards, see freedesktop.org.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206978)

In the beginning it was a license issue, KDE was based on the non-free QT while Gnome was purly based on LGPL stuff. However in the meantime stuff has changed, QT is now free and the goals have shifted.

Qt is a GPLed library... meaning the full GPL spreads to any KDE apps (unless you buy the commercial license from TrollTech). That's why few companies have anything to do with KDE (no, Novell are comitted to GNOME and Mandriva/Linspire simpyl don't count in any real comaprison) -- because of the license trap.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206992)

> Novell are comitted to GNOME Novell is also committed to KDE.

Re:Gnome vs. KDE (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206981)

Why are there two major windows manager projects?

The communists asked themselves the same question about any and all products.

The answer is that Humans are naturally competitive. To do their best they need to think the other mob are nipping at their heels. It's just human nature and it is the reason why products which achive a near monopoly find it so hard to keep quality high.

This post prepared on a GTK web browser under fvwm.

KDE (-1, Troll)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206788)

Why do I have to choose between the great features of KDE and Gnome? Why can't they shut the fuck up and work together?

Not trying to be a troll...I'm just tired of this crap.

Re:KDE (2, Interesting)

etrnl (65328) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206807)

They do, from time to time. Take a look at the Extended Window Manager Hints Spec (that I was involved in administrating for a bit before it got too technical for me...).

They don't always work together very well, but given the basic design differences in architecture, that's to be expected technically. Personality wise... well, it's my experience that the more intelligent a geek is, the higher probability that they believe that anyone who disagrees with them is an idiot. (De Raat, Stallman, etc) That just breeds personality conflicts. (Linus seems to be an exception to that, for the most part.)

Re:KDE (1)

kelnos (564113) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206986)

(Linus seems to be an exception to that, for the most part.)
Really? By all accounts, he seems just as egotistical and arrogant as those you've mentioned. He just tends to be quieter about it (doesn't speak outside of lkml quite so much), and (dare I say it) more sensible and practical in his ideas than true zealots like RMS, ESR, de Raadt, etc. I guess that's the difference: he may be an ass from time to time, but at least OSS isn't a religion to him.

Re:KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206817)

To be quite honest, they're really beginning to match each other feature for feature (from toolkits all the way up to the capabilities of the DE's themselves) and becoming interoperable to the point that having two of them is pretty redundant, and a choice between them is almost meaningless.

I personally choose KDE as it has the edge on functionality (compare, e.g., gnome-bluetooth-manager with kdebluetooth) and is slightly better designed with its KParts and kio_slaves. Plus, I greatly prefer C++ to C for development so KDE fits with me better, although the existence of gtkmm makes this slightly less important.

Re:KDE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206822)

Why do I have to choose between the great features of KDE and Gnome?

You don't have to. Other people working on projects that introduce them doesn't force anything upon you.

Yeah I know : "But I can't cope with havijng choices!" Won't someone tell me what to do?" Okay, use XFCE. There, choise made for you. You never have to worry again. Happy?

Re:KDE (1)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206852)

Why do I have to choose between the great features of Windows and OSX? Why can't they shut the fuck up and work together? The two groups have vastly different philosophies as to what a desktop should be. As you stated yourself, there are strengths and weaknesses for both. The one true anything simply won't happen.

Re:KDE (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206861)

Er. You don't have to "choose", for the most part. GNOME applications typically run just fine on a mostly-KDE desktop and vice-versa.

It's mainly the fanboys who don't STFU. Under the auspices of the http://freedesktop.org/ [freedesktop.org] organisation, KDE and GNOME (and other minority desktop!) developers regularly work together, standardising interaction protocols and whatnot. KDE and GNOME have different design philosophies, and I happen to prefer KDE (though I wish it wasn't written in Qt-extended-C++). I don't WANT to see one or the other go away, though, because friendly competition drives innovation in the linux desktop.

Re:KDE (3, Insightful)

Phleg (523632) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206863)

The same reason that you have to choose between Microsoft Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and *BSD. The developers all have a different perspective on what defines good software, different project goals, different target audiences, and these differences are irreconcilable for the purposes of a single project.

I have to admit, I fail to see what is so utterly difficult about this concept that causes people to be so blind to the answer, despite the fact that they accept it on faith for everything else: why we have competing cars, fast food restaurants, colas, and so on.

Totem (5, Interesting)

astralbat (828541) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206793)

I'll look forward to the day when Totem manages to play DVD's better than Xine.
Even changing the GStreamer backend for the Xine backend, Totem still never manages to play half the movies I seem to give it.

I do like the idea of a GStreamer based Mozilla plugin though. It will give users a great choice to drop the ugly Mplayer based plugin.

Works For me (TM) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206803)

You are sure you have installed libdvdcss2 and other necessary libraries? Here Totem with xine works perfectly fine with all DVDs I throw at it.

It Just Works Philosophy (4, Interesting)

vectorian798 (792613) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206795)

From the article: More software is taking advantage of the Hardware Abstraction Layer from Project Utopia. HAL-aware applications can display more information to the user, as well as benefit from "it just works" plug and play style hardware support. GNOME-VFS in GNOME 2.12 has improved integration with HAL, and now gives more visual cues about the types and names of media devices.

I am looking forward to this feature, especially - just another step towards making Linux more user-friendly.

In fact, this prerelease tour shows many exciting features for those who want to see a real desktop linux - improvements to Nautilus, a panel with Edit Menu option compliant with Freedesktop.org spec (how long have we been looking for something like this?), and more. Yay

Re:It Just Works Philosophy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206866)

> a panel with Edit Menu option compliant with Freedesktop.org spec (how long have we been looking for something like this?) KDE has it for several releases already.

Re:It Just Works Philosophy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206891)

I just works... slowly.

Has anyone else spotted the fact that GTK2.8 will be part of GNOME2.12? This means that the Cairo-based GTK will be used... and it has been comprehensively shown to be much slower than previous GTK2 releases.

This is unacceptable. The GTK developers are rather well-known for not knowing how to do basic optimization tasks and ignoring complaints/patches/profiles submitted by developers from gnumeric, eclipse and mozilla that show just how badly under-optimized GTK2 really is compared to stuff like The Fox toolkit or Qt. It's been this way since the introduction of GTK2 (the V1 branch was quite fast).

Now we are faced with the GTK2 developers throwing in yet another technology that will slow things down further. I really wish a company would hire someone with a clue, instead of the current bunch of GTK2 developers (many from Red Hat) who don't seem to know their asses from their elbows. How about taking some of those kernel developers who pride themselves on code quality and putting them to work cleaning up and speeding up GTK2?

Re:It Just Works Philosophy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206913)

> a panel with Edit Menu option compliant with Freedesktop.org spec (how long have we been looking for something like this?)

Real desktop linux? KDE has it for several releases already.

Looks like an interesting combination (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206809)

The icons for drives remind me of some of the older Macs. Then everything has a touch of Windowsism. It looks like an interesting mixture of ideas.

That, and the upcoming KDE is looking nice as well. Everybody loves to criticize the free software desktop environments, but all I see is progress each year.

I suppose nothing will please the armchair software developers.

Efficiency (4, Insightful)

Alain Williams (2972) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206810)

The feature that I want is: efficiency.

Gnome is great at turning a fast computer into a sluggish one. Just because you have all of those CPU cycles doesn't mean that they have to use them, especially when lots of them seem to be wasted.

For instance: if you look (strace) at a typical gnome program when it starts up, it stats zillions of files; many of them more than once. This is why startup is so sloooooow.

Oh, I am trolling am I ? We all have fast computers so why am I making a fuss ? Think about: being able to save power (improve battery life) with a slower CPU laptop; people in the third world who cannot afford the super computers that we, in the 1st world, have on out desktops; think about sharing a server between many people (eg LTSP).

It would be nice to see a gnome release that just concentrated on making the code faster.

Re:Efficiency (1)

mfearby (1653) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206835)

Unfortunately, the Gnome developers are mezmerized by their own eye-candy and the unlimited possibilities for adding more, more, more!!!!.

I can see it now, the Gnome people in Hell's "Ironic Punishment Division", being forced to add so much bloat to Gnome that they realise they've become Windows Vista's spawned process of doom!

Gnome isn't ever going to cut it in the real world as long as the development team fail to realise that people get sick of bloat in no time, and ultimately, just want something zippy and efficient that doesn't prove time-wasting.

I actually think that most Linux developers prefer being the eternal underdog because they're certainly not helping their cause by remaining slaves to the perpetual eye-candy tweaking at the expense of efficiency!

Re:Efficiency (4, Interesting)

ssj_195 (827847) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206846)

I think both the major desktops are beginning to start the optimisation drive round about now; the thing is that software development usually proceeds in fits and starts, with different parts of the software development process going through the phases of Making It Work, Making It Work Well and Securely, and, finally, Making It Work Fast. I'm going to stick my neck out and say that even though both Desktop Environments have been around before the year 2000, both have undergone more intensive development, or at least had more features added, over the last year or so than ever before in their history (actually, this goes for Desktop Linux in general, from the kernel to X to the toolkits to the DE's to the distros themselves), so there are a lot of rough and unoptimised new additions in there.

Fortunately, unlike a certain other purveyor of Desktop OS's, the devs are actually fairly committed to making everything faster and less resource hungry (witness the GNOME optimisation bounties, and the efforts of the Ubuntu team). Robert Love gave a very interesting talk on optimisation of the desktop environments (I can't find a link right now, but the talk was called "Optimising GNOME", although some of the library-level changes could be conscripted by KDE and anyone else, really). KDE posted some resource-consumption figures for the (very rough and unoptimised) KDE4 port of Kate, and it already looks significantly better. Add in the upcoming xgl et al, and things should hopefully get to the absolutely perfect state of getting faster and faster while still adding features that every developer yearns for :)

Of course, it's pretty much impossible to continuously increase functionality without paying some price in terms of resource-consumption, so you might be better off going to less featureful DE's like, say, XFCE, if you prefer speed over functionality.

Re:Efficiency (3, Interesting)

stilborne (85590) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206883)

we (KDE) have been getting faster with each release in the KDE3 series. optimization isn't exactly a new thing on our plate, but you are right that KDE4 will likely show additional improvements.

I see "chunky" is still in vogue! (2, Insightful)

mfearby (1653) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206812)

Looky here! Nobody wants a file browser that forces you into that evil humungo-icon-size style or that horrid tea-towel stripy look. Give me a file browser that is as cut-down, yet lightening fast, as explorer.exe (but without the lock-ups :-) and maybe, just maybe, this Gnome behemoth might be worth a look. I'll bet that the entire width of the left column is highlighted when you click on a file, even if it's only named "1.txt"!!!!! Old, people! That's old! Get with it!

Nobody? I do (1)

ThreeDayMonk (673466) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206969)

Don't make the mistake of assuming that because you don't want something, nobody does.

I like big icons, because they are easier to click. I have plenty of screen space, so wasting it isn't a problem.

I like stripes, because it's easier to track the information across.

I even like the spacial browsing mode of Nautilus.

Now, you can say that I'm an idiot for liking these things, but if nothing else, it proves that some people are happy with the direction Gnome's taking. We just don't tend to make a loud noise about it.

Just what Gnome needs... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206813)

...more bloat for there "user as a simpleton" vision. Anybody with a clue is already comfortable running XFCE, flux or icewm.

Still ugly fonts (3, Interesting)

AvantLegion (595806) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206830)

Neat features. Yes the font in every screenshot is still ugly and would be laughed out of the room if it were the default look for a GUI on an OS from Microsoft or Apple. They're thin, brittle, and chintzy. Though it's not necessarily the fonts themselves. Even when I copy over the fonts from Windows, they make those fonts look thin, brittle, and chintzy. Why can't, say, Times New Roman be rendered in Linux and match Times New Roman in Windows, without the crappy errors with italicized letters and such? All the tinkering with AA and subpixel rendering settings in the world still can't match what a few clicks to turn on and tune Cleartype does. It saddens me to leave my Linux desktop at home, go to work on a Windows PC, and marvel at how much better websites and such look.

Give me font rendering that doesn't suck.

Re:Still ugly fonts (5, Insightful)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206845)

Write congress and tell them to reform patent legislation so that the Xorg folks can use the same techniques that Apple and MS does. It's not gnome's fault that the patent system is broken.

Re:Still ugly fonts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206854)

Windows font rendering is terrible, I much prefer FreeType's autohinting. I assume you do understand why FreeType defaults to autohinting? [freetype.org]

Re:Still ugly fonts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206902)

Windows font rendering is terrible, I much prefer FreeType's autohinting.

Either your eyes are broken, or you only have crappy unhinted fonts AND you never use non-Western text.

There's a reason why properly hinted fonts cost a lot of money, and it's not because computers can do it better.

Re:Still ugly fonts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206952)

I expect that my employers Win2K workstations don't do antialiasing which explains the visual sandpaper I have to stare at for 8 hours a day and I hardly ever use non-Western glyphs.
There's a reason why properly hinted fonts cost a lot of money, and it's not because computers can do it better.
I think the bitstream fonts are hinted.

In a side by side comparison between hinted and autohinted rendering of the same font, my collegues all prefered the autohinted version, as did I. I'm sure google will turn up the URL for the comparison.

Re:Still ugly fonts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206857)

Patents are protecting some parts of font rendering, thats is why truetype fonts look crappy: http://www.freetype.org/patents.html [freetype.org]

Re:Still ugly fonts (4, Informative)

Gleng (537516) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206885)

If you're using a Debian based distro, you can run:

dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig

And then select the bytecode interpreter from the menu. Fixed. :)

Re:Still ugly fonts (1)

kelnos (564113) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206964)

It's not like MS has had the best font renderer forever either. I'm forced to run Windows 2000 on my work machine, and the fonts there don't look quite as nice next to those on my Linux boxes.

I will admit, XP's Cleartype really does look nice, though it goes a bit too far into blurry-land for my taste, depending on the output device. At least the subpixel hinting is tweakable on X11 with fontconfig/Xft.

Re:Still ugly fonts (1)

d99-sbr (568719) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206991)

Microsoft release a ClearType calibration PowerToy a while back, and this made ClearType a whole lot better. Previously, I too thought it looked too blurred.

Re:Still ugly fonts (1)

nihilogos (87025) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206977)

I really don't know why people still go on about fonts in linux. I haven't had a problem with them since XFree86 3.3.something.

If I've been working exclusively on linux for a few weeks I gag when I boot up windows and look at the fonts for the first time in ages. And vice-versa when I have been exclusively on windows for a while. It just depends what I'm used to.

OS X-alike font rendering in Gnome (2, Interesting)

ThreeDayMonk (673466) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206985)

Personally, I despise Windows' hinted rendering. I like the heavily anti-aliased look on OS X, especially when dealing with Japanese text.

If you want to emulate OS X's font rendering, that's easy to achieve in Gnome. Just go to Font Preferences, Details..., and set Smoothing to Subpixel (or Greyscale for a TFT) and Hinting to None. Then walk away from the computer for a few minutes, because it looks weird in direct comparison. When you come back, enjoy the smooth text!

Hidden sinker (0)

iamdrscience (541136) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206833)

I've always felt that the fact that there are two major free *nix desktops is a real detriment to normal people adopting free OSes. I mean, to average computer users (i.e. my mom) the desktop _is_ the OS, a linux system running KDE and the same system running Gnome are two different systems entirely to people like this. I've never heard people talk about this as a reason why some people are hesitant to adopt FOSS OSes but it seems to me like it's a big one. I mean, if you're teaching the system or providing help desk support, you're dealing with two different beasts when walking a user through KDE vs. through Gnome.

User: How do I do XYZ?
Tech: Well, which desktop are you using?
User: ...I'm running linux...
Tech: Yeah, umm... what I mean is, uh, are you using KDE or Gnome?
User: Huh?

Now don't get me wrong, from my perspective as a geek, I understand why things are the way they are entirely, and the difference between using Gnome and using KDE aren't that big of a deal to me. I just think it's useful to look at it from the perspective of general users and worth considering.

Re:Hidden sinker (2, Insightful)

bhalo05 (865352) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206879)

I've never heard a newbie complaining about the variety of linux desktops. They may have problems installing software, and of course headaches with hardware drivers and kernel compilation. They also say things such as "does do not this thing run Half-life 2?". But I don't remamber any user moaning about the fact that there are two different desktops. In fact, they usually just use the one their distribution uses by default, and don't try the other until they are not newbies anymore.

Re:Hidden sinker (3, Interesting)

kelnos (564113) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206950)

I've always felt that the fact that there are two major free *nix desktops is a real detriment to normal people adopting free OSes.
Why does that have to be the goal? I'd much prefer a wide variety of choices over being friendly to the average-joe user. Am I being selfish? Not really. The average-joes can have Windows and Mac OS X. I'll stick with Linux.

Note that there's nothing stopping a company from taking a snapshot of GNOME or KDE (or whatever), and spending a year or two turning it into an average-joe-perfect distribution. IMHO, selling to the teeming masses is more the job of a commercial distro vendor than hackers working on a desktop environment. Let the hackers have their fun (I know I do [xfce.org] ), and let the businessmen make their money by appealing to the largest customer base.

What I don't understand (1, Interesting)

dnaumov (453672) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206844)

about GNOME is: why can't they fix and polish existing applications, instead of COMPLETELY REPLACING them with new applications like they do now. People do not want to change 1/3 of their desktop applications every year, I know I don't.

P.S: Why is this in the BSD section anyway?

new features, new shmeatures (2, Interesting)

KZigurs (638781) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206865)

ok, but when will I finally see a list of REMOVED features.

You know - those features that was recognized to be shitty and unusable. Removed default applications that simply don't work(r). Sourcebase size shrinking by megabytes. Abstraction and unification instead of the Linux Way(tm).

Yes, I'm flaming. But honestly - what's new? Desktop theme? Cool rendering approach? And why desktop envorement should ever mention HAL?

(yes, but I really like the fact that now Gnome is copying System7. Actually it's really a progress - all the usability quirks from Microsoft Windows have been copied already, yes?)

True Transparencies? (3, Interesting)

xjerky (128399) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206868)

TFA didn't seem to mention anything about it. I would hope that 2.12 can utilize X.org's native transparencies that have been present for months now.

Re:True Transparencies? (1)

kelnos (564113) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206976)

I would hope it doesn't, actually, at least not by default. The X Composite extension is still buggy as hell, and requires a recent video card with good drivers (pretty much only nvidia, and then only using the binary-only driver, and to some extent ATI), otherwise it's painfully slow. Hopefully that should improve with X.0rg 6.9.0/7.0.0 onwards, but I don't think that'll be timely enough for GNOME 2.12.

Wow! (2, Interesting)

David Horn (772985) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206890)

My boss saw this over my shoulder and is almost (but not quite) possibly thinking about maybe trialling Linux on his home machine...

Spatial Tree file view and huge directories (1)

Travoltus (110240) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206899)

How much time and cpu power/RAM will be needed for this feature to process a tree with a hundred directories, one directory having a total of, say, 5000 pictures/thumbnails?

Re:Spatial Tree file view and huge directories (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206975)

a lot, but who have 5000 pictures within the same directory?

Yes! (2, Interesting)

FrostedWheat (172733) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206912)

New clipboard management, based off the Freedesktop.org specification and tightly integrated with GNOME, allows for objects to persist in the clipboard longer than the lifetime of an application

About time! Closing the application and losing the clipboard contents always annoying me and was a real embarrasment for Gnome. I'm glad it's been fixed but I wonder why it took so long.

Re:Yes! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206966)

About time! Closing the application and losing the clipboard contents always annoying me and was a real embarrasment for Gnome. I'm glad it's been fixed but I wonder why it took so long.

They saw Windows and thought, "Hey! That's a neat idea." Just like half the other "new" features listed in that preview.

Did they fix the Gnome Settings Daemon? (1)

k8to (9046) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206925)

It used to be (as of Gnome 2.10), that if I would launch Natilus from a shell, or if another application (such as totem) launched Nautilus withous asking me, that I would get a window where every icon was a grey piece of paper. Apparently Nautilus is incapable of showing the correct icons for the files unless gnome-settings-daemon was launched beforehand. Further, Nautilus would open a window the size of the screen and draw the desktop onto this, as well as draw a static image of the desktop to the root window.

It is possible to manually ask nautilus to please not draw to the root window. This request will also ask it not to open the useless desktop sized annoyance window that some window managers aren't aware it intends to _be_the desktop. It is _not_ seemingly possible to ask nautilus, such as in a settings file, to please launch gnome-settings-daemon if it is not running. Since I do not run the gnome panel, and other gnome desktop tools, it is never already running, and the behavior of the window and the look of the icons is so unhelpful to make me upset that the window is on the screen.

It would be a pleasure if the Gnome developers were to consider improving the behavior of Nautilus and/or the gnome-settings-daemon to handle users of gnome applications who are not necessarily interested in running the entirety of the gnome desktop experience.

Re:Did they fix the Gnome Settings Daemon? (2, Informative)

moranar (632206) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206959)

nautilus --no-desktop
As it says if you do
nautilus --help
But I don't really know about the correct icon for file types. Nautilus has done this for at least a year, and quite possibly more.

Re:Did they fix the Gnome Settings Daemon? (1)

nihilogos (87025) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206989)

I just start the gnome-settings-daemon in xinitrc.

Re:Did they fix the Gnome Settings Daemon? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 9 years ago | (#13207001)

It would be a pleasure if the Gnome developers were to consider improving the behavior of Nautilus and/or the gnome-settings-daemon to handle users of gnome applications who are not necessarily interested in running the entirety of the gnome desktop experience.

Gnome is a desktop environment. I don't think the developers care what happens outside Gnome. It's a shame because some of their applications are pretty good.

I had the same problem with gnome-settings-daemon under RH 9. FC3 seems to handle this situation with more grace, but given the complexity of Gnome, etc; it is impossible to say what has changed to improve the situation.

KDE Looky-Likey (1)

SpinJaunt (847897) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206932)

Yep, Gnome starting to look more like KDE, they might be better of doing a merger *hint*.

One pet peeve of most *Desktop Enviroments is the size of the icons by default -- yes I know they can be changed quite eaily.

  * I jest. I jest.

no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13206995)

when gnome starts to look like KDE I will stop using it, as i dont like how kde look like.

Looks fantastic! (1, Interesting)

a.different.perspect (817184) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206955)

I'm terribly impressed - 2.12 looks like it will fix basically every gripe I have with out-of-the-box GNOME. The implementation of a clipboard service and menu editor is long-overdue, and most users have had to find third-party programs like gnome-clipboard-daemon and Smeg; the switch to Clearlooks saves us all a download; the extra configurability of Sound Juicer means I'll be able to switch from Grip; DVD support in GStreamer means I won't have to change the Totem backend to XINE, and a Firefox plugin for it means I don't have to have other players installed. The GNOME project have done really great work here: 2.12 seems to be a big step towards making GNOME a self-contained and complete desktop environment.

What about MIME types/file associations? (1)

WWWWolf (2428) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206993)

This isn't intended as a troll. I'm a GNOME fan. Just a frustrated one, regarding one particular feature of the system.

I don't know, GNOME's file associations seem really, really tricky to deal with. A few revisions back (2.6), I was marginally aware of how to manage file associations through control panel. I could not add my own icons to file types at all, but I at least managed to say which apps I wanted to be shown on Nautilus menu, which were available at all, and which was the default application.

I have no freaking idea where this thing is actually stored. In GNOME 1.x, they used some kind of really broken text file format. In early 2.x, they seemed to just keep using it. Nowadays, I have absolutely no idea how it stores the associations. Is it somewhere in gconf database, finally? I also have no idea how to really manage these file associations in 2.10: Nautilus isn't particularly helpful and I couldn't find the knob in the control center.

So is the file association stuff getting better at all? How do I manage the file associations in 2.12? And do they finally have some working way of adding icons to file types, or an actually understandable way of making icon themes?

Oh, and about article: Seems interesting. The HAL looks particularly droolworthy, based on a random and uninformed glance it seems to finally beat KDE =) And the Cairoification is always a good thing, it's definitely going to drag X11 kicking and screaming to the future, the direction where Microsoft and Apple are running blindfolded =)

Apple System 7 ?? (1)

rduke15 (721841) | more than 9 years ago | (#13206994)

I admit I don'tknow anything about Gnome, but seeing a reference to Apple System 7 doesn't really sound very exciting, and doesn't quite make me want to give it a closer look.

Maybe some details could coinvince me?

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