10. June 2008
(for all who are just not interested in useless “Future of GNOME”-discussion – just open a beer or scroll down)
Personally, I think Andy has started the right discussion and the approaching GUADEC is also a good time for it.
The whole GNOME community really needs to start thinking about the next generation Desktop - whatever that will be. Maybe it’s very similar to the current Desktop but sure it will just be better. Andy mentions some good ideas though 3D and desktop effects may not be the only truth.
But let’s assume we want to go into the desktop effects direction, what would we want there? GNOME was always meant to be clean and easy to use and we should continue this. Until now, desktop effects are just “effects”, they look spectacular but there is now real need to have them despite impressing your neighbor. Let’s change this! Let’s have desktop effects in a way that they improve the user interaction. Usually that means that computers should act more like the physical world but not by copying the annoyances of the physical world but by using work-flows developed thousands of years ago. That could mean to put documents aside or to stack them or do whatever you find appropriate.
The main problem of such abstract visions is that they are visions. We don’t need more visions, we need implementations. When you compare our current development libraries with those available before last GUADEC we have made a big step with clutter and other things now available. Perhaps it’s now time to include such things in mainline GNOME in an incremental way without breaking everything. So everybody: take the ideas that are mentioned on the planet and create the next generation desktop instead of talking of it. I already said to much…
BTW, the first thing I would love to see is a more fancy (and useful) GNOME panel…