Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

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Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby mdawgmike on Thu Oct 21, 2010 3:11 am

I haven't been able to find a thread here that covers this much. With Gnome 3.0 (and the new Shell interface) right around the corner I'm surprised not to see much discussion about it anywhere. This will (likely) be a major change to the look and feel of Mint.

Personally, I'm not liking what I'm seeing at all. This isn't just because I have to learn something new. It seems to go against everything that got me hooked on the Gnome UI in the first place. Simplicity! The process of switching applications in the shell looks to be overly complicated and just pure eye-candy. The whole desktop shrinking each time I do this also seems like it would get old very quick. When I initially heard about Gnome 3 I was thinking, and hoping, that it would focus on visual improvements and additional features (i.e. incremental). This all just hits me as a bit of a shock I guess.

I'll admit that I haven't even tried it yet. I'm still learning all the ropes with Linux, and the installation of the Shell for Mint seems a bit tricky and time-consuming. That plus...I know what we would get now wouldn't be the final release anyways. I'm only going on what I've seen in screen-shots and demos. I'm guessing that this will probably be implemented in Mint 11. If I haven't tried it by then, that will be my true deciding point if I like it or hate it I guess. The cool thing about Mint, and Linux in general, is that there's other choices readily available (KDE, LXDE, etc.) I don't mean this in any way to be a hate thread on the new Gnome, more so just to get some discussion going.

So...what do other Mint users think?

For those that have no idea what I'm talking about...here's what we're in for:
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby alpha1 on Thu Oct 21, 2010 4:17 am

As long as there are not 10s of places you've to visit to tweak single stuff (a.k.a KDE philosophy) - its fine and dandy.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby ej64 on Thu Oct 21, 2010 4:26 am

mdawgmike wrote:I haven't been able to find a thread here that covers this much. With Gnome 3.0 (and the new Shell interface) right around the corner I'm surprised not to see much discussion about it anywhere.
There has been at least this thread: GNOME 3 and Linux Mint.

It seems to go against everything that got me hooked on the Gnome UI in the first place. Simplicity!
Simplicity? Try Openbox.

The process of switching applications in the shell looks to be overly complicated and just pure eye-candy. The whole desktop shrinking each time I do this also seems like it would get old very quick.
Why not use <Alt>+<Tab> ?

So...what do other Mint users think?
My take is: I will have a closer look once it's mature. Gnome Shell plus Zeitgeist seem to make a very interesting approach of working. A different however. So you have to adopt, to learn, to think more document-centric rather than application-centric.

If it's not for me (or for you) there is choice enough and I may stick to XFCE or Openbox. Choice has a relaxing effect ...
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby Susu on Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:03 am

I tried Gnome Shell on my netbook and was very pleased by the speed. PLUS it isn't hard to handle. The Windows button switches from overlay to desktop and back etc. The only thing I don't like so much is the lack of a real panel. Else it looks very promising. I'm curious, if and how customizable it will be (tools?).
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby pluraldave on Thu Oct 21, 2010 10:33 am

I've been using gnome-shell for several months now and at this point I wouldn't go back. Unfortunately, there's no gnome-shell PPA any more (AFAIK) so installing is a bit harder for people who want to test it. It's much snappier than Compiz, the activities hotspot/overview mode is no issue at all, typing the name of a program is so much more efficient than flicking through menus and if you're like me and still like a panel window list as a second/more traditional method of application switching tint2 does nicely IMO.

As for customisation you can't add/change/remove things on the panel/overview (at the moment), but creating gnome-shell themes is much easier than creating gtk/metacity themes as it's mostly editing a css file. If you know what you're doing in inkscape there's a couple of small svg files but they're really only icons and don't particularly need changing.

However, the version I'm using (a couple of months out of date since the PPA went?) still needs a bit of tweaking to deal with multiple monitors better when the overview mode is activated.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby tdockery97 on Thu Oct 21, 2010 5:17 pm

I don't know...looks an awful lot like a Windows wanna-be set-up.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby michael.conner on Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:39 pm

I tried out Gnome Shell after Shuttleworth's Unity annoucement. I'm pretty impressed with it, actually. Running it on Mint 10 RC.

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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby morat on Thu Oct 28, 2010 7:04 am

pluraldave wrote:I've been using gnome-shell for several months now and at this point I wouldn't go back. Unfortunately, there's no gnome-shell PPA any more (AFAIK) so installing is a bit harder for people who want to test it. .....


Synaptic or Apt-get run a search for gnome-shell, gnome3-session install all stable packages
once installed restart and choose gnome 3 from login menu
Gnome shell works fine but it does still feel like a dev, no serious bugs but limited functionality :|
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby exploder on Thu Oct 28, 2010 8:40 am

Gnome Shell seems to waste a lot of screen space compared to Unity. Canonical seems very open to ideas on improving Unity, the Gnome developers do not seem open to suggestions. In my opinion, Unity is a sleeker approach and could work across a variety of devices. To me Unity stands a better chance of attracting the attention of the oem's.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby pluraldave on Thu Oct 28, 2010 5:49 pm

morat wrote:
pluraldave wrote:I've been using gnome-shell for several months now and at this point I wouldn't go back. Unfortunately, there's no gnome-shell PPA any more (AFAIK) so installing is a bit harder for people who want to test it. .....


Synaptic or Apt-get run a search for gnome-shell, gnome3-session install all stable packages
once installed restart and choose gnome 3 from login menu
Gnome shell works fine but it does still feel like a dev, no serious bugs but limited functionality :|


I meant for running the "current" version. The Lucid package was already months out of date by the time Lucid was released and gave a very poor impression of gnome-shell to anyone who installed it. The version in Maverick is also behind the development version (2.31 vs 2.91) and the difference between the two versions could be quite significant.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby michael.conner on Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:29 am

Actually, Gnome Shell wastes less screen space than Unity does -- the screen shots above show what Gnome Shell looks like when you're choosing between apps or searching for them, not what it looks like when you're just using one app.

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That being said, I'll definitely be interested in seeing what Canonical does with Unity. I'm not a fan of its current Netbook-ish version, but presumably the Desktop version will look and act differently.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby exploder on Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:52 pm

Actually, Gnome Shell wastes less screen space than Unity does -- the screen shots above show what Gnome Shell looks like when you're choosing between apps or searching for them, not what it looks like when you're just using one app.


It does look better in that screen shot. Is touch screen technology being built into Gnome Shell? Will Gnome Shell work the same on mobile devices as well as desktops? Things are gearing up for touch screen technology on the desktop just like modern cell phones are using, that is why I ask.
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby michael.conner on Fri Oct 29, 2010 1:54 pm

exploder wrote:
Actually, Gnome Shell wastes less screen space than Unity does -- the screen shots above show what Gnome Shell looks like when you're choosing between apps or searching for them, not what it looks like when you're just using one app.


It does look better in that screen shot. Is touch screen technology being built into Gnome Shell? Will Gnome Shell work the same on mobile devices as well as desktops? Things are gearing up for touch screen technology on the desktop just like modern cell phones are using, that is why I ask.


That's a good question. According to one of the folks working on Gnome 3 for OpenSUSE, touchscreen input is something they had planned from the get-go: http://www.opensource-news.com/operatin ... g-gnome-3/

On the other hand, he also says, "it’s important to note that GNOME Shell is designed for computers, and not all kind of devices."
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby exploder on Fri Oct 29, 2010 2:12 pm

On the other hand, he also says, "it’s important to note that GNOME Shell is designed for computers, and not all kind of devices."


Thanks! I think that might be some of the reason Ubuntu is going with Unity. At any rate, things are going to be very interesting in the next release cycle. :D
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby mmesantos1 on Fri Oct 29, 2010 6:13 pm

I have run gnome shell, and have run new Unity in 10.10 from fresh install. I do believe they have much work to do before it will be ready to replace Gnome shell for the desktop but I am sure they will give it go for 11.04. Can't wait to see what changes they will make with Unity, hopefully will work better than what I experienced in 10.10 UNE. It did not seem to be ready for prime time. It has lots of potential though and I am crossing my fingers that Ubuntu will get it right by 11.04. :D
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby OldManHook on Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:24 am

Unity for the Desktop :?: might want to check out this point of View 8)
http://lxer.com/module/newswire/view/143738/index.html
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby mmesantos1 on Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:41 am

OldManHook wrote:Unity for the Desktop :?: might want to check out this point of View 8)
http://lxer.com/module/newswire/view/143738/index.html


As I stated Ubuntu has work ahead for this task and only time will tell. I would like to be able to say I know the future but I do not nor do you. Lets wait and see what time will make of this. :wink: :)
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby tdockery97 on Sat Oct 30, 2010 12:45 am

Interesting read. I myself fall into the category of one who would be a desktop user. Although I do not use my PC for work, or for heavy computations, I am also not into all this "cloud" BS. No way am I going to store my personal information on someone else's server (how do I know who they really are?). No thanks, I'll keep all my stuff physically on my pc or backed up physically on my own drive or dvd's. I don't tweet, my face isn't on Facebook. I am just an old-fashioned kind of guy who still wants computers to be computers. :roll:
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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby allypink on Sat Oct 30, 2010 7:49 am

tdockery97 wrote:Interesting read. I myself fall into the category of one who would be a desktop user. Although I do not use my PC for work, or for heavy computations, I am also not into all this "cloud" BS. No way am I going to store my personal information on someone else's server (how do I know who they really are?). No thanks, I'll keep all my stuff physically on my pc or backed up physically on my own drive or dvd's. I don't tweet, my face isn't on Facebook. I am just an old-fashioned kind of guy who still wants computers to be computers. :roll:



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Re: Thoughts on the Gnome Shell and Gnome 3.0?

Postby Robin on Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:50 am

Me too! This move to "the cloud" is a fearsome thing at a time when - in my country at least - the government is becoming more and more intrusive. Yeah I know it's all about "security and safety" and there are prob'ly good reasons for all their scrutiny, but my gosh. I have no expectation of privacy online, but let me keep my personal stuff to myself if I can, and share it only with those I wish to share it with. Give me a hard drive instead of a "cloud" any day!

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