Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

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Pilosopong Tasyo
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Pilosopong Tasyo » Thu May 18, 2017 6:46 am

xenopeek wrote:...a desktop environment with (built in) endless configuration options...
This was (was being the operative word) precisely what turned me off KDE years ago.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Thu May 18, 2017 9:04 am

xenopeek wrote:Yet you say a desktop environment should fit all through customizability. That's meeting your needs as somebody that prefers customizability. It's certainly not meeting my needs as somebody that just wants to pick a desktop environment that works for me and prefers to not have to configure too much about it. Making one desktop environment fit all needs through customizability will by definition not fit all needs :wink:
Well, most users like me are satisfied with Xfce, Cinnamon, Mate and KDE. I rarely change the defaults myself, except when populating the taskbar with my mostly used apps, not to mention the background, which are not even a huge deal and not even considered heavy customization.

To each his own, at the end of the day. If you want a bare minimum that won't allow you to do what you can do in other DE's with a single click, then get Ubuntu. If you want a barren desert of a UI bereft with the RMB power and the usual items you see in others, then get Ubuntu. (Strange part is it's supposed to work on keyboardless mobiles, yet it still expects you to use a keyboard for shortcuts! Very inconsistent, indeed.)

You don't even need a survey to know what to design. Everything is already designed. These guys are just trying too hard to reinvent the wheel. Like I mentioned in other threads, your design will be more appreciated if you ADD to the invention, and not subtract from it and expect others to use something with so many things lacking.

BTW, I use KDE occasionally because of its more advanced File manager, Kate, automatic internal/external drives recognition and others. I mostly use Cinnamon and Xfce.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by xenopeek » Thu May 18, 2017 10:49 am

thom_A wrote:If you want a bare minimum that won't allow you to do what you can do in other DE's with a single click, then get Ubuntu. If you want a barren desert of a UI bereft with the RMB power and the usual items you see in others, then get Ubuntu. (Strange part is it's supposed to work on keyboardless mobiles, yet it still expects you to use a keyboard for shortcuts! Very inconsistent, indeed.)
I assume you mean future Ubuntu with Gnome Shell and not current Ubuntu with Unity. I don't see what context menu option would be useful on the Gnome Shell panel. Hence I don't feel it misses anything.

As for mobile, as shared in the first post here Canonical has stopped investment in that. GNOME isn't targeting mobile. Ubuntu with Gnome Shell is doubly not caring about mobile :wink: I don't understand why people keep saying Gnome Shell is for mobile just because they don't like the design. The past releases have seen improvement upon improvement for keyboard accessibility. Like the extremely handy keyboard shortcut overview the core applications now have. One example from Gedit:
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thom_A wrote:You don't even need a survey to know what to design. Everything is already designed. These guys are just trying too hard to reinvent the wheel. Like I mentioned in other threads, your design will be more appreciated if you ADD to the invention, and not subtract from it and expect others to use something with so many things lacking.
A lot of folks like Unity a lot. Now Unity is going away and being replace by something different. Not better or worse, just different. How does it not make sense to seek feedback from your community of users when going through a transition? They aren't reinventing the wheel, they are asking what would please the majority of their users to have installed by default.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by mr_raider » Thu May 18, 2017 11:31 am

xenopeek wrote:I think the objective should be to make it extremely customizable. Meaning, the capability to make it look like any desktop environment any user prefers. Many users want the taskbar and panel on the bottom and left side of the screen, as one example. Why deny them that?
Gnome Shell's screen layout is customizable through extensions. There are hundreds of extensions. Gnome Shell's screen layout can be made to look like Windows (with either icons only taskbar or icons with labels taskbar), like MATE (the default MATE look, with a panel at the top and bottom), like Unity and like macOS to name just a few.

Actually Ubuntu MATE 17.04 is a very nice interface. The MATE-tweak tool has a bunch of preconfigured layouts to mimic OS X, WIndows 7, windows 10, gnome 2.0, or unity. I'm pretty much a KDE user for last 4 years, and I'me heavily invested in the KDE ecosystem, but if I was newcomer to Linux, I would strongly look at Mate as a desktop.

As for the traditional single bar at the bottom layout, I feel it's limitations more and more. On small screens like my 11" laptop with 1366x768 resolution, having a bottom taskbar cuts down on vertical real estate for web pages. On large wide screens like my desktop (2560x1080), I likewise dont want to waste vertical screen space, when I have so much horizontal space. Also, quick launching is faster than going back across a big screen with a mouse to hit a taskbar icon.

Nowadays I configure KDE with a single vertical taskbar at the side, and use the KDE application dashboard as the launcher. You can hit the win key and the first few characters of the program name and return to launch it.

Gnome 3.x can do the same, but customizing it is PITA. I really like the way gnome presents windows when you hit the win key. It make task switching ultra fast. As for the gnome 2.0 layout with two taskbars, it's just a waste of screen space IMHO, a relic from the days of 4:3 screen ratios.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Citizen229 » Thu May 18, 2017 11:45 am

My Mint XFCE is a barren wasteland. I have the trash and that is it. My horizontal bar auto hides. I can access anything I want with the Whisker Menu(start button). My desktop is like my garage. My tools stay in the toolbox when not in use, not scattered all around my garage.

I dont even know why I have the trash can. I never use it. I always right click delete.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Thu May 18, 2017 12:26 pm

Citizen229 wrote:My Mint XFCE is a barren wasteland. I have the trash and that is it. My horizontal bar auto hides. I can access anything I want with the Whisker Menu(start button). My desktop is like my garage. My tools stay in the toolbox when not in use, not scattered all around my garage. I dont even know why I have the trash can. I never use it. I always right click delete.
Almost same thing here. I have only Firefox on my desktop and the rest are either on the taskbar or panel. Difference with an Ubuntu UI is that you don't have click twice or make your cursor fly in long distances for almost everything you want to access.
mr_raider wrote:As for the traditional single bar at the bottom layout, I feel it's limitations more and more. On small screens like my 11" laptop with 1366x768 resolution, having a bottom taskbar cuts down on vertical real estate for web pages. On large wide screens like my desktop (2560x1080), I likewise dont want to waste vertical screen space, when I have so much horizontal space. Also, quick launching is faster than going back across a big screen with a mouse to hit a taskbar icon.
All of the Mint flavors, Xfce, Mate, KDE and now Cinnamon allow you to have a vertical bar. Yeah, it makes sense placing it on the side because that's where the real estate screen space is plentiful of. But I'm used to the bottom side as the date and time remain larger, not to mention not having to compete with an applications menu buttons if it were on top, thus confusing which button to hit. Have yet to see a vertical bar with vertical texts on the time and date, but it's a minor issue.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by rick gen » Sat May 20, 2017 12:15 pm

thom_A wrote:I see that their idea of streamlining a desktop is to make it barren and deserted as if most monitors have the size of a 7" tablet. Man, give me 10 ways to minimize a window and I'm all for it, via RMB, all four corners of the window, via shortcut, icon, you name it. If you have a large monitor, your cursor can't be flying around in long distances just to reach the same spot everytime. If you have been a power user of any serious app, you will want to access a single command or tool in many different ways. These designers probably haven't been in that situation.
The main criteria for me when it comes to UI and workflow issues, OS or app, is simply less mouse clicks and short mouse distance travels.
When I find myself clicking way too much unnecessarily or my mouse traveling long distances, then it's a no no for me.
It doesn't make any sense clicking twice on a specific spot, ie, right-click on a window bar to access a menu, move cursor down to pick minimize, etc.
2 clicks, instead of one. Absolutely no reason why they remove the minimize button, one single click.
You could easily tell that it serves no other purpose than making it different. So it's an ego thing for the designer/s.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by xenopeek » Sat May 20, 2017 1:25 pm

rick gen wrote:You could easily tell that it serves no other purpose than making it different. So it's an ego thing for the designer/s.
Have gone through their design documents? Have you gone through their discussions on design? Have you gone through the feedback from usability tests? All done in the open BTW. The claim that Gnome Shell is different just to be different is baseless and demonstrably false. I'm not saying you can't dislike a desktop environment—go ahead and not like whatever you don't like. But there's no call to drag another open source project through the mud. Use whatever works best for you instead :wink:
rick gen wrote:Absolutely no reason why they remove the minimize button, one single click.
Takes 3 clicks to enable the minimize button if you want it. With certain extensions, like Dash to Dock or Dash to Panel, it is absolutely useful to have a minimize button. On the default Gnome Shell it doesn't serve a purpose as it uses a different workflow to change applications. Now again, you may not like it and that's fine. Hence you can, if you do want to use Gnome Shell, add such extensions as I named and enable the minimize button to set it to meet your workflow needs.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Jedinovice » Sat May 20, 2017 2:05 pm

rick gen wrote:
thom_A wrote:I see that their idea of streamlining a desktop is to make it barren and deserted as if most monitors have the size of a 7" tablet. Man, give me 10 ways to minimize a window and I'm all for it, via RMB, all four corners of the window, via shortcut, icon, you name it. If you have a large monitor, your cursor can't be flying around in long distances just to reach the same spot everytime. If you have been a power user of any serious app, you will want to access a single command or tool in many different ways. These designers probably haven't been in that situation.
The main criteria for me when it comes to UI and workflow issues, OS or app, is simply less mouse clicks and short mouse distance travels.
When I find myself clicking way too much unnecessarily or my mouse traveling long distances, then it's a no no for me.
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I concur. I am a heavy laptop user. Can't use a desktop - too much on the move - and can't use tablet (hate the things) because I am a content producer.

KDE is the KILLER UI for me if only for one feature - keyboard shortcuts. The power and flexibility of keyboard shortcuts in KDE is unsurpassed.
All my commonly used apps and key folders are a key press away! It's glorious. Fast, accurate - no slipping with the mouse - so much that my moving the mouse to the kickstar menu is a rarity. I can go for days without never clicking on it. Had a full days work and have not click on the Kickstart button once.

Cinnamon appears to have very good user definable keyboard shortcut control but, in my brief exploration of the UI (I am WAY too busy to experiment! I need what works and works NOW!) it's not as powerful as KDE's. In Mint 18 KDE I can even shutdown my laptop with a three finger ke ypress! Couldn't make that work in 17, mind.

Anyway... I do know that Cinnamon, KDE, XFCE and Mate all allow some degree of user defined keyboard shortcuts but it SEEMS to me - I will be happy for the users of said UI's to say otherwise! - that it's a bit fiddly setting them up in Mate and XFCE. But it's been along time since I tried either.

But, in all four Mint supported DE's keyboard shortcuts are available to some degree and I am amazed that people do not use them more.
Really impresses Windows and Mac users as I open up app after app after app just by pressing buttons!
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by ilikereading » Sat May 20, 2017 2:33 pm

So, with this change, ubuntu and mint will be better in the future?

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by xenopeek » Sat May 20, 2017 3:51 pm

me_1 wrote:So, with this change, ubuntu and mint will be better in the future?
It doesn't really affect Linux Mint. Ubuntu used Unity in the past. Unity was Gtk based and used Gnome applications. Ubuntu were working on A Qt based Unity which would use QtQuick applications. Linux Mint had and continuous to have Cinnamon, MATE and Xfce (all Gtk based) and KDE (Qt based) but for the Gtk based editions now is using more and more of its own applications (X-Apps) instead of the Gnome ones. So while Ubuntu will benefit from swimming with the flow instead of against it (just using Gnome instead of their own shell [Unity] for it and just using Gnome applications instead of patching them to work with Unity) as the work done by developers from other distros on Gnome also benefit them directly now (which wasn't the case with Unity as it took a long time to become available on other distros so there was little synergy with other distro teams), it won't do as much for Linux Mint as that has been slowly but steadily been doing more of its own things. Though a lot of Gnome components are used on Linux Mint so there will be some benefit from these being better supported on Ubuntu and not have been patched for Unity.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Lucap » Sun May 21, 2017 4:37 am

Linus Torvalds finds GNOME 3.4 to be a "total user experience design failure"
http://www.zdnet.com/article/linus-torv ... n-failure/

Linus Torvalds switches back to Gnome 3.x desktop
http://www.zdnet.com/article/linus-torv ... x-desktop/

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Sun May 21, 2017 12:05 pm

Jedinovice wrote:But, in all four Mint supported DE's keyboard shortcuts are available to some degree and I am amazed that people do not use them more.
Really impresses Windows and Mac users as I open up app after app after app just by pressing buttons!
Even if most users use keyboard shortcuts, that doesn't mean it's okay not to have means to access the same shortcut on the screen using your pointing device.

(I started with DOS at a young age at a time when pointing devices were not even available. So I'm not new to shortcuts. If fact, it took a while for me to transition from text-based apps to Windows/Mac.)

To me any design of any graphical user interface should always be based from the perspective of a tablet user, especially in this day and age. (You can't use shortcuts or the mouse's RMB and MMB buttons on tablets.) Meaning, every feature, tool, settings, etc., should be accessible on the screen via the pointing device.

Just to be clear, I don't discourage users using shortcuts. Far from it. They will always be there no matter what. I've never heard of software developers having problems adding shortcut keys for desktop PC users. (Every time I post something like this, someone comes out and scream, "Nooooo! Don't take away my shortcuts! It's a senseless concern.)

--------
Torvalds: "I'm really tired of the f*cking old "just use the keyboard shortcuts" crap. Sure, if you're a keyboarding person, then gnome3 is a big improvement. But dammit, if you're like me, and you write using the keyboard, and then use mousing for other operations, gnome3 is just not doing the right thing.

And what irritates me is how the gnome3 fanboys (and more importantly, developers), seem to never acknowledge that different people have different tastes. The whole "we know best" thing is a disease."

http://www.zdnet.com/article/linus-torv ... n-failure/

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Jedinovice » Mon May 22, 2017 4:27 am

thom_A wrote: To me any design of any graphical user interface should always be based from the perspective of a tablet user, especially in this day and age. (You can't use shortcuts or the mouse's RMB and MMB buttons on tablets.) Meaning, every feature, tool, settings, etc., should be accessible on the screen via the pointing device.
Yeah... That's where you and I part company. There was a time when the world was convinced that everything was moving to tablet. Only tablets have been supplanted by smartphones in the main and the laptops remains the king of content production.

Every attempt to bring a tablet style UI to the desktop has been, frankly, an utter failure. Gnome had to backtrack. Unity worked well as a UI on mobile device but was a horror on the desktop spawning Cinnamon and Mate in quick succession. Windows 8 was the most hated GUI on the desktop in history... I think. Maybe Windows 1 was less popular but Windows 2 was more usable!!!

Tablets are devices for content consumption - not content production. Having icons on a tablet makes perfect sense due to the form factor and functionality of the device. But it does not make so much sense on the desktop. Icons on screen work in a desktop GUI, mind, but it is more labor minimizing apps and/or moving things around to get to the icon and then restoring said apps icons than using keyboard shortcuts. Now, that's not a problem in the main but if speed of access to apps is important to you - and it is to me because my hardware HAS to be minimal spec - then nothing beats keyboard shortcuts.

Now, I do agree that a man's desktop is his castle and he can use it any way he likes. Linux = choice and I *like* that!!! Again, that's the thing I like about KDE. Choice. By default KDE does not allow icons on the desktop and emphasizes the kickstart menu and keyboard shortcuts. But, in KDE< you can have any UI experience you like. One click in system settings and you get icons on the desktop. And, as I say, I do that in Cinnamon the user defined keyboard functionality looks pretty good. When you are using minimal hardware and on the move and cannot guarantee running a laptop from a fixed desk.. keyboard shortcuts REALLY help.

Then again, maybe it's just because I grew up with a Sinclair ZX Spectrum. :D

But the idea of basing a desktop GUI on tablet functionality has definitely been tried and proven to be a complete failure.
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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Mon May 22, 2017 11:59 am

Jedinovice wrote:But the idea of basing a desktop GUI on tablet functionality has definitely been tried and proven to be a complete failure.
I agree with most of your post. The quote above is merely a flag to signify I'm responding to your post, not someone else's, and not have to show the entire post to avoid redundancy. And I have to show appreciation for any response, which included that of xenopeek's and others. Thank you.

I knew my post is going to be misinterpreted, misconstrued, whatever you want to call it. I should have just said I agree with what most 99% of developers typically design when coming up with a GUI for their software. It's not even new. They've been doing it that way as soon as the pointing device was invented even BEFORE tablets were.

GUI is GRAPHICAL user interface where you take advantage of the pointing device. Note that I'm not even saying "mouse" because the early ones had only one button. Took years for the Mac people to even adapt to the two button mouse! Now all mice have three. (And now we're seeing environments where using your finger or stylus is becoming common, so back to the equivalent of a one button mouse!)

It used to be just "user interface" when people were using mere keyboards for input where they don't even see menus on the screen. I even started with the DOS version of AutoCAD using the keyboard's cursor keys for pointing stuff on the screen.

Having said all these, developers will always add shortcuts for everything. Shortcuts will always be there no matter what. Meaning, users will never be denied their shortcut keys, man, why do I struggle having to make this thing clear?

Problem with a few developers is if you have users like Linus Torvalds, the Linux founder, who gets irritated when some shortcuts have no equivalent access on the screen, or it takes multiple mouse clicks and long mouse distance travels. It's like the developers started with putting the cart ahead of the horse.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Mon May 22, 2017 1:40 pm

Put simply, it's a case between two carpenters where carpenter A can use both electric and portable drills, while carpenter B only want to make use of the electric one. Both can be made available. So what's the problem? Whoops, probably not a clear analogy.

Okay, so user B prefers shortcuts, while user A prefers pointing items on the screen, but also use shortcuts. Problem exists when developer only make shortcuts available for everything and miss many things accessible on the screen.

Unnecessary argument: user B is okay with denying user A what he wants. User A prefers to use both, therefore user B is not denied anything. Confusion: so what is user B still arguing about? He will always have his tool no matter what.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by rick gen » Mon May 22, 2017 2:41 pm

My newphew and niece can't draw or paint anything on the screen without using a drawing tablet and stylus pen.
It's impossible.
Now I see more and more people drawing and painting on top of the sreen itself.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A02CBeZvzZU
I can't imagine shortcuts are still being used on these types of situations where the keyboard has become entirely irrelevant.
Soon we'll be seeing more and more artists or non-artists drawing and painting in parks using portable tablets.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by thom_A » Mon May 22, 2017 4:30 pm

rick gen wrote:I can't imagine shortcuts are still being used on these types of situations where the keyboard has become entirely irrelevant.
Soon we'll be seeing more and more artists or non-artists drawing and painting in parks using portable tablets.
In reality, developers design interfaces with both things in mind, keyboard and mouse or pointing device. I don't think they can even start with one without considering the other. They always go together. It's hardwired on them. There are traditional keys across the board with similar functions such as F1 for help, Esc or Ctrl+C for canceling ongoing process, Backspace, Delete, Ins, PrintScr, etc. Which means the keyboard will always be a part of the design process.

There are only few developers left that go against the grain probably thinking all users have the same preferences, thus it doesn't even occur to them that both can be made available so users don't have to pick one. It's probably this wrong notion that cutting down items in the GUI would make it efficient when the exact opposite is achieved, at least for people who don't subscribe to their preferences.

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by Lucap » Tue May 23, 2017 3:04 am

@ thom_A

You can't reason with fanboyism........ :D :wink:

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Re: Ubuntu drops Unity and moves back to GNOME

Post by xenopeek » Tue May 23, 2017 3:13 am

This is no longer about the news of Ubuntu dropping Unity and moving back to GNOME. I guess we're done talking about that news so locking this as it's all over the map.
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