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LWN.net Weekly Edition for May 16, 2013
A look at the PyPy 2.0 release
PostgreSQL 9.3 beta: Federated databases and more
LWN.net Weekly Edition for May 9, 2013
(Nearly) full tickless operation in 3.10
GNOME Shell to support a "classic" mode
Posted Nov 21, 2012 15:51 UTC (Wed) by dront78 (guest, #47603)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 16:31 UTC (Wed) by Uraeus (subscriber, #33755)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 16:35 UTC (Wed) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 17:04 UTC (Wed) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198)
It's probably too late now but it would have set a good tone if GNOME 3 had come with all the existing GNOME 2 infrastructure and so remained fully compatible with existing third party software.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 17:09 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:21 UTC (Wed) by mitr (subscriber, #31599)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:11 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
E.g. maybe you mean bonobo, in which case I think there is nothing using that. Maybe you mean gtk+2.0, in which case I do see progress (e.g. Firefox, Gimp), it is just taking some time. Maybe you mean gconf, in which I also see progress (often done at the same time as a gtk+3 switch).
All these GNOME 2 applications have worked and are working totally fine. Suggest to ignore claims of sabotage in this regard :P
Regarding porting work, various GNOME developers have performed porting work in more than just "core GNOME" stuff. Just take a look at a few of the GNOME goals.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:58 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 9:30 UTC (Thu) by dgm (subscriber, #49227)
And KDE is not any better, by the way.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 10:15 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Already mentioned that XMMS, a gtk+1.x application should work fine in GNOME 3.
I think all distributions still have the GNOME 2 libraries. The only thing I am aware of that won't work is a gnome-panel applet. I doubt that the proprietary application is an applet.
In any case, please be more specific.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 13:50 UTC (Thu) by Rehdon (guest, #45440)
Please leave out personal insults from this site.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 13:53 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 14:07 UTC (Thu) by Rehdon (guest, #45440)
Also, your English is puzzling O.o
Posted Nov 22, 2012 14:21 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Suggest to read again, just because I mentioned "stupid" doesn't mean it was about a person.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 14:47 UTC (Thu) by Rehdon (guest, #45440)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 14:54 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
In my view, you're mostly getting personal while ignoring any argument.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 15:06 UTC (Thu) by Rehdon (guest, #45440)
Hope you also make some progress on the hypo- quiz thingie.
And finally, I'm not "suggesting" your English is not good:
"What you quoted is and was not a personal insult." sounds like bad English to me.
"I know it are my words" is definitely bad English. Period.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 21:04 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Complaining about someones English and all the other behaviour you've displayed here is pathetic while trying to complain about my behaviour. I've asked for details, instead you show this kind of behaviour.
Get lost, really.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 21:07 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:17 UTC (Thu) by Rehdon (guest, #45440)
But of course that didn't happen: God forbid that you might admit being wrong! I guess you might be the kind of person who says "look where you're going!" when you bump into someone. No, I won't come pay a visit to you at FOSDEM: my attitude might be different indeed, but it's yours that it's at fault here.
I'm afraid the current problem with GNOME development it's not technical, and it's not political either: it's just that the wrong people are doing it. You're back at the starting point of the open source movement: you're scratching your personal itches, so to speak, only you're disguising that using words like "vision", "brand", and so on. The technical regressions in GNOME 3 are just a symptom of the psychological regression and detachment from the GNOME community by the current developers.
I almost felt sorry for you guys when reading the heavy trolling in this thread, but not anymore, you reap what you sow after all. I will be back to GNOME when you either grow up (in all senses), or a new generation of developers will take your place.
So long and thanks for GNOME 2.x (if you had any part in it).
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:32 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Where you complain that I personally insulted someone. It was not a personal insult, nor meant as one.
I don't care at all about "brand" and all the other stuff you're adding to this. Seems you're getting very emotional and personal for no good reason.
"No need for stupid sarcasm, thanks."
Was NOT intended as a personal insult. It also is NOT a personal insult. If you read it as such, I did NOT mean it that way.
In any case, you continuous behaviour (condescending, getting personal, and psyco analysis of me as well as other GNOME developers): Rich to complain about me taking the high ground.
Noticed you never replied the times I stated I did NOT an personal insult. Also, you seem to have ignored my request to go to FOSDEM.
Trying to be constructive here and understand, but even if I was wrong somewhere, you're not making things any clearer for me with this kind of conversation style.
This is going nowhere, so this is the last I'm going to say.
perhaps my opportunity to be flamed ...but
Posted Nov 25, 2012 9:12 UTC (Sun) by ds2horner (subscriber, #13438)
Posted Nov 26, 2012 10:11 UTC (Mon) by dgm (subscriber, #49227)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 18:49 UTC (Thu) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 23:00 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
No, there are deprecated GNOME libraries that are no longer shipped and hard to build (at least via distro means), breaking apps.
seriously, if a distro ships an application without satisfying its dependencies, why are you complaining to GNOME and not to the distribution that is breaking its own packages? do you, perchance, think that GNOME is responsible for removing packages from distributions as well?
Posted Nov 23, 2012 7:18 UTC (Fri) by HelloWorld (guest, #56129)
seriously, if a distro ships an application without satisfying its dependencies,
Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:44 UTC (Fri) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
GNOME didn't do anything, except say that nobody is working on those libraries any more, except for eventual security issues; patches coming from distributions have been folded back, whenever applicable, and releases have been made.
if you want to maintain old libraries, you're absolutely encouraged to do so: just ask for a Git account, or push clone on github/gitorious if you want to, and ask distributions to switch over to your tarballs.
if that's not to your satisfaction then I'm sorry: you have a profound issue with the whole "free software" thing.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 10:03 UTC (Fri) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
So thanks for that.
Note that I was *not* assigning blame anywhere, and I was not ranting. I was merely stating a fact: a good application disappeared from a common distro because of churn in libraries, and that the old libraries are difficult to build on that distro, at least using the packaging facilities of that distro. If stating quite objective facts on LWN about free software is akin to questioning and having profound issues with the whole basis for free software, then perhaps we're all on a quite shaky foundation.
As I've written here before, my view is the problem is a business one. In particular, the fact that it's impossible to pay the major employer of Linux desktop developers for support on the software I'd like to run on my desktop (i.e. software that isn't 5+ years old on average, but not sub-6-month old either). Further, even if they would take my money for that, that still leaves a good number of developers I depend on not owing me anything. I'd have to get support contracts with each of them.
Re fixing your problems yourself, it's not always possible to learn a codebase and figure out how to fix it within the space of the hours to a day you can afford to spend on fixing some random software problem. But I'll give the GNOME lib building another try and see what needs fixing.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 7:34 UTC (Fri) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
I'm not blaming GNOME for distros not shipping libraries. GNOME deprecated those libraries, and then building those old libraries on modern distros became troublesome (likely for a variety of reasons). Because of that, those distros decided to stop shipping those libraries (or just couldn't), which, obviously, lead to that app no longer being shipped. Again, it's more than a case of an app no longer being shipped - which a user could easily fix themselves.
I don't know who's to blame, but my point was that - regardless of the work you say the library maintainers put in to maintain API and ABI compatibility - a very useful application disappeared from at least one distro because of library churn in GNOME/GTK+.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 10:09 UTC (Fri) by dgm (subscriber, #49227)
I'm sorry that I cannot provide you with specifics. The problem I have witnessed is this:
I work for an engineering company, developing custom automation products. It's very rare to find Linux based developments running there, all important automation packages run on Windows.
One of our clients, though, bought a system for classifying defects based on video cameras. The system was running in an very old Ubuntu (Dapper I believe) PC. When the time came to replace that computer they first tried with a recent Ubuntu. The application refused to run. They called to me and I had to explain what Unity is, and that they need to install Gnome, which they did. The application crashed. The only way they found to make it work was to install an old version of Ubuntu (10.4). I don't know what the concrete problem was, just that they could not fix it. After that, they have been regretting their decision of buying anything based on Linux.
What do you think they will do if I suggest to them to buy something based on Linux?
Backwards compatibility over features
Posted Nov 23, 2012 16:10 UTC (Fri) by man_ls (subscriber, #15091)
However, let us put things in perspective here. Dapper was released in June 2006 and it has been supported for five years. At the time of its introduction Vista had not yet been released (January 2007), so the most current version of Windows was XP (released in October 2001). If your story had read thus:
The system was running in a very old Windows XP PC. When the time came to replace it they first tried with Windows 7; the application refused to run. They called me and I explained what Aero is, and that they needed to install Windows XP Mode, which they did. The application crashed. They had to install an old version of Vista. I don't know what the problem was, just that they could not fix it. After that they have been regretting their decision of buying anything based on Windows.
There are two important differences: first that Microsoft is supporting XP with SP 3 until 2014, and each service pack is essentially a new version of the OS. Second that your client did not pay for Ubuntu, probably. If they had chosen Red Hat they would be happily running RHEL 4 on the new machine (supported until 2015). I think you could do worse than recommending anything based on Red Hat. (Note: I am a happy Debian user, and would be grateful to recommend Debian oldstable; but I also value what Red Hat gives to companies.)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 17:08 UTC (Fri) by sorpigal (subscriber, #36106)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 22:16 UTC (Fri) by jjs (guest, #10315)
This is one of the standard problems with proprietary software -and I've seen it on Windows quite a bit. However, I can run my old WordPerfect for Linux (from mid-90's) on Linux, as long as I install the right user-space libraries.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:53 UTC (Fri) by jcm (subscriber, #18262)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 17:12 UTC (Wed) by drago01 (subscriber, #50715)
You can still run GNOME2 apps just fine on GNOME 3 ... sure you cannot run extensions to the old desktop (applets) but everything else just runs fine as it does in KDE or any other desktop.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 17:51 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
GNOME 3 wasn't designed to be parallel installable. Right?
continuing to repeat a meme won't make it become truth, you do realize that?
GNOME's platform is, and has always been, parallel installable - that's an acquired skill, and we've been saying how to do it properly for the past 10 years.
applications are not parallel installable (or, at least, they are not by default): there is no totem3 to be used alongside totem2, or nautilus3 to be used alongside nautilus2. that's perfectly fine, and it's up to the individual maintainers to decide that. you cannot run gnome-panel2 alongside with gnome-panel3 either, because (believe it or not) gnome-panel is an application; the applet library is parallel installable, though.
I sincerely hope that people stop repeating crap propaganda spewed by people with far less than the required amount of clue and an axe to grind.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:13 UTC (Wed) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198)
It seems that it would be good to make the same sort of platform API guarantees that the Linux kernel makes to userspace or that glibc makes so that third parties can expect their application binaries to continue to function for decades and that the system won't be deprecated out from underneath them.
Anyway the main point of the article is supporting a GNOME 2 style theming using extensions to GNOME Shell which seems like a good idea for users who prefer the old style workflow. Even Windows maintained a classic interface option when introducing changes XP and 8 and was more successful for doing so. This is a positive thing.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:43 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:51 UTC (Wed) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:17 UTC (Wed) by dlang (✭ supporter ✭, #313)
There are some APIs that many wind 95/98 apps depended on that are broken in recent versions of windows.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 0:40 UTC (Thu) by vonbrand (subscriber, #4458)
Wrong. Not "were broken in recent versions of Windows", it is "are utterly broken since WinNT 4.0 at least." Been burned by it.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:23 UTC (Thu) by quotemstr (subscriber, #45331)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 15:47 UTC (Fri) by Wol (guest, #4433)
A lot of my wife's programs - sold as "runs on everything Windows" in the Vista days, is now broken on 7. And because we've got the Home version, running it in XP-compat mode isn't an option :-(
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:29 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
I want to know if Office looks like an app written in 98 if you enable the Windows Classic Theme.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:37 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:14 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
I'm not familiar with the internals of GNOME but what about notifications or IPC or VFS plugins?
IPC and VFS, and settings, are sitting at the GLib level, our lowest common denominator; GLib's API and ABI were not bumped.
a lot of functionality that was in separate libraries was deprecated and moved into GTK+ 3.x and GLib; the symbols are different, and the libraries are still available for applications to use, so you can definitely run a GNOME 2 application in GNOME 3, should you choose to do so. obviously, it would be better to port to non deprecated tech, but it's not mandatory.
let me give you a for instance: Banshee is a GTK+ 2.x (and GNOME 2.x) applications, given that only recently Mono has been updated to support GNOME 3 API; I can use it without an hitch under GNOME 3.4 and 3.6, and all its functionality remains untouched. true, some stuff works better when integrated in GNOME 2's panel - but to be fair, it's all inside extensions that can be removed, and I look forward to the point where Banshee will be a proper GNOME application again.
the core applications in GNOME are tied pretty much with the rest of the environment, because they are designed to be that way; you can avoid using Nautilus, after all, but you cannot complain that Nautilus 3.6 does not work without the rest of its dependencies, because Nautilus is not meant to be a file manager that can work under every desktop environment under the sun - and it certainly isn't up to you to tell the Nautilus maintainers what they have to spend time on.
the whole point of the "GNOME Classic" exercise is to provide a different workflow for some users without shipping a completely separate set of dependencies (which we cannot maintain, and that nobody stepped up to maintain in the past 3 years, even after repeated calls for it).
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:23 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
And what do we users gain from all this application breakage?
Less "API cruft" for the devs?
Wow sounds like a good reason for my music player to break. Thanks guys keep up the good work!
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:38 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
As said elsewhere: XMMS still will run fine under GNOME 3. And I do mean the gtk+1.x compiled XMMS, though maybe your distribution doesn't ship it anymore.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:47 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
All the iTunes users will be jealous. This year will surely be the year of the linux desktop.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:02 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Ah, the stupid sarcasm again.
Anyway, to quote yourself
And what do we users gain from all this application breakage?
You said application breakage in some weird relation to the GNOME 2 panel. I responded to that. Now instead it is about some official GNOME 3 media player? Whatever.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:54 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Someone complained about parallel installs of GNOME2 and 3.
ebassi says that the gnome 2 libs are parallel installable so it's all good.
But then later admits that doesn't actually help that much since application functionality is often reduced/broken in GNOME3. HIS example was Banshee. But it's all the user/applications fault, not GNOME3.
I questioned the benefits of the changes that caused that breakage.
Your defense was that OMG! XMMS still works.
A true WTF. I'm not even sure why you would make the leap to XMMS.
XMMS has nothing to do with this conversation.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 18:01 UTC (Thu) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
I tried building the old srpms, but that leads to a huge number of dependencies, including old gnome stuff that conflicts - iirc. So that wasn't practical, is my vague memory.
I got maybe a quarter to a third of the way of converting Referencer over to the GLib equivalents before giving up, and deciding it was easier just to switch to using Zotero - which is a cross-platform web service + Mozilla XUL based app.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 19:37 UTC (Thu) by jspaleta (subscriber, #50639)
When it went missing I given a very specifically told to get that back on the desktop and laptop systems in use. So I resurrected the necessary bits from Fedora packaging git and rebuilt it and its "longer than I really felt comfortable with" set of dependencies for in-family packages. I'm sure as hell not going to offer to maintain this for anyone outside my household.
We are evaluating replacement applications. So far, the user in question hasn't really liked the other options available. If it were a C application, I could probably seriously take a look at porting it. But the fact that it uses c++ bindings, bindings which themselves are not being ported afaik, porting it is a not starter. I'm not going to put myself on the hook for maintaining low level c++ binding as prereq to port this application. It'd be easier to nuke it from orbit and rebuild it as C or vala using the maintained bindings.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 19:46 UTC (Thu) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 21:05 UTC (Thu) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
The porting is fairly trivial, but it's not mechanical. Referencer unfortunately uses things like the old URI thingy all over the place. By the 2nd day I got fed up and switched to Zotero.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 6:49 UTC (Fri) by kigurai (guest, #85475)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:42 UTC (Thu) by tuna (guest, #44480)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:58 UTC (Thu) by jspaleta (subscriber, #50639)
If you can point me to any project that has made the jump successfully from using libgnomeuimm to using gtk3mm I'd love to look over their changes as a starting point.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:18 UTC (Wed) by andresfreund (subscriber, #69562)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:31 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
None? So the distro maintainers are too stupid to be able to do it?
Not geniuses like GNOME developers I guess.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 18:45 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:10 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:16 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
So which version of Firefox removes great chunks of functionality making it essentially useless like GNOME3?
you got a question and now you feel the need to move the goal posts in order to "prove" to others that you're right, and everybody else is wrong.
you are a sad, sad person, and you have my pity.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:27 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
And to prove your point you start calling names?
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:32 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:00 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Seriously, GNOME3 dropped a lot of functionality (some of which it still hasn't gotten back) which is is understandable for .0 release.
Why deny that and call me sad?
What is so hard to understand about users wanting to continue to use GNOME2 until GNOME3 becomes viable?
Sure, I replied in kind to the Company post. So that makes me sad?
Sure, GNOME2 - 3 is just like a 6 week firefox iteration. I'm the unreasonable one.
GNOME3 is above criticism? Defend GNOME3 at all costs?
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:12 UTC (Wed) by cry_regarder (subscriber, #50545)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:13 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
In any case, you complain about "ad hominem", while continuously showing the similar behaviour (just directed at many people instead of 1). And not just this article. It seems similar to the "graffiti theory" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Broken_windows_theory#New_Yo...). If everyone responds nicely and rejects unnice behaviour, it'll likely be a nicer behaviour overall. To be clear: this is not directed at you. In this article alone you'll note that various people respond harshly towards each other. I noticed that corbet mentioned a while ago that he doesn't want moderation except in extreme cases. IMO this badly affects the comment quality.
You'll see that once the sarcasm stops, the chance of being heard vastly improves.
And criticism is very helpful. If everyone says yes, you only need 1 person.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 21:10 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Calling someone a sad person that you pity is more unnice.
But hey, criticism accepted, I will tone it down.
I think the real problem is that team GNOME considers anyone who says something they don't like or don't agree with, or says anything less that total praise for GNOME3 as a troll and not worth listening to.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 7:34 UTC (Thu) by jspaleta (subscriber, #50639)
You are coming off as hostile and perhaps a weebit passive aggressive.
Speaking from my own personal battle with the disorder...
If you are prone to sarcasm, and you don't have the necessarily health care to cover the cost of the meds to control it you can still make a series of choices on when and where you use sarcasm. Control the disorder don't let the disorder control you.
Among many strategies I have tried over the years, the one I find most successful in written communication forums is to keep bulk of the sarcastic comments aimed directly at oneself. I believe the term is self-deprecation. You still might not master right off the bat, unless your British, I'm not so I'm still working on it, but it does help take the edge off a bit when others are reading what I write. Instead of coming off as hostile, when making sarcastic jibes at other people, you just come off as a bit odd, muttering about yourself. And maybe this strategy isn't for you. Maybe you need electroshock therapy. I can't tell you want will work for you. Experiment... maybe try that electroshock stuff a couple of times just to be sure its not the right treatment for you.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 18:21 UTC (Thu) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
As someone who's been on the receiving end of your sarcasm elsewhere a few times, a good while ago, and not particularly enjoyed it: Bravo for recognising it and trying to address it. I hope I could do the same if/when needs be. ;)
Not sure about the electroshock treatment though. ;)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 13:41 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
I am on various mailing lists, mostly just to look for feedback and spot problems. Sometimes one person saying things is enough, sometimes only when many people say something.
Elsewhere the "faster horse" thing was mentioned. If someone gives feedback it can be various things:
- outright bugs
- hardware issues
- something that doesn't work right at the moment
- packaging problem
- performance (known or unknown)
- design/usability problems
All of that is useful to know, but there is not a one on one relation between this. E.g. a "don't drop fallback mode" criticism might be the result of something else, e.g. a hardware issue. Further, if someone doesn't like a nautilus 3.5.92 or even 3.6.0, it could be either a design issue, maybe not. Often what is expected that some suggestion must be implemented immediately. Not always possible... takes quite a bit of time to figure what the feedback really means. E.g. some stuff in gnome-shell 3.0.0 wasn't working nicely, but actually can be difficult to understand if feedback is in the form of "what are you doing?", "idiots", etc.
That's just interpreting feedback, after that knowing what to do, etc.
Not saying things couldn't/shouldn't be improved, just that the expectations are a bit high.
Note that recently I saw a few designers commenting on usability testing, saying that big usability tests (like Sun did) would be very welcome and is a bit lacking atm.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:58 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
I was too aggressive, not only to you. Sorry for that.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:40 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
... and that was just a quick look.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:58 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Never had a problem with autocomplete not working.
> 4: messed up UI
Wow, detailed and scathing criticism there.
Maybe I will use that gem on the next GNOME release.
> 6: fucked up the location bar by making stuff gray
Yep, surely that is on par with GNOME3 removing the ability to change the font size, or minimize windows or getting rid of the task bar.
Or the hideous and unchangeable and largely useless black bar across the top of the screen.
> 7: broke copy/paste from location bar
Sounds like a bug more than an intentional design change. Never experienced it here though.
> 8: needs manual fudging for add-ons
Sorry I forgot Gnome extensions are fully supported and always work perfectly.
> 9: messed up UI again
Wow once again, such constructive criticism.
> 10: removed forward arrow
Hmmm... I have a forward arrow here.
> 13: added the horrendous "home tab"
Easily disabled since you know, they actually support user preferences.
> 15: suddenly auto-updates without asking
Which is bad why?
But the GNOME3 defense is now - "Others make crappy software so we can too".
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:12 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
Tip: Do your own distro, it can come with all your favorite versions of all your favorite software!
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:34 UTC (Wed) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:17 UTC (Wed) by drago01 (subscriber, #50715)
1) You can still change the font size
2) You can re enable that feature
3) There is an extension available for that
> Sounds like a bug more than an intentional design change. Never experienced it here though.
He probably means the hiding of the "http" and adding it to the pasted url even though it wasn't part of the copied url.
> Easily disabled ...
So now changing options is acceptable? (see the 3 points above).
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:40 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Seriously? You had to (still do?) need to install a separate tool search through and hack the registry.
Not the same as opening a preferences dialog.
You guys just cannot concede anything. GNOME3.0 was perfect.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 23:55 UTC (Wed) by drago01 (subscriber, #50715)
> You had to (still do?) need to install a separate tool
> search through and hack the registry.
No you have to just to click on a few buttons in said tool ... not exactly rocket science.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:02 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
So which distro has GNOME2 (not MATE) and GNOME3?
that's an issue you will have to raise with distribution people - I am not one.
the libraries are parallel installable; we took great care at bumping everything during the 2 -> 3 cycle. if something got lost in the process, it was a mistake, and I'll gladly take the blame by proxy - as well as accept patches.
as I said above, applications do not have parallel installability - but that's something absolutely normal, unless you statically link everything. by the by, we're trying to solve the issue of installing applications in parallel, along with sandboxing and keeping ABI stability in the face of OS updates; it's a large swamp to drain, and something that takes time to implement, and usually gets lots of grief from people droning about the right to choose and the Linux distribution process.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:19 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
Rubbish. You answered the question.
The "apps" (I would argue that nautilus and gnome-panel are not apps but are the desktop) are not parallel installable.
Which was a deliberate choice by you GNOME devs to force the transition to GNOME3. Which is why people are hating on you.
No one cares if the libs are - I want a the login manager to give me the choice of logging into GNOME2 or GNOME3.
I want to use your code! I just want the choice on which version. I don't want the latest buggy incomplete version. I want to chose when I make the transition.
But I know you guys can't understand how people don't think GNOME3 with no taskbar and no font size changing and no minimize button and 3d hw requirements and no themes and gaudy touch friendly widgets isn't the best thing since sliced bread that everyone should immediately want to switch to.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:31 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
The "apps" (I would argue that nautilus and gnome-panel are not apps but are the desktop) are not parallel installable.
Jhbuild parallel installs an entire GNOME in your existing distribution. This includes Nautilus and gnome-panel and so on.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 14:38 UTC (Thu) by Thanatopsis (guest, #14019)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 17:31 UTC (Thu) by jspaleta (subscriber, #50639)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 19:26 UTC (Thu) by Thanatopsis (guest, #14019)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:13 UTC (Thu) by jspaleta (subscriber, #50639)
If you want to look at specific environment changes you run:
and you can examine the environment variables accordingly.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 0:12 UTC (Fri) by Thanatopsis (guest, #14019)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:55 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Or in other words: ensure that you can easily join development. Be able to provide people with the latest GNOME release as a VM, including all the various system dependencies which are needed by GNOME. Be able to fully test the whole "OS" (meaning GNOME but also the system dependencies).
To answer your question:
The way that jhbuild does this is by installing everything in different prefix. So instead of /usr, you can have the entire GNOME stack (+ some dependencies) in e.g. $HOME/gnome. You can then tell GDM to launch $HOME/gnome/bin/startgnome.
What I forgot is that this will still share the "dot" files. We've put a lot of work into supporting the XDG directories (~/.config), which can be changed using environment variables. Quite envious of KDE here (they solved that years ago).
Posted Nov 23, 2012 0:39 UTC (Fri) by Thanatopsis (guest, #14019)
So what is keeping everyone who desires to, from running GNOME 2.x & 3.x side by side?
Posted Nov 21, 2012 16:33 UTC (Wed) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
I must say, their answer isn't very convincing... It reads something like, "Clem doesn't like the new Nautilus so we can't use any part of Cinnamon." It would be nice to hear more.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 16:40 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 17:30 UTC (Wed) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
Of course Gnome has a better chance of pulling it off, since they can tweak the Gnome code to work better with extensions if they have to.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:20 UTC (Wed) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Of course Gnome has a better chance of pulling it off, since they can tweak the Gnome code to work better with extensions if they have to.
well, it's not a problem of access to the code - it's all open, after all, and we still respond well to patches from contributors. it's more an issue of constraint: Mint wants to be able to provide a specific user experience that includes being able to completely change itself in ways that are not under the original author's intents and designs. the GNOME shell extension team can achieve that because it has a smaller surface area, and can make decisions; obviously, this will lead to a series of shitstorms on web forums and mailing lists, with people saying that we "disenfranchise" users (whatever that may mean in the context of a free and open source project), but it's not like we aren't used to it by now.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:30 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
The precious GNOME brand. It's not important that users do what they want, we need to maintain the brand!
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:41 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:01 UTC (Wed) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
Which is better than the alternative.
I find quite a lot of what I read on the Internet (including most of your posts) not worth reading in hindsight, but I value freedom of speech, so I'm willing to put up with it.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:15 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:29 UTC (Wed) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:37 UTC (Wed) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
There was nothing that could be rude as the only thing you said is that you don't find most of my post worth reading. In my impression I think I have more or less the same discussion, usually with the same people in pretty much every LWN article. It gets to the point that even if I am just interested in something other than GNOME, it turns in the same discussion anyway. I sometimes wonder if the repeating the same discussion is not against the spirit of the GNOME Code of Conduct ("try to be concise", see https://live.gnome.org/CodeOfConduct).
Saying "not worth reading in hindsight": I actually wondered why only in hindsight ;)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 3:37 UTC (Thu) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
I'm not really sure what you mean by this, but if you mean "why do I read things that I think I might disagree with," it's because I've learned things from people with whom I disagree with on almost everything. I admit not often, but it has happened.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:21 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 21:45 UTC (Wed) by AndreE (subscriber, #60148)
And communities are free to enforce standards of discourse to encourage the sort of participation they like.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 22:16 UTC (Wed) by Company (guest, #57006)
This is why I value moderated places like GNOME IRC channels or mailing lists over Facebook or Twitter for GNOME development discussion or Google News over Tumblr.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 21:01 UTC (Wed) by Zizzle (guest, #67739)
This guy must be the ultimate troll in your eyes.
"The point is that it decreases our brand presence. We’ve always argued that if it is anything, GNOME is a UX. There might be a case for letting people tweak things here and there, but I really think that every GNOME install should have the same core look and feel. Otherwise, what is it that we are doing in the first place?" -- Allan Day
"Let’s say that we are trying to define either a product or a product platform. I don’t think it is possible to do this without some “brand” coherence." -- William Jon McCann
Posted Nov 22, 2012 5:23 UTC (Thu) by Trelane (subscriber, #56877)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 5:24 UTC (Thu) by Trelane (subscriber, #56877)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:25 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 12:18 UTC (Thu) by Trelane (subscriber, #56877)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 13:18 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 15:09 UTC (Thu) by clump (subscriber, #27801)
I do wish comments on these articles would stay away from hyperbole. Every time GNOME is mentioned people immediately jump to making assumptions about people and intent. There are gifted coders and contributors on LWN. Surely the time would be better spent contributing.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 16:03 UTC (Thu) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:49 UTC (Thu) by clump (subscriber, #27801)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:14 UTC (Thu) by Trelane (subscriber, #56877)
So don't filter posts with your account? Personally, it helps me deal with stressful persons who're likely to just draw me into yet another unproductive debate.
The "Someone is Wrong on the Internet" thing. It makes life suck just a bit less.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:47 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Posted Nov 21, 2012 19:57 UTC (Wed) by el_presidente (subscriber, #87621)
Isn't this a good thing? Assuming that the original author isn't perfect.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 9:14 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Isn't this a good thing? Assuming that the original author isn't perfect.
one thing that has been learned over the past 15 years of GNOME is that there are limits as to what you can make your environment do, assuming you still want to provide a coherent experience that doesn't break horribly if something goes ever so slightly wrong. it has nothing to do with perfection (which we know is the enemy of "good"), but more with surface area and interaction between different parts of the system. complexity increases exponentially with the number of moving parts, after all.
if you have, for instance, 2 extensions then you need to handle four cases: only (a) is loaded, only (b) is loaded, both (a) and (b) are loaded, both (a) and (b) are unloaded. on top of that, dependencies and ordering may be issues (and one of the things that Clem found is that yes, they are): now you have to handle the case where (a) is loaded before (b), and the case where (b) is loaded before (a). total: six cases, for two extensions; if you look at the list of extensions needed to implement a "classic" UX, you can start to extrapolate how many failure conditions have to be checked to avoid breaking your UI. now a solution is to make it a single extension, or at least a set of independent extensions that do not interact between them and do not rely on ordering, and eliminate all of this in one fell swoop - but this falls outside the constraints on Cinnamon, which allows you to control individual extensions, and has different extensions depending on each other. again, fair enough: I cannot even remotely pretend to dictate what Clem should or should not do, and I don't begrudge him the necessity to fork, given his constraints.
it's really not something that should be so surprising, but I guess it needs to be experienced as a developer to be truly believed. I posit that this is why a lot of people here, and elsewhere, think that GNOME developers are morons that like to remove third party extension points just because the want to impose misery on their users, as opposed to the people that have been dealing with the user-reported bugs and requests for the past 15 years - which is insulting and wrong, but mostly insulting.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 16:09 UTC (Thu) by bronson (subscriber, #4806)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 18:33 UTC (Thu) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
Coupling *is* bad, and it *does* push up the test matrix, but clearly it's not as bad as all that. It might be worth seeing what ball-of-mud projects like Emacs are semi-accidentally doing right in this area, and copying it.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 18:44 UTC (Thu) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
It looks like there's no real progress there. Other projects had moved from simple text editors to full-scale semantically-aware IDEs during this time.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 19:02 UTC (Thu) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 19:07 UTC (Thu) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:23 UTC (Fri) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:55 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
stuff that we are copying, or we can copy, from Firefox: communication with extension authors; a certain grace period for letting the most successful extensions be updated before the actual release; integration of part of the functionality of the extensions into core.
it's been two cycles: it will take a bit of time to get to the point where Firefox is now.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:35 UTC (Fri) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
So if GNOME is modelling its extension API on FF's, it's not a good sign. If it models it on FF's except treats it like an API and doesn't break it at the drop of a hat, that might work better.
(Again, I don't really know how Emacs has avoided implosion despite using the same 'big ball of mud, everything is available' approach as FF extensions do. I suspect it is simply treating its interfaces like a programming language designer would, i.e. extremely conservatively, taking *decades* to deprecate *anything*, so by the time your extension moves from using deprecated interfaces to breaking because they're removed, the app itself is too obsolete for anyone to care about it anymore. It only just broke old-style backquote, for instance, and that started emitting deprecation warnings something like fifteen years ago.
Perhaps if people would consider that they are kicking all their users every time they deprecate a stable interface it might help. I understand that Emacs developers ritually cut off and sacrifice a body part to the cons gods every time they intentionally break anything that external Lisp is relying on :P That attitude might help too, but it seems to be almost unique in the 'just break it dammit' free software community right now.)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 9:51 UTC (Fri) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
Again, I don't really know how Emacs has avoided implosion despite using the same 'big ball of mud, everything is available' approach as FF extensions do.
because you're obviously ignoring the fact that the emacs users are putting up with a big ball of elisp with obscure commands that require three keyboards to actually be used successfully, which means that they are capable of getting out of the mess by themselves, and they'll probably enjoy doing so - whereas people installing Firefox and GNOME extensions are much more likely not to be software developers or humungous geeks.
Posted Nov 23, 2012 19:37 UTC (Fri) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
Posted Nov 30, 2012 20:20 UTC (Fri) by njs (guest, #40338)
(Also emacs' UI is pretty flat and decoupled to start with, since it consists mostly of keybindings. It's much easier to merge 10 extensions' keybindings than it is to merge 10 extensions' arbitrary fiddlings with status bars, menus, etc., and those things change from release to release too.)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 19:39 UTC (Fri) by nix (subscriber, #2304)
Posted Nov 23, 2012 10:18 UTC (Fri) by dlang (✭ supporter ✭, #313)
Firefox also has an extensions API, and things that use that are very stable. But Firefox didn't start with an explicit API, instead extensions are allowed to muck with anything in the browser, and ones that do are extremely sensitive to any changes in the browser (potentially including compile options)
as in everything, there are tradeoffs
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:51 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
By this logic extensions.gnome.org is doomed to failure. Curious if you really believe this.
you're extrapolating from something I didn't say.
I said that it's extremely hard to create a system that can be QA'd (and documented) effectively - not impossible, because there are few things that are outright impossible.
it's also true that everyone can set up their own system using extensions, evaluate what breaks, and learn to avoid it - locally; end users, especially enthusiasts, have a fairly high threshold for pain, otherwise you wouldn't be able to explain vim, emacs, or enlightenment. I'd rather not expose non-enthusiasts to this mess, though.
Posted Nov 21, 2012 20:21 UTC (Wed) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
My impression (which could be wrong) is that the Gnome project does not want to accept patches from outside contributors, which is why Cinnamon was forked in the first place. Are you saying that Cinnamon could be integrated with Gnome Shell and Mutter if the Mint project submitted patches?
Posted Nov 21, 2012 21:05 UTC (Wed) by sorpigal (subscriber, #36106)
So "If you want that maintain it yourself," which they're doing.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 2:20 UTC (Thu) by jbicha (subscriber, #75043)
I believe that whatever muffin does could be done in mutter. Even Cinnamon could probably be implemented in extensions and I think GNOME Shell developers would be interested in accepting a few patches to make that possible (if it isn't already).
But the Linux Mint devs would rather keep their GNOME 3.2 forks of GNOME Shell, Mutter, and Nautilus.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:51 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
My impression (which could be wrong) is that the Gnome project does not want to accept patches from outside contributors
I guess that's why we don't have a public bug tracking system, or integrated patch review on said bug tracking system, or even a public, distributed revision control system to store all our code.</sarcasm>
seriously: we accept patches and contributions from everyone; there are constraints: if the maintainer does not think your patch should be integrated, then he won't integrate it. the reasons for that depend on the product's direction, long term maintainability, style issues, design issues, or implementation issues. any failure to match to the per-product criteria will be communicated and there can even be a back and forth until the patch is either dropped or pushed to the repository.
I have just described the process of submitting a patch to any open source/free software project; it shouldn't be surprising anyone that things work this way for GNOME too.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 8:57 UTC (Thu) by dlang (✭ supporter ✭, #313)
are you really surprised that people don't "work with them" to submit patches?
Posted Nov 22, 2012 9:25 UTC (Thu) by kigurai (guest, #85475)
While I noticed some regressions in the first versions of GNOME 3.x (most notably bookmarks in nautilus), I think it's a healthy sign of a project that features are not applied blindly.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 9:27 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
but when the project leaders make such a point of saying that they don't want features, they don't want flexibility, they don't want...
this is something you have inferred by yourself, or extrapolated by single data points. yes, it has been said by the members of the design theme that extensions and themes are potentially dangerous; they have any right to say so, and from their perspective (and from others as well) they are absolutely right. on the other hand, you're replying to an article that says that the GNOME project has decided to use extensions to bring the 2.x user experience back for the users that feel so inclined. I think an announcement from the release team, which is direct emanation of the GNOME Foundation board of directors, should have more weight on any judgement of the direction of the GNOME project than individual emails extrapolated out of their context.
another data point for you to consider: I accept patches, I accept features, and I accept bug reports - and so do all the other maintainers in the GNOME project, otherwise we would have closed Bugzilla down. if you think I (or any other maintainer) will commit any and all patches you send my way without a review, then you're obviously deluding yourself: I will reject patches that are sub-par, or conflict with my vision of the modules I maintain. it's not something unprecedented or weird or wrong. if you think you know better, then the licensing and development model allows you to fork my code and do whatever; I'd obviously prefer to discuss things before adopting the nuclear option, but that's just how things works in free software, don't they? try sending a patch for a kernel module written in C++, or using the GNU coding style, or using the wrong interface, to lkml, and see what happens.
tho, I have to agree: we have a marketing/communication issue. every time GNOME does $SOMETHING, people immediately accuse us of being irrational, wrong, stupid, and be on the payroll of Microsoft or Apple or Google or Satan himself. this, repeated over the course of years tends to create a siege mentality - it is (sadly) natural, and we (luckily) lack the personalities to just tell people to fuck off and die in a ditch, like some other project does.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 9:59 UTC (Thu) by dlang (✭ supporter ✭, #313)
actually, I think you (as a project) are doing a pretty good job of getting that exact message out.
This article is one of the very few items that goes the other way.
Not accepting patches because they don't agree with your vision for the project is within your right (and your responsibilities for that matter), but you can't do that and then complain "why don't they just send patches" when they fork your project.
Preventing a fork is at least as much the responsibility of the people running the project (thorugh the process of accepting outside viewpoints and expanding the scope of the project when patches are supplied) as it is the responsibility of the people who start the new fork
Posted Nov 22, 2012 15:12 UTC (Thu) by jbicha (subscriber, #75043)
If you're talking about the MATE and Cinnamon projects, I don't think that those developers even tried submitting patches. If they didn't, then I believe the GNOME developers are fully justified in saying "why don't they just send patches."
Posted Nov 22, 2012 20:40 UTC (Thu) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950)
Now this is not needed anymore (everyone has their own infra).
Posted Nov 22, 2012 22:43 UTC (Thu) by ebassi (subscriber, #54855)
If you're talking about the MATE and Cinnamon projects, I don't think that those developers even tried submitting patches.
correct, as far as I know after talking with the maintainers of the involved projects.
Posted Nov 24, 2012 2:15 UTC (Sat) by tytso (subscriber, #9993)
For that reason, I'm not going to be willing to waste time trying to bend GNOME 3 in "Classic mode" to my will (if that's even possible, given that you don't believe in giving customization options to users). It's clear it will always be a second class citizen, because it's not consistent with your "vision". Which is fine. Fortunately, the XFCE developers are willing to support my desired use case --- which is why I'd encourage all desktop developers who are interested in contributing to GNOME 3 "classic mode extensions", to consider instead contributing to XFCE. At least that way they will be contributing to a project where their contributions will be valued, instead of being at best tolerated since they don't match up with the GNOME project's "vision".
Posted Nov 24, 2012 2:27 UTC (Sat) by jbicha (subscriber, #75043)
I understand you're upset at GNOME 3 to date. Hopefully you can see that the GNOME developers actually do appreciate extensions that add customizability. (I mean that's kind of what this whole news topic is about.)
I'm glad that XFCE seems to be working out well for you. Maybe you should take a look at GNOME 3.8 or 3.10 to see how well the classic mode lives up to your expectations next year.
Posted Nov 24, 2012 3:09 UTC (Sat) by Trelane (subscriber, #56877)
Specifically, I'm using https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/484/workspace-grid/ which has satisfied my need for a 7x7 grid quite admirably.
Posted Nov 24, 2012 19:35 UTC (Sat) by tytso (subscriber, #9993)
The problem is that the GNOME developers have a very bad reputation about not caring about preserving their existing userbase's usage patterns, and instead of developed Steve Jobs arrogance of trying to tell me that "I'm using it wrong". I haven't seen any evidence they've repented of their arrogance. Until then, why should I risk my productivity?
Better to try to encourage more people to use the competition such as XFCE, and make it be a better desktop environment than GNOME 2.x ever was (and certainly better than GNOME 3.x is by my lights).
Posted Nov 24, 2012 21:57 UTC (Sat) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
Posted Nov 24, 2012 22:13 UTC (Sat) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523)
XFCE, on the other hand, is not married to GTK2 - there are plans to migrate to GTK3 (it's actually slowly happening right now). And XFCE community is nice enough to minimize breaking UI changes.
Posted Nov 26, 2012 17:07 UTC (Mon) by tytso (subscriber, #9993)
But in any case, that's why I've been recommending XFCE; that and the fact that it's available on all of the major distributions, which is not necessarily true for the Gnome 2 forks.
Posted Nov 22, 2012 17:56 UTC (Thu) by tjc (subscriber, #137)
If you read from the top of this thread down to here you'll notice that we're going around in a big circle, with a lot of context being left behind along the way.
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