User: Password:
|
|
Subscribe / Log in / New account

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 30, 2013 21:14 UTC (Thu) by geuder (subscriber, #62854)
Parent article: Ubuntu bug #1 closed

So is this the beginning of the end of a Canonical-backed desktop distro?


(Log in to post comments)

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 30, 2013 21:47 UTC (Thu) by landley (subscriber, #6789) [Link]

The Open Source development model has a structural problem dealing with aesthetic issues and user interfaces. Part of my ELC talk was about that, starting at 11 minutes 30 seconds:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=11m30s

Giving up on Linux on the Desktop is sad, but we've had twenty occurrences of the "year of the linux desktop". At some point we have to admit it's a structural problem.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 0:15 UTC (Fri) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

I agree with your point, it hasn't been the year of KDE, GNOME, Unity or the "traditional" Linux desktop although it was the year of Android Linux a few years ago,. I would add though that the traditional desktop still exists and is being worked on so every day the sun rises is another day of opportunity. If the traditional desktop developers can ever grab that opportunity when it comes by it could be the "Year of Linux" any time, as long as they don't give up.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 6:53 UTC (Fri) by mlopezibanez (guest, #66088) [Link]

Are you actually using a Linux Desktop? Because in my experience introducing several people to KDE, the main issues are always:

1) Hardware doesn't work (Kernel/X issues)
2) Important programs don't work or there is no good enough equivalent (AutoCAD, iTunes, client for exchange server, MS Office)

Never, never, somebody has complained to me about the interface being unintuitive or ugly. Of course, they complain for a while that it is hard because "It doesn't work like Windows", but after a while they simply get used to it and don't care.

This is actually why Linux Desktop has never succeeded: 1) no enough fraction of hardware vendors produce completely working systems; 2) no enough software developers produce Linux versions; and 3) no enough new users learn to use computers using a Linux Desktop. "Aesthetic issues and user interfaces" have zero to do with any of it. Bad drivers, unstable/poor APIs and sheer inertia, explain it all.

And you can easily see that neither of these reasons applies to Android: 1) hardware is designed for Android; 2) Android is one of the two main targets of phone software developers; 3) most people that start using Android have never used any other smartphone OS before. Ergo: Android is a success.

And these are exactly the issues that will explain whether Firefox OS or Ubuntu for phones fail or succeed.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 9:18 UTC (Fri) by dgm (subscriber, #49227) [Link]

Hear, hear!

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 13:58 UTC (Fri) by landley (subscriber, #6789) [Link]

I've been using a linux desktop continuously since 1998. Wandered through gnome, kde, and now xfce. Red Hat 5 through Fedora Core 2 (which didn't boot on a Via Samuel because their default kernel required a Pentium III), then installed Knoppix on the hard drive by hand for a few years, then switched to Ubuntu. I played Loki's Myth II to completion, and had the Linux version of The Sims 1 (which came bundled with... Mandrake, was it?) Various servers have had gnome and suse and such, but those weren't the machine in front of me I was trying to beat "the daily show" out of.

I'm currently using Ubuntu LTS, where half the time the sound is muted after suspend, and also mutes itself when you plug/unplug headphones. And then stays muted (even through further suspend/plug fiddling) untill you pull up pavucontrol (normal audio controls don't work for this), navigate to tab 3, scroll down to the output type it doesn't initially show you because the window is too small, and unmute it. (Plus adjust the volume from the insanely low default.)

Of course, everybody should know how to do that. Just as they should know how to to "sudo modprobe -r ath9k && sleep 5 & sudo modprobe ath9k nohwcrypt=1" to make the network card work with my home router, or to "rmmod iwl3945 && insmod iwl3945" every time the previous netbook's network card lost its marbles and hung because Starbucks has noisy wireless.

However, my point was more about "The gimp ain't replacing photoshop", and "Open/Libre office are really ugly". People will download and install the flash plugin en masse, or Adobe's PDF viewer, and once upon a time Netscape had 90% market share as a free download. Linux having less than 2% market share is a side issue: why haven't firefox and openoffice and the gimp and vlc swept the windows application space the same way? (When's the last time your day job gave you LibreOffice instead of Word, or Thunderbird instead of Excel?)

Most people don't complain about things they don't have the vocabulary for. And when they say "this tastes terrible" and the reply is "you don't know how to eat, just keep going and you'll learn to love it", they tend not to follow up.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 21:33 UTC (Fri) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

Of course, everybody should know how to do that. Just as they should know how to to "sudo modprobe -r ath9k && sleep 5 & sudo modprobe ath9k nohwcrypt=1" to make the network card work with my home router, or to "rmmod iwl3945 && insmod iwl3945" every time the previous netbook's network card lost its marbles and hung because Starbucks has noisy wireless.

I've complained myself about developers ignoring the basic networking use-cases and perhaps brainstorming about airport lounge wireless network roaming instead, and I accept that this sometimes pervades other aspects of the user experience, but I imagine you know as well as anyone why it is that "everyone should know" the arcane things you mention if they use Linux. It has nothing to do with the attention span or excitement levels of the developers and everything to do with there being a scarcity of properly documented hardware.

Of course, one can argue that Shuttleworth should have invested more in hardware had he really wanted to close bug #1. As it is, people struggle to support what effectively and literally lands in their lap, quite probably with Windows already installed. And from there we can quite easily explain things like the "resilience" of Microsoft Office in the face of freely available alternatives.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 21:49 UTC (Fri) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

> Of course, one can argue that Shuttleworth should have invested more in hardware had he really wanted to close bug #1.

That's not how it happened but I'd like to think that with the resources Canonical put into Ubuntu that if they had become a hardware reseller like System76 and sold highly-optimized Canonical branded hardware they would have had an easier time with hardware support, as the paid employees would only need to worry about a single target platform, and a revenue stream from the hardware which would help the software development be more sustainable.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 5:29 UTC (Sun) by FranTaylor (guest, #80190) [Link]

That's not a very good strategy if your goal is to be a ubiquitous distribution. It's also not a good strategy if you actually want to make money. Ubuntu's wide availability on the server, the desktop, and the laptop means that it's an attractive distribution for third party vendors; they can say "We support Ubuntu" and their customers have a wide variety of hardware platforms to choose from. People who are paying big $$$ for a commercial software package are not going to mind paying a few extra $$$ for a supported operating system.

I like to use the analogy of trucks. If a company uses a lot of trucks in its business, it spends a lot of money on them. They can save a lot of money by pitting the vendors against each other. Trucks from different vendors are more-or-less interchangable. I talked to a purchasing agent who buys a million dollars worth of trucks every year. When the truck salesmen come to visit, he parks trucks from the competition in the visitor's parking lot so the salesman gets the message that he has a tough sell in front of him. When a company can use the same strategy with its computers, they can also save money. Ubuntu plays nicely into this strategy.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 1, 2013 13:58 UTC (Sat) by kju (guest, #61936) [Link]

> Never, never, somebody has complained to me about the interface being unintuitive or ugly.

Well, I do. I hate ugly OSS software, but ugliness is often the norm. It may sound pathetic, but using ugly software is a real pain to me.

Also most of the work I do, I do for business customers. And when I show up with ugly or overly complicated OSS solutions, they often perceive these as unprofessional because they the look does not give the feel that it is worthy software. Same goes for web sites of said software. Many OSS project websites are complicated and not appealing to business decision makers. Yes, it is a stupid way of judging, but it is the reality.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 14:33 UTC (Sun) by intgr (subscriber, #39733) [Link]

> Same goes for web sites of said software

Well, it's nost just software. There's a certain news site you may have heard about.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 11:01 UTC (Mon) by dgm (subscriber, #49227) [Link]

Your problem is that you want the rest of the world to conform to your current aesthetic taste. It's impossible, unless you force that taste from up above. So, you are barking at the wrong tree, try Apple instead.

And by the way, don't look at common people on the street, they all look so messy and ugly...

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 30, 2013 22:20 UTC (Thu) by ccchips (subscriber, #3222) [Link]

I certainly hope not! I'm a musician, and I have yet to see anything on Android that would draw me away from using a decently-powered computer and desktop. Also, it seems to me that there is still 'way too much hardware fragmentation in the Android world; in the desktop world, I can install almost any OS I want on almost any Intel-based system, whereas in Android, with very few exceptions, I can install only the Android I was given by the manufacturer if they even bother to produce one at all, or just throw the thing away if the Android on it fails for some reason.

Also, I'm appalled at the immaturity of some of the Android software I have seen, and amazed that anyone would *charge money* for it!

Then there's the keyboard-and-mouse issue. Sure, it's fun to swipe a finger around, and some people may find it easy and interesting to type on a "virtual keyboard," but let's see a typist go at 100+ WPM on one of those things, *without looking at that virtual keyboard.* There needs to be consistent, mature support for both keyboard and mouse in Androad.

Until all of these problems are addressed, I'm here at the Linux desktop, where I can get some work done. Then I'll go to my Android tablet and curl up with a good book...

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 30, 2013 23:10 UTC (Thu) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

I'm a musician, and I have yet to see anything on Android that would draw me away from using a decently-powered computer and desktop.

Now you are talking just as serious CAD (or 3D modelling) users talked about 30 years ago. Don't worry: you are safe for 5-10 years yet. AutoCAD for Unix ceased to exist about 20 years ago :-)

Also, it seems to me that there is still 'way too much hardware fragmentation in the Android world; in the desktop world, I can install almost any OS I want on almost any Intel-based system, whereas in Android, with very few exceptions, I can install only the Android I was given by the manufacturer if they even bother to produce one at all, or just throw the thing away if the Android on it fails for some reason.

Yup. Exactly the same situation as with MS-DOS 30 years ago: it was basically impossible to use Compaq DOS on IBM PC or IBM DOS on anything except genuine article.

Also, I'm appalled at the immaturity of some of the Android software I have seen, and amazed that anyone would *charge money* for it!

That's because you've not seen (or just forgot?) about times when dBase was seriously sold as DBMS and WordStar generated millions.

Then there's the keyboard-and-mouse issue. Sure, it's fun to swipe a finger around, and some people may find it easy and interesting to type on a "virtual keyboard," but let's see a typist go at 100+ WPM on one of those things, *without looking at that virtual keyboard.* There needs to be consistent, mature support for both keyboard and mouse in Androad.

Sure. But don't forget that Windows 1.0 was actually bundled with mouse because it was basically impossible to buy one in stores!

Until all of these problems are addressed, I'm here at the Linux desktop, where I can get some work done. Then I'll go to my Android tablet and curl up with a good book...

That's fine - if you are Ok with dropping your habits and switching to whatever PC replacement emerges from Android. But if you want to have any say in how said replacement will look like then time for action is now.

"History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme": many minor details can still be changed (and will undoubtedly change), but the general direction is unchangeable at this point.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 2:45 UTC (Fri) by gwolf (subscriber, #14632) [Link]

Yup. Exactly the same situation as with MS-DOS 30 years ago: it was basically impossible to use Compaq DOS on IBM PC or IBM DOS on anything except genuine article.
Hmm, sure on this? My first PC was a Printaform (Mexican reseller of Acer). I am sure to have run on it MS-DOS 2.11 and PC-DOS 3.0 seamlessly. Around 1987.
Sure. But don't forget that Windows 1.0 was actually bundled with mouse because it was basically impossible to buy one in stores!
Again, I disagree. My Microsoft mouse was bundled with Paintbrush and Show Partner. I only came to fiddle with Windows 1.01 some months after getting my mouse. And yes, with two floppy drives, Windows was quite painful to use.
"History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme"
*That* is a quote I expect to steal!

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 10:14 UTC (Fri) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

Yup. Exactly the same situation as with MS-DOS 30 years ago: it was basically impossible to use Compaq DOS on IBM PC or IBM DOS on anything except genuine article.
Hmm, sure on this? My first PC was a Printaform (Mexican reseller of Acer). I am sure to have run on it MS-DOS 2.11 and PC-DOS 3.0 seamlessly. Around 1987.

Please read what you wrote! 30 years agoAround 1987. That's four years difference, you know. Period of time when MS-DOS system were well and truly incompatible was quite short and turbulent but by the 1987 it was already more-or-less history, you only were able to find traces of it by configure options of various programs which had knobs for "not 100% IBM PC compatible" devices - and it looks like we are already starting to experience the same with Android (here and here, for example).

"History does not repeat itself, but it does rhyme"
*That* is a quote I expect to steal!

Don't forget that you are stealing from Mark Twain, not me! This phrase is so famous and well-known that I felt no need to even attribute it…

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 13:48 UTC (Fri) by micka (subscriber, #38720) [Link]

Not everybody knows evey quote from Mark Twain.Many people from different part of the world have different cultural references. I only know of two novel name from this man, and not much more (before looking on wikipedia 5 minutes ago, I couldn't even tell which period he lived in).

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 21:42 UTC (Fri) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

After a while, it almost doesn't matter who said what any more:

http://www.banksy.co.uk/indoors/badartists2.html

Certainly, some quotes take on a life of their own.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 5:15 UTC (Fri) by rsidd (subscriber, #2582) [Link]

Yup. Exactly the same situation as with MS-DOS 30 years ago: it was basically impossible to use Compaq DOS on IBM PC or IBM DOS on anything except genuine article.

Not true at all. Having grown up in a country (India) where, in those days, the "genuine article" was a rarity and the market was dominated by local beige-box assemblers, I can attest that quite a few of them did install (pirated) Compaq DOS or IBM PC DOS. Functionally there was no difference between those and MS-DOS.

(Today the market here is dominated by the same multinationals you see in the west -- including Dell, Compaq/HP, Sony, Lenovo, etc -- and many of them supply low-priced, modern laptops pre-installed with FreeDOS. This is obviously an invitation to the user to install a pirated copy of Windows. Why not ship the thing with some form of Linux instead?)

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 30, 2013 22:54 UTC (Thu) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

This is beginning of the end of desktop.

In 15-20 years you'll need desktop distro as much as you need OS for you RISC workstation today.

P.S. Note: PC architecture will probably survive - like big UNIX iron survives today, but why will you need a desktop distro for a box without GPU?

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 0:25 UTC (Fri) by yodermk (subscriber, #3803) [Link]

That kind of thinking amazes me, but maybe I don't fully understand what is meant by it.

From my perspective, to do any real work, I *need* a big monitor, a real keyboard, and a mouse (or something like it). That will never, ever fully fit in my pocket.

Do you mean simply a pocket device that you can hook all this stuff up to? Then maybe that is conceivable, once you can get the power of a Core i7 + a nice graphics card + big redundant storage in a pocket size device (and due to Moore's law, I suppose that will happen someday).

If you mean we'll be using every app like we use a phone or tablet today, I think that's simply absurd.

IMHO the desktop paradigm will *never* die, but the form factor of the CPU might continue to evolve.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 1:46 UTC (Fri) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

Nothing in computing ever truly dies but the focus of the industry has moved from mainframes to minis to PCs and now to mobile. OSs designed for mobile can be extended enough to be used for many computing tasks that used to require a traditional desktop OS far more easily than traditional systems can be changed to be as simple, easy and reliable as mobile systems. My wife uses her iPhone for her primary comptuting device and arely uses a traditional system and that is part of a trend. You might not use a mobile OS for your primary work system but many people are using one for their home system.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 3:06 UTC (Fri) by rqosa (subscriber, #24136) [Link]

> the focus of the industry has moved from mainframes to minis to PCs and now to mobile

The shift from mainframes/minis to PCs couldn't happen until PCs gained the ability to use LANs and client/server networked applications, which enabled the PCs to perform all the tasks that mainframes/minis were previously used for. Similarly, mobile-class computing devices may be able to displace PCs eventually, but not until they can be used to do all of the tasks for which PC-style human-interface devices (particularly large monitors, keyboards, and mice, and optionally other things like high-quality speakers, game controllers, etc.) are a practically necessity.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 15:17 UTC (Fri) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

I think we are pretty close already, the technology is all there it just needs to be put together in the right way. AFAIK existing Android already support attached keyboards, mice, etc. and in the flailing around to find market niches devices such as the Motorola Atrix which had a laptop-dock and Ubuntu installed or the upcoming nVidia Shield game system. I wouldn't be surprised to see a merger of the ChromeOS onto Android such that you can dock your handheld computer with traditional human I/O devices. A Linux-based, Google-driven ecosystem has the potential and opportunity to displace much of the Microsoft/PC ecosystem by the end of the decade if they take advantage of the luck that comes their way. That's not crazy talk, that's market forces.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 1, 2013 12:19 UTC (Sat) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

Similarly, mobile-class computing devices may be able to displace PCs eventually, but not until they can be used to do all of the tasks for which PC-style human-interface devices (particularly large monitors, keyboards, and mice, and optionally other things like high-quality speakers, game controllers, etc.) are a practically necessity.

Sure. But why is it a problem? You can already connect your phone to your large monitors, keyboards, and mice using standard docks. Something like this (note that it's not something sold in "speciality shop": it's official dock from official leader of smartphone industry). Hardware is already there, it's only matter of software now - and it's on the way, too (Android already supports large monitors, keyboards, and mice although interface is not ideal... but if people can cope with Unity and GNOME3 abominations then they'll cope with Android interface, surely).

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 1, 2013 19:20 UTC (Sat) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

When you mean "standard", I presume you mean "available as an official accessory", or does that multimedia hub use a standard connector to the phone?

I agree that since the profile of one's desktop computer has been largely irrelevant for some time - whether it's a tower under the desk or a mini-PC attached to the back of a screen - how the computing power is delivered is less relevant than the devices you choose to go with it.

We may be seeing ARM-based devices return as competitive desktop computers, but they won't necessarily be dedicated desktop computers. But even if dedicated desktops become extinct, the practice of desktop computing will survive: it's just a way of working, after all.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 1, 2013 19:36 UTC (Sat) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

Don't forget that it's more expensive to make electronics smaller and run in an poor thermal environment (like a sealed phone)

it's going to remain cheaper to build a 'desktop' box that doesn't have to fit in a shirt pocket and be super thin, doesn't include a battery and display, and that can have better cooling and room for expansion (no, USB doesn't always cut it) then it is to build a phone/tablet and use it.

Some people will want to use a mobile thing and carry all their data with them, some people will not choose to do so.

So I don't buy that the "desktop" computer is going to go away completely either.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 1, 2013 21:44 UTC (Sat) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

Don't forget that it's more expensive to make electronics smaller and run in an poor thermal environment (like a sealed phone)

Or even a small form factor computer like the one I'm using right now.

So I don't buy that the "desktop" computer is going to go away completely either.

Neither do I, really. In fact, I went from a laptop to a desktop because I don't need the portability, I got to choose the hardware, and I didn't have to pay for a Windows licence I would otherwise have been forced to accept along with the rest of my purchase. But other people will go the same way just to get better performance, better expansion possibilities and better value for money for certain kinds of components.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 5:43 UTC (Sun) by FranTaylor (guest, #80190) [Link]

Sure platforms don't "go away" all that often.

But their market share can go WAY down, to the point where they become niche businesses. For example HP still sells VMS and HP/UX systems. These systems have not "gone away" but they have been relegated to niche markets.

All the arguments about smaller components being more expensive, are 100% blown away by economies of scale.

To address your argument about expansion: sure you needed an expandable computer back in the day when a motherboard had the CPU and the RAM and the keyboard controller and little else. But today motherboards come with all the standard peripherals on board so expansion is really not an issue for the majority of users. You also have to remember that those expansion slots are not free either; today connectors cost more than the peripheral chips that are plugged into them. Any peripheral with any kind of popularity at all is going to be incorporated into the motherboard.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 5:53 UTC (Sun) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

your economy of scale only works if you have multiple models using the same motherboard.

with mobile devices, every model requires a complete redesign of the circuitry, so you only have your scale match the sales of a particular model

as for motherboards including every possible accessory, that just isn't going to happen.

at the low end, it won't happen because they won't want to spend the money on things they don't need.

at the small end it won't happen because all those accessories need connectors, and there isn't space to put them on tiny devices

As proof that this isn't true, look at the fact that most mobile devices don't include memory card slots. That's something that many people want, but the cost (in money, space for the connector and slot for the card) means that most devices don't contain something that's so useful.

for that matter, Apple couldn't fit video on their new iphone connector and resorted to using wifi to cover the 3 inches to the receive built in on the wire. Who thinks this is a good design?

there are far too many possible accessories to put every one of them on every motherboard.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 9:55 UTC (Sun) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

your economy of scale only works if you have multiple models using the same motherboard.

Not the same motherboard. The same SOC. It's [relatevely] easy and cheap to develop motherboard (that's why we are seeing bazillion cheap chineese phones in different form factors), it's hard to design a SOC - but there are just a handful SOCs in existence and this is where "economy of scale" comes into play.

As proof that this isn't true, look at the fact that most mobile devices don't include memory card slots.

Yup. They don't include memory card slots, they include flash memory instead. Have you actually read what FranTaylor wrote? You also have to remember that those expansion slots are not free either; today connectors cost more than the peripheral chips that are plugged into them. Any peripheral with any kind of popularity at all is going to be incorporated into the motherboard. If anything your example WRT memory card slots supports FranTaylor's point, not yours. Connectors are going out, chips which were previously attached via these connectors (GPS, accelerometers, image sensor, flash memory, etc) are going in.

for that matter, Apple couldn't fit video on their new iphone connector and resorted to using wifi to cover the 3 inches to the receive built in on the wire. Who thinks this is a good design?

Apple, apparently. Others have included video, power and USB 2.0 in the connector of similar size. This is scary WRT Apple's future: Steve left us only 1.5 years ago and Apple already lost it's vision of the future. But what this has to do with the future of computing? Apple have started this revolution but then, as usual, have lost it's way - it's no longer in the center of it. Perhaps it'll start some other revolution, perhaps it'll die - does it really matter?

there are far too many possible accessories to put every one of them on every motherboard.

Not that many if you include accessories which may be supported by USB (USB 3.0 if they are fast enough). And most of these fall into "niche market" bucket with pricess above $1000 - thus you can quite literally bundle new android-based PC into these "accessories" instead of the other way around. This is already a trend.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 20:04 UTC (Sun) by foom (subscriber, #14868) [Link]

> resorted to using wifi to cover the 3 inches to the receive built in on the wire

No, they really didn't. That would be utterly ridiculous.

What it *does* do is encode the pixels on the screen using a hardware mpeg4 encoder, before sending the video stream down to the adapter [unless it's playing source material that's already mpeg4]. The adapter has a hardware mpeg4 decoder, and it shoves pixels out the HDMI port.

https://www.panic.com/blog/2013/03/the-lightning-digital-...

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 13:23 UTC (Sun) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

I'm not sure whether laptops outsell desktops but it is still the case that hard disks for laptops carry a premium over the larger profile models. I don't keep up with the component choices of laptops these days, but it used to be the case that you needed the Kingston memory wizard, or whatever it was called, to find suitable memory for a laptop (if you were even able to upgrade the memory), whereas you just used standardised memory for a desktop. And so on. Not all "expansion" is plugging in external peripherals.

Of course, one might not care: I haven't upgraded the memory on my computer, but I've seen people do it to get some more useful life out of their computers instead of just buying a new one, which they may not want to do because of it being an unnecessary expense, it being a chore to migrate to another machine, and for many other reasons.

And with regard to the effort needed to make desktop products, because there has been a lot of standardisation, the threshold for new entrants is a lot lower than for mobile devices. That doesn't necessarily hurt well-resourced companies - they can finance the scale needed to make money - but you can see that people wanting to experiment with hardware and get into the game are hurt by the need to do so much more, as well as by the intensified constraints on hardware design that occur for physically smaller, lower power consumption products.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 9:31 UTC (Sun) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

When you mean "standard", I presume you mean "available as an official accessory", or does that multimedia hub use a standard connector to the phone?

It's kind-of-in-the-middle right now. Somewhat similar to early laptops where you often had non-standard connector which you used to connect to dongle with standard LPT/COM/etc ports.

But even if dedicated desktops become extinct, the practice of desktop computing will survive: it's just a way of working, after all.

I'm not so sure. I know of many, many office workers who don't have desktop computers at all. Only laptops. Sure, they are similar to desktop, but as a way of working they are different. Mobile phone which is connected to projector to show presentation or to monitor and keyboard to type large text will be even more different. There will be some users who will use them as today's desktops (after all 1-2% of PC users use them as if they were minicomputers - with X Window system and everything), but this will be small niche, not a mainstream.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 13:03 UTC (Sun) by pboddie (guest, #50784) [Link]

Oh yes, I've worked in environments of all sizes where everyone have been given laptops, and the justification for using laptops instead of desktops is generally that of flexibility: you can be shuffled from project to project or workspace to workspace, you can go to meetings and present stuff from your own computer, there are fewer wires and less equipment sitting around. All of this became possible when laptops were no longer much more expensive and inferior to desktops.

So, there is this continuing trend, but at the same time there has still always been the desire even in such workplaces for people to have docking stations, additional screens (especially when CRTs started to go away in favour of LCDs, which is a factor behind laptops becoming cheaper, too), external keyboards and mice, and so on. A big reason for this is ergonomics: some people still hate their laptop ergonomics, and some actually become ill if they have to work under such conditions.

I agree that it will become more normal to use mobile devices for the stuff where a laptop is just excessive: when you just want to plug in some device to share content with a projector, for example, messing around with a laptop (even more so when it is a Mac, as I'm sure we've all witnessed) is going to seem more and more ridiculous. But as all the possibilities open up, the "tablet GUI" metaphor may not be mainstream, either: we may see all sorts of specialisations emerging, devices may even support many of them (like the Ubuntu/Android mode switching concept), and for many people life will go on as it always has.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 3:54 UTC (Sun) by rqosa (subscriber, #24136) [Link]

> it's only matter of software now - and it's on the way, too

That's my point, though — it's not true that "In 15-20 years you [won't] need desktop distro", you'll just be running it on a different type of hardware.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 18:55 UTC (Sun) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

That's my point, though — it's not true that "In 15-20 years you [won't] need desktop distro", you'll just be running it on a different type of hardware.

I doubt it. You'll run smartphone distro (most likely Android, although there some small possibility that something like Tizen will take it's place) with some desktop addons.

It's really funny: when Linux (the kernel) filled all the niches (except for desktop) there was hope that eventually it'll manage to conquer that, too - and that desktop-distribution-developed technologies (DPK/APT, RPM, etc) will be vital in this process. IOW: full GNU/Linux OS (not just Linux kernel!) will win. Instead Linux managed to conquer all the niches (except for the server) only when it dropped this GNU/Linux desktop baggage! I was kind of confused by that (I mean: what makes server special?) but when Rob Landley pointed out that servers are basically "final resting places" for all obsolete technologoes (mainframes, minicomputers-turned-big-iron-UNIX-servers, then microcomputers-turned-PC-Linux-servers, etc) it finally started to make sense. And if he's right (and he's most likely right) then desktop distributions are dying: sure we'll use something superficially similar to today's desktop but it'll not use most technologies which are used by today's desktop! Intead it'll reuse some pieces of code to create brand-spanking-new implementation which will only superficially similar to what we use today. Similarly to how Windows is only superfically similar to RISC workstations.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 22:02 UTC (Sun) by anselm (subscriber, #2796) [Link]

Instead Linux managed to conquer all the niches (except for the server) only when it dropped this GNU/Linux desktop baggage!

In most cases, the »GNU/Linux desktop baggage« is not being dropped because it stops Linux from being useful but because it is not required on the platform in question and/or it is more expedient to use something else. Android does not come with Emacs, GCC, or GNU Coreutils not because these programs suck in general and must be abolished but because people are unlikely to want to use them on devices that run Android (and it is not that difficult to get them back if one does want them). For devices like routers, it makes a lot more sense to use a web-based GUI rather than something like X11 because these devices have IP connectivity but do not generally include graphical displays – not because nobody would buy a router with a GUI based on X11.

Android could just as well be using APT or RPM under the hood and that would have made precisely no difference as far as its success as a platform is concerned. The Android developers saw fit to do their own thing for whatever reason but people don't pick Android phones on the strength (or lack of such) of the underlying package manager. The same goes for things like X11.

If anything it speaks for the flexibility of Linux that it can adapt to all these different use cases.

then desktop distributions are dying: sure we'll use something superficially similar to today's desktop but it'll not use most technologies which are used by today's desktop!

A Linux distribution like Debian GNU/Linux is not going to go away just because some of the technologies it uses change. When Debian was new, PCs were based on the ISA bus, neither KDE nor GNOME existed, executables were in a.out format and the standard libc was Linux-specific. It is very likely that in 10 or 20 years we will still be running the likes of Debian GNU/Linux on our »desktops«, even if the Debian of the day is based on systemd, Wayland, and all sorts of interesting and useful things that will be developed in the meantime, and running on completely different hardware than a 2013 desktop PC.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 22:54 UTC (Sun) by FranTaylor (guest, #80190) [Link]

> and it is not that difficult to get them back if one does want them

Gotta disagree with you there.

Android has morphed Linux to the point where it's not remotely "POSIX compatible" any more. Please go ahead and try to cross-compile any of those programs on Android, I guarantee you won't even be able to get configure to complete successfully due to the lack of POSIX support. Some of the missing pieces are just not available in any way. For example the pthreads support on Android is barely there, and the missing pieces really can't be emulated.

Of course there are good reasons why these things are missing, they just don't fit into the platform because they don't cooperate with Android's goals of super-low power consumption and process control.

> If anything it speaks for the flexibility of Linux that it can adapt to all these different use cases.

Well not really because again Android is NOT stock linux, it's more like a NASCAR version of Linux, with all of the heavy structural parts removed and a fiberglass shell to make it look similar.

By that argument BSD is way more flexible and adaptable because Apple has shoehorned it into even smaller devices without having to butcher it as much as google did with Linux.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 23:02 UTC (Sun) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

Android could just as well be using APT or RPM under the hood and that would have made precisely no difference as far as its success as a platform is concerned. The Android developers saw fit to do their own thing for whatever reason but people don't pick Android phones on the strength (or lack of such) of the underlying package manager. The same goes for things like X11.

Remember OpenMoko, Maemo? Remember N900? Remember how it failed miserably despite backing of #1 smartphone maker (#1 at the time, that is)? X11 was unnecessary clutter but probably survivable, but RPM/APT turned out to be poison which killed the whole thing. Tizen picked many things from Maemo/Meego but dropped RPM/APT like a plague that it is. Note: there are nothing wrong with RPM/APT - they work as fine replacement for Windows Component Wizard. The only problem: they made it possible to pretend that "rebuild everything for the new version of OS every few months" is a viable strategy - which in turn made Linux DOA everywhere they were used.

When Debian was new, PCs were based on the ISA bus, neither KDE nor GNOME existed, executables were in a.out format and the standard libc was Linux-specific. It is very likely that in 10 or 20 years we will still be running the likes of Debian GNU/Linux on our »desktops«, even if the Debian of the day is based on systemd, Wayland, and all sorts of interesting and useful things that will be developed in the meantime, and running on completely different hardware than a 2013 desktop PC.

If by "we" you mean "the same 1-2% of geeks which always backed Linux" then may be (although I'm not so sure). Most users will use Linux, but completely different flavor of it (and you may be forced to run your beloved Debian in a a jail depending on how exactly the story of DRM and bootloaders will unfold).

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 13:47 UTC (Mon) by nix (subscriber, #2304) [Link]

RPM/APT turned out to be poison which killed the whole thing
This is, at best, extreme historical revisionism or selective memory. What killed the whole thing was endless Gtk/Qt switching, requiring everyone to rewrite their apps time and again, thus effectively discouraging anyone from writing any. This has nothing to do with RPM/Apt (dpkg). The hiring of an MS executive who, surprise!, went with Windows Phone had even more to do with it -- and look how well that's turning out for them! This is not 'the curse of RPM', it's 'the curse of ex-MS execs still fighting for the old school tie'.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 15:33 UTC (Mon) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

This is, at best, extreme historical revisionism or selective memory.

Not really. Take a look on this list: maemo 4.0.x is not API compatible with earlier releases, maemo 4.0.x is not API compatible with earlier releases. That's version 4 and 5 - supposedly well-developed, mature, releases.

What killed the whole thing was endless Gtk/Qt switching, requiring everyone to rewrite their apps time and again, thus effectively discouraging anyone from writing any.

This was just a final nail in the coffin. Compatibility problems plague all Linux distributions which are built on top of "normal" CADT libraries - and these libraries can only be used because RPM/APT keep everything together. Worse, RPM/APT masters force "no old, obsolete libraries" (thus "no compatibility with old system") model.

This has nothing to do with RPM/Apt (dpkg).

Not with RPM/APT per se, no. But the attitude of RPM/APT users (distribution packers) when they are confronted with the need to keep bazillion old libraries and kludges needed to keep backward compatibility? Absolutely no for bundled libraries! Old, obsolete versions are not acceptable! Kill them! Kill them with fire! Conicidently this attitude also kills all the chances for the third-party developers support and thus mainstream acceptance.

P.S. I'm not saying Android, iOS, Windows Phone and others are paradise in this regard. They also have compatibility problems, and when compatibility is broken it's "big deal"™. With "traditional" Unix distributions it's something normal and expected - and Linux desktop not only just inherited this poison, it made more more potent.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 15:55 UTC (Mon) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

the APi incompatibility wasn't apt/rpm it was gtk/qt

so your complaint is confirming the parent post you are trying to refute.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 18:34 UTC (Mon) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

the APi incompatibility wasn't apt/rpm it was gtk/qt

The whole discussion looks bizzare. I'll reproduce it in nutshell:
  me: This jar of cyanide posoned the whole dish.
  nix: The jar is not to blame! It's just glass, nothing more! Perfectly safe.
  me: It has cyanide inside. Potent poison. Don't use it.
  dlang: But the jar is not to blame! It's not poisonous! See! You are totally wrong!
  me: This jar is designed to carry cyanide. It can only carry cyanide. Cyanide is poison. Don't use it.
  Repeat unto infinity.

The whole point of RPM/DPKG is fine-grained dependency tracking - it's the only thing which distinuishes them from .tar files and/or .zip files. And if you have stable ABI you don't need such kind of tracking. A single number (a-la Android's API version) or some runtime checks (a-la MacOS, Windows, or even ChromeOS/Firefox) are enough. You only need RPM/DPKG in your system if your system does not have stable ABI (Ok, you can use RPM/DPKG to manage only components of your system and it'll work fine for that, too, but frankly, it's an overkill and will look like use of haul truck for small parcels delivery).

And yes, Maemo was killed by dbus/gtk/etc incompatibility (even before they tried crazy Gtk+-to-Qt switch), but this incompatibility was direct result of use of RPM/DPKG-based system which exposes underlaying plumbing to the application developer and makes things which are simple, useful and expected in the Joe Average world basically impossible (I mean: Evernote supports Android 1.6 yet still uses widgets from Android 4.x if they are available on the device — can I do that with RPM/DPKG-based system?).

so your complaint is confirming the parent post you are trying to refute.

Not really. As I've said initially: Note: there are nothing wrong with RPM/APT themselves - they work as fine replacement for Windows Component Wizard. RPM/DPKG are poisonous not because they don't work (they do… most of the time). They are poisonous because OS which is based on them can not support third-party applications properly (this simple fact is finally, finally, after decades of denial is accepted by sane developers). After all the most important property of Android is this one: There is exactly one Android API for each API level, and it’s the same API no matter what kind of device it’s installed on. No parts of the API are optional, and you never have to worry about parts of the API missing on some devices. Every compatible Android device your app will land on will include every class and every API for that API level. And if you don't use RPM/DPKG to manage applications on your system then pretty soon natural question arises: why use them at all? If you build your OS as a single image and deploy it as a single image then DPKG/RPM are not all that attractive, after all…

P.S. I think this whole thing shows that bug #1 was closed with wrong resolution. It's closed as "Fixed", but it really should have been closed as "WontFix". For one simple reason: it boldly proclaims What should happen: A majority of the PCs for sale should include only free software. That didn't happen and will never happen. That only part didn't happen, that is. Most PCs, smartphones, fridges, cars and other devices are sold with bits and pieces of proprietary software — and will ship with such bits and pieces for the foreseeable future. But when you accept proprietary software as a legitimate citizen — suddenly the whole house of cards kept together with RPM/DPKG falls apart. It's no longer feasible to base your OS on these tools: they are either useless (if you have stable base ABI) or insufficiaent (if you don't). You need a demarcation line between your [presumably free and open] OS and [presumably closed and proprietary] addons and application.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 14:36 UTC (Tue) by lsl (subscriber, #86508) [Link]

> And if you have stable ABI you don't need such kind of tracking.

Of course you do. Even if every library in existence had a stable ABI you'd still need a way to express your dependencies. You can drop the version indication, though. When I install some program I expect that my system makes sure the libraries or language interpreters that program needs are also installed. I don't want to hunt them down manually. The system in question can be APT/YUM or something like the BSD's ports system but it needs to be there.

You only get around that requirement by bundling everything together with the program. Oh well, you could also tell developers: "These are the languages and libraries you're supposed to use. Deal with it.", like Apple and MS do for their mobile platforms. But you don't expect this to work in a volunteer environment, do you?

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 17:53 UTC (Tue) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

Of course you do. Even if every library in existence had a stable ABI you'd still need a way to express your dependencies. You can drop the version indication, though. When I install some program I expect that my system makes sure the libraries or language interpreters that program needs are also installed. I don't want to hunt them down manually. The system in question can be APT/YUM or something like the BSD's ports system but it needs to be there.

Why? All successful OSes live without such systems: Android, ChromeOS, iOS, MacOS, Windows. When I install program I just need to know which OS versions are supported - that's all. Sure, some applications ported from "crazy Linux world" do require this a ability (and it's sometimes provided as a third-party addon), but native applications (and there are many more of these) don't need it.

Somehow it feels hollow when you claim "such and such ability is absolutely vital, you can not live without it" when 98% of users live happily without it.

Oh well, you could also tell developers: "These are the languages and libraries you're supposed to use. Deal with it.", like Apple and MS do for their mobile platforms. But you don't expect this to work in a volunteer environment, do you?

This is strange. Linux kernel, GCC, Emacs and many other projects are volunteer environments and are developed in "These are the languages and libraries you're supposed to use. Deal with it." fashion - and they are doing just fine, quite popular (significanly more popular then Debian) and thrive. But somehow it can not work for the whole OS? I don't buy this. But even if that's true then it still does not answer why RedHat and Ubuntu (which are not "volunteer environment"s) can't do that. But heyu, they are planning to do that. We'll see if it'll work or not. It's sad that this basic problem is only addressed in 2013 and not in 1993, but hey, better later than never.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 18:35 UTC (Tue) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> ll successful OSes live without such systems: Android, ChromeOS, iOS, MacOS, Windows.

you've obviously never heard of DLL hell where different programs on windows require incompatible versions of DLLs

If you think there are no version numbers for libraries on those operating systems you just don't know what you are talking about

As for dependencies, they don't have automatic dependency resolution, instead the user has to do this manually when they run across some program that depends on something that's not installed by default. You may not have run across such a situation, but I sure have.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 5, 2013 5:50 UTC (Wed) by Cyberax (✭ supporter ✭, #52523) [Link]

DLL hell is actually a feature of half-assed attempt at fine-grained dependency control. It's been solved by forcing each app to use its own private namespace for libraries.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 18:41 UTC (Tue) by anselm (subscriber, #2796) [Link]

All successful OSes live without such systems: Android, ChromeOS, iOS, MacOS, Windows. When I install program I just need to know which OS versions are supported - that's all.

This is fine if you have one single »OS version number« to point to. Good luck getting all the Linux distributions to standardise. The systems you listed are at an advantage there because they get to control the complete platform.

And do note that on Windows many third-party applications (used to?) come with their own versions of important system libraries that they then put into the official library directory, possibly overwriting different custom versions of the same important system libraries that other applications put there earlier. Windows may be »successful« (i.e., popular) but certainly not due to its sophisticated and foolproof ways of handling libraries. OTOH, this is something that most of the mainstream Linux distributions get mostly right from an infrastructure POV (as I described for Debian).

But heyu, they are planning to do that. We'll see if it'll work or not.

Note that that proposal talks about third-party software for Ubuntu only. In that case the Ubuntu folks are in the fortunate position of being able to pretend they're Microsoft or Apple, but it doesn't buy us a lot for Linux packaging in general. (And of course the Ubuntu guys are notorious for doing their own thing.)

Also note that they don't propose to do away with the traditional way of packaging stuff, which will still be used for the »base system«, so it's not as if this was an attempt to make simple-minded packaging »work for the whole OS«.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 5, 2013 7:28 UTC (Wed) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

This is fine if you have one single »OS version number« to point to. Good luck getting all the Linux distributions to standardise.

Why would you need that? Create a way to support your distribution, ignore all others, when few distributions are supported in such matter - they can synchronize if it'll make sense.

The systems you listed are at an advantage there because they get to control the complete platform.

And Fedora or Ubuntu don't have such control? Come on: Ubuntu have enough control to create completely alien interface not supported by any other project yet it can't create a working SDK?

And do note that on Windows many third-party applications (used to?) come with their own versions of important system libraries that they then put into the official library directory, possibly overwriting different custom versions of the same important system libraries that other applications put there earlier.

Just curious: when was the last time you've actually used Windows? Yes, once upon time this plactice (and Dll hell which it produced) was common. Today... most applications either don't do that at all or use official Microsoft's packages designed to support such use which work really well.

Windows may be »successful« (i.e., popular) but certainly not due to its sophisticated and foolproof ways of handling libraries.

Sophisticated? No. Foolproof? Yes. It's 100 times more robust then handling libraries under Linux. I mean from Joe Average POV who don't really distinguish between "package is referenced, but not available" and "I've installed Foo and now Bar does not work" failure modes.

OTOH, this is something that most of the mainstream Linux distributions get mostly right from an infrastructure POV (as I described for Debian).

Really? Take any third-party package and check how many of them support both lenny and wheezy. Compare with Windows where support for both XP and Windows 7 is still the norm (note that Windows XP is three times older then lenny).

Also note that they don't propose to do away with the traditional way of packaging stuff, which will still be used for the »base system«, so it's not as if this was an attempt to make simple-minded packaging »work for the whole OS«.

One step a time. Once you relegate most of the packages to "third-party" addons and stabilize your base OS you don't need RPM/DPKG anymore. But you can still use it to manage your OS - why not? It's your OS, you can use whatever you can as long as you are not trying to pretend that third-party developers need to deal with this stuff.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 19:55 UTC (Tue) by renox (subscriber, #23785) [Link]

Bah, it's mostly your arguments which are bizarre..
Using a 'fine grain' dependency mechanism doesn't imply that you can't work on keeping API/ABI stables.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 3, 2013 19:12 UTC (Mon) by anselm (subscriber, #2796) [Link]

But the attitude of RPM/APT users (distribution packers) when they are confronted with the need to keep bazillion old libraries and kludges needed to keep backward compatibility? […] Old, obsolete versions are not acceptable! Kill them! Kill them with fire!

I don't buy this.

Debian GNU/Linux has no problem whatsoever keeping several versions of the same shared library installed. In fact, Debian policy explicitly requires this to work (see chapter 8 of the Debian policy manual, which contains extensive information on what to do when preparing a compliant library package).

It makes sense for a distribution to provide packages built against up-to-date libraries, so you shouldn't look to the distribution makers to keep all older versions (which no package in the distribution still needs) on the off-chance that some other, third-party, package might possibly require them. On the other hand, it is not a big thing for the maintainer of a third-party package to make an older library dependency available, too – especially if the packaging has been done already (courtesy of the Debian project) and all that is necessary is possibly adding security patches and rebuilding the package. This version of the library can then remain installed alongside the one provided by the distribution for as long as it is needed.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 0:36 UTC (Tue) by hummassa (subscriber, #307) [Link]

I stopped reading when it became clear that khim has no idea whatsoever of what he's talking about. He is confounding APIs with ABIs amongst other things. Funny thing is that I have Qt3, Qt4 and Qt5 applications installed alongside each other, and they look similar.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 10:04 UTC (Tue) by nye (guest, #51576) [Link]

Go back to posting comments on Youtube.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 10:54 UTC (Tue) by hummassa (subscriber, #307) [Link]

> Go back to posting comments on Youtube.

I really thought, at first, nye posted its response to the wrong comment. Funny thing is I never ever commented on Youtube. :-D

Looking for another participation of "nye" in my last twenty or so replies shows that s/he does not exist. Hmm.

Oh, my.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 16:55 UTC (Tue) by nye (guest, #51576) [Link]

My point is that your comment was offensive, obnoxious, and wrong, plus there is no point in anyone arguing with you since there's no chance you'll ever change your mind. This is the stereotype of a Youtube comment, and it's a textbook example of why I don't consider LWN worth paying for (ie. the comments significantly detract from the value of the site).

The really annoying this is, when I see people behave in the way they commonly do on LWN, I get emotional and end up just adding to the problem by responding in kind (it seems that rapid escalation is unavoidable in non face-to-face disagreements, for some reason), which makes me feel just as bad about myself as about whoever I'm angry with.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 17:10 UTC (Tue) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

> I don't consider LWN worth paying for

I'm sorry you feel that way, may you wish to consider a few points?

- You are paying for the editorial content, the comments are free
- You are under no obligation to read the comments if they provide negative value to you
- If you do wish to read comments, subscribers can filter out users tend to not add value
- Subscriptions are reasonably inexpensive given the quality of the original content (in my opinion)

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 17:20 UTC (Tue) by jake (editor, #205) [Link]

> the comments significantly detract from the value of the site

sorry you feel that way, but, beyond what raven667 had to say, there's an additional thing to consider: you can turn off comments entirely in the customization under 'My Account'. Do that and you'll never see them again.

jake

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 18:36 UTC (Tue) by hummassa (subscriber, #307) [Link]

> your comment was offensive, obnoxious, and wrong

Ok. First of all, your "go back to youtube" was as offensive, obnoxious and wrong to me as my "khim does not know what he's talking about" was to you. Maybe more, as it is factually wrong (I never youtube-commented, neither on youtube nor here), really offensive (it translated as "you are puerile and your motivations are evil and/or stupid", something that does not correspond to the way I behave myself online but ESPECIALLY on LWN) and extremely obnoxious (as you wouldn't indignfy yourself telling me what was that I wrote that offended/bothered you and why am I factually wrong).

Moreso, khim *is* factually wrong in lots of thing he says in this thread, for instance: it's his point of view that package management tools (in his parlance "RPM/APT") somehow magically cause people to want to introduce ABI incompatibilities and that Windows DLL hell is a good solution.

He is especially wrong when he rants:

>> Not with RPM/APT per se, no. But the attitude of RPM/APT users (distribution packers) when they are confronted with the need to keep bazillion old libraries and kludges needed to keep backward compatibility? Absolutely no for bundled libraries! Old, obsolete versions are not acceptable! Kill them! Kill them with fire! Conicidently this attitude also kills all the chances for the third-party developers support and thus mainstream acceptance.

Because there is nothing in any distribution I ever used that precludes the usage of older versions of APIs, especially alongside new ones. That is why, in my comment, I said (informatively IMHO) that I use Qt[345] applications as seamlessly as possible.

> there is no point in anyone arguing with you since there's no chance you'll ever change your mind

There are actually lots of documented occasions, especially here on LWN, where I was wrong and I conceded that I was wrong, and where I changed my mind after someone took its time to argue their views with me. So, I am pretty sure there would be a point in it, if you were so inclined.

One example would be: https://lwn.net/Articles/529887/ -- where I ended with "so I stand corrected!".

On that note, I stand corrected of my "nye does not exist" comment, because, in the process of looking better for examples on LWN, I found you -- and some very amiable interchanges between you and me here on LWN. Which, obviously, add to my confusion relative to your irritation with me.

> This is the stereotype of a Youtube comment, and it's a textbook example of why I don't consider LWN worth paying for (ie. the comments significantly detract from the value of the site)

This phrase gives me the impression that you are reading different comments that I am reading, or at least that you are reading them differently. Yes, it is annoying when some LWN users go commenting on an "opposite side" article (e.g., {Gtk,Gnome,Apache OpenOffice,Emacs,Btrfs}-people ranting on unrelated-to-them {Qt,KDE,LibreOffice,Vim,Zfs}-related news "wow, mine is better!"). But these are a minority, and easily avoidable IMHO.

In any case, I reviewd my thirty or so last comments, and I think I behave reasonably well (*), so, my conscience is clean.

(*) I think jake (or would it be corbet?) gave me a hard time for a comment some days ago, but I can't seem to find it, and I distinctly remember apologizing for it.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 4, 2013 0:20 UTC (Tue) by rqosa (subscriber, #24136) [Link]

> You'll run smartphone distro […] with some desktop addons.

If it walks like a desktop and quacks like a desktop, then it's a desktop as far as I'm concerned. In fact, I'm looking forward to Android for the desktop — that should mean more ARM-based "nettop" machines on the market, plus the ability to run regular Unix software in a chroot and/or by dual-booting into a non-Android kernel (e.g. with kexec).

> Similarly to how Windows is only superfically similar to RISC workstations.

Today's Windows is much closer to Unix than it is to Windows 3.x / MS-DOS 6.x, I'd say — and the same applies even more to Mac OS X vs System 6 / 7.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 13:24 UTC (Sun) by Lennie (guest, #49641) [Link]

Actually current "cloud computing" solutions are looking more and more like some distributed mainframes.

Have you seen what the open compute project and Intel came up with around silicon photonics ?:

http://www.datacenterknowledge.com/archives/2013/01/22/si...

And how some of the Open Stack solutions, like Nebula One, are being marketed ?

Just remove failed hardware and add new hardware as needed everything else is handled automatically and dynamically.

Certain tasks are now moving from the PC to mobile and the cloud.

People are already developing applications running GPU-intense tasks 'in the cloud' and streaming the output to a client device.

However I do think when mobile devices are capable enough they will eventually be the new PC and certain tasks will be moved from 'the cloud' to mobile client devices.

It probably is just a matter of time.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 11:26 UTC (Fri) by paulj (subscriber, #341) [Link]

The systems behind the scenes may have changed, but the interfaces havn't. They're still a big screen, keyboard and pointer. Ok, the pointer is a newer addition, but still fairly old now.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 11:27 UTC (Fri) by paulj (subscriber, #341) [Link]

The physical interfaces, that is.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 0:46 UTC (Fri) by rqosa (subscriber, #24136) [Link]

> In 15-20 years you'll need desktop distro as much as you need OS for you RISC workstation today.

The reason that you don't need a "workstation" today is because today's x86 PCs can do everything that the workstations of 20 years ago could, and more. The same applies to the OSes that they run — Windows NT and its descendants have all the capabilities (pre-emption, MMU support, swap space, user permissions, etc.) that workstation OSes had back then that older PC OSes didn't have.

Whereas today, the ARM-based devices are eating away at the x86 PC market from underneath, same as IBM PC clones did to the workstation market back then — but they'll have to first reach the point where they can do everything that PCs can do before they can dethrone the PC. And part of that "everything that PCs can do" that they'll also need to do is to run a desktop UI (i.e. one that requires a large monitor, a keyboard, and a mouse or similar pointing device) — because touchscreen-only UIs just aren't suitable for many tasks, and never will be.

In other words: 20 years from now you'll still be running a desktop UI, but you'll be running it on hardware that's a lot like a Trim-Slice (but more powerful).

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 9:26 UTC (Fri) by robert_s (subscriber, #42402) [Link]

I'm going to bookmark this comment so I can point and laugh at it in 5-10 years as an example of "remember when the next big thing was tablets and mobile?".

Have you ever tried _producing_ anything on a tablet or mobile (other than the occasional email)?

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 9:32 UTC (Fri) by robert_s (subscriber, #42402) [Link]

(Apologies - this came out ruder than I meant it to)

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 10:51 UTC (Fri) by wagerrard (guest, #87558) [Link]

Who knows what it portends?

The Bug #1 bit was grandstanding in the first place. Crusading against Microsoft and turning out innovative and popular software are two different things. Better to focus on the latter and let the chips fall where they may.

Since no one else has ever made money marketing desktop Linux, I've never really believed Canonical can manage it. The number of people who are motivated by ideology to use Linux is too small. To attract business from everyone else -- meaning everyone who is a Windows user -- Canonical needs to offer a platform that consumers instantly see as obviously better than Windows. Ubuntu is pretty good, but put a Windows machine and an Ubuntu machine next to each other in a big box store and I'm not at all sure customers would look at Ubuntu and go "Wow!".

If Canonical can turn a profit from phones and tablets, it could position desktop Ubuntu in a way that's analogous to Red Hat and Fedora. Or, they might just turn it loose. The more they change the phone/tablet code base, the more welcome the latter course might be.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted May 31, 2013 23:11 UTC (Fri) by ewan (subscriber, #5533) [Link]

"If Canonical can turn a profit from phones and tablets, it could position desktop Ubuntu in a way that's analogous to Red Hat and Fedora."

Or OS X, which is now pretty much perceived as the desktop from those nice iPhone people.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 13:11 UTC (Sun) by Lennie (guest, #49641) [Link]

I doubt Apple will ever focus on the mass-market.

And only over 1 billion smartphones have been sold so far, there is still the other 5 billion phones that need to be replaced. Those will only get replaced when they reach a price point that people can afford.

For the short term that means a price like US $50. That is just the hardware, a data plan is needed for smartphones.

Hardly any smartphones are being sold at that price right now, people that can't afford any more than that $50 probably don't want to pay for the data plan either.

But I'm pretty sure things will change eventually, prices will keep going down though.

Ubuntu bug #1 closed

Posted Jun 2, 2013 22:17 UTC (Sun) by anselm (subscriber, #2796) [Link]

Apple doesn't need to focus on the mass market any more than Mercedes-Benz or BMW need to focus on the mass market.

Apple's devices are premium »lifestyle« products for people who are happy to pay extra not just for the sleek tech but also to be seen with the latest Apple device. So far there does not appear to be a shortage of such people even if Apple is not the dominant player by market share.


Copyright © 2017, Eklektix, Inc.
Comments and public postings are copyrighted by their creators.
Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds