Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Linux Mint 11 Katya is the latest Mint release - and the bravest one. Mint is technically based on Ubuntu, and as such subject to the whims and changes and perils of its parent, but there's been more and more of a rift lately. Using Unity as the default desktop would probably have been pointless. And Gnome 3 is nowhere near as usable as it ought to be. Wisely, the Mint developers chose stability and consistency over hype and stayed with Gnome 2 as the desktop environment. Indeed, not doing Gnome 3 or Unity was a very brave decision.
Now, let's ignore pure aesthetics for a moment, as there's more to an operating system than just good looks. Linux Mint Julia was a phenomenal release, the best of 2010. Then, there was Mint Debian, also a stellar edition. Katya needs to be at least as good as either of these, otherwise it's a fluke. And so with drama lurking mightily, I present the Linux Mint 11 review.