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Ubuntu 7.10 Pragmatic Visual and Behavioral Critique (I & II)

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Ubuntu

The purpose of this article is not to emphasize the strengths and merits of Ubuntu user experience, but instead to shed a brighter light on areas that have been neglected due to shortage of time and resources, usability testing, and various software and artwork defects. I hope those who are sometimes overprotective of open-source software will take my recommendations with a pinch of salt and see this article for what it really tries to be: a vocal user experience report and constructive criticism. It’s correct that many of the issues pointed out in this article could be filed as simple software bugs, since this is open source software after all. The truth however is that Ubuntu Gutsy 7.10 was released as a final product and the developers clearly saw it fit for final release into the real world.

From here on I’ll try to be direct and to the point as I’m definitely not getting paid enough to write this.

Desktop and Panels

The default GNOME desktop consists of two panels. This seems like an attempt to capture the best of Windows and OSX yet it somehow seems to fall short of achieving this goal. The Apple desktop makes clever use of the two panel approach, in the GNOME desktop however, the middle section of the panel is completely wasted space.

Part 1


Part 1 of this article came about as a result of my frustrations on sparse publicity on areas of the Ubuntu Desktop that still need further polish. I received great feedback and comments to the previous article which only reinforced my belief that some users do indeed notice much of the frustrations that I voiced, but usually learn to adapt to the non-showstopper inconveniences while hoping their frustrations are resolved through the evolution pathway of the software in the future.

Why worry about the details?

I also received comments from those users experiencing more serious issues with Desktop Linux than occasional graphical glitches and artifacts, and usability annoyances. People complain about driver issues, and complete absence of hardware functionality, and these are undeniably serious problems. I’m not belittling these issues with this article nor do I see it as losing sight of priorities.

Part 2




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Today in Techrights

today's leftovers

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  • End of an open source era: Linux pioneer Munich confirms switch to Windows 10 [Ed: Microsoft paid (bribed) all the right people, got a Microsoft fan -- by his own admission -- in power, gifted him for this]
    Mayor Dieter Reiter said there's never been a unified Linux landscape in the city. "We always had mixed systems and what we have here is the possibility of going over to a single system. Having two operating systems is completely uneconomic.
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    This week we refactor a home network, discuss how gaming on Linux has evolved and grown in recent years, bring you a blend of love and go over your feedback.
  • Live ISOs for Slackware-current 20171122
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  • Am I willing to pay the price to support ethical hardware?
    The planned obsolescence is even worse with tablets and smartphones, whose components are all soldered down. The last tablet with a removable battery was the Dell Venue 11 Pro (Haswell version) announced in October 2013, but it was an expensive Windows device that cost as much as a mid-range laptop. The last Android tablet with a removable battery was the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (GT-N8000 series), released in August 2012. It is still possible to find mid-range smartphones with removable batteries. Last year the only high end phones with removable batteries were the LG G5 and V20, but even LG has given up on the idea of making phones that will last longer than 2 years once the battery starts to degrade after roughly 500 full charge and discharge cycles. Every flagship phone introduced in 2017 now has its battery sealed in the case. According to the gmsarena.com database, the number of new smartphone models with non-replaceable batteries grew from 1.9% in 2011 to 26.7% in 2014, and now to 90.3% in 2017. It is highly likely that not a single model of smartphone introduced next year will have a replaceable battery.

More Coverage of New Lumina Release

  • Lumina 1.4 Desktop Environment Released
    The TrueOS BSD folks working on their Qt5-powered Lumina Desktop Environment have issued a new feature update of their open-source desktop.
  • Lumina Desktop 1.4.0 Released
    Lumina 1.4.0 carries a number of changes, optimisations, and feature improvements. Lumina is the default desktop of TrueOS, a BSD-based operating system. The desktop itself is lightweight, modular, built using Qt, and uses Fluxbox for window management. Although Lumina is mostly aimed at BSD users it also runs on Linux, including Fedora, Arch and — *mario coin sfx* — Ubuntu.