Everyday Linux Gripes

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Linux

As you already know, if I have to sit down in front of a computer, I want it to be running the Gnome desktop on Linux. I've watched it mature from a downright ugly, needlessly complex playground for geeks, to an attractive, simple interface that holds its own against commercial alternatives. And yet, every day I still encounter rough edges that make me think there aren't nearly enough folks out there hacking away at this stuff. I'd like to watch.

Take, for instance, the fact that I still have troubles playing any sort of rich media (usually video) in my Web browser. It doesn't matter whether I use Mozilla Firefox or one of the two native Gnome browsers, Epiphany and Galeon (see FIGURE 1), both of which use Firefox's rendering engine. Much of the time, if a Web page wants to serve me a video, I'm out of luck.

There are several reasons why.

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