Tuesday, February 28, 2012 8:20:44 PM
Starting from Kubuntu 4.7.4 I ventured into composing my latest Desktop Environment under Linux. Enough has been written about the Ubuntu 'Unity' experiment and inflexible Gnome 3 (with or without 'shell') to only repeat that both are fairly useless for my office. Initially testing and using both desktops my productivity spiraled down. Both interfaces marginally fitted in my journalistic and photo/video-graphic 'workflow'. It took more hours to finish a job than I allowed for it, oversimplified Gnome 3 doing better than the grotesque Unity interface. Reason to urgently consider adopting a more suitable "DE" (desktop environment). My curiosity had been aroused already by the message that Canonical (from Ubuntu/Unity) would drop Kubuntu support, precisely at the moment that KDE launched its nice Plasma Active II interface for smart-phones and tablets, i.e. the market that Canonical has in mind with its Unity. My conclusion: the KDE 4.8 Software Composition with its nice Plasma desktop could be a (far too) heavy competitor for Ubuntu with Unity, maybe even Gnome 3 during 2012. Kubuntu will continue as a community development without support from Canonical. Anyway it would take until 2016 to see this Linux composition (distro) being phased out. Me and my computer might be too... Depending development of Linux Mint KDE I could always fall-back on that pretty similar OS and DE for updates. That insight was the decisive factor to adopt KDE. Important to realize is, that Kubuntu (KDE 4.8 SC) is totally flexible, like Lego blocks. You need not but you can build your own, unique Linux OS with KDE desktop. Opposite to the Gnome 3 and Unity trends, that hardly allow design modifications. So simple as they are, so complex KDE can be or not, which is your individual choice. There are more Linux distros using KDE. The Ubuntu/Mint series allow simple straightforward installation and offer a wealth of software for KDE, easy to install. However I consider KDE 4.8 SC a DE for more powerful PC's and newer laptops, whereas KDE 4 Netbooks and Plasma Active II fills in the gap towards smart-phones.
Here is what you might expect from KDE 4.8:
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 7:10:12 PM
Peculiar things are happening regarding Gnome 3 and Ubuntu Unity (and Oneiric 11.10). Now and then I check on developments and believe to see significant changes. Nevertheless I stick to my viewpoint from earlier posts on this subject: is all of this necessary? For me no shadow of doubt, that Unity (as an alternative for Gnome 3) was launched far too prematurily. I downloaded Ubuntu 11.10 'Oneiric' Alpha-3 a few days ago to see where things were going. Details have changed indeed, in a way that reminds me of a slight back-tracking towards the 'good old' desktop formats. Are we coming full circle in due course, but with some 'innovations' (differences in 'look and feel')? Do we see the start of a merger of Gnome-3 into Unity or vice versa? The 'best' of both worlds? I am that old already (65) to have seen too many failed attempts to change the desktop look and feel of computers. To unite different technologies onto one platform for example. Remember the TV-set as a 'communications-centre' in your living room. Now it's trendy to bring computer 'productivity tool'-characteristics into small, rudimentary equipped electronic gadgets. To take pictures, do computing, email, make phone-calls and view the Internet. Notwithstanding the hype it's bound to fail. To unite the user interface for these limited devices with the one for full-blown, dedicated operating systems on heavy production desktop computers will fail. We are mixing and messing up different variables (i.e. user-requirements) here. Of course useful insights and new. acceptable principles can be used or exchanged, but see how Ubuntu (Canonical Ltd) struggles to make the best out of a development that I would rather call 'un faux pas'. Not to speak about Gnome-3 that went so eccentric that it not even complied to its own 'laws' and descriptions. An 'unholy mess' was created that way. Both potentially catastrophic developments now appear to turn for the better: back towards the good old, flexible desktop, but with some novelties. Let's find out where we stand today...
Saturday, June 11, 2011 6:15:17 PM
released their brand-new "CrossOver Impersonator"
as a follow-up of its bottled CrossOver versions and WINE. It isn't an emulator
, but an 'impersonator', allowing you to run Windows' software on a Mac or Linux OS. Not that this new version has no 'bottles' to sandbox and separate programs from the base-OS, but their functionality has been improved
and automated. In other words: "C.I." runs far better than earlier versions and is easier to use. Put a program-CD in a drive and it recognizes it, ready to install without further hassle. In a next post I'll come back on this issue and the use of WINE, CrossOver and the Impersonator. I have tested some important tools for photographers that so far were a 'no-no' for Linux users. No more. But first take a look at this new CrossOver Impersonator...
Monday, May 2, 2011 6:46:17 PM
This isn't gonna be a soap-Opera
Too much is written already about the new User-Interface in its newest release 11.04. "Unity" needs a try, but ever more voices
get loud that this isn't the right way
to the future of personal computing. Having worked with Ubuntu 11.04 this long weekend my personal conclusion is rather a question: 'Do you need it?'
Before you throw Ubuntu off your hard drive or trash its Live-CD, angry about this pseudo-innovation or not, think twice. Next to computers (whatever their commercial nickname: Laptop, Office computer etc.) we are faced with small mobile hand-held devices, touch-screens and touch-slabs. If you don't belong to that
category of users I fail to understand the need and advantages of the new Unity U.I. If you are a long-time Linux user: likewise. Huh?
Even those innovators who always must buy the 'latest' technology, like a touch-screen? Yes. Then you can easily 'reconstruct' Unity from the standard Gnome basis, prematurely already called: 'Classic' and use the available touch-screen drivers for it. Unity appears largely links and Compiz based. With the available standard software, perhaps with a few key-presses more than with Unity, you can have the same 'effects' and layouts, even more if you carefully figure out what is available for Compìz 0.8 right now. When you do that you might come to a surprising conclusion...
Thursday, March 10, 2011 2:52:57 PM
You watch it often close up
, yet most of the time it sits right in front of you "as is". This isn't going to be a technical debate about advantages of HDTV, LCD-, TFT-, LED- or CRT-screens, but my view on an intriguing aspect of computer screens. Before me stands the LG Flatron W1943SS
flat screen, an 'oldie' already 1 year on the market.
It has a screen diagonal of 18.5 inch and optimum resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels or wide 1 : 1.77 (not 16:9 or 4:3). It can do 1920 x 1080 pixels (full HD) as well. It has a response time of 5 ms, good for fast games - no HDMI input
, so no Content Protection. I see you smile. Its price tag about $100. But about all of this I won't write. Then what is shown on such a screen and who sits behind it?