Re: Clarius

On Wed, 2006-08-30 at 18:51 +0800, James Henstridge wrote:
> On 30/08/06, Thomas Wood <thos gnome org> wrote:
> > > Scenario 2) I go to use another machine that's mounting
> > > the same NFS home directory, or is otherwise getting the
> > > same GConf values.  This machine is running Gnome 2.14,
> > > which doesn't include Clarius.
> >
> > The same thing would happen if you went to a machine running a Gnome
> > version prior to that which Clearlooks was available in. Or if you
> > selected a theme that you have installed locally, or any other
> > combination of possibilities. I think it is slightly unreasonable to
> > assume we can never add new themes.
> Just because we've done things that make using multiple Gnome versions
> difficult in the past doesn't mean we should repeat them now.

I fully recognized that sometimes we just have to bite the bullet
and deal with the compatibility issues.  To a certain extent, most
changes introduce some level of compatibility problem, even if it's
only an issue of user learning.

The point is to minimize the more aggravating churn.  The default
theme just needed to be changed, and it took three whole release
cycles for my whining to make the change happen.  That created a
compatibility rift between 2.10 and 2.12.  It had to be done, so
we swallow it.

If we do it again for 2.16, it creates another rift, leaving us
with three classes: [2.10 --] [2.12 2.14] [2.16 ++].  Coupled
with incompatible changes in other desktop-wide modules, we get
a combinatorial explosion of problem-causing versions for large

It's not a never-or-always question.  It's a minimization thing.

> > > Interim 2) I utter some choice words and post a flame to
> > > Slashdot and/or OSNews.  I go to the theme manager and
> > > change my theme back to Clearlooks.
> > >
> > > Scenario 3) I go back to do some work on the machine that's
> > > running Gnome 2.16.  See scenario 1.
> >
> > It's running Clearlooks, but with a slightly "updated" appearance.
> >
> > >
> > > Friends don't let friends churn keys.
> >
> > I know several people have already pointed out the relevant points about
> > the change, but I just want to reassure you I did consider these
> > scenarios before I made the changes.
> >
> > There were several reasons for the change. Firstly, I wanted to make
> > sure we didn't go through "appearance churn". The new cairo based
> > clearlooks engine provides several changes to the UI. I wanted to make
> > the 2.16 appearance more consistent with the 2.14 appearance. I also had
> > several people mention to me that they did not want Gnome to go down the
> > "glossy appearance" route. It was therefore critical that the glossy
> > scrollbars were toned down before the release. Unfortunately I was under
> > the impression that I made this change before the UI freeze, which I now
> > realise was incorrect. Secondly, the change did not affect any
> > translatable strings, so I assumed it did not affect the string freeze.
> >
> > The reason I felt it necessary to make our own gtk+ theme (in
> > gnome-themes, rather than relying on the one provided by gtk-engines),
> > is that we probably will want to make more conservative changes in the
> > future than the author of Clearlooks wants to make.

Sorry, I didn't realize earlier that gtk-engines installs gtkrc
files as well as the engines.  That does mitigate the migration

I think a big part of putting the theme into the Gnome release is
making the theme suitable for Gnome.  If Richard wants a theme he
can do anything with, then he should have a separate theme.  Heck,
I'm fine with it being in gnome-themes.

I'm sure we offered to put Clearlooks into Gnome under a different
name, leaving the Clearlooks hackers free to do whatever they want
with the theme named Clearlooks.  We did this, for instance, when
we incorporated Glider (n�SmoothGNOME) into gnome-themes.

> > Having spoken to Richard about this problem (unfortunately he has been
> > very busy and we didn't get a chance to discuss it before), he seems
> > willing to keep the Clearlooks gtkrc as conservative as Gnome wants it,
> > and put more exciting changes into a separate gtkrc. With the permission
> > of the release team, I would be happy to revert the changes, and change
> > the one line that makes the scrollbars blue in the Clearlooks gtkrc.
> If the theme author is okay with it, this sounds like it would make
> everyone happy.

I'm down with this.


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