Re: GNOME Usability Improvements - Fix the window manager!

   I disagee with Mr. Fulbright.  I do not think that there should be
one,people should have the right to interface with whatever manger they
want. Wheither it be E or KDE or blackbox. Your asking for alot more trouble
than you realize by saying that maybe there should be a window's manager for
gnome.  Once a manager is created for gnome, new users will assume that is
the only one out there for gnome. You ended up with the debate over wheither
this one is better than that one, which will bring a limit in the minds of
those new users to the plethora of options available. You then begin to
start a nasty dialog that would end result in dividing the community as a
whole. What should be the issue here is improving gnome to do what desktop
software has never gone before. If a team needs to be constructed to do this
then great, do it. 
I personally think the easiler, more stabile,more configurablity more
functional a product is the better it does for the community and those
groups that are undecided as a whole. Here is the challenge: make it even
easiler for gnome to work with the various window managers, show that the
gnome desktop can work in so many ways. Gnome can do some of this already,
but more needs to be done in order for this to happen. Matt

On Sun, 01 Aug 1999 22:09:57 -0400, Michael Fulbright wrote:

> I applaud the recent rejuvenation of the GNOME UI effort. I hope that the
> people working on it can give us regular drafts for comments. I would
> advise them not to try and make it too much of a "tell us what you want
> and we'll add it all" - we need a few people with UI experience to
> draft a proposal, and then get comments from everyone. Otherwise you'll
> what we had last time.
> The best way I can see to help usability FAST is to get the KDE/GNOME
> window manager spec ironed out. I think the worst aspect of the current
> GNOME desktop to new users (according to all the feedback email I
> get since my email address is in every GNOME RPM :) is the abitrary
> distinction between the GNOME desktop and the window manager. Currently
> the GNOME desktop and the window manager fight over things like
> background settings and mouse clicks on the desktop.  Some window
> claim to support GNOME, and yet when in 'GNOME mode' they throw up their
> own panel equivalent, icons, etc.  The words 'window manager' should
> show up on the desktop imho - users should not have to learn about them.
> The worst offender are themes - on the Red Hat 6.0 tour I talked to alot
> of people about GNOME and KDE.  Most people seem to perceive more
> in GNOME, but did not like having to deal with the window manager. In KDE
> this is not an issue.  I had numerous people ask me why they have to
> configure TWO themes. I think the GNOME project should very seriously
> pursuing (with great vigor) a window manager for GNOME that gives us the
> level of control over the environment that allows us to hide the fact
> a window manager is even running from the novice user.
> Note I have advocated two things:
>  1) Get the spec worked out in common for both the GNOME and KDE
>     A window manager author will then have a single target and it is
>     much more likely window managers will properly work with both.
>  2) For the much larger class of potential new users (compared to the
>     current user base of Linux) we should have a window manager we have
>     designed that works closely with GNOME (via CORBA) that completely
>     hides the window manager from the user. Themes will be shared with
>     gtk+ themes, the issue of who owns the background will be gone, the
>     pager and task list applets won't have to use broken X11 tricks to
>     get window lists, etc.
> Of all the reasons people pick GNOME versus KDE, I think the fact that
> GNOME is supposedly window manager independent is very low on the list of
> reasons.  It certainly is not one of the top three.  I think its time
> to consider making a distinction between "GNOME compliant" window manager
> and "GNOME enhanced" window managers.  The later is what a newbie will
> want to use.
> We can satisfy both the seasoned Linux users who have a favorite window
> as well as the new user who just wants it to work. I think in terms of
> usability we have a great deal to address for the later when in comes to
> the window manager.
> Next on the list would be the file manager, but this email is already too
> Dr Mike
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I had to hit him -- he was starting to make sense.

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