Re: Vincent Untz and the "users that like to hate people"

On Sun, Feb 17, 2013 at 8:24 PM, Ma Xiaojun <damage3025 gmail com> wrote:
Well, GNOME fans, can you answer me a simple question:
Does using GNOME require skills like text file editing and/or command line?

If you're using GNOME to administer an email server? Yes, of course!

An attentive reader will of course say "there's no GNOME app for
administering a mail server," to which I would respond: "Precisely!"
and "But actually, there's a perfect one: Terminal. It's very
familiar, and it even has colours."

If your answer is No, let's see some other questions.

I'll just assume my answer counts as No.

If you use multiple versions of Firefox and each of them has a
different profile, I'm going to make a crazy bet here: you are
probably comfortable searching for help online, you are probably doing
some amount of web development, and so at a minimum you are
comfortable editing text files. I expect that is the case for any
person in this situation. After all, the last time I checked you need
to run Firefox with a particular command line if you want to use a
specific profile, or even to open the profile chooser. (With that
said, you might be interested in the ProfileSwitcher extension).

JAR files? Yeah, I'm not a fan of those either. With OpenJDK, at
least, you can execute a jar application if you right click it and
choose the JRE from "Open With", but it does seem a little unhelpful
that File Roller is the default handler. Fortunately, there are
definitely some nice ways to solve this that don't involve menu
editors :)

Anyway, launchers. I think the nicest way about this is to simply
notice that in GNOME 3, launchers (and search providers) are very much
static things that belong (with a near one-to-one relationship) to
applications, so as long as you aren't building your own applications
you'll be much happier just not thinking about them as things you can
change. Yes, not the same as it was, and yes, you can totally change
them with with a tool like Alacarte and that will be reflected in the
overview, but give me a moment. As I understand it, many of these
interactions you are used to from GNOME 2 are simply moving from the
shell to the individual applications. So, you want to choose between
different profiles for Firefox? Great! Do that with Firefox (or maybe
a search provider some day). Find yourself running some terminal
commands somewhat frequently? Edit your .bashrc or .profile and stick
them there. Maybe an alias is what you need. I like this kind of thing
because applications have much more capacity to express themselves
than a bunch of launchers (or file names) ever did, so the faster you
get to a space controlled by the application you're interested in, the

This does cut back on our ability to create clever hacks in vanilla
GNOME 3 (I remember adding a launcher to my panel, back in the day, to
toggle desktop effects), but you can be as clever as you want with
shell extensions ( or with awesome
applications like GNOME Do. The shell just isn't that malleable thing
any more: to a big extent, it's a fixed point — a known quantity —
(and it takes up a lot less space by default), and you can add the
cool bendy stuff yourself.

When I first looked at GNOME 3 I was kind of put off as well. I cut my
losses and let the shell guide my workflow a little more, and as soon
as I did that it suddenly turned into my favourite thing ever. So,
err, if you just block the Linux desktop stuff from your memory and
let GNOME 3 be its own thing for a moment, it could lead somewhere
surprisingly nice.


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