gnome shell, message tray, notifications and empathy


i love gnome shell and i started to like empathy... to some extent, but
actually the combination of gnome shell, message tray and notifications
is very, very frustrating.

i agree that there should be idea of user being "available" and "busy"
for notifications. and probably no one there in the world have a problem
with "busy" state of user - no damn notifications. great!

but, imho,  gnome designers misunderstood the "available" state.

you know... when we are using a computer, we might be available
but we still do something - write e-mail, documentation or software,
work on images, watch movies... you name it.

this is probably the reason the distracting message icon had to go, right?

so why we got message tray? so far it seems

- to be simply annoying like hell (much more than the ditched icon)

- giving us privacy issues

- not delivering notifications to us (we miss them)

i understand that it is hard to find appropriate balance for notifications.
i just do not understand why we get simply unusable (missing notifications!)
and very annoying and distracting message tray?

imho, it seems like gnome designers and developers are looking
for some holy grail based on AI, i.e. bug report 643014 (hm... well,
that seems to be unconfirmed, but still... it is not invalid).

in the meantime, would it be possible to get something simple and
_really_ not distracting? for example, list of notifications only in
activities mode (and no empathy/IM messages in desktop mode).
imho, that would be a good starting point to whatever future (maybe
too simple, but that's would be better than unusuable current state :/).

finally, if there is fix on the way, do we have to wait till november?

i am really happy to test any patches i can find in bugzilla for current

i understand that some might find above e-mail too harsh... but please
consider frustrated like hell users[1], who find their and others bug reports
unconfirmed for weeks if not months.

best regards,


[1] yes, even while writing this e-mail i was annoyed by the message tray
and yes while making a break from writing this e-mail i have missed
messages from other people who went off-line before i _managed_
to be notified... thank you empathy and gnome shell :/ :P

p.s. does this bug report solve some of the above problems?


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