Re: GNOME 3 Marketing - GNOME Shell

On Mon, 2010-03-29 at 17:52 -0700, Sriram Ramkrishna wrote:
> I agree, thanks for doing this.  I do have some questions, but I'm not
> sure if this is the right forum to address this.  If there are attacks
> on the GNOME 3 experience it will be with perceived  (or real)
> regressions.  How do we address these issues?

I really don't like the term regression - I think people often use it to
conflate two things:

 1) Bugs that come back because of poor testing or development

 2) A new version of a program that doesn't meet their needs as
    well as a previous version.

I don't expect the first to be a problem for GNOME 3 - all Metacity bug
fixes should carry forward cleanly into Mutter. But there are certainly
going to be some areas where people will be vocally upset.

 * Ability to run on old hardware. 

There's nothing much to do about this other than to provide a clear
message - that to provide a desktop that is a compelling alternative to
other operating systems, that will last for the next 5-10 years, we have
to take advantage of the graphical power of modern hardware. 
And that we will work well on virtually all hardware manufactured in the
last 5 years.

We can also point to various alternative desktops built on GNOME
technology - whether that's the continuing ability to run the GNOME 2
panel and window manager, or to XFCE and LXDE.

 * Ability to put launchers and applets onto the panel.

 * Ability to configure your panels in unusual ways

Here the story is really two parts - the first part is that a dynamic,
simplified panel is a core part of the design, and that we think it
provides a better experience. That the functionality previously provided
by putting launchers in your panel is better accomplished by the

The second part of the story is extensions - extensions have always been
meant to be the escape-hatch for people who aren't satisfied with being
handed a fixed desktop configuration; who want to tinker and try new
things. Unfortunately, I don't think we'll have a fully working
extension ecosystem by the time of the GNOME 3.0 release.

 * Accessibility

My hope is that we can get back roughly to the status quo by the time of
the GNOME 3 release - but I'm not very satisfied with the status quo.
I think the main marketing message we can do here is simply to be clear
about expectations and what we are working on.

- Owen

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