Re: [Nautilus-list] The Future of Nautilus

Mark Finlay <linuxexpert eircom net> writes:
> I am in the business of converting the masses to Linux. And more
> importantly increasing awareness of GNOME. As part of a series of
> Articles on the future GNOME on my site(, I am
> going to write an article on the future of Nautilus, which I see as THE
> key element in the future uptake of GNOME.

I'm not sure that's accurate. There are many more crucial points (for
example, the millions of dollars and thousands of hours spent on
accessibility mean that GNOME 2 will be acceptable for US government
use, which is absolutely essential for the ongoing success of
UNIX/Linux desktops).

> The question I'm asking is, am I to expect any major changes when I
> run Nautilus in GNOME2 in a few weeks?

It's mostly just a port. The main differences are in speed and small
UI touches. Other pieces of GNOME are changed more noticeably.

> Three major features myself and my site readers are hoping to see in
> Nautilus are:
> 1. Drag and dropping launchers onto the desktop.

This has always existed from a Nautilus window to the desktop as far
as I know. Do you mean from the panel? I think that is supposed to
work, at any rate.

> 1.5 Right-click creation of desktop launchers.

Someone added this recently.

> 2. Easy access to the "Show hidden Files" setting.

Should be a toggle in the View menu or something instead of a
preference, for sure.

> 3. Integration of Nautilus preferences into the gnome control
> center.

GNOME 2 doesn't have a control center (well it exists but it's
optional and sort of hidden). Instead it just has a small set of
simple property dialogs. There's a Nautilus window that displays them,
similar to Mac or Windows, and they are also available in the menus.

> I believe these three things are the major things that need to be done
> to make GNOME really intuitive to the new user.

Everyone thinks their favorite three issues are the entire problem
blocking Linux on the desktop. ;-) The catch is, everyone has a
different three! And most people's three aren't the things that appear
in user testing with naive users.

Get on the mailing lists and track bugzilla for a while. Better, track
real user reports from the Linux distribution side, or run some user
tests. You'll quickly see that solving the desktop problem is much
harder than you might expect.


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