Wednesday, March 14, 2012

opposite points of view

To get an idea of how divergent the opinions are in the Linux world regarding the GNOME Shell and Unity interfaces, one only needs to check out a couple of blog entries that were posted today.

In "Linux Mint and Cinnamon: Spice for your desktop," Dedoimedo describes Mint's Cinnamon shell as "the last hope for the Linux world," and writes:

One day, Linux Mint people decided they had enough with Gnome 3, the bland and moronic interface that killed functionality and turned everything sluggish. So they decided to start developing their own desktop, which would focus on allowing users to actually work without being ugly or compromising the long-term support Ubuntu family relationship. In one sentence, Cinnamon aims to combine the GOOD aspects of Gnome 2 and Gnome 3 and become the one desktop interface that everyone will like and use.

But in Unity vs. GNOME Shell: Comparative Review at the Muktware site, we find a much more positive outlook on the new interfaces. About GNOME Shell and Unity, the author writes:

I have used both of them and I think that both represent the future of the desktop environment in their own way.

I personally feel that in some ways Dedoimedo might be blinded by his own hatred of GNOME Shell and Unity; he never acknowledges that many people (including myself) feel that these two interfaces are much better than what we had in GNOME 2. But his opinions are important, and despite his negativity I feel that he's still a positive force in the Linux world, and I read his posts even though I don't always agree with what he says.

So far, I've had no interest in using Cinnamon instead of GNOME Shell or Unity, but I have to admit that Dedoimedo's screen shots and comments make Cinnamon look pretty good.

Everyone always says that "Linux is about choice," and nobody's forcing anyone to use GNOME Shell or Unity. The emergence of Cinnamon is a good thing for many former GNOME 2 users; many others have happily turned to other environments like KDE or Xfce, and still more have embraced GNOME Shell and/or Unity. There's something out there for everyone; improvements and new stuff keep coming.

I don't think I really agree with Muktware's comment that GNOME Shell and Unity "represent the future of the desktop environment." For whom?

And I certainly don't agree with Dedoimedo's assertion that Cinnamon is "the last hope for the Linux world." Maybe it's his last hope.

As always, the best thing to do is to use what works best for you.

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