Wed, 20 Apr 2005

The OLS Desktopcon CFP is closing soon; it should be an interesting experiment. Please submit papers if you have some time to spare that time of year.

Elijah: 2.x has a lot of legs left in it; lots of people are happy with it, but ‘m sure people will be using it (and even hacking on it) for ages. I could even see a future where GNOME is doing both major 2.x and 3.x releases in parallel. But you said: ” Yet none of the comments seem to say that ‘here is something that we need in the desktop and that we can’t do in 2.x'”. In fact, I listed four such things. I believe strongly there are some things fairly fundamentally broken or limited about our current user model- menus suck, file browsing sucks, save and open dialogs suck, thinking about applications instead of documents or people or whatever sucks, etc., etc. I want to break all those old models. I want to throw them away. I want GNOME to be doing those things, and leading in them if at all possible. We can do that based on, say, gtk 2.x, and gnome-vfs 2.x, and whatever 2.x underneath, but we can’t call the resulting UI 2.anything- it would be (ideally) fundamentally different, and it would probably not be releasable in six month increments for some time.

It is worth noting that I agree with you that many things that have been discussed as 3.0 are not 3.0 features but 2.x bugs, and it’s possible that there are less radical solutions to some of the things I’ve discussed that are potentially 2.x material. I’ve tried to scythe such things out of the l.g.o 3.0 page with my sword of organizational justice, but obviously some of these issues are also judgment calls.

Dave: I don’t really think that the six month thing is particularly related to the 3.0 problem I was identifying. It is constraining, sure, and will almost definitely be a problem when we are ready for 3.0. But removing the six-month cycle won’t generate code, innovation and energy, which is really the problem. Once those things are there, I’ll be the first one to say we need to kill the regular cycle for a while.