slight innovation followup

Dan: my goal in ranting is to increase the amount of innovation being delivered to users. So if the idea is 30 years old, but I can’t use it because I’m not part of this ‘bunch’, please carry on ;)

More seriously, I do hope the process of producting a new gnome-shell provides an innovation model we can build on- it would be terrific to see conscious thinking about building a repeatable process as well as the code. So far the process seems to be admirably JFDI-based, and the javascript does seem to be lowering the barrier to participation, which is terrific. I did hear suggestions that there was a dispiriting amount of bikeshedding in the conversations which took place at Summit, so maybe we still need to develop better norms and practices around that. And I’m not sure where (if?) there is a place for designers in the process- some of the ideas seem to have come out of RH’s internal design folks, but I’m not clear on that.

Of course, this looks a lot like bikeshedding itself, doesn’t it, so maybe those guys should just ignore me altogether. Dan, please unsubscribe from my blog ;)

(Tangentially: it is completely awesome to click on Dan’s video and have it Just Open in my firefox nightly. Big thanks to the firefox folks in taking the jump to include <video>- I’m not sure it is ‘innovation’ per se but it is pretty awesome :) Now, we just need to work on the production side…)

10 thoughts on “slight innovation followup”

  1. There’s always a lot of bikeshedding on topics of general interest. WHich is a good thing, you can filter through it to get a feel for what other people want.

    Of course, in the end the JFDI people decide what gets implemented. So we’ll all run Owen’s idea of what a panel should look like, not Vincent’s, yours or mine.
    Or to quote Peter Hutterer: “Become an active contributor, then you get to decide on what the defaults are.”

  2. Unfortunately, “JFDI” is what got us into this mess in the first place. The more people just go off and FDI without any documented requirements based on real data, the more fragmented the user experience becomes. Where’s the research that informed the current shell discussions? The usability studies on the paper mockups? Nope, we’re just bashing on and writing code as usual, and we might tweak it a bit later if it turns out people don’t like it after all. Epic fail.

  3. Jedi: your complaint isn’t insane; certainly a design-centric process would be ideal. But if I had a paper mockup for every time someone made that complaint, I’d have a pretty damn comprehensive paper mockup. But instead I’ve got a big pile of complaints, and no mockups; not even any designers talking seriously about making any mockups. Instead those designers are either missing/hypothetical, or too busy with other things to… do anything except complain. :/

  4. Jedi: I’d add that, to the extent we’ve had design support in the past, they were often frustrated by the lack of JFDI once their designs were delivered. So the same discipline can be useful if there is designer support on the front end; the important thing is that once there are ideas there is execution and not dickering.

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