Because something is being difficult about me sending via KNode/GMane (either unknown errors or spinning), I'm sending via KMail. Sorry for breaking the thread. --Ben
Followup-To: gmane.linux.redhat.fedora.advisory-board Lines: 140 From: Ben Boeckel <MathStuf gmail com> Subject: Re: website mockups, what is fedora? To: fedora-advisory-board redhat com Reply-To: MathStuf gmail com Date: Fri, 21 Aug 2009 19:07:27 -0400 References: <4A8EA95D 4000206 math unl edu> User-Agent: KNode/4.3.0 MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/plain; charset="UTF-8" Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8Bit Newsgroups: gmane.linux.redhat.fedora.advisory-board -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE----- Hash: SHA1 Rex Dieter wrote: > OK, I get the idea behind all of this, really I do. Much of it is > great, but let me share what's been nagging at the back of my mind for > some time. It's just been hard to put into words, so I'll try my best here. > > Let's get back to the question: What is Fedora? > > I thought a general consensus was something akin to: a solid flexible > base distro technology that can be used for many different purposes > > Then, look at the new website mockups. > > (perceived) Answer: Fedora is the fedora-desktop spin > > The KDE SIG, developers and users alike, for better or worse, draw this > natural conclusion. It's a perceived step back from the status quo, > where KDE is mentioned on the main download page anyway. We feel that > the main download page mockups don't adequately reflect the scope of the > Fedora project (i.e. its developer and user community) and that it would > be beneficial for Fedora to properly advertise that scope. > > Especially for the classes of users identified as: > People who are somewhat computer savvy, but may be new to Fedora and/or > Linux and FOSS in general > or > People who don't know where to find anything other than the default > offering (i.e., is there something else available?) > These folks likely want to know more about the project scope, and > (over)simplification is missing the opportunity to inform and educate them. > > > -- Rex I've read this thread and instead of micromanaging threaded replies, I'll just post my thoughts here. I think that what Fedora needs to have is a separation of the current spins into Editions and Spins. Editions would be the the general-use spins, such as GNOME, KDE, LXDE, and XFCE. Spins would be a collection of applications meant for a single purpose, such as Astronomy, Education, and FEL. In order to explain this, I have to give what I think Fedora is. I offer that it is an experience. For developers, the experience of working with other dedicated individuals working together to provide a satisfying computing environment, the Fedora experience for users. I have learned much since I first started using Fedora with FC6, but my work with the KDE SIG for Fedora has been the largest chunk of that since I started a year ago. Working together to help users who need help, patch testing, getting upstream aware of bugs, and more. *That* is what Fedora should strive for. For users, Fedora should be a way of enjoying your time with a computer. Whether it be as you check your email, keep up with fads and memes on the Internet, package software, or develop software, Fedora should be there to make it enjoyable, or at least painfree. In order to be considered an Edition, the team would work to provide a complete Fedora experience. This includes documentation, a testing team, support, timely bugfixes, and possibly a critical path-like QA process. Spins would be derived from Editions and be geared towards a specific use-case (as they are today). This separation should help to fix the problems with the mockups of the download pages. The mockups look nice, but they are a step in the wrong direction. Some have argued that more users means more contributors, but I see this as naïve. I think that instead there are a certain number of developers (whether through potential or already realized) and that attracting these people should be our goal. So I think the actual relationship commonly given is that more users are just more chances for getting a contributor at random. There are other ways to raise the chances such as piqing interest in a project enough to get the user involved. By hiding what Fedora has to offer, we lower the chances that what we showcase will inspire the user enough to become a developer. It may take a trip to OpenSuSE or *buntu to realize that, but by then they are not contributing to Fedora. We *should* make the transition from the dominant operating systems today as painless as possible. This does mean that we should offer defaults. But not at the expense of putting other alternatives behind a door. We should take cues from OpenSuSE which offers a variety of desktop environments without hiding the non-default ones. Pre-empting the argument that this choice overwhelms users, I argue that these users are the ones who would ask for help in installing Fedora anyways. Linux is spread to people through having friends and family who install Linux for others. These are the ones who make the decision about the desktop environment used and what's on the front page is probably going to do little to change their decision. Assuming that those who go to install Fedora who do not have such help, I think there are bigger barriers than the desktop environment choice. Do they know how to burn and ISO to a disc (on Windows, this is still something that I seem to always be scrounging for apps to do and am never satisfied; never tried with a Mac)? Do they know if they even have a CD/DVD burner? What if their boot order is wrong? How to partition a drive so that Windows is preserved just-in-case? How to get Windows back if Fedora is not for them (removing GRUB and getting back the Windows bootloader requires its rescue disc last I checked)? If this user can get through this, then they've probably researched what the desktops environments are while waiting for Windows to resize its partitions. Assuming they know that they exist. So, I think that instead of arguing over the current design, we focus on what is causing these problems and separate out the things that are not "just" spins and call them Editions. The complete Edition split will probably have to wait until F13, but the website design differences can be made for F12. Thoughts? - --Ben -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE----- Version: GnuPG v1.4.9 (GNU/Linux) iEYEARECAAYFAkqPI5YACgkQiPi+MRHG3qS0nACfTKW1XbDDRQvSD3Tn08tIhItd OrwAn1CdxDTmeKgQmQGN077HgWnHOaSU =Oa4B -----END PGP SIGNATURE-----
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