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Re: website mockups, what is fedora?

Again something is weird with f-a-b and GMane/KNode. Errors about not being able to write to news.gmane.org.
Followup-To: gmane.linux.redhat.fedora.advisory-board
Lines: 184
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: Sat, 22 Aug 2009 00:13:12 -0400
References: <200908212107 14387 MathStuf gmail com> <1250908442 9488 165 camel localhost localdomain>
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Máirín Duffy wrote:

> On Fri, 2009-08-21 at 21:07 -0400, Ben Boeckel wrote:
>> 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 
>> alternatives behind a door. 
> I disagree that having a default option and an 'others' option 
> putting the non-default options behind a door. Please explain 
why you
> feel this is the case.
Maybe "door" is strong. One click is the difference between the 
GNOME edition page and the spins just as google is one back to 
their search for "linux download". Probably still not saying 
what I mean, but since they are all general purpose 
environments, they should be given similar treatment. (See below 
for a way that, I think, may work).

> The loudest critiques of the new design are hailing open suse 
as the way
> to go:
> http://software.opensuse.org/
> Looking at this screen, I see no mention of GNOME or KDE? How 
is this
> screen giving me a choice of default desktops? Can someone 
fill me in as
> to what is going on here? Has the new design not debuted yet, 
> something?

They have a DVD as default, they all fit there, so the place to 
look there is in their Anaconda for how they do the 
differentiation. With the live CDs, the website must where that 
choice is made.

> Either way, requiring people to fill out a form to download 
something is
> full of FAIL.

I agree.

> That download button is awful small. Doesn't even say 
download. I had to
> scan the page several times to figure out how it worked.

Yes, the current page is dull. Especially in 8pt fonts ;) .

>> 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.
> My younger brother had absolutely no problem installing Fedora 
on his
> own once given a direct link to the ISO that would work for 
him. The
> installation is fairly straightforward unless you run into a 
bug (which
> is common enough but even folks who can interpret the 
> usually need help in those situations as well.)
I've had to talk people through drag and drop. If I gave them a 
link to a page with an ISO and *complete* instructions, they'd 
still call me for help. This is how I feel most technophobic 
people see computers and what the new download page is 
attempting to target.

If we continue going down this road of "users * $DEV_PERCENTAGE 
== developers", we will again be trying to appease everyone 
which I believe you stated in the thread as unfeasible. We have 
to assume some baseline of intelligence in those we expect to 
become developers. Those who are too lazy to look up what a 
desktop environment is and comparisons between those on a list 
are not likely to become developers.

Windows and OS X get along fine with "here is what we made, hope 
you like it" because there *are no choices* besides what's 
crippled in your downgraded version. Linux is different. If a 
potential developer uses GNOME and doesn't like it, is it 
obvious that there are alternatives? KDE and XFCE are thrown in 
with Astronomy and Education. I can see people thinking it was 
just some niche of study they didn't know anything about.

I think we should be able to have some way of putting the DEs on 
one page and yet still be able to get the attention of new users 
to get the default. As a thought, Linux does have a reputation 
of being for techies, so this is something that new users 
probably expect anyways. Maybe a "New to Linux? Click here 
(GNOME Edition) to see what Fedora is all about. Want to explore 
Fedora more in depth? Look what we have to offer below: <list of 
Editions with screenshots and links to in-depth information 
pages>". Those interested in one DE from an article or something 
can recognize the screenshots and get what they came to look 
for. Those looking for Fedora to try get the GNOME edition. 
Those looking for what fits them best are nit picky anyways and 
would be more willing to do some research.

>> 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 
>> from Editions and be geared towards a specific use-case (as 
>> are today).
> Problem is only the Desktop spin meets these requirements 
right now
> AFAIK. All our docs are written for GNOME and as far as I know 
KDE has
> no testing team (I could be wrong on the latter.)

We're trying to get something formal set up, but it is still 
quite informal yet.

> Your point about there being a difference between desktop 
> focused spins and actual specialized use case spins is a very 
> one. The specialized spins like Art Studio, Security Lab, and 
> Lab have clear purposes and use cases and users will clearly 
know what
> they are meant for. XFCE and KDE spins really offer no 
compelling reason
> to download them other than 'it's different.'

In many ways, as the multitude of flame wars found all over the 
Internet can attest to.

> It might be worth
> separating out the spins on the spins site as being either 
> oriented or desktop-environment oriented, but I do not think 
we have
> enough spins to justify this classification. I can give it a 
shot in the
> spins mockup though.

That would be good :) . I still think not at least giving them 
equal footing with GNOME is wrong, but it's a start.

>> This separation should help to fix the problems with the 
>> of the download pages. 
> I'm sorry, but it really does appear the problems run quite a 
bit deeper
> than that. You mock me up a page that incorporates this 
editions idea,
> and in the process I think you'll see what I mean.
> If you want to push editions as the solution, then I think 
what you're
> really going to have to do is have an entirely separate 
website for each
> edition. That's probably a better way to go.
Possibly, but my designs skills submit to function over form 
which would make any website I touch awfully spartan and raw. 
Not to mention having pointy corners everywhere.

> But I really don't want to
> balkanize our spins... I think it's important they have Fedora 
I don't remember saying that they weren't Fedora. The difference 
between editions and spins would likely be similar to the 
difference between the GNOME edition and the spins today.

> ~m

- --Ben
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