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Re: Abandon "Default Desktop"

On Monday 04 May 2009 10:27:39 pm Callum Lerwick wrote:
> On Mon, 2009-05-04 at 21:00 -0400, Orcan Ogetbil wrote:
> > On Mon, May 4, 2009 at 8:41 PM, Callum Lerwick wrote:
> > > On Mon, 2009-05-04 at 20:00 -0400, Orcan Ogetbil wrote:
> > >> On Mon, May 4, 2009 at 6:46 PM, Callum Lerwick wrote:
> > >> > On Mon, 2009-05-04 at 14:31 -0400, Orcan Ogetbil wrote:
> > >> >> A person already makes a choice (a very big and "radical" one) when
> > >> >> he decides to use Linux. A second choice is made by deciding on
> > >> >> Fedora. Why should we enforce that these were the last choices he
> > >> >> makes?
> > >> >
> > >> > http://www.joelonsoftware.com/uibook/chapters/fog0000000059.html
> > >>
> > >> Nope, that text doesn't have any scientific value. It contains
> > >> variations of "Nobody cares", "Nobody wants..." without backup. I
> > >> neither have met this Nobody person, nor do I care what he wants more
> > >> than I care for any other user in the pool. In fact, I know more
> > >> people who care about certain design choices than who don't. Moreover,
> > >> the text tends to confuse bad design with customizability (although it
> > >> tries hard not to).
> > >
> > > I'm sure you have scientific studies showing people love playing 20
> > > questions to get anything done, right?
> >
> > No, I particularly like having choices. Whenever I am getting
> > furniture or some kitchen appliance, I go to the store and make my
> > selection according to my taste. I find it important the way my
> > furniture looks. Also I make sure that my kitchen appliance have the
> > capabilities that I am interested.
> And if you actually read the essay, it's not against choice. It's about
> being very careful and responsible in what you force the user to choose.
> Choice for the sake of choice is not desirable.
> > And I know quite a lot of people who do it the same way. In fact, very
> > few houses I have seen have identical furniture and kitchen
> > appliances. The reason for this is people have made decisions among
> > multiple choices.
> >
> > You may want to grab the first microwave oven you
> > see and get out of the store, but believe me, most people are not like
> > you.
> I doubt that most people *want* to spend hours obsessing over what
> microwave to buy.
> I note that all your examples pertain purely to aesthetics. Yes, *that*
> is one thing average people care about. They want things to look unique,
> and personal. They *do not* care about underlying mechanics.
> > If you don't believe me, look out of your window. You might see
> > different brands of cars. I think that would be a proof that is
> > "scientific enough".
> And when most people jump in their car, they don't want to spend hours
> selecting ignition timings and suspension settings and transmission
> tunings and the gender and accent of the navigation system's voice
> before they can start the car.
> Those who want to do so are free to buy a BMW with iDrive. Those people,
> dare I say it, are not in the majority.
> > Have a choice :)
> No one's taking any choices away. Having choices available is something
> completely different from *forcing* users to *make* choices they do not
> understand or care about.
> A non-technical user who just wants a platform to run Firefox and email
> photos to grandma does not want to play 20 questions about this "desktop
> environment" thing they've never heard of before they can do so.
> And as KDE itself has embraced this mistaken philosophy of "choice is
> always desirable", why would we ever want to inflict it on non-technical
> users? People who want to play 20-questions already know where to find
> KDE.

I'm confused. Is this thread about bashing other desktop design philosophies 
now? I thought this was all originally a thread to introduce a way to put the 
major desktop environments on even footing. I think you two should take a step 
back here and look at what we're trying to accomplish. Let's just put a big 
'ole 3-way radio button in the installer with "GNOME", "KDE", and "Other/None" 
in the DVD installer and be done with it. I realize that picking a desktop 
environment probably isn't something a new Linux user is familiar with. But 
that doesn't mean we can't put some link on the download page explaining the 
term and the differences between the two.

The only way I see this being resolved is with:

A) We cave in and give the user a choice, which is something few other distros 
with a graphical installer do (only suse comes to mind), or
B) We remain a stick in the mud, staying with the tried and true GNOME 

Picking A will almost certainly bring in more KDE users and help make KDE less 
of a second class citizen in Fedora. Picking B will make one less decision for 
linux newbies to make when they install Fedora.

I believe option A will benefit fedora in the longer run.

Trever Fischer (tdfischer)
Fedora Ambassador, KDE Hacker
GPG: C40F2998 hkp://wwwkeys.pgp.net

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