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posted by n1 on Tuesday April 11 2017, @01:29AM   Printer-friendly
from the politics dept.

After announcing his company was abandoning Unity for GNOME, Shuttleworth posted a thank-you note to the Unity community Friday on Google Plus, but added on Saturday:

"I used to think that it was a privilege to serve people who also loved the idea of service, but now I think many members of the free software community are just deeply anti-social types who love to hate on whatever is mainstream. When Windows was mainstream they hated on it. Rationally, Windows does many things well and deserves respect for those. And when Canonical went mainstream, it became the focus of irrational hatred too. The very same muppets would write about how terrible it was that IOS/Android had no competition and then how terrible it was that Canonical was investing in (free software!) compositing and convergence. Fuck that shit."

"The whole Mir hate-fest boggled my mind - it's free software that does something invisible really well. It became a political topic as irrational as climate change or gun control, where being on one side or the other was a sign of tribal allegiance. We have a problem in the community when people choose to hate free software instead of loving that someone cares enough to take their life's work and make it freely available."

Shuttleworth says that "I came to be disgusted with the hate" on Canonical's display server Mir, saying it "changed my opinion of the free software community."

Full story here.


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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11 2017, @03:35AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11 2017, @03:35AM (#492114)

    Unity and GNOME 3 are both designed around the idea that phones and desktops will share a UI. The actual functionality that we need is the ability to have a phone serve up a fully traditional desktop UI, and for a desktop PC to be able to run phone apps. Android developers already go one way with emulators. Going the other way is possible too, as seen in VNC clients for phones. Do these things for code running on the same system and you have a working answer to the need. Don't pretend that the experience will be seamless; it just needs to work so that we can have phones that usefully plug into monitors and keyboards.

    Mir and Wayland are "second system syndrome" disasters, as described in The Mythical Man Month by Fred Brooks, with a big helping of NIH. We didn't need a bunch of cheap n00b developers (plus Pottering probably) doing a bad reinvention of X. We needed a careful cleanup and modernization effort by super-experienced folk.

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  • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11 2017, @04:24AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11 2017, @04:24AM (#492128)

    I still have no idea why Mir exists.

    Wayland has a lot of tangible goals.

    But I see now (elsewhere) that people are abandoning XOrg because it finally sunk in that it was the XOrg developers themselves who created Wayland.

    I will never understand tribalism. But y'all have fun going back to XFree86 or whatever makes you feel good.

    Better not use XOrg, because those are the same n00b developers behind Wayland.

  • (Score: 1) by WillR on Tuesday April 11 2017, @12:59PM

    by WillR (2012) on Tuesday April 11 2017, @12:59PM (#492233)
    A modernized, cleaned up X ceases to be X. All that legacy font handling stuff that nobody uses since GTK/Qt do it better and with antialiasing, line/box/bezier curve drawing cruft that nobody uses because again, the toolkits do it better, the hacks to make 8-bit displays semi-usable, all the stuff that nobody uses anymore are required parts of the X11 protocol.
  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by VLM on Tuesday April 11 2017, @01:59PM (1 child)

    by VLM (445) on Tuesday April 11 2017, @01:59PM (#492255)

    phones and desktops will share a UI

    There's a deeper problem with the whole ... situation.

    Why can't my hiking boots and car have the same UI? Why can't my screwdriver and my hammer have the same UI? Why can't an outhouse/streetshitting and a toilet have the same UI? Why can't my physical corded analog landline phone have the same UI as my physical wooden desk, not talking about computers at all? Oh yeah because that's a really bad idea. Merely being borderline technologically possible due to the miracle of Turing complete hardware doesn't mean its a great idea. We live in the computer equivalent era of the TV infomercial "pocket fisherman" where its somehow a wise idea to buy a combination ear hair trimmer, fishing pole, and beer can opener gadget, and some money is made off that stupidity, but most of the population laughs and says that stuff don't work, which makes the crazy people work harder at doing dumb things (I know, the general public will declare 2017 as the year of the pocket fisherman if only we add a kitchen gadget like a zucchini spiralizer, after all we already got a turning handle on the fishing pole part! Genius! NOW 2017 can be the year of the pocket fisherman multitool)

    The problem is phones and desktops having the same UI is taken seriously.

    • (Score: 2) by AthanasiusKircher on Tuesday April 11 2017, @03:26PM

      by AthanasiusKircher (5291) on Tuesday April 11 2017, @03:26PM (#492300) Journal

      Absolutely agree. It's certainly a worthy goal to have some commonality in the appearance and interface across devices. But the idea that you'll operate a tiny handheld phone the exact same way you'd want to use a 100X-more powerful desktop computer with three large monitors is just bonkers.

      We need tools that allow efficient communication between devices. And perhaps tools that can allow direct access between devices when needed (like remote desktop software or whatever). But there's no strong reason why the default OS should function exactly the same way on all these devices.

      All that said, I see no reason why some people can't create such a thing -- and I'm sure there are SOME people out there who really do want all their devices to behave exactly the same. It's the idea that such a development is somehow "inevitable" and obviously the next logical thing as a default UI that always seemed baffling to me.