Re: Has there been a paradigm shift and nobody told me?
>How exactly is a novice user supposed to know that his video editor is called "kdenlive", his music player is >called "amarok", or his PDF viewer is called "acrobat"?
The point is exactly that that they don't need to know this any more. Typing "music player" or "video editor" or "PDF reader*" does the job, and in all cases on my machine I don't even need to get past the first four characters, and that's just the first time too. Typing "internet" or "web" finds Firefox. If you wanted to edit firefox.desktop to include the search string "the orange thing" then that would work too, but that does sort of defeat the object.
Also you can still browse the menu in the old style, by section, and the menu interface itself is way bigger and easier to use than the old-style start menus, so I would argue that discoverability is up. Not only are there multiple complementary - not contradictory - routes to find things, but the old menu systems have (imo) been improved as well. I hear a lot of techies complaining about big icons, but the fact is big icons and simple interfaces are easy to use. Personally, I like big icons, but that's just me.
* actually 'PDF Reader' doesn't work in Gnome. But in that case a user would be clicking on downloaded a pdf file or, even more likely, wouldn't know even they were looking at a pdf 'cos it had opened in-browser. "Document viewer" works.