back to article Ubuntu Linux daddy Mark Shuttleworth: Carrots for Unity 8?

New year, new Linux – or, in the case of Ubuntu, two. As in years past, Canonical's distro gets two updates in 2017 – the spring and autumn releases numbered and named respectively 17.04, Zesty Zapus, and 17.10 – name TBD, actually. As ever there will be UI and experience fiddling – Zesty Zapus sees changes in windows …

  1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    Quotes from the windows playbook

    This

    "Unity 8 delivers a unified set of experiences across all the kinds of personal computers,"

    could have just as easily been

    "Windows 10 delivers a unified set of experiences across all the kinds of personal computers,"

    How many Ubuntu users will actually use (or want to use) a touch interface?

    I guess he wants the Ubuntu Phone/Table to sweep all before it.

    Desktops with a touch interface are still very much in the minority and many of them will never run Ubuntu if MS has their way (i.e. running anything but Windows on a Surface)

    We had a conversation about this at a LUG not that long ago. Many expressed the opinion that expecially on the desktop touch is a PITA.

    I will be pleased though if I am proved wrong. Canonical has put a lot of effort into all this.

    1. E 2

      Re: Quotes from the windows playbook

      Agree - 19+ inch touch screens make no sense.

  2. bombastic bob Silver badge
    FAIL

    a definition of insanity

    "so that it runs as both a touch and a desktop experience"

    Thanks, Micro-shaft... Uh, I mean Canonical!

    The obvious Windows "Ape" and Win-10-nic connections were already in the article, yeah.

    I just want to point out that it is _A_ definition of insanity, to repeatedly try something that has failed before, expecting different results. THIS time. Because YOU are not "them". "No, no, we'll re-package it and do it _BETTER_ *this* time, because, we're not THEM!"

    Good luck with THAT. 'Unity' (and its clones) is the only thing I've *hated* in the Linux world. You're not making it better by placing LIPSTICK on the BOAR. Again.

    (I've only DESPISED what gnome 3 has become. Unity is something I truly *HATE*. Fortunately Ubu has Mate, and Mint exists)

    1. ch0rlt0n

      Re: a definition of insanity

      It's only insanity if you don't learn from the mistakes of others. If the first rocket blows up on the launchpad, no-one else should ever attempt to get to space again?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: a definition of insanity

        If the first rocket blows up on the launchpad, no-one else should ever attempt to get to space again?

        Only if it's a Facebook satellite :)

      2. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Re: a definition of insanity

        Sometimes the lesson isn't "try again." Sometimes it's "this is not a good idea."

        It's long been known that a Jack of all trades is master of none. A UI that tries to "unify" dissimilar devices that have dissimilar UIs for a reason is not going to be as good on either of the platforms than one that was built specifically for the platform in question.

        The change in GNOME seems to be hand-in-glove with Unity. Both are focused on the same "master of all" chimera that has obsessed Microsoft of late. As such, the various GNOME applets that are distributed with many Linux distros, things like Calculator, Disks, GEdit, etc., have all been infected with the hamburger menu. That abomination may be a necessary evil on mobile devices, with their tiny, clumsy, imprecise touchscreens, but there's no reason I should have to deal with them on my PC when a better, more intuitive choice (the pulldown menu bar) has been the industry standard for 30+ years.

        That's the problem with these UIs that supposedly adapt to desktops or mobiles as needed-- they don't. If they did, all of the UI compromises meant to make touchscreens work (the hamburger menu is just one of them) would be blissfully absent on PC screens, but they're not. You still get the stupid stuff like tiny, disappearing scrollbars and other UI elements, sparsely-populated displays with those elements that do exist taking up way more space than they should, and all kinds of other things.

        The only way I can see this ever working is to have every bit of the OS or distro, and every program that is supposed to share the convertible UI, have two fully-developed UIs for everything. In Windows terms, every program's UI, every menu, every dialog would have a native Win32 version and a UWP version, each optimized for the platform for which it was designed.

        It wouldn't really be "one for all" as much as "two in one," and that's not all that creative or slick... just redundant. It's not as wasteful as it may sound; the controls and widgets used to build each dialog are already there in any case, with only a small bit of code needed to describe the UI layout. Still, that's not the way MS went, or GNOME 3 itself, or Unity. Duplicating code is inelegant; they want something more "yahh, way kool d00d" than that. What we're left with is desktop operating systems that have hamburger menus, oversized controls, menus that require more drilling and that end up with options being removed to make them less confusing, broad areas of empty space...

        It's notable that both versions of Windows that were supposed to be "one UI to rule them all" have been unpopular, with 8 being rejected nearly completely (its market share is smaller than that of XP now) and 10 being so "great" that people won't even take it for free. If MS had not used malware techniques to push 10, it would almost certainly be as complete a failure as 8.

        Ubuntu used to be the top "beginner" Linux distro, but now it seems to be Mint, at least judging by Distrowatch (as imprecise a measurement as that is, it's the best we've got). That change coincides quite well with the adoption of Unity and the new touch-friendly direction of GNOME 3. Mint itself is a reaction to the growing mobile-ification of Ubuntu and GNOME 3; its main mission in life is to preserve the traditional UI and eschew all of that mobile stuff on non-touch devices.

        Apple seems to be the only one that has it right. Tim Cook specifically rejected the idea, stating that there would be compromises that lead to the experience being less than it should be on both platforms. I don't agree with Apple often, but this is one of the rare times when I do. I think it's a fool's errand to try to make one UI for two very different platforms. It makes no more sense than trying to graft automobile controls onto a motorcycle or motorcycle controls into a car. They have different "UIs" because they have different needs.

        1. Ian 55

          Re: a definition of insanity

          Quite. You can tell how successful Unity has been by how many people run other versions of Ubuntu (MATE, Lubuntu, etc) or Linux Mint...

  3. ovation1357

    "If we are going to deliver code to 20 million people, it's not a science project, it's not for fun – you can't screw up people's desktops" - If only Mark Shuttleworth had taken that attitude when I was royally screwed over by Ubuntu by them completely ditching GNOME2 (Ok, yes - so the GNOME Project were the actual ones to kill it) and replacing it with unusable early versions of Unity and GNOME3.

    Screwing my desktop up was exactly what he did for fun - I'd invested plenty of my time in customising it only to lose all my preferences and be presented with a choice of two terrible environments (Unity and GNOME3).

    Around the same time the whole privacy debacle kicked off with Ubuntu + Amazon and the combination of those events lead me to Linux Mint with MATE and I've never looked back.

    It is just a pity that there was never a nice migration tool around to allow MATE to pick up GNOME2 preferences and carry them on.

    I totally agree with bombastic bob above - Unity sucks. It's a horrible desktop to use which breaks just about every long-established concept of what makes a good solid desktop environment, and OOB it wants to hog a tonne of RAM and do a load of completely unnecessary whizzy graphical shit making it really slow too.

    I'm still not completely sold on touch-screen smart phones - barely a day goes by when I don't swear at my on-screen keyboard and think, "surely there's a better way to do this," and I sure-as-hell do not want grubby fingermarks over any of my desktop screens!

    Maybe Unity works quite nicely on a phablet, and I'd probably give it a go in that context - but as others have pointed out before: There's a very good reason why Apple have kept iOS and MacOS separate (and I'm no fanboi) but the likes of Cannonical and M$ seem completely blind to this.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Maybe Unity works quite nicely on a phablet, and I'd probably give it a go in that context - but as others have pointed out before: There's a very good reason why Apple have kept iOS and MacOS separate (and I'm no fanboi) but the likes of Canonical and M$ seem completely blind to this."

      Canonical's trying to have a desktop that allows for a flexible UI. Doesn't seem at all strange to me given that Linux desktops really embrace MVC.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        >There's a very good reason why Apple have kept iOS and MacOS separate

        Yes, Apple would like you to buy a Mac and an iPad. To that end, Apple has made it easier to use them in concert - ie, Continuity (open a document in your iPhone and it will be open on your Mac), OSX Photoshop can have tool palettes displayed on an iPad, Wireless MIDI baked into to all iDevices so they can just be a control surface.

        Google too, as cloud providers, are geared towards the user having both a phone and a Chromebook - though of course they don't really care whose device you use as long as you use their services.

        There is some scope for crafting applications that play nice between tablets and desktops (and of course 'convertibles'), but this idea of plugging a phone into a monitor is just daft, now that ARM SoCs are as cheap as (potato) chips.

        1. Updraft102 Silver badge

          "Apple has made it easier to use them in concert - ie, Continuity (open a document in your iPhone and it will be open on your Mac), OSX Photoshop can have tool palettes displayed on an iPad, Wireless MIDI baked into to all iDevices so they can just be a control surface."

          And all that without MacOS and iOS being the same thing! You can have desktop and mobile versions of (say) Office or whatever else you want to run, and have them be highly interoperable and cloud-enabled, without them actually running the same OS.

          The Apple fans have it good now (presuming they're already OK with the Mac's relative lack of software support). They get iOS that is (as Apple sees it) optimized for touch devices, MacOS that is (also as they see it) optimized for PCs, and all of the interoperability too. The only negative, if you see it as such, is that neither MacOS nor iOS is suitable for a potential future convertible Macbook/iPad.

          I don't really see that as a big issue; I'd rather have a tablet optimized for being a tablet and a separate laptop optimized for being a laptop rather than one device that has a keyboard that snaps on and off and tries to be both. Once again, there's the issue of a a Jack of all trades being the master of none. If the devices are "cloud" enabled, they can sync easily and automatically without having to actually be one device.

          As such, the convertible 2 in 1 seems more to me like a "gee whiz" gimmick than a tool for which there is a lot of utility. A particularly good 2 in 1 might have all of the components of a real laptop (I like DTR-class laptops, not ultrabook types; that would be what I would look for, if it even exists) integrated into the keyboard/base and all of those of a real tablet in the screen; when docked,it would mainly use the tablet portion as a display and touchscreen, with the laptop base handling the main storage and computation.

          In that case, there would be little or no compromise in terms of performance, but the end product in laptop form would be heavier than an equivalent laptop that wasn't convertible (since the convertible has all those redundant components in the screen section). It also would carry roughly the same cost as two separate devices, since all of the components of a separate tablet and laptop would have to be installed in the all-in-one too, save one LCD screen and backlight.

          The benefit would be that you only have to carry the one device if you're travelling... but again, with the kinds of laptops I prefer, I'd have a decent sized protective case if I were going anywhere (and I do have such a case that has served me well for more than 10 years), and it would easily accommodate a tablet with a screen size equivalent to that of the laptop in addition to that laptop itself. In that case, the weight of the two separates would be greater than the all-in-one... but all things considered, I'd still prefer that setup to a convertible.

        2. Roland6 Silver badge

          Yes, Apple would like you to buy a Mac and an iPad. To that end, Apple has made it easier to use them in concert - ie, Continuity

          But the fundamental concepts of Continuity were developed at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center as part of its Ubiquitous computing research project in the late 1980's, which showed the need for different forms of system devices, each targetted at a particular UI/UX function.

          So whilst Apple might want you to buy a Mac, an iPad, an iPhone, an iWatch etc, it doesn't invalidate the underlying utility of having different device forms and having them co-operate.

  4. Tom 7 Silver badge

    The one interface to rule them all

    should be shoved so hard up the crack of doom you wont hear it ring ever again.

    1. tr1ck5t3r
      Trollface

      Re: The one interface to rule them all

      Totally agree, its not like a car dashboard, where a manufacturers dashboard is pretty standard across the entire range. Ok so VW have probably the best dash for driving, with red needles as red focuses the mind, with blue background not straining or interfering with the night vision when driving at night.

      You can tell which car companies have thought things through to some point, but there again, Volvo like their dials, because you can operate dials without taking your eyes off the road, handy if you want to adjust your cabin temp without thinking.

      There again Tesla can absorb you in their tablet dashboard all they like just so long as the car can drive itself. On the other hand if it cant drive itself and you want to adjust something on the stuck on tablet, lets hope you are female and can multi task!

      Ubuntu I'm losing patient with, they don't even ship an enabled GUI firewall like GUFW, so if you boot from a live cd and don't have the ready made scripts to configure iptables, in a hostile environment, then those bad bots will pwn your live CD experience in a matter of seconds, especially if you use a an ADSL modem like a Draytek Vigor 120 to get online with.

      So just how do they plan to attract new users who are not technogeeks?

      And they say Linux is more secure.......

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: The one interface to rule them all

        they don't even ship an enabled GUI firewall like GUFW

        I've found the lack of decent personal firewall products for Linux irritating but then having used Outpost on Windows for many years I've probably been spoiled...

      2. Ian 55

        "don't even ship an enabled GUI firewall like GUFW"

        One of the features of the first versions of Ubuntu was that, unlike say Windows, it didn't have any open ports listening and exploitable 'out of the box'.

        Has this changed?

    2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

      Re: The one interface to rule them all

      It's not that clear.

      I declined to use Unity on Ubuntu, but not by switching to Mate, but by using the Gnome Fallback, which actually looks and feels a lot like Gnome 2. I found that I preferred to continue to use Ubuntu than one of it's derivatives, mainly because of the additional Gnome tools that you would need to find alternatives for.

      The reason I didn't like Unity on a desktop/laptop, is that the early releases made it awkward to have more than one window visible on the screen. Applications would open full screen, and often, trying to open a second instance of an application dropped you back into the first instance, rather than opening a new one. It followed the Mac idea that window controls were best on a bar at the top of the screen, rather than attached to the window, In early releases, this was take it, or don't use Unity - there were no configuration tools to change the behavior.

      These issues can now be configured, so I can at least use Unity on my laptop, but I still prefer not to.

      But that's not my whole story. When I needed a second mobile phone because of poor network coverage in two locations where I spent significant amounts of time, I decided to get a second-hand Nexus 4 and put Ubuntu Touch on it.

      Unity on this platform makes a lot of sense, and once you've got to grips with right, left and top swipes, it's a very suitable platform for devices where you only have one application visible at a time. I would actually think about using it as my primary phone, if I was not so attached to some of the Android apps. I would be very interested to try it out on a tablet, if only there was a reference hardware device available at a reasonable price second-hand that had a current build.

      1. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Re: The one interface to rule them all

        "I found that I preferred to continue to use Ubuntu than one of it's derivatives, mainly because of the additional Gnome tools that you would need to find alternatives for."

        They're all available in the Ubuntu official repo, which Mint uses. Just install 'em and go!

        1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

          Re: The one interface to rule them all @Updraft102

          Well, I suppose I'd better come clean, because the version I actually used was Mint Debian edition, where you don't use the Ubuntu repositories.

          I liked the idea of no dist-upgrades and a rolling upgrade policy, but did not like the fact that all the default installed tools had different names (which was important when you start, for example, gnome-terminal from the command line), nor the (irrelevant in this case) fact that the packages in the Debian repositories are frequently rather old.

          It's my laziness, I admit.

          I do sometimes wonder, now there are more usable official editions of Ubuntu (like the MATE and Gnome edition), why the derivative Mint distros are still as popular as they are.

  5. Avatar of They
    Thumb Down

    Ubuntu meh!

    Unity was the death knell for me, quickly hammered in by its Amazon links. I went to MINT - I think it was a memory hog on older systems, or just didn't seem slick or fast so I didn't take to it. And not being able to see the tiny arrows showing me I had open windows or scrolling without a mouse wheel just seemed odd.

    Recently I got the Dell xps with ubuntu native to it and I have to suffer Unity in a later version and can't get away from it. Four years on and still can't see tiny arrows showing me open windows and on a 4k screen it is even worse for my eyesight. Add in that I have icons scrolled off the bottom and on a touchpad I don't have a mouse wheel so can't scroll up or down in windows and I wonder who actually prefers Unity and why Ubuntu continue to steam roller ahead with it.

    Thoughts of an all inclusive on any desktop version of Unity makes me shudder. This movement to having to type everything as it doesn't list your icons anymore, how will that work on a touch pad? What about scrolling in a window because the scroll bar on the side has gone. Going to have to overhaul a lot more than pretty icons to make it seamless between formats.

    1. Bela Lubkin

      Re: Ubuntu meh!

      Um. There are approximately 50 window managers in the Ubuntu repositories.

      This returns 57 matches:

      $ ### sudo apt install aptitude ### if necessary

      $ aptitude search '?and(!~ri386,~Pwindow-manager)'

      -- of which half a dozen are essentially duplicates.

      $ aptitude search '?and(!~ri386,~Psession-manager)'

      returns 7 non-duplicates.

      Neither of those are a good comprehensive list of "desktop environments" available in Ubuntu. That would be some sort of matrix of window manager x session x who knows what else, numbering in the thousands of possibilities.

      The problem isn't that you're stuck on Unity, but that there's an overwhelming sea of possibilities with nary a map in sight.

  6. wolfetone Silver badge

    Canonical need to learn one thing and do it right: "If it isn't ready, don't release it".

    Yes they need to test these things but Joe Public who installs Ubuntu just wants something that works. They don't want to have to fiddle with the OS. If they wanted to fiddle, they'd pick Debian or Arch, maybe even Slackware. They want the eye candy, they want stability, they want to be able to install software easily and have it work reliably.

    If none of these happen, they get mightly pissed off. And as Ubuntu is really many a new users first taste of Linux, these things can leave a sour taste and stop these users embracing Linux for a while after.

    So please, Mr.Shuttleworth, concentrate on doing one thing and doing it well: Release When Ready.

    1. Sproggit

      Agreed

      It was the combination of the enforced switch to Unity and then Shuttleworth's decision to start selling your local search terms to Amazon that drove me away from what had always been a solid distro. 12.04 was my last ubuntu system and whilst it was good, I don't miss it.

      IMHO the single biggest mistake that Shuttleworth made was forcing Unity on people before it was ready. I am sure that his reasons were benign - i.e. getting more people to test the code - but it was not ready for GA release and should never have been allowed to be the initial desktop. Especially as the ability to add an extra desktop and then select which at log-in time is so trivially easy...

      However, what disturbs me is the way that Canonical seem to have unilaterally disregarded all other work in this space, thrown all their toys out the pram, and not attempted to collaborate with other projects in this space. As a previous poster has pointed out, it's not like there has been a shortage to choose from. It's clear that the motivator was to get a single interface across multiple platforms, come hell or high water...

      My only question would be: what were the numbers of people either 1) asking for this; or 2) likely to actually use it? I suspect very few - and that this was, in effect, a vanity project sponsored largely by Mark's undeniably deep pockets. Well, I won't knock that - he's doing what he wants with his cash...

      Can't help wonder, though... what could Canonical have turned to if they had listened to users? For a start I'd like to see someone offer us a viable alternative to systemd... Tried that with Mint 18.0 on my system - endless issues with hardware, resulting in a wipe and re-install of the bulletproof Mint 17.3...

      1. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Re: Agreed

        "Tried that with Mint 18.0 on my system - endless issues with hardware, resulting in a wipe and re-install of the bulletproof Mint 17.3..."

        You can boot with Upstart if you like in Mint 18. It's in the default GRUB options under Advanced. Clem has said he does not think SystemD is ready to be the only choice just yet.

        I personally don't quite get why SystemD is so hated. If it always caused issues like yours, that I can understand, but that's not usually what the critics say. I know it's not the Unix philosophy, but apparently, it works well enough to make nearly all distros adopt it, so I don't know.

        I do know that I always booted with Upstart in 18.0, but in 18.1, SystemD works just as well for me, and boots/shuts down quicker too.

        1. Ian 55

          "I personally don't quite get why SystemD is so hated"

          Having just, for the first time, had a problem with booting the main PC after changing some discs, I do.

  7. Paul Woodhouse

    I actually quite like Unity and always did... just seemed to get on with it OK from the start....

    hmm, quite like Mint Mate too though, couldn't stand windows 8...

  8. cantankerous swineherd Silver badge

    "the ever so humble and now taken-for-granted addition of Wi-Fi that worked out of the box."

    been messing about with devuan, wifi still won't work.

    gave up with Ubuntu because of repeated freezes. answer seems to be buy a Mac if you want Linux.

    1. wolfetone Silver badge

      "gave up with Ubuntu because of repeated freezes. answer seems to be buy a Mac if you want Linux."

      Whoever gave you that answer needs a slap.

      It all starts with what WiFi chip you've got. Intel and Broadcom tend to be well supported. Any WiFi device can work, it just needs some work.

      1. Updraft102 Silver badge

        My Atheros (Qualcomm) works beautifully right out of the box (including in the Live session)... never had it drop or freeze in Linux, not even once.

  9. InNY

    Don't like Ubuntu Unity?

    Use something else... that's the joy of the Linux world. Choice. Lots of choice. Don't like any of current distro's on offer? Create your own desktop environment. That's what Linux Mint, and a few others', did, basing their distro on Ubuntu; but you could just as easily roll your own distro using all the free and open-source software out there.

    At the end of the day, it's all about choice and the freedom to innovate and push all of IT forward.

  10. Alister Silver badge

    Put Ubuntu running Unity 8 on a phone and it'll render as a phone, put it on a PC and it'll render as a PC, put it on a tablet and it'll render as a tablet. That's the idea anyway,

    You see this, done properly, would be great. However it is not the same thing at all as " a unified set of experiences across all the kinds of personal computers", which is what Windows 8 and Unity 8 were trying to do.

    A vanishingly small number of desktop users want a touch based interface with big buttons or widgets, in the same way that phone and tablet users don't want cascading menus. To try and enforce the same UI on all possible devices is a stupid idea

    By all means have an overall architecture which is cross-platform, but the way it renders the UI should be device specific.

  11. akeane

    If I said it once...

    https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/command-not-found/+bug/1055766

  12. Scroticus Canis
    Coat

    Being 'fed carrots' or 'getting carrots'

    Common South Africanism - such as: "If you screw this up I am going to feed you carrots!"

    Generally taken as being bent over a desk and forcefully fed carrots anally. To make the point more clear one would also append "... and without Vaseline".

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fake news has truthiness.

    "The Ubuntu installer was superior to those of Red Hat and Debian, with one early Ubuntu evangelist joking that the word "Ubuntu" was African for "Can't install Debian"."

    This context is confusing, does the author not know?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Never name a project "Unity"

    Or "Fusion". It *always* ends badly.

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: Never name a project "Unity"

      More so if it is "cold"

  15. Paul Chambers

    Ubuntu base, but not necessarily unity...

    On a personal level I find getting things working with ubuntu a bit easier than with other distributions. It offers a good balance of bleeding edge, community support, stability, and manageable upgrade cycle. For virtualisation development, ease of use for things like openstack, and general development, it's not perfect, but better than most.

    Unity i don't like, but the availability of so many options on the same base and repositories means there are ways around it. I like the look of budgie, and it will be available as ubuntu budgie from 17.04. It's already workable, and likely my direction of travel in the short term.

  16. Oh Homer
    Linux

    "not working with proprietary..."

    The author got that backwards. It isn't Free Software developers who are keeping secrets from proprietary software developers, it's the other way around, therefore it isn't up to the former to somehow get their software to "work with" the latter, it's up to the paranoid/monopolistic nuts keeping secrets to make those secrets work with our open sources.

    1. Walter Bishop Silver badge
      Linux

      Re: "not working with proprietary..."

      "The author got that backwards."

      Well that statement is from the Registers resident Microsoft booster ..

  17. Chemical Bob

    Naming 17.10

    Clearly, Ubuntu will have to move On Beyond Zebra and name 17.10 "Yapping Yuzz-a-ma-Tuzz"

    Where's the Dr. Seuss icon?

  18. Palpy

    Personally, Unity schmUnity.

    I agree with Paul Chambers. Ubuntu base receives timely updates, runs well on my equipment, and stuff which glitches after a new upgrade (looking at you, Pulseaudio) seems to get "healed" fairly quickly after a few update cycles. (Again, Pulseaudio.) At least in my experience.

    I never did like the Unity dock, but so what. Trivial to add a proper app menu -- if you can mod Windows with Classic Shell, you can mod Unity with Classic Menu Indicator, for instance. No big deal.

    OK, I also like Mint. I also like Qubes. I also like Q4OS. And Win 7. And Android. Also Salix, Manjaro, and Mac (well enough, anyway). So WTF, I'm either easy to please or stupid. Probably the latter. But OS-bashing of and for itself has gotten boring.

  19. E 2

    Maybe Ubuntu can release Mir first on a Power 8 desktop!

  20. dbannon

    Now, there is a surprise !

    "....Shuttleworth says. It's building something that works as it should everywhere and doesn't piss people off."

    OK, so Unity was not an attempt to piss people off ? Grafting a display designed for a phone screen onto a desktop, sorry, I cannot see any reason to do that other than to piss people off. I guess its just possible that someone, somewhere thought it was a useful experiment but surely everyone else in the room could see the piss off potential ?

    Mate works fine, you still get to use Ubuntu and have a grown up interface. But I worry about new to Linux people. They hear Ubuntu mentioned, get the default install and never come back again.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    i get the feeling canonical is in trouble. it was reported that canonical operated at a 2 million dollar loss last year. if you combine this with their insatiable quest for a single ui for all devices that no one is interested in except a fraction of their user base, it's no wonder ubuntu "touch" or the ubuntu phone is shelved. why invest in development for something you cant even monetize? yet, they dumped ubuntu one!....the very infrastructure they could have used to develop a convergence infrastructure THAT COULD HAVE BEEN MONETIZED! my opinion, but i think these are bad choices. my use of ubuntu goes back to 7.04. i went through the changes when they decided to make unity their default desktop when originally, unity (or ubuntu remix as it was back then) was only to maximize netbook screen user space. well that turned out to be a lie and it became the default desktop. then they announced they want to go for convergence on all devices and go for ubuntu touch, using mir . lets not forget, the development of snappy package management... LOOK, unity was enough of a mess. it is terribly unproductive although i like it better than gnome 3, which i hate. mate or xfce is much more organized and productive a desktop than gnome 3 or unity could even pretend to be. but xfce looks like something out of windows 98 ....it's not polished looking. it's better with the whiskers menu, but still not polished. now i hear ubuntu 18.04 will come default with mir and snappy package mgmt? ...i think i'll pass...almost 10 years i've put up with ubuntu's changes...and that is a long time to remain dedicated. but i don't trust mir to be ready for production machines in a years time, also given that they had to shelve ubuntu phones and "touch"? im currently looking for another distro for my default, and i give myself till the release of 18.04 to decide. if i wanted an o/s to dictate to me how it's ui will behave and look, i would have stuck with windows. i need something that is stable, that works, and something i can have confidence in .. i don't have confidence in canonical's direction anymore. and that is sad :(

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ubuntu is the biggest piece of feces out there

    They haven't made a single penny of profit .. support is non-existent. Their deployment are aimed primary at laptops which is a dying product..

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