On Desktop Wars.
Yesterday, after arriving at the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Sevilla,
I had three people in a row claiming one
of the following: "You're a KDE guy, I'm GNOME guy, so we should be fighting
(rather than drinking beer together)", "KDE? Sorry, I'm a GNOME user." or "...
Apart from that being serious or not, I'll take it as an invitation to state my
stance about the relationship between KDE and GNOME:
So it might be easy for KDE and GNOME to pick on each other, but it doesn't make
sense at all. Maturing the platform and the market is what we should aim for,
that strategy will give us a broader userbase than we expect.
Maybe 10x10 isn't realistic because people failed to see that. Maybe
interoperability would already be better if people had understood that earlier.
Personally, being at the Ubuntu Summit in Sevilla at the moment gives me the
unique opportunity to work on that. Some weeks ago, Michael Vogt and
sent me a note that they're working on a GTK-based UI for displayconfig. We'll sit
together this week and think about how we can make configuration of X on the
Free Desktop easier and more reliable for the user.
That is Doing The Right Thing.
- Uptake of one is positive for the other. It's easier to switch from KDE to
GNOME and the other way round than it is to switch from Windows or Mac to Linux,
BSD OpenSolaris or one of the other Free platforms supported.
- If it's either KDE or GNOME (or Windows or Mac for that matter), in the
end that sounds like we're heading from one monopoly into another. That is
something we're actively fighting at the moment. Priorities should be: "Free
Software" and provide choice to the user. KDE and GNOME need
- How much sense does it make to put energy in competing with 2 - 3% of
the market when 90%+ is still running a non-free desktop? (Hint: Zero) Instead
the energy should be put into increasing the market share of the Free Desktop
and then having the user choose. Healthy competition might exist, it might even
make sense, but I'm getting tired of this KDE vs. GNOME stuff. It's showing a
deep lack of understanding and vision.
- Emerging technologies (in this case desktop operating system, and yes,
this clearly is not a mature market yet) always start in a monopoly-like situation. A
stable market's characteristic is that there are a couple of different offerings
and that the user has choice. Maturing the market means:
- A good portion of the market for the Free Desktop (wild
estimation: 30%+ for the Free Desktop as soon as the market
- Various offerings that operate together well.
- Raising awareness of choice for the user. (How many people know
that there's something beyond Windows to run on a computer?)
[ Sun, 06 May 2007 17:39:54 +0200 ] permanent link
This weblog does currently not offer the option to comment. I would be happy to receive an email with your thoughts.
23-11-2007, 18:44 h
© Sebastian Kügler