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Comment: Re:Just turn off dynamic workspaces (Score 1) 248

by jcdr (#48014973) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

Two points:

1) Why this tool is not integrated by default ? It's completely against the usability to require to install a separate application to let user configure ultra basic features of his desktop. On XFCE or MATE for example, configuring almost anything on the desktop just require a right click on the widget you want to change. What wrong with a such simple a easy way ? What the benefit to make configuration more difficult ?

2) Static workspace in Gnome 3 is also a complete failure because all workspace are in a single column. Totally unusable.

I have already analysed the Gnome Tweak Tool in this post: and, sorry, it'a largely not enough for my needs.

Gnome 3 have 2 big failures:
1) His "innovative" usability schema is broken from the view of a so large user base that XFCE and MATE have gain attention that there will never get if Gnome 2 was not discontinued;
2) Gnome 3 team, even after years of evidence, still completely ignore the reality of the situation.

The most bad decision was to discontinue Gnome 2. All the infrastructure under the Gnome 3 have evolved only for the need of Gnome 3 despite the fact that this evolution of the infrastructure would be also a benefit for Gnome 2. Now MATE is heavy working on bringing a good desktop on a modern infrastructure, something Gnome project should have do from the start. Not only Gnome don't recognize that MATE project is making work that there should have done, but Gnome project still ignore the MATE project when there make infrastructure decision. At some point in time this evolution will inevitably clash if more coordination are not put in place.

Comment: Power supply fail before the LED (Score 1) 591

by jcdr (#48004449) Attached to: The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

I tested many different LED since about 10 years ago. My observation is that the lifetime have mostly increased over time, but almost every failure was related to the power supply components.

I observed a single LED component failure on a recent lamp where investigation with a microscope showed a defective wire bonding in the chip where it go trough a semi rigid diffusing material (that chip still work up to a certain temperature and then the the bounding fail until it cool down). For all others failures, the AC to DC converter was in cause. I was not able to investigate all details of them, but I suspect that chemical stability of some components like capacitor might increase stress up to a failure of the capacitor itself or of the power transistor (most of the time integrated into the switching regulator chip). To fit the site of a standard light bulb, those components are very small and are exposed to high temperature for long time. This is almost the worst possible situation for a high power electronic component. I am not so surprised that there are the cause of many failure.

In my test it's clear that the LED that use a separate power supply basically never fail (is used correctly). External power supply can use more big components and it's most of the time possible to avoid exposing them to high temperature. So my hint is to use distribute a low voltage DC current instead of high voltage AC current to power LED. In this category, LED strips are very valuable, as long as the quality of the soldering is good. I have see some LED strips with soldering failure out of the box or after a few month of use.

Good quality LED strip with external power supply is actually the best value in my test. I gradually replace everything with that.

Comment: Re:Just turn off dynamic workspaces (Score 1) 248

by jcdr (#47997955) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

There's actually a lot of things that can be configure, it's just that the UI does not allow it. This will hopefully be improved one day.

If it's a joke, this is a very bad one. Hell, this is not even a joke but the crude reality of Gnome 3... Users complain got directly into /dev/null !

Dynamic workspaces can be disabled. GNOME Classic uses this setting by default. You can easily change it with gnome-tweak-tool.

So I need to install a magic application to configure ultra basic features of the desktop. I wonder how it was decided to not integrate this application... Why someone will have something to configure ? So why gnome-tweak-tool even exists ?

I changed the dynamic workspace to static workspace. There is only 36 workspace available (I used to have 64 in a 8X8 array some years ago) and Ahhrggg !!! There are all in an single column: completely useless.

You don't need to use the mouse at all. Use your super/windows key to bring up the Activities view, then just type what you want and hit return.

Why will I ever use a mouse on a desktop computer ? Are you serious ? Having a good shortcut will never be a usable workaround for a completely broken UI. And how a newbie will ever learn this shortcut ? Why bringing an UI with animation if at the end the only efficient way to use it is by using keyboard shortcut ?

You can drag and drop any application that you want there.

MATE or XFCE allow far more applications to be dropped anywhere on the panels or desktop. But most important there directly have a very clear and usable application menu with categories: something all newbies understand immediately and take no time to learn.

There's a shortcut, super+a will bring up the applications view.

Again why an UI ? Why a mouse ? How newbie learn that ? It's strange how Gnome 3 is unable to be usable with a mouse compared to all others desktop out there... What for a progress ! Ouch !

No, but you can create folders from the Software application.

Did you know that distribution already do categories for there packages ? Why Gnome don't use that ? Why should I manually do that work while others desktops have it automatically since so many years ? Where is the feature of removing that ?

Most of this can be fixed within gnome-tweak-tool. You should check it out.

I have checked and no. gnome-tweak-tool solve only a few problem I listed here. It allow to add a application menu with categories. Whoow ! I wonder why there have to keep this so advanced feature (sarcasm) in a secret tweak tool if nobody ask for it... Arg! Impossible to drop an application in the panel from this application menu entries. Must be a even more secret feature... A lot of extensions descriptions are so short that there left me wondering what there intended to do. More ridiculous even that short description are sometime cropped by the default width of the gnome-tweak-tool window. I tried the system monitor, and see no visible effect. I tried some others extensions that display something on the top panel and found no way to move them around.

Granted, there is exactly zero feature in the current Gnome 3 that I would like to see in MATE. Gnome lack a lot of features that others desktop have since many many years. And it's not like is Gnome 3 is just born and still need major work. No. Gnome 3 is there since many years too and his team think that he so fine that one of the leading feature of the today release is new animations on open/close windows and button toggle...

I am not a child expecting a new animation in a toy desktop. I need a desktop to do my real work and I don't need animation for that, but a real state of the art desktop like MATE.

Comment: Re:MATE is still far more advanced in usability (Score 1) 248

by jcdr (#47997397) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

I also use XFCE4 on my main Debian wheezy machine with a 6x7 workspace array because MATE was not available on that release. I have an other test machine with MATE and Gnome on Debian jessie. I did not talked about XFCE4 because I think that MATE is a more promising project, despite XFCE4 having some good original ideas that I would like to see on MATE.

Thanks for the qubes-os link. It certainly a good idea, not only to bound desktop applications, but also services. I hope that this kind of technology will be the default someday. This could enable everyone to securely run there own services and global could contribution without relying on commercial big farms. The future of project like Debian could be in that direction because there will probably never get enough finance to maintain a big farm, but demand for better files spreading, more computer power, and faster community communication with the users will rise in the coming years.

Comment: Re:MATE is still far more advanced in usability (Score 1) 248

by jcdr (#47993287) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

Lack of systemd integration was the point Debian use to decide witch back from XFCE to Gnome instead of MATE:

"Systemd/etc integration: Xfce, Mate, etc are stuck paying catch-up to
ongoing changes in this area. There will be time to hopefully iron these
issues out during the freeze once the tech stack stops changing out from
under them, so this is not a complete blocker for those desktops, but
going by the current status, Gnome is ahead."

I was very surprised by that point that I was not aware of before. I still think that MATE bring a better usable desktop as of the today state of jessie.

Comment: Re:Just turn off dynamic workspaces (Score 2) 248

by jcdr (#47992909) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

I just tried Gnome 3.12.2 from a freshly updated Debian jessie and no, there is still nothing configurable at all on that desktop. This is the big major difference from MATE and XFCE4 where everything is configurable by just a right click on the widget you want to change. On Gnome 3, even after years of complain, there is still absolutely nothing configurable at all.

So sorry, your claim is false: there is no option to disable dynamic workspaces and there is no option to disable top-left corner gesture. I have found 3 way to start the Preferences application (from the user menu top-right, from the application icon bottom-left, from a right click on the background). None allow to configure what you claim.

And finding an application is still a nightmare. Still the same nonsense of having to go to the top-left activity menu, but warning, be precise because the top-left corner is just a few pixel away. On a 4K display this is just a torture to not hit the top-left corner when you wants to click on the top-left activity menu. Still, the activity menu is in fact not a menu but a vertical bar with few big ugly icons of something I rarely use, not even a web browser.... I have no clue how there chose to display those useless icons. Still have to got to the bottom-left of the screen (from the top-left of the screen, try that on a 4K resolution) to click on the application array. But why ? This array use so big icons that only a few of then are displayed. Might be on purpose, because there are very very few applications on the full array anyway compared of all the application available on the system from the MATE application menu. Still no categories ? I have no clue about how look the icons of the applications I wants and the text is not only ridiculously small but cropped !!!! Yes, on a 4K display will 3840 pixel width, Gnome 3 fail to display the full name of a few applications icons in a row even with a almost unreadable small font !! Such a big failure. Completely useless.

Back to MATE, quickly...

Comment: Re: MATE is still far more advanced in usability (Score 1, Interesting) 248

by jcdr (#47991849) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

I build Linux embedded systems since 15 years ago, and in each single project there was an specifically developed application to start, monitor, spread events, and stop applications in an dependencies scheduled timing when different events occurs (like electrical signal change, device detection or removal, etc...). Init V design can't be used to do that without a incredibly hard work, and a complete nightmare regarding maintenance.

Systemd solve in an acceptable (and now accepted) way a lot of basic but hard problems on dynamic systems. Yes it is more complex than init V, because it solve problems that init V it completely unable to deal with. The actual big problem is that most users don't understand how complex it is today to maintain a modern distribution where the same users expect that everything is magically dynamic and fast. The crude reality is that init V was simply never designed to be dynamic and fast.

Now systemd is not already perfect and probably need some improvement in some area (like an ACID compliant log for example). But this is an important achievement, so don't ignore it, because it will be everywhere in a few years. And if something really bad will be found to be enough the kill the systemd project, be certain that his replacement project will keep a lot of his features and will still be far more complex than init V.

The init V days are counted since the upstart project proved some of his goals, almost exactly like the static /dev days was counted when devfs proved some of his goals. Finally udev replaced static /dev and devfs. Now systemd is on track to replace init V and upstart.

Comment: MATE is still far more advanced in usability (Score 2) 248

by jcdr (#47991339) Attached to: GNOME 3.14 Released

Especially when you have a lot of virtual desktops and a lot of windows. I use a fixed array of 8*6 virtual desktop where I statically organize the multiple projects I work on. Very easy to setup with MATE. Same goal impossible to archive with Gnome because the virtual desktops are organized dynamically. With MATE I can switch very quickly to the virtual desktop I want because there position are fixed and my brain can learn a corresponding map of them. I don't even have to think about how to go to the right virtual desktop, it's so easy that it's almost a reflex. No animation make the switch fast and without visual fatigue.

The whole Gnome3 UI concept look completely ridicule on a 4K screen. It wast all the space so efficiently that it make my new 4K screen look like the old 1080p one. Whit MATE you really enjoy more available space.

Finally a strongly hate the upper corner hook trick that wast time to randomly move all windows out there in a unpredictable position. It broke the static mapping I have in my brain and distract me from my work. On a 4K screen the MATE the top and bottom tiny bars take almost no place and provides direct access to applications menu and windows list without useless animation that broke the actual layout.

I don't need a UI for a smartphone on my desktop as I don't need a UI for a desktop on a smartphone !
Please help MATE to integrate systemd so I can be the default desktop on Debian.

Comment: Re:Do the math (Score 1) 168

by jcdr (#47953173) Attached to: My resting heart rate:

Nice wording, but statistics and simple math are very bad for modeling a heart.
In practice this measure have a tolerance margin of approximately +50% and -100%.
And there is a minimal beat frequency to allow the brain to enjoy what's we commonly understand as a human life.

Comment: Re:Windows 8 (Score 1) 727

by jcdr (#47728279) Attached to: Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

I run a single 4K monitor setup with a fixed grid of 8 x 8 virtual desktops to work on a lot of projects. Sloppy focus is a requirement: so much natural and efficient. Using alt-tab of upper left corner to switch application is a total vast of time. Either you better have to put widows side by side to not switch at all, or use the taskbar/taskmenu to directly raise the one you want, because on a machine with close to 100 windows the "always changing position in the list" of the atl-tab menu is a nightmare. I use Ctrl-Up/Down/Left/Right to quickly switch between virtual desktop with a single hand. Add Shift to move the focused window across the virtual desktop. There is absolutely nothing floating, moving, growing or shrinking dynamically: no effect at all. This make all the operations immediate, blazing fast, and perfectly predictable in my brain without looking at something other than the task I am working on. In addition, I have found that no effect is the best setup to lowering visual fatigue.

I have tried multiple times to get the same comfort and efficiency with Gnome 3, but it's actually not possible to reach the level of xfce4 or mate. From a high level Gnome 3 look like it can do it, but so many details are broken/unconfigurable that in fine it's just a vast of time.

Comment: Re:Windows 8 (Score 1) 727

by jcdr (#47727549) Attached to: Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

I don't known what work you do with your Gnome 3, but for anything more than basic task it's a complete failure.

The panels management, something that reached the perfect stage in Gnome 2 after a decade of effort, was completely trashed away with nothing close to replace it. The upper right corner application switch is totally ineffective on big resolution screen like 4K. Removing the trivial application menu is not a simplification at all. The virtual desktop management completely broke the fact that the human brain work mainly with spatial representation. The window management is full of bugs that make too many applications a frustration to use. Almost any good panel plugin was either trashed or replaced by a inferior and unstable version.

I actually work with Debian Xfce4 and it's a usable replacement of Gnome 2 after a full day of configuration tricks. I have a others machines: one with Ubuntu Unity, one with Debian Gnome 3, one with Debian Jessie Xfce and Mate, and a last one with Mint Mate to be able to test different systems. Mate will certainly be my choice when I will switch to Debian Jessie on my main workstation.

My girlfriend use maily the Gnome 3 machine but also regret the Gnome 2. My children use manly the Ubuntu Unity and Debian Jessie with Xfce or Mate. The vastly prefer Mate or xfce desktop. That said there even more prefer Mint Mate because of the innovative well designed application menu and application installer, even if it is a bit slow from my point of view. If there is a future in the desktop usability, you should look in that direction instead of degrading a computer to the usability of a mobile phone like Unity or Gnome 3 do.

Comment: Re:Linux could own the desktop... (Score 1) 727

by jcdr (#47719851) Attached to: Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

It's not realistic to get a such deb-pkg error from a python wrapper is you wanted to create a package containing only a binary application.

I have packaged many binary applications without any problem, this is in fact the most easy way to create a package. The tools to do that are well tested and reliable.

This process is nothing related on how you have compiled and linked your binary application. In some project this includes some horrible hack to link proprietary binary libraries compiled with old or unusual compiler. If you get the stage where the result work, then packaging it is trivial.

System checkpoint complete.