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Enlightenment GUI

Rasterman leaves RedHat 446

poohbear_honeypot wrote in with the full text of Raster's letter to the mailing list, which is below. Essentially, Raster has left Red Hat for greener pastures, and (surprise, surprise) is headed West. He asks that people hold off on e-mailing for the next week or so. For the gory details, click below.
"From Rasterman on the Enlightenment Mailing List:

Well I thought I'd send this mail out now...

The short and curly:

As of friday the 28th of May I no longer work at Red Hat Software. The story is along ad will be explained sometime later - it's been brewing for months though.

I am now officially unemployed.

I am as happy as chickens in a seed farm.

As of tomorrow , June 1, 1999 I will be leaving North Carolina and moving west. I currently have no other employers.

This is all good for E and E development.

I am so glad to get out of ths creativity-stifling environemnt of RHAD LABS - away from certain people there who see E and its userbase as what I can literally quote them saying a "festering crowd".

I've tolerated this attitude towards E users for way too long. I do not envisage much future support from Red Hat for Enlightenment - they have been itching to get rid of E and will as soon as they can. I don't much care. They can do whatever they like - and I wish them all the best but I do not fit in there. E does not fit in there. They want a windows clone distribution and OS. I do not. They don't believe users really count - corporates and "partners" count and what they percieve as the "business world that wants an exact windows clone" counts.

I am not advocating changing distribtuions, but I am saying that this is onyl good for E - I will be freed up to concentrate on it and associated projects (that includes working on X and extensions to X). This also means i will be able to develop E free of GNOME. E is NOT GNOME's Window Manager - GNOME does not have one. Infact E will be workign to becoming its own desktop shell (I separate Desktop and Desktop Shell here for a reason) in its own right as time moves on - but unlike GNOME I won't make a vaporware publicity stunt out of it until there's something concrete there. E is getting on and a lot of important backend code is in place. After a few more necessary features it will start to grow into a desktop shell (a desktop shell is what I term the combination of Filemanager, Window manager and a Panel app launcher and an "applet/dock" holder). This means E is independant of whatvere desktop apps you use - you can use KDE apps, GNOME apps, GTK apps, X apps, Motif apps, CDE apps - whatever apps you like - but your desktop shell will be consistent and configurable to exactly how you want it. You alreayd knwo E's memory footprint is pretty small - especialyl compared to those of gnome and KDE (when you add the memory use of all the applets, panels, programs, wm etc. of each they add up to much much much more than E). E can absorb much of the functionality of these with very little overhead since it's already got the backend code there in E. Once the desktop shell for E is compleyte, debugged, optimised and so on E will hit 1.0 - but I'mnto setting a time limit on this - this happens when it's done and not before.

If you want to help: sit tight and stick to E - send good feedback and bug reports - We DO listen to them. Send patches to E if you want features. When the new dock applet apiu is done you can all scrutty off and write 5000 loadmeters, cd pplayers etc for E's new dock applet api (yes non square 64x64 dock apps - any size, anywhere (in the dragbar, in small windows, on the desktop istelf). all "dock applets" for E will follow the theme of the WM. This has yet to be worked on but will be - as well as adding in the iconbox again (that comes first).

Expect E to go far.

For the next week I'll be driving across the USA so dont' expect much response from me - after that I'll be moving into a new home, but therafter expect things to move along again.

I do hope we are doing things right by the majority of e users out there. You are my priority - not commerical interests, not political games, not a windows clone, not GNOME, not KDE - users come first. Those that help wiht the project get their wishes often done sooner than others becuase there aren't many working on E.

Here's to a bright future for Enlightenemnt and for all who use it.

-- --------------- Codito, ergo sum - "I code, therefore I am" --------------------
The Rasterman (Carsten Haitzler) raster@rasterman.com Raster's Page raster@linux.com "

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Rasterman leaves RedHat

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  • that's not true at all.
    In fact, I work on enlightenment at VA.

    Geoff Harrison (http://mandrake.net)
    Senior Software Engineer - VA Linux Labs (http://www.valinux.com)
  • This brings up an interesting side-issue...is scalability a feature that is considered in UI design? It doesn't seem to be, although I really do want it.

    I have all the problems AC does with Windows and trying to run a lot of small applications. The entire OS from the internals all the way up to the UI is designed around running a handful of really bloated applications. It has problems coping with lots of small applications, or combining applications in useful ways (unless of course the applications involved are designed from the ground up to work with each other--and conceptually that's just really one application with two inseparable modules).

    I've never been able to make Windows understand that I want all text and border decorations to be minimally sized because I want to put ~20 windows on the display at the same time. In Linux this isn't always trivial but it's at least possible.

    Personally, I'd like to use a UI (as well as its associated "look and feel" rules, which are really conventions for application implementors) such that applications will run as well on my 1600x1200x24 X display(s), with dozens of open windows, as they do on a Palm Pilot's 160x160x1 stylus screen. Unfortunately, many modern applications have difficulty even resizing their windows that small, much less working afterwards.

    Interestingly enough, the Palm Pilot Developer's Guide (http://www.palm.com/devzone/docs/pptdg/TableOfCon tents.htm suggests that Palm applications, _unlike desktop applications_, should be small and fast, should display useful information to the user right away, and be task-specific. This implies to me that somewhere there's an unwritten rule that desktop applications should be slow and bloated, should require the user to fight with the UI to get the information they want, and should include all sorts of features unrelated to the task they perform. Frankly, I prefer single clicks instead of double clicks (gosh, when was the last time I ever double-clicked for anything other than selecting words from text? 1996? Even Windows' right-click-drag-release for "open" is better than double-clicking...), I like applications that try to display maximum useful information in limited screen area (or, conversely, display maximum aesthetic appeal given unlimited screen area), and I like applications that are task-oriented and don't try to do everything that other apps already do.

    Of course the Palm's GUI design is a direct copy of the MacOS design in many places, and I am impressed with how well it has managed to capture almost all of the MacOS flaws. They could have built the system around Unix-like text files (with transparent compression for data transfer and long-term storage to conserve memory) instead of the broken MacOS creator/type filesystem--at least that way you'd have some hope of combining two small, memory-limited applications into one larger, more useful one. Thank God it doesn't have a Windows Registry...
  • Anyhow, E's look is nice and all, but gnome's outright refusal to adopt a window manager has annoyed me to no end. I change gtk, I have to change gnome separately. Gtk and gnome never look quite like they match up, and of course there's a whole new drawing layer on it.

    As for Kwm (Raster does talk about E in KDE after all), it uses Qt as its toolkit. Same idea as mwm using motif. The window menus and root menus and such, they're KDE menu objects (derived from Qt). No wheels reinvented here.

    In the gnome app list, I see a gtkwm that aspires to do the same, but it appears to be forever vaporware. Could some enterprising soul who knows window managers perhaps take up this project? It's ridiculous to have a window manager represent a code fork from a desktop environment.

    As for reply links ... I simply have no link to reply to this article, and the moderator dropdowns show up inlined. kfm seems to be awful funny with forms... So anyhow I'll piggyback my reply to someone famous, hopefully it won't be moderated down :)
  • just my 2 cents...
    personally, I think that in the world of linux, no standards are imposed on anyone. i use RPMs because they are convenient, not because i have to. i have seen plenty of things to download in .deb format, but that would require downloading something else to unarchive it, and im sure the majority of the people are just too lazy to do it.
  • The KDE developers list is an output-only medium, just like the regular media: There is no way to correct anyone on kde-devel list, given that only developers get post access, but everyone can read.

    As it stands, Matthias opinion on the hype of Gnumeric and his "comparission" on the code quality are unfounded.

    His bashing on other free software projects on that list are as bad as the ones I have been criticized for (hey, it was my *opinion*).

    I did look at KSpread code when writing Gnumeric, hoping to get some good ideas from it, but I was rather dissapointed with the code.

    Why does he say it is overhyped? Mistery; Why did the pink rabbit die? Mistery; Why did he spread miss-information about Gnumeric? Mistery again; Why does he imply we have some marketing team to market Gnumeric? Mistery once more; Why do I love Paris? Because of the coffee.

  • I think you're right, but missing the point. From a general employer/employee point of view, you are absolutely correct. The employee was hired to do a job, and to do it under the direction of the company. I don't know what Raster's contract said, but I'm guessing that he was paid to develop E. As his employer, Red Hat has (well, had) the right to tell him how to do that.

    But I think that j-edge's comparison to a music artist selling out is very apt. Raster has his own concept of how he wants E to work. If he was instructed to develop it in ways contrary to his plans, he could follow orders and perhaps feel like he sold out, or he could keep his vision and leave his job. It comes down to artistic integrity (and coding can very definitely be an art form).

    I haven't looked at E's code, but from the interface, I'd say the Raster's pretty talented. I don't think that he'll have a problem finding work. He might want to consider doing the sort of thing Linus did--explicitly searching for a job that that doesn't involve E. In such a job, he might not have as much time to develop E, but there would be no conflicts of the nature we're seeing here.

    --Phil (May we all be lucky enough to find a job where "work" and "play" intersect.)
  • by ywwg ( 20925 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:38AM (#1873317) Homepage
    For all those who were worried about Red Hat becoming the next Microsoft, their fears seem to be at least partly justified. If their goal is to create an "exact windows clone," and they consider businesses better friends than users, it suddenly becomes clear why fvwm95 is their default WM even though it sucks.

    My only hope is they don't force standards on us. For all those who say that isn't going to happen, just look at RPMs. Who distributes using DEBs?

    Maybe Corel will get it right?
  • Actually with a bit of configuration kdm, the kde xdm replacement lets you do just that at login time. I find that quite useful. Most of the time I want kde, but when I have to do something quick under X, then log right back off, twm or blackbox meets my needs quite well.
  • by Morgaine ( 4316 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @02:11PM (#1873331)
    Window managers are such a subjective thing that it would be very poor strategy for RedHat to supply future distributions with just a single window manager configured on installation.

    Obviously there has to be a default, but all the other major window managers should be just one simple menu selection away.

    The very least that should be provided are E, WM, fvwm*, icewm, twm and olvwm, and another half dozen or so would be most welcome.

    People have hugely varying tastes and functional requirements, and the ability to choose window managers is one huge advantage that we have over Windows --- RedHat should make the most of that possibility.
  • I had a different experience with RH support. I upgraded several boxes with the RH6 boxed set distribution, and ran into trouble with only one, which happened to have 3c905b NIC. After checking the newsgroups and trying a couple different things, I opened a support ticket.

    I got an e-mail with the answer, within 24 hours, to get the latest Donald Becker driver source for that card as it was not tested and shipped with RH6. I gave it a try and that fixed the problem I was having.

    I saw the next day that this was posted in the knowledge base.

  • No, the list still exists.

    It was removed because we discussed internal stuff in that list, and people used my private comments on a private mailing list to start a flamewar with some KDE people.

    The fact that it was available on the web was a mistake, as it is a private mailing list.

    Nothing about the earlier release of gnome 1.0.

  • by Mandrake ( 3939 ) <mandrake@mandrake.net> on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:29AM (#1873337) Homepage Journal
    actually it's not GPL anymore, it's the X license.
    which is actually a lot freer than GPL.
    and you'll find a lot more people than raster's name in the copyright.
    eesh -ewait "copyright"
    Geoff Harrison (http://mandrake.net)
    Senior Software Engineer - VA Linux Labs (http://www.valinux.com)
  • by Roberto ( 1777 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:18AM (#1873341) Homepage
    If I had achieved 10% of what Matthias has, I would be 10 times more
    annoying than he is (hey, I may already be ;-).

    Besides, you are totally missing the point of what you replied to:

    Matthias is just a developer. He is an extraordinary developer. Hell, he
    writes perhaps the prettiest code I've ever seen, but he is not the
    equivalent of Linus/RMS/Miguel/whatever in one important aspect: he is not
    "the boss".

    You see, he is not humble about his code. He doesn't need to, his code is
    good. He is humble about just being a coder, which is (IMHO) a lot more

    BTW: what he says of KWord and Abiword is actually true.
  • by Bowie J. Poag ( 16898 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @01:52PM (#1873343) Homepage
    Well, this is kind of strange.. Its never good to hear this kind of stuff happen in the family. He alluded to the fact that this sort of tension had been brewing for several months, which makes me think this isnt exactly a spur of the moment decision for him.

    Whatever his decision is, thats cool. It's Karsten's right to flip the bird to whoever he wants..but not without consequences. You have to admit, there are better ways to leave a company..Certainly more professional (and perhaps more mature) ways, at that.

    Publically referring to your former employer as an entity which doesn't care about its user base, and prefers only "commercial interests, political games, and making a windows clone" won't exactly earn you any friends. Or a good employment reference, for that matter. It makes both Red Hat _and_ him look bad.

    My only fear is that whoever his future employer will be will look past his talent and see him simply as a potential risk to the company's public image. If he decided he didn't like my company, and then turned around and slammed MY company in the press like this, I sure as hell wouldn't hire him either, talent or no talent.

    If you dont like where you are, thats fine. Its cool to move on.. But dont spit in the face of people who gave you a shot in the first place. Its not just unprofessional..its also a bit childish, imho.

  • You have threatened to re-write a whole bunch of things though. Maybe someone just assumed you'd done for E what you're doing for spreadsheets and want to do for email, etc.
  • by Scola ( 4708 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @10:57AM (#1873357)
    I've noticed a number of instances where KDE has really had a different culture than GNOME or E, which has led to a different attitude to from the project:

    1. Core KDE developers *never* rip on opposing projects. They attempt to intergrate. I'm sure everyone remembers when KDE anounced Version 1.0 of GNOME promenantly on its webpage.

    2. No publicity stunts. The software's done when it's done. 1.1.1 took forever to get out, but when it was out it worked really well. In fact KDE folks are currently debating whether they should try to pre-release more official stuff in order to generate interest. For example, the koffice daily snapshots won't generate the type of interest a Koffice-0.3 would.

    3. No central cultish leader. Sure it's nice to have what ESR described as the "benevilent dictator", the Linus or the Larry Wall. However, neither Miguel or Rasterman fill this role particularly well. They have the dictator thing down, but not the benevilence. Sometimes, I'd say the FreeBSD/XFree/Apache model of just a bunch of developers works pretty well.

    Just some observations about the way Open Source software works in different cultures.
  • It didn't seem to me that Raster wrote anything bad about Redhat in his message. He only stated that he felt his creativity was stifled. I challenge anyone who has worked under another person not to say the same.

  • where Miguel essentially said he thought E was a piece of sh*t

    Actually, your description of the article seems fairly familiar, altough I am quite sure it was not Miguel behind the sentence.

    Now that I think about it, it was an article titled "The Mad Hatters" by some US newspaper. I guess you'll find the link from GNOME.org [gnome.org]'s news archives.

    (Checking for it, it might be that Frederico could've been interpreted to have said that in the interview, which actually wasn't about GNOME but rather the RHAD labs).



  • According to redhat, they upped the price to deal with the fact that pretty much well everyone who bought a boxed set wanted more technical support than what was previously offered.

    Technical support is *very* expensive, especially when you have a high demand for it.

    Microsoft, on the other hand, upped the price for either greed, and/or to make it seem like its a "better deal".

    Just wait till microsoft moves to a per term licensing scheme like everyone else(ie, Sun, Compiler companies, etc)
  • ----
    The KDE developers list is an output-only medium, just like the regular media:

    I have offered you in the past to forward anything you want to that list, Miguel. It's not output-only for you.

    I remember when you whined about that on IRC... and then oops, you closed gnome-hackers. Bad double standard there, Miguel.

    Don't you have any IRC channels about projects you don't take part of that need crashing tonight, Miguel? Old habits die hard, don't they?

    His bashing on other free software projects on that list are as bad as the ones I have been criticized for (hey, it was my *opinion*).

    Except, of course, that you are the self-appointed GNOME leader, and that you gave your "opinion" on the BBC. If the parallel was more pathetic, it would be emetic.
  • As for adopting one particular Window Manager, I tend to agree with the icewm author: the GNOME WM compliance specification sucks.

    I'd rather see a specification that uses an ORB for communication. If the window manager wants to support GNOME, let it support an ORB -- ORBit's overhead is NOT as much as some raving anti-CORBA fanatics insist. The libraries are already in memory anyway. If the theme applet is run, let it change themes through an IDL interface -- frankly I'd like the window manager to automatically change along with the desktop, and not have to depend on GNOME code to do it. This was the original promise of CORBA (and GNOME): independence from implementation, reliance on interface.

    And as for "gtkwm", "gnomewm", etc., don't hold your breath. Listing a project on GNOME's applist is the Kiss of Death for a stable 1.0 version. If anyone wants to see a window manager using GTK, go get wm2 (the closest thing there is to a reference implementation for X11 window management) and start hacking. Make it scriptable; write an IDL interface to it; let the programmer worry about adding docks and themes and gadgets and root menus and whatever.
  • I sort of agree with you. WMs have different purposes. E looks damn cool. Twm/blackbox are lightweight. Kwm with all the KDE stuff adds a lot of functionality.

    However, I will take this oppertunity to attack the BeOS theme for enlightenment. Whoever wrote that (or at least the one I saw the last time I used someone's machine that was running E) had obviously never used BeOS. The thing in the top right corner had an awkward sort of application launcher thing instead of a process list. For someone who's hactually used BeOS a lot it seemed half-assed and counterintuitive.
  • by Alan Cox ( 27532 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:32AM (#1873392) Homepage
    Does it really matter? Red Hat own the parts of the kernel I work on in Red Hat time. It's GPL'd so its kind of irrelevant.

  • Red Hat shipped an older and buggy (early 1.0) version of GNOME. You can get updated GNOME RPMs [inconnect.com] for Red Hat 6, which will help stability considerably.

    The current CVS GNOME is quite stable. I haven't used E much yet, but hope to get it set up on my Ultra 10 soon.
  • "more stable" ?
    "lighter" ?
    most people who say these types of things don't know much about enlightenment. it doesn't hog memory unless you tell it to, and it certainly doesn't crash all the time like people tend to assume it does.

    Geoff Harrison (http://mandrake.net)
    Senior Software Engineer - VA Linux Labs (http://www.valinux.com)
  • That's all I have to say about that. Leave his immigration status the hell out of it. I'd say he contributes more than most 'mericans BORN here. Just a _little_ off topic ya think? sheesh.
  • Posted by FascDot Killed My Previous Use:

    The point is not that they would close the source. But that they added a killer feature and THEN closed the source.

    Remember, the example assumes RH becomes evil. So they come up with some moderately good idea, patent it (evil, remember), stick it in E and release binary only.

    Suddenly GPL'd E loses the market and RH becomes MS.
    "Please remember that how you say something is often more important than what you say." - Rob Malda
  • Immature? I suppose this depends on your perspective. Refusing to put up with something you don't like and/or believe in, is, IMO, a brave thing to do. In this case it is reasonable to suspect that the company has grown too big to change and "work it out." To think that companies change in this way is somewhat immature in itself.

    Joseph Foley
    InCert Software Corp.
  • Wow, I'm glad a RedHat employee finally said what non-RedHat users have been saying for so long: RedHat does not care about the users, they don't care about open source, they only care about corporations and money. Rasterman's leaving the company only illustrates this clearer.

    "...I wish [Red Hat] all the best but I do not fit in there. E does not fit in there. They want a windows clone distribution and OS..."

    I've been saying this about Red Hat since I first tried it and started X11. What should show up, but a window manager that looks exactly like Windows 95, right down to the "Start" menu and Red Hat's "Control Panel". Some people might say this is to make Windows users feel more comfortable about using Linux, but why should we make our operating system look like theirs? Projects such as Enlightenment are clear examples of the power and capability of Linux, yet Red Hat would rather have its money-paying corporate users run in an environment that looks like Windows 95.

    I wish all the best of luck to Carsten in his move away from Red Hat. I hope the Englightenment project continues to prosper and grow into an even better window manager.
  • by Uche ( 6766 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:32AM (#1873424) Homepage
    GNOME will be next out the door, unless they get the stability issues resolved fast. COL 2.2, SuSE 6.1, Slack 4.0, and Mandrake 6.0 are all using KDE 1.1.1; don't expect to see Red Hat piss away their competitive advantage waiting for GNOME to mature.

    This is arrant flame-bait and not at all necessary. For a long time I used Gnome on one machine and KDE on another. After RH 6.0 came out, I chose Gnome everywhere and erased KDE. Is it so hard for KDE folks to believe that some of us prefer Gnome, and have not experienced any sort of stability problems with it? To be sure, I didn't have any stability problems with KDE either. They both crash much less than Win98, which I am forced to use for some purposes.

    I went from Gnome 0.3 to 0.9, where I stayed for a long time. When Gnome 1.0 was released, I heard a lot of well-considered criticism of its stability and avoided it. I heard that it was fixed by about 1.03 and that's when I first upgraded to 1.x. I simply do _not_ have problems with crashes on my machine: Celeron 400 with 128MB RAM running RH 6.0 + Gnome (RH 5.2 + Gnome + Kernel 2.2. was just as rock stable). Netscape is the only occasional offender, and nothing that kill can't fix. BTW, I do everything from burning CDs to GIMP art to programming (Python, Java, C), etc on my main machine.

    Gnome has as much a place as KDE. The competition between them has made both _much_ better in spite of the childish jabs from either side. Miguel can sometimes overdo the advocacy, but I have also heard (at second hand, admittedly) hair-raising flame-bait from core KDE developers as well.

    And the key point is that Red Hat is not "pissing away" anything by supporting Gnome. In UIs, as in other things, non est disputandum de gustibus. Believe it or not, the fact that RH didn't board your favorite ship does not doom it to oblivion. Nor does the fact that other distros chose another desktop. All it proves is that there is healthy competition in the Linux landscape.


  • ... the news made it into the online version of the Austrian daily newspaper "Der Standard", which is one of the most popular web sites in Austria (2nd at the moment, I think). The headline was "Top-Programmer leaves Red Hat". :-) It concludes that the "commercialization" of Linux would cause more reactions like this among open source programmers... (look here [derstandard.at]). I don't think it's bad to have an exact Windows clone personality for Linux, if it's also more flexible than Windows. There'll always be room for creativity, since everyone's free to change/improve whatever desktop/window manager/variation of Linux they begin with.
  • by Kestrel ( 1301 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:45AM (#1873432) Homepage
    I have been trying to get my college to start using Linux on the desktops for some time now, with almost no success. We have all Linux servers, and the geeks use it, but we can't make any sort of dent in the regular desktop users.

    I was rather pleased to see how Gnome was coming along because I don't rather fancy the look of KDE, although that is what I have been using for the computer labs because it is the most complete system at this point.

    Raster is correct in that E and Gnome are two different beasts. That is the problem. In giving out Red Hat 6.0 CDs to Linux newbies, I have found that they all get incredibly confused by the fact that the level of complexity of Gnome is compounded by a factor of two because of the fact that one must configure the window manager and gnome (sorta like matching your shirt and trousers).

    I think that Red Hat was trying to push E towards being "Gnome's window manager" simply because that is what the most people out here would really really like to see. Gnome fills in the gaps that E leaves rather well, and truth be known, I think that a total integration would make the most sense. Insisting that Gnome be "non window manager specific" is just plain insane on their parts: it NEEDS to be or will forever have that dual configuation hell.

    Despite what might be best for Red Hat, or what the most people want, absorbing E into Gnome most certainly isn't Rasterman would want. I can see why he would feel this way. People do open source software not for the money, but for the glory. There is precious little glory having your work buried into another project.

    So, unfortunately, this shows one of the major weaknesses of Open Source. Because the modivation is notority, it lends itself to programmers whose egos can dictate more than what might be good for the community. Raster meantions that he is motivated by user input, but from what I have seen with the people I have tried to introduce Linux to, an integrated Gnome/E would be the most preferable path to take. While really really pretty, Enlightenment has always been the least usable window manager in any incarnation.

    Admittedly, I don't know what might have gone on inside Red Hat, so I apologise to Rasterman if these comments have sounded overly critical, and certainly neither I nor anyone else should have the right to dictate the course of your life. But I must say that I am disappointed to see that we are less likely to see a more integrated Gnome/E and very disappointed that the change could not have been done in a more gentlemanly manner.

    Surely this will provide a dividing line for the community and a oil tankers worth of fuel for the flame war that will follow.

  • >According to redhat, they upped the price to
    >deal with the fact that pretty much well everyone
    >who bought a boxed set wanted more technical
    >support than what was previously offered.

    If that's the case, then I think they failed to justify the price increase. I got a supported version of Red Hat 6.0 to see how useful it'd be compared to my previous Cheapbytes purchases. When I had a problem with the upgrade and couldn't solve it promptly, I submitted an incident to Red Hat's support page.

    They made no reply after three days, so I solved my own problem instead...just like I'd do with an unsupported Cheapbytes purchase. In my case, Red Hat's support system failed significantly, and I could have saved my money. Next time I need an upgrade, I'll do it the cheap way.

  • by Raleel ( 30913 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @05:18PM (#1873450)
    I don't know Rasterman. I have only used E to some small extent, but enough to know that whatever came with Redhat 6.0 (whether it was E or GNOME's fault) was very slow. E is pretty. I liek the way it looks. I do not like the way it works. But that is ok. I am an ex-windows user. Most people do not care about customizing the crap out of their window manager. They care about what allows them to get their work done. If their IT department mandates a switch from windows to Linux, I say KDE all the way, because they can get their work done quickly. It looks the same. It feels the same. And it was a lot easier to install than E was before RedHat 6.

    As for Rasterman's comments with regards to Redhat. I believe these were extremely unprofessional. I think a simple "creative differences" would have sufficed. But saying that the company stifled your creative energies, etc, etc is a bit more than is needed. All it did was fuel the anti-redhat war.

    Despite what the linux community at large appears to believe, not everyone has time to learn a new OS, a new way of thinking. Thay are not there because of the power of Emacs and grep, they are there because it does not crash. They are there because they can get their work done. IT people like it for remote admining, plus probably the power of the utils. I can vouch for this because I am an IT person, I tried to get a group of windows user to switch, and I knew that they woudl never have time to learn everything. They would rather spend the extra 3 minutes rebooting into something they knew rather than spend an extra 5 learning how to do email, then an extra 5 learnign how to start a command line app, then learn how to tar.

    I know that learning is good (I spent the last year and a half learning linux as much as I could). I know that there are philosophical and ethical reasons for using linux. I don't care about those. I care that it is free (as in beer). I think it is neat that it is free (as in speech). I care that it works, and that the community in general cares more about quality than features. That's why I will use it. And I will keep using distributions that are easy to use.
  • I really like KDE, too, but my God, it is so boring--it *looks* like a WM written by Germans trying to win enterprise desktops. If that's your goal, why not just use WinNT and be assimilated.

    I don't get this; the RedHat default GNOME desktop is fairly Windows-like, too, but you don't judge it based on the default, right?

    KDE has theme support through kdethememgr, with MacOS (even uses a global menubar if you like for KDE apps), Drawing Board, and many other cool themes. Theme support will get even better in the future, with the introduction of Qt 2.0.

    Get your fresh, hot kernels right here [kernel.org]!

  • Raster,

    When you get out to San Francisco, check in at Linuxcare. (650 Townsend, corner of Townsend & 8th, third floor of the Sega building) We'll get you set up with all the local folks, and perhaps we have some mutual interests? In any event we would be pleased to offer you an internet connection and whatever resources you might need to find a place, a shower, and all the arrival basics.

    Take care, Art...
  • If you keep saying it you will eventually believe it and then it will come through. The Linux community will change as it grows, but GNOME KDE and all the other projects can coexist. Look how GNU and Linux combine nicely, despite differences in opinions. Such disagreements are to be expected, but they are not the end of the world. As long as the ideal is bigger than the differences we are okay.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Could you please enumerate to everyone the instances in which Debian has spent money out of its treasury to keep lawyers on retainer, file for trademarks, or fund advertising?

    You're just plain wrong. Money from the Debian treasury has been spent on things like domain name registration fees (and the annual renewal rate).

    If you're referring to the Open Source trademark issue, as I recall Bruce Perens paid for that out of his own pocket (but in the name of SPI), which is one reason he claimed he had the right to transfer it to Eric Raymond without SPI's approval. Now that Bruce and Eric have parted ways, however, I don't know if that reasoning has changed. But that's beside the point.

    Debian money doesn't pay for lawyers or advertising. If we spent our money on things like that we'd be broke in a week.

    As far as the criticisms about "politics" go, this is just a consequence of the fact that 99% of ALL Debian discussions are carried on in the open, on public, archived mailing lists. Debian does not have a dictator, a CEO or a staff of suits to tell us when to jump or how high. The body of developers is self-governing in a way that no commercial distribution can ever hope to be. Technical and political decisions alike are thrashed out in vigorous debate. Corporate boardrooms have closed doors; ours are wide open (except for sensitive issues like security bulletins that are sent to us and which we are asked not to publicize until a certain date).

    Those who are interested may want to read the Debian Constitution [debian.org]. This is our alternative to "do this or we're going to have to let you go." If people want to join our VOLUNTEER project and be dictated to, that's fine, but most of us want a voice, and want to participate in guiding the Project to which we belong. Employees become shareholders in the corporations for which they work for similar reasons. If you think Red Hat is less "political" than Debian, you simply haven't been reading the news.

    -- Branden Robinson, Debian Developer
  • Exactly.. And why they chose to have a plain, flat aqua colored background instead of PROPAGANDA tile is beyond my comprehension. ;)

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I use enlightenment as my standard window manager, i'm not into flash and flair (I use tigert's ShinyMetal theme). TigerT is an outstanding artist, he should make a poster of of that hot air balloon gimp thing, I'd buy it. Anyways, I use E, becuse it's the fastest W i've come across on my hardware K6-2 350mhz/8mb ATI video. Yes, even faster than Blackbox on screen renderings (due to caching i assume). Sure it uses a little more memory, but you get a lot more, too. It's unfortunate that E can't seem to escape its bad fvwm-xpm days image. I recently demo'd my E system at a local Linux user group, and the two most common comments i got were 1) how fast it was, and 2) How nice it looked. E can be as easy to use, or as complicated as you wish to make it. To say its not worthy, because it doesnt run well on a 486, is unfair, no modern M$ OS runs decently on a 486. 486 is nearing obsolescence. for today's standard PII system, it works fine, its completely configurable, fast and flexible. Good luck to you, raster, keep up the good work (there's some of us who use E for work AND play). And christ, man, take some english classes, your spelling is still as horrible as ever ;)
  • Has anyone confirmed that this is real? On rasterman's page ( www.rasterman.com/raster/ [rasterman.com]) he writes:
    Tue May 4 22:54:17 EDT 1999

    OK OK.. The following article here [linuxnewbie.org] Is garbage - I never wrote it, posted it, said it or anything. I don't have a girlfriend... (sux eh?) I live on the 3rd floor, not the 2nd, my computer does all it needs, I haven't given any notice to Red Hat about leaving in any way or form - nor am I intending to, Red Hat is just fine - it's not becoming a huge microsoft, E is NOT dead - damnit.. I'm still patching stuff and am adding features (just been sick for the last week with a flu - thus a bit slow), and no - not all my knowledge is computer based. I can speak German and French pretty well, can paint and draw. Hell it was posted at 6:26pm - I was at the Durham Ball park watching a baseball game with other Red Hat employees at that time. So whoever was so childish as to go posting this complete piece of FUD and GARBAGE I think now would be a good time to come clean and admit it and fix it. I DON'T like people masquerading as me - It's not nice to do it, not gentlmanly, not mature and not intelligent. I have very little respect for such childish behavior. If I have anything to say I'll say it HERE on MY pages at rasterman.com - not at some site I've never heard about until today. (my emphasis) Now back to doing useful stuff, like code... and looking for a girlfriend.... :)

    There is no entry on his page that he is leaving RedHat. However, he DOES say that he is moving to California:

    Sun May 30 17:51:28 EDT 1999

    Pack pack pack pack... I'm packing... wow - my room is almost empty... only the last essentials remain in it - computer, stereo and chair and a suitcaseof clothes... Tuesday morning I'm leaving this god forsaken land they call North Carolina and driving west... and I'm loving the idea.

    In fact I'm never coming back... I'm leaving North Carolina for good and moving... Goodbye sweet Chapel Hill. Adios My dear RTP. I'm so happy to get out! Welcome California sunshine, California girls, California countryside, Real Cities, Supermarkets that sell liquor.

    I'll be driving west from Chapel Hill via I-40 then heading to St Louis, then off to Denver, via Salt Lake City, and finally arriving in the Bay area, Northern California. I'm looking forward to seeing America.

    Fri May 28 12:59:15 EDT 1999

    Don't mail me! :)

    Next week I'm going to be gone and completely out of contact - I'm taking a long trip across the country, so if you expect a reply to your mail.. um.. well then.. don't.

    So, we know for sure that he is leaving North Carolina, but not that he is quitting RedHat. Can anyone verify more than this? Was his post signed?
  • by esacevets ( 26712 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:47AM (#1873492) Homepage
    I met Carsten once, at the 1998 Linux Expo (and what a blast that was). He struck me as a highly creative mind, with a desire to create software that is innovative above all else.

    RH, it seems, wants to target the mainstream user. Simplicity is their goal.

    Both are great goals. But these are divergent goals. it is sad to hear of the sniping and infighting in RH. But, perhaps, this is more proof the the Linux Revolution (tm) is in full swing. This simple software can be stretched into countless directions. In essence, this CAN be a good thing for us all.

    Good luck, Raster. I will keep your RH business card as a collector's item.

    JL Culp
  • by Rahga ( 13479 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @10:29AM (#1873496) Homepage Journal
    Mandrake said he does not presently have a job.
    And as far as most of you should be concerned, raster has said of GNOME-vs-KDE
    "I wish people would quit fighting and start coding."
    Quit wasting your breath, people, and get a life. Start making your own stuff, most of this chatter is useless. Find a better way to waste breath :)
  • You can install debian packages on any machine with tar, gzip, and ar. No dpkg is needed. Try 'ar x file.deb' sometime.
  • by Alan Cox ( 27532 ) on Tuesday June 01, 1999 @02:55AM (#1873499) Homepage
    My palmtop is a 486. I care it runs stuff well. It doesn't run E too well, which I don't care about and imlib is awful on it, although better since I bitched at Raster.

    The 20 seconds delay on a 486SX caused by imlib poor coding is a 4 second delay on a pentium 166 which for 10 gnome apps starting is a lot of CPU time.

    People who write unjustifiably unoptimised code are not good programmers. People who write inconsistent guis are not the greatest gui designers.

    There is a lot of E code that is justifiably CPU intensive. It isnt rasters fault shape extension in X11 is heavy nor that transparent window moves while they look beautiful are CPU heavy. Imlib on the other hand I don't like codewise. I use it cos it works. (That being qualification #1 for good software 8)).

    Another way to think of it for the more religious warfare inclined - imlib is why KDE is a lot faster than gnome on an 8bit display lower end machine.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 31, 1999 @04:08PM (#1873503)
    Except Debian, Red Hat is still ethically the best distribution. SuSE and Caldera do the completely proprietary dance.

    If you don't like the $80 price tag, buy the $40 version without support. They were just diversifing their product range; not raising prices. $80 RH6 has better support than 5.2, and costs more. $40 RH6 has no support, but costs less.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 31, 1999 @10:20AM (#1873504)
    "Most European cathedrals show differences in plan or architectural style between parts build in different generations by different builders... Against these, the architectuaral unity of Reims stands in glorious contrast... As the guidebook tells us, this integrity was achieved by the self-abnegation of eight generations of builders, each of whom sacrificed some of his ideas so that the whole might be of pure design. The result proclaims not only the glory of God, but also His power to salvage fallen men from their pride."

    Fred Brooks
    The Mythical Man-month

  • The bit about "the following article is garbage" is in reference to a post on linuxnewbie claiming to be him (about a month ago).
    Losing your faith is a lot like losing your virginity

  • Enlightenment is a window manager; it handles how your screen looks, i.e. the shape of windows, maybe your pager (the thing that allows you to choose your virtual screen), and so on.

    Gnome is a graphical user environment; it is supposed to provide a unified interface for programs.

    To put it simply (an oversimplification, I know), Enlightenment handles things outside your windows; Gnome handles things inside.

    Of course, some window managers have elements of a graphical user environment, and KDE includes a window manager (kwm) itself. However, you should think of the WM and GUE as being two different things.

  • For all it's worth, I distinctly remember reading about Redhat opening a satellite branch in California. It would make a lot of sense for him to be moving out west to work in the new Redhat office. Then again, he might really be leaving redhat, but if this is the case I would imagine he would say something about it directly, and before he just packs up and leaves.
  • by Filgy ( 2588 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:53AM (#1873519)
    Raster was in #e the other night talking to us all about leaving RH. It is confirmed from his mouth (err.. fingers.. >:))
  • by ghjm ( 8918 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:08AM (#1873529) Homepage
    Red Hat is in the middle of a conversion from a small, tightly-integrated company with a strong shared vision of its beliefs and values, to a larger firm, a notable industry player, with dissenting versions of what its vision should be.

    No doubt there are people at Red Hat who think that producing a Windows-clone user interface is the best way to going beyond the early adopters and penetrating the majority market. No doubt there are also people at Red Hat who think that the whole point of the exercise has been to build something different from Microsoft's offerings and that if you're just going to turn the product into a Windows-clone, why bother? No doubt there are even people at Red Hat who don't care a great deal about these issues, and just want to do their job and pick up a paycheck.

    This is normal.

    I'm not saying that I agree with everything Red Hat is doing; in fact, I have had serious issues with Red Hat for a couple years now. But this item is not one of them. We can only expect to hear more and more dissent from inside Red Hat, and this is good--it means they are maintaining transparency. We as users and customers want to know what's going on inside the company, and that means sometimes we will see some dirty laundry aired. Let's try to be mature about it.

  • bah. It's one person's opinion, and the posted letter was refuted by Raster, anyhow. He may be moving West, and he may be leaving RH as confirmed in an IRC channel (FWTW), but another person *did* post a paste from his Website refuting the inflammatory comments made in a spurious and fraudulent post.

    Personally, I like Redhat. I'm not sure *how* much they are getting for 6.0, but mine was free. Gotta love the Internet! ;). Redhat is good for Linux. Debian is good for Linux. SuSe is good for Linux (isn't it?). Etc., etc.

    I see Redhat as trying to satisfy requested needs/wants from various and sundry users. If more of their users are corporate customers, then it stands to reason that the flavor would have a decidedly corporate taste. If you don't like the way it tastes, go eat something else. There aren't any chains holding anybody down at a particular table...

    As far as Desktop environments go, again, each to his own. My favorite is Window Maker + GNOME. Someone else's is KDE. Again, others are just happy with twm. We're all about diversity, and it's a good thing.

  • Posted by The Mongolian Barbecue:

    How many times has this tired tale played out? The oss coder doesn't like the philosophy of the people he's working for, so rather than try and iron out their differences, he simply leaves. It is no wonder that oss is still second rate in many areas- too often do coders just have fits and go and start their own new versions of a program. If oss coders spent half the energy on actually getting decent stuff written that they did having tantrums about doing it, then we might be in business. Until then, the cold laughter of Redmont will be our only reward.
  • by gavinhall ( 33 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @01:40PM (#1873541)
    Posted by FascDot Killed My Previous Use:

    ...it does matter. The owner of the copyright decides the license.

    Example: Let's say RH owns E. Right now E is under the GPL so no big deal. Then RH becomes evil AND has a good idea for a new killer feature for E. They add the feature and re-release E binary only. They can do this because they are the copyright owner. If they were just a licensee then Evil RH is no problem. You can see how this would suck.

    In the case of kernel code (particularly from you) it's a little different. First, I believe you contract to RH, do you not? Unless you signed something saying RH owns the code you write they probably don't--you aren't an employee, you are a separate company (although this would be worth looking into). Furthermore, even if they did own the stuff you write/wrote, it's only a small fraction of the total kernel (no offense). With E, we are talking about the whole ball of wax.

    Now that I think about it, this is a good reason to worry about any company that collects kernel developers like action figures. If they get enough of them they can release non-GPL'd Linux code...
    "Please remember that how you say something is often more important than what you say." - Rob Malda
  • by Alan Cox ( 27532 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:43AM (#1873544) Homepage
    Miguel and the control of Gnome all reside outside of the Red Hat world. Miguel works for unam, who afaik don't have anything to do with E development or have an official policy on it.

  • Gnome has as much a place as KDE.
    Agreed to a certain extent.

    I think choice is a good thing, and I would like Linux developers to be able to choose which set of development libraries they use (GNOME libs or KDE libs or ...), and have confidence that the apps they create will work (integrate with other aps) irrespective of what desktop environment (or window manager) their users choose.

    On the other hand (in my opinion) KDE has earnt a place as a usable desktop while GNOME has not (yet), primarily due to the premature GNOME 1.0 annoucement.

    The competition between them has made both _much_ better in spite of the childish jabs from either side. Miguel can sometimes overdo the advocacy, but I have also heard (at second hand, admittedly) hair-raising flame-bait from core KDE developers as well.
    I agree that the competition has been good. However you seem to be implying that core KDE developers have engaged in a similar level of GNOME bashing as Miguel has in KDE bashing. This is simply not true.

    Miguel has repeatedly made derogatory comments about the KDE project in public (official) annoucements. (and in doing so has done a disservice to other GNOME developers that wish to cooperate with KDE)

    I challenge you to show me one single public KDE annoucement that makes even a single derogatory comment about the GNOME project.

    As far as informal KDE discussions go, yes I have seen anti-GNOME sentiments expressed, (not by KDE core developers though). But so what? The official KDE project policy seems to me to be one of co-operation and friendly competition.

    Furthermore I believe this is an honest policy and reflects the true feelings of kde-developers, core or otherwise.

  • This cannot happen. If Redhat or anyone else added a "killer feature" to a GPL package then it too must be released as GPL.

    The GPL was explicitly designed to prevent that sort of abuse.

    This is why I find all the anti-Redhat paranoia so amusing - even if they wanted to become a MS, the can't. They are prevented by the GPL.
  • Perhaps you should look at RedHat and you would notice that it does in fact have a whole bunch of window managers just one click of the mouse away from the default fvwm95 yuck fest.

    I totally agree with Raster. I like RedHat, but I trust Raster more when it comes to what people want from the distro. Like him, I am not interested in the corporate world's desires for a quick fix to Windows. If Linux is going to start being ruled by the IT managers and bean counters, we are going to find our top OSS programmers turning to something else bleeding edge.
  • by pingbak ( 33924 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:53AM (#1873566)
    I'm not sure why there's always been an anti-biz slant to just about every one of these divorces. Sometimes, and I've been there and done that, one has to do code which productizes software.

    Overall, I think RH is on the right track to making Linux (or broadly, Unix, since most Linux apps will run on other x86 Unix platforms) usable for the masses. Yes, it means "selling out" to "the corporates" -- but it's not selling out, per se. The reason why mediocrity has 90% of the users out there is because it has an incredible marketing machine (and really crafty contract writers.) Part of the RH strategy is to give the ordinary (dare I say, mediocre?) users something they're familiar with... and then be completely subversive by introducing changes that get them on the road to something more useful (UI-wise, application-wise, etc.)

    While I appreciate and try to code to perfection too, there's a point at which the code has to be released and shipped. Usually companies have two sets of coders: one which creates the features and the "cool stuff" and another set which productizes. It seems to me that RHAD combined the two, pissed off one of their developers, and now we all get to hear about the bad blood.

    Personally, I hope there's an opening when I finish this degree at RHAD. The important lesson is to choke down one's ego when it's appropriate.

  • I really like KDE, too, but my God, it is so boring--it *looks* like a WM written by Germans trying to win enterprise desktops.

    Aren't enterprise desktops the Death Star in this little game of galactic domination? For 90% of the computer users out there, their favorite operating system is "the one they make me use at work".

    Hopefully, in the future all distributions will have a little menu at the login screen allowing you to pick your Window Manager/Desktop Environment (like Mandrake has now). When that happens, all of these pissant flamewars might finally end, because folks will realize that the only real difference is two mouse clicks and a matter of taste.
  • Wow. All anyone needs to do to attack the professionalism of the Open Source Software movement is quote a bit of the crap that RHAD people make public. Between Miguel and Raster, they would make any suit afraid to put their company in the hands of such prima-donna crybabies.

    These little diatribes also have a great way of ending one's career. Advice for Raster: Keep your mouth shut on the way out. It's enough that you've escaped. Don't burn any bridges.
  • You really need a clue.

    Let me clue you in:

    1. AbiWord is written in C++. OH SHOCK!

    2. The fact that he does not talk to the press
    is completely irrelevant. Slashdot posters
    have made it clear that speaking your opinion
    is a capital sin. Or is it just a sin for me?

  • by j_edge ( 20712 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:11AM (#1873580)
    I think you miss the point though that it's not RedHat's project to "productize". I thought it was a good thing when RedHat hired Raster. I don't particuliarly care for the company itself, but I thought that the fact they were hiring coders to work on their own "free software" projects was really cool. I didn't know that they would try and dictate the direction he would take with it, though. That is not for them to do, being as it's not their software to do it with.

    Let me put it another way. Let's say a band you like is on a small label, and playing a certain style of music, and suddenly they sign a lucrative recording contract. If their music were to change from corporate pressure (tone down the lyrics, or make it more "Top 40'ish"), they would have sold out. It is very much selling out. They would have changed what they had been doing not because they wanted to, but to make the company that was paying them happy (and rich).

    Personally, I am really happy that Raster didn't sell out. Besides being able to respect his integrity, I think the community is much better off with Raster coding what he likes & bringing his contributions back to the community, and Red Hat either hiring someone to code their GNOME-compliant Win9x-style interface that they want to appeal to the masses or go back to using fvwm95 or whatever.

    How many people would be upset if Alfredo was being paid to work on Window Maker, but one day the corp. that writes his paycheck thought it would be a good idea that would help new users by changing the GNUStep logo in the top of the dock to a "talking, help-giving paperclip"(tm) :). The only difference is WM is modelled after a specific environ so it would be immediately obvious, but with E the specs are all in Raster's head and if the company that's paying him is telling him to go against the direction he wants it to go, that is a bad thing.

    Keep up the good work, Raster, Mandrake, Alfredo, Miguel & the _COUNTLESS_OTHERS_ who spend YOUR time creating software and sharing it with us. And thank you.

  • by guacamole ( 24270 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @01:35PM (#1873583)
    Raster is right about adding more GUI shell capabilities to E. There are people who want to have a nice looking, functional, fast and easy to use windowing enviroment, but at the same time they don't want all the bloat and useless features of things like GNOME.

    Don't get me wrong. I myself use WindowMaker 0.53 . It is reaching the shell stage Raster is talking about. It has app dock, 2 GUI configuration programs, themes, nice looking, fast , drag n' drop, etc (though, the file manager is not there yet). I have downloaded, installed, and deleted GNOME and KDE many times. Deleted GNOME mainly for instability and KDE 1.1 because I don't see why should I need all those features.

    In GNOME and KDE it is easy to configure things like menu, background or the dock, but you can do so in Window Maker for example very easily as well. And the rest of KDE/GNOME deatures only add bloat.

    I use gvim/vim instead of their pussy text editors, epic instead of xchat, xterm (with nexaw3d) instead of kterm or gnome term, pine/tin instead balsa, kmail, etc. Overall GNOME looks more like a shell for newbies, thats it. I like KDE more, because it has at least a window manager (and very nice), but still I feel that WindowMakert and other window managers already have all features that I need (well, a fast, stable, integrated file manager would be nice too but it is not a necessity for me)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 31, 1999 @10:43AM (#1873595)
    Why do you think that this is the truth? This is one persons view of things. How much did raster have to do with GNOME? The only think I see is his window manager specs. He most likely did not work well in the RHAD environment because it came time to get some real work done - i.e. - Red Hat Linux 6.0 needed to have a good desktop. raster has never worried about deadlines or backwards compatibility. Just look at how many times theme creaters have to rewrite their themes because of config file format changes.

    Furthermore, Red Hat is doing the furthest thing from making a Windows clone. It may be true that they made the Clean theme - the most Windows looking theme - the default in Red Hat Linux 6.0. That decision HARDLY makes Red Hat Linux a windows clone.

    Just by saying "unlike GNOME I won't make a vaporware publicity stunt out of it" you've done just that - in saying these things about your co-workers - your colleagues - it shows that raster just didn't fit in. It seems that he had his own agenda and just wasn't a team player in the labs.
  • by jaffray ( 6665 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:16AM (#1873607)
    Red Hat wants to bring Linux to the masses. Raster wants to write really cool code. These are both worthy goals, and they often overlap; but often they don't, such as when the masses want something boring.

    So it makes sense for Raster to go his own way, and I don't think it's a disaster or a tragedy or a commentary on free software development; he and the company just didn't fit together well, that's all. He's variably sized and curvy, Red Hat is 64x64 and square.

    People change jobs. It happens. Often it's good.


    who prefers his windows rectangular and opaque, but still appreciates Raster's work

  • I think that it was actually Quartic that made that comment, though. I remember reading this, too, and I'm pretty sure the article was on RHAD.

  • by gavinhall ( 33 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:19AM (#1873611)
    Posted by Federico Mena-Quintero:

    I think you are referring to an article about RHAD Labs that appeared some months ago in the News and Observer (a local paper). It was me who made similar, but not quite the same comments.

    Let me tell you the little story. The day before the interview I had spent an unfruitful afternoon trying to write a configuration file for Enlightenment, to make a theme. Mind you, I did not succeed. So the next day I was rambling about how unreadable Enlightenment's configuration files are. I was especially untactful against the Enlightenment configuration parser.

    So on the next day there came this reporter to interview the RHAD Labs crowd, and he asked me what I was rambling about. I told him, and somehow he managed to mangle it into text that said that I hated Raster's code and that Enlightenment was a bad program. I don't think I said that. I said that I did not like the way it parses configuration files. I apologize to Raster if I was harsh.

    I have offered Raster to write a real parser for his Enlightenment configuration files. I think it is important for the window manager such as Enlightenment to have an easy way to create themes. A configuration file with better organization than what there is now would be good. A GUI tool to do it would be even better.

    Again, I am sorry. I have learned the hard way that the press likes to mangle one's thoughts to create "interesting" press about a non-existent conflict.

    As Miguel said, the thing that we *do* want to replace is Imlib. Imlib's memory management is rather poor, and as such GNOME applications cannot be as efficient as they could be with respect to image loading and caching. Imlib was designed for Enlightenment's particular needs and as a libXpm replacement.

    I hope this clears things up. I apologize to Raster if that newspaper article implied offensive things. And I wish him the best of luck in California, where you can find nice civilized cities.

  • >Matthias Ettrich wrote: With abiword and gnumeric
    >there are now two overhyped gtk projects that
    >both have a far superior counterpart in the KDE
    >office suite.
    > ...
    >Without wanting to discourage you: Do you really
    >think that's worth it? I mean, Abiword right now
    >can't do even half of what kword can do! Why
    >fiddle around with these over-hyped C-sources
    >without functionality, if kword is nicer >designed, more powerful and object-oriented?

    Strange, seems to me last time I looked at the Abiword source code it was in C++.

    Not to mention that it is not gospel truth that C++ is the end all be all of computer languages. Neither is C, Java, Eiffel, etc, etc.

    There are other considerations in the speed of Abiword development, such as cross-toolkit compatibility rather than sticking to only one (QT in the case of KWord.

    KWord also does not list on its feature set a Word imported, which is available on AbiWord, though it is not perfect yet.

    As for Gnumeric, I've been using it since the .1x series and have found it to be extremely stable, have it to have a fairly large feature set for such a young application, and it has the ability to load Excel spreadsheets. Again, not perfect, but it is enough that I don't need to use Excel for the majority of basic spreadsheets at work anymore.

    The "over-hyped" comment is completely out of line, as there has been little mainstream coverage of either comment outside the casual mention in articles about each desktop enviorment.

    The "far superior" comment is a MATTER OF OPINION, as both have features unique to themselves.

    And even these being true would NOT be a reason to abandon two projects which are progressing very nicely and will only lead to more choice in the free software community.

    My only hope is that there will be some consensus on file formats, preferably an XML derivative.
  • I'm very shocked to hear of such stifling of creativity happening at one of Linux's Corporate leaders. I am especially shocked after the response to comments I made [slashdot.org] about corporate violate of Linux. The responses from the likes of Chris DiBona, mandrake, and Alan Cox were enough to make me believe that companies like RedHat would be supporting movements like Enlightenment.

    In the words of Rasterman: "They [RedHat] don't believe users really count - corporates and 'partners' count and what they percieve as the 'business world that wants an exact windows clone' counts."

    Is it just me, or is something wrong with this picture?


  • by HappyHead ( 11389 ) on Tuesday June 01, 1999 @03:48AM (#1873623)
    E may not be the WM everyone uses at work, but its the one everyone uses for shows.

    Actually, not only do I use E at work, my job would be considerably more difficult without it. I have to take care of 6 Unix servers, and several Unix workstations, and I've got E set up on my desktop to change window borders/... depending on which machine a window is connected to so that I can find my way around faster. To the best of my knowlege, that's not an easy task with any other Wm. Between that, and the keyboard shortcuts, I'm about 3 or 4 times as fast using E as when I'm using any other Wm. I've used twm, Mwm, 4Dwm, OpenLook, AfterStep, WindowMaker, fvwm, and even a few scary 'built-into-the-Xterminal' window managers, and so far, the only one that I've had not crash on me is E-15. (I'm very abusive towards system resources.) I guess that makes me a freak or something, but the only one I've used that was as fast as E was OpenLook. (On linux that is. The only Sun I've natively run X on is a sparc1, and it's slower than my 486, which runs imlib just fine.)

    I don't know how my Grandmother would react to E, but my 3 year old niece has no problems using it. Most of the time she just wants to turn on the screen saver or shut the machine down, but she also knows how to start up a drawing program to doodle with. (She scares me.)
  • Who pays the packager/distributor $80 for what is free, particularly if it isn't in turn funding the Rastermans of the world? Who'll pay Red Hat to make Linux more like Windows?

    well i must say that rasterman leaving redhat citing differences is sad (nice to see a local lad from .au working in the states), but not the end of the world. redhat labs has been touted as a nivana for oss development in that they get paid (be it below commercial rates). But commercial reality is hitting home here. You could interpret this to mean that RH consider 'e' as a non-essentail component of their distro. Dont forget though that a hell of a lot of the best work has been done by 'volunteers'. living outside the box!but to get to the above statement, who will pay USD$80 for software they can get for free? why business of course! mainstream conservative business instictivley distrusts 'free' (read oss) beacause of mislead perceptions such as reliability, onsite support and a host of other stupid beliefs.

    how many times on slashdot have we heard lines like, 'ohh we tell the pointy haired boss that xxxxx (insert yr own os) runs that bit of software, but in reality have installed linux, freeBsd or some other flavour and theres no downtime and i get no complaints'

    i was talking to my boss the other day about how redhat jacked their prices up from distro 5.2->6.0 and he said 'good, more business's will probably buy it.' From a business point of view it doesn't seem that free sw is the deciding facot and I'll be buggered if i know why?.from a home-user pov, cost is a factor and this is why oss is gaining a foothold on users desktops.

    I'm currently trying to build a really small linux installation for 486es
    plz post yr results on slashdot. i reckon myself and others would like to see the results and pilfer their code :)
  • When I compiled QT, Trolltech was moving to a "free" license which ultimately turned out to be "not quite free" (the same way Velveeta is not quite cheese). I've since never needed the QT libraries, so I don't use them.

    Was? I believe the only changes to the QPL have been concessions to requests to make it more free, and QT 2.0 is still intended to be released under the QPL.

    "not quite free"? RMS said that a QT released under the QPL would be free software.

    He also said that the QPL is GPL incompatible, due to the patch clause and the lack of a privacy clause. Others disagree, I don't know who to believe. I've spent hours reading the GPL too.
  • by Nite_Hawk ( 1304 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:54AM (#1873632) Homepage
    Back when Raster started working at Redhat I was kinda wondering how it would turn out. I'm not terribly surprised to see the outcome, but a bit disappointed in Redhat. I don't use the distribution myself, but with the price raise to $80 for 6.0 (At the local Best Buy anyway), and Raster's comments here, it really seems like they may be headed towards being exactly what so many of us feared. This isn't to say that Redhat is going to become some kind of dictator, but that thier goals as a business, not just succeeding, but excessively growing, seem to be getting higher priority than than just developing cool software.

    I understand that making sure you have a good business model is certainly important, but when any company, or even a group of people, target to have a monopoly on the interface to linux, i.e. what a person sees, when they see it, how they interact with it, that strikes me as being rather scary. This is, imho, why Enlightenment seems such a good concept. Provide the backbone to allow any interface, but do everything behind the scenes. Don't market the default interface as the end all. Actively promote diversity to accomplish the best results. I truely hope in the future that linux doesn't simply become the underlying archetecture to propriatary interfaces. Even with opensourced code, the concept of an end-all interface with it's own agenda can be damaging. Unfortunatly, it appears that this is the road that many companies, (and individuals) desire. Hopefully the most open design in the end will win, and that the people who work for companies investing in linux, will not abuse thier positions.

    Ok, I'm off my soapbox now, flame away.. ;)

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Rubbish. Of course the sole owner of some software can release the software or scraps of it under conditions entire to his liking, regardless of whether he has released them GPLed before. So the ownership does matter for future development when there are no third party copyright holders.

    Even the *main* owner can effectively release his GPLed software and other with it under the BSD, if he simply declares that he will not pursue any license violations.

    So with GPLed software, the owner does matter a lot. This is different with BSDed software: there is almost nothing that a "malignant" third party would not be allowed to do with the software the same way as the copyright holder: release binary-only, restrict further redistribution, etc. etc.
  • >As someone once pointed out, /.'s motto should be changed to "Gossip for nerds. Stuff that matters."

    And we love slashdot for it!

    screw jerry springer. This thread is WAY more entertaining that that..

    I use both KDE and GNOME, as the mood stikes me.
    and I find KDE-GNOME wars like this immensly entertaining. :)

    Flame on!
  • by shutton ( 4725 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:33AM (#1873644) Homepage

    This really depresses me. I had it in the back of my brain that Red Hat was a good bunch, some folks who made the free software model work. And I'd ignored most of the "is Red Hat turning into the next Microsoft" comments because I figured that was just the nature of their position in the Linux market.

    If what Rasterman says about Red Hat trying to push out a Windows clone, that really changes my opinion of them. I hate seeing applications that seek to be exact Windows knock-offs. How can we say that Windows is a bad thing if we just turn around and emulate it? This is the time for rethinking things, lest we become the beast itself.

  • First (in response to the original message): GNOME being RHAD's raison d'etre, I doubt that Red Hat will be "jettisoning" it any time soon.

    As to GNOME stability: I'm currently running GNOME out of CVS on my home system (P200, Linux) and my work system (SPARC Ultra 10, Solaris 2.5.1). The only stability problems I've had (aside from some problems with the original 1.0 release, and one of the pre-1.0's until I rebuilt the world) were caused by outdated includes and libraries being visible during the build --- you can't safely build GNOME with outdated Gtk+ headers and libraries around, a fact which is fairly well documented.

    (I'm not currently running E; I find the default Enlightenment theme to be a bit much, I *like* minimal user interfaces. I currently run a seriously minimalized fvwm2 configuration, but will be borrowing the RH6 E theme as a basis for customization when I have time.)

  • You got your references wrong Dude.

    It was not me trying to rewrite E, probably someone else, but not me. As far as I care, I only care about the application framework and the applications.

    The window managers never quite excited me, so I doubt it was me.

    The only code I want to rewrite is Imlib, because Imlib 1.xx has serious memory management issues. So we are going to base our new image code in Raph Levien's code.

    Hope this clears up your confussion.

  • by Donnie Barnes ( 4674 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:32AM (#1873671) Homepage

    Interesting commentary indeed.

    I wish Raster the best of luck. I'm not sure why he would care to say nasty things about Red Hat, the product, or the people there, though. I don't know anyone at Red Hat who did anything to make Red Hat an unhappy place for him.

    Sometimes things just aren't a perfect fit, though, and people have to find that perfect fit. I hope raster finds his. I'm saddened at Red Hat wasn't it.

    I also hope that E development continues as it has. I think it's a damned good piece of free software and hope to continue to be able to use it. I also hope it does continue to tie into GNOME nicely. No, it doesn't have to be the GNOME window manager. There can be many. But I like E and I think it fits well.

    Anyway, good luck raster.

  • So what if KDE is boring? It's got good solid functionality, and it does a really good job of doing what I want. It makes my life much easier at work than anything else I have tried. I don't think it's fair to say that just because you like a window manager that is windows-like that you should just use windows. The one thing Microsoft can actually do well is make a good user interface. I think you could do a lot worse than have a GUI that works much like windows. I do think that eventually the free software community can go one better and enhance the whole thing until it's better than the Windows interface. Of course, if you can get a good GUI that runs on top of a good operating system like Linux you can have the best of both worlds.

    I was never particularly thrilled with E myself. It looked great, but did not seem to make my life any easier, and that to me is more important. In fact, my unhappiness with E has been one of the major reasons I haven't explored gnome more fully yet. I keep saying that one of these days I'll try it with WindowMaker, since people seem to have lots of good things to say about it, but I haven't actually gotten around to it yet.
  • by Chris Johnson ( 580 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @11:20AM (#1873673) Homepage Journal
    I don't use Red Hat- I pillage it ;)
    I'm currently trying to build a really small linux installation for 486es, and I'm getting the files from RH5.1 to do it. The CD originally came from linuxmall as a two-for-one at about $5. Red Hat is probably not the distribution I should be using, but it's the only one we got at the moment, we're real low budget :)
    Anyone who seriously thinks that cloning Windows is strategically vital had better go investigate the Interface Hall of Shame [iarchitect.com], and the reviews of the Windows Find applet, Explorer, and the common file dialogs. These are faithfully duplicated in environments like KDE (I'm thinking of Explorer in particular, it is _very_ similar), and the agenda to clone Windows will bring more and more of these horrible, appalling errors and awkwardnesses into whichever Linux environment goes that route.
    Meanwhile, I'll be messing around with largely text-oriented Window Maker implementations (and figuring out neat things to do with scripts), and Raster will presumably be constantly furthering the limits of wild and ornate window manager interface design, and we can damned well make our _own_ mistakes, thank you: we don't _have_ to make Windows' mistakes as well just to be taken seriously. I'll happily take Raster seriously- he talks like a designer, like someone willing to try something new, or make his own decisions. I hope he takes me seriously but hey, I haven't 'shipped' yet so I have to get results together before I can expect to even be noticed. At any rate, I think it's safe to say that neither of us give a damn for faithfully replicating Windows mistakes out of some misguided notion that it is expected of us ;P
    So good luck, and if there's anything I can do to help, Raster, you're welcome to it. Here, it's not much, but I am good with GFX: use any or all of my Linux graphics [airwindows.com] such as tiles and textures and backgrounds. If I can do more I will, and if my own pursuits help you out I will rejoice, just as I daresay you'd rejoice if yours help out mine.
    And if Red Hat does not rejoice to see non-Red-Hat-style implementations being busily developed, if they do not rejoice to see their profitable standardization undercut by people like us, well, fsckem ;) who knows, we may yet discover that something like Red Hat is simply not profitable. Over in Mac land we have recently suffered the loss of a _very_ historic third party company, Micro Conversions, the only ones doing Voodoo2 cards for the Mac officially. Hacks of their drivers drove them under. We might see Red Hat croak in similar fashion for two reasons:
    • if you want windows so badly, Microsoft is happy to sell you it
    • cheapbytes. Who pays the packager/distributor $80 for what is free, particularly if it isn't in turn funding the Rastermans of the world? Who'll pay Red Hat to make Linux more like Windows? Not me, I'll tell you. They are just another distribution.
    Good luck, Rasterman. Hack on.
  • As I imagine you well know, inflicting X on
    someone with less than a pentium is not pretty.

    It would be interesting if E could be lined up
    as a build in WM system for a non-X system (i.e
    run in the displayserver). Sure the theme
    programming language needs a complete rewrite
    for this purpose, but... (that said, what
    I am basically describing is more like Berlin,
    though an abstract display architecture sans
    CORBA would be nice)
  • It takes infinately more maturity to realise that the situation that you are in is not in your best interests. I wish I had half the courage and integrity as raster has to get up and quit with no open prospects. Keep in mind that there are many other people who will be wiling to hire him based on his talents. When you are hiring a new employee, you have to look at their contributions and performance, not the past falling down that he has.

    He said:
    'I am so glad to get out of ths creativity-stifling environemnt of RHAD LABS - away from certain people there who see E and its userbase as what I can literally quote them saying a "festering crowd".'

    That is hardly a unfounded remark. As he can say, he can literally, quote them, not figuratively. In other words, somebody within redhat has shown raster their true stripes as a corporation, and he feels it no longer has a soul. What is immature about that? and where else does he dog on redhat? Yes, he says they are trying to make an exact copy of windows, and for all intents and purposes, they seem to be doing just that! He speaks more about his move, and his love for E than anything, while spending very little time to be whiny and immature.

  • >OK OK... The following article here is garbage...

    Check the date. May 4!! This has nothing to do with what Raster posted on the e mailing list.
  • Could this possibly be the beginning of the end of harmony in the Linux community - yet we have had the KDE/GNOME scuffles, but the real people behind these projects have always kept their hands clean... until now. We have the Gnome coordinator slagging off KDE, and now one of RedHat software's most visable people leaving RedHat pretty unhappy. Is it really the case that Gnome, despite being GPLd and thus more free-software-friendly, is something of a cancer - in the sense that it is breeding such discord in the Linux community? Up until yesterday (when an upgrade broke it) I was using Gnome and was reasonably impressed with it, although it still needs some work (couldn't persuade it to add new applets to the panels, and is it actually possible to install the RPMs without using --nodeps?). KDE is a good piece of software, but the whole QT issue still worries me a bit, even with the whole QPL thing - I would rather it was GPL. Also I think the interface is a bit too-Windows.

    Anyway, what is going on people - is the Linux community loosing its grip?


  • After LinuxExpo, I installed Debian 2.1 (Actually, debian's install was so broken it ended up not working), Caldera 2.2, RedHat 6.0, and SuSE, and with the exception of Debian (I just don't know if it does), they all let you choose your WM when you login, and they all allow you to enable XDM/KDM logins during installation.

    BTW, after doing them all, for the installs, I would rate RedHat #1, SuSE #2, Caldera #3 (pretty, but buggy), installing from random unlabled floppies #4, and debian #5.

    I was very happy to see RedHat install SMP support automatically.

    -- Keith Moore
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Well, (I hope Alfredo doesn't read this), I have finally switched to E for more than 48hrs (insert #E people laughing here). I'm really impressed with how its moving along. I can't wait till he gets cranking on it full time.

    all the best,
    aka: OctobrX
    ps. Yes I'm too lazy to login.
  • Most of the comments here sway between GNOME and enlightment offering a decent solution to windows, or them being unstable. Personally, I found that the distribution I recently recieved of RedHat 6.0 was far superior to anything I have used before. I even prefer it to the Solaris Sun machines I use at University for programming.

    I think the argument between Windows and Redhat 'replacements' are unfounded because of the completely different ethos between the two. RedHat offers something which my geek freinds and I can play with and learn about, develop software for and play with.

    But you have to remember that the big Linux Vs. Windows argument is never going to hold...

    ...just look over the horizon. BeOs is gaing popularity (try the demo CD!), even my Amiga was more powerful/usable/stable than Windows!

    People are finding systems which suit their needs (finally), so I think Rastermans' move was a step in the right direction. The scene is getting stagnant and we all need to move on.
  • by Alan Cox ( 27532 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @09:34AM (#1873708) Homepage
    Try inflicting Enlightenment on your grandmother or using imlib on a 486SX machine. There will always be a difference between end user ease and reliability and the Rastermans flair for the bizarre and incredibly flexible.

    Enlightenment is a beautiful toy, if you want to do wild and wonderful things. But to a lot of people the fact that all buttons behave the same way is a feature they like.

    Good luck Raster, E may not be the WM everyone uses at work, but its the one everyone uses for shows.

  • There was session on Enlightenment at Atlanta Linux Expo last year with Raster and Mandrake. Both of them said that the code had become spaghetti-like as it grew and both of them had worked on a major rewrite.
  • Do you really think the folks here at Slashdot have enough time to research each peice before they put it up? I wouldn't even want them to! It would spell the end of Slashdot as we knew it. Imagine if Rob or Hemos suddenly started to research every scoop that came in, it would be insanity, and I feel is not the function of slashdot. If a story is false, post some feedback, it's what it's all about, the whole CGI BBS thing...
  • yes, it's true. friday was his last day at redhat.
    Geoff Harrison (http://mandrake.net)
    Senior Software Engineer - VA Linux Labs (http://www.valinux.com)
  • >That doesn't seem to be the mark of someone that won't accept input from others.

    Actually, when I first heard about GNOME and Enlightentment, I went to the respective web sites to have a read. Gnome was okay, but on the enlightenment [enlightenment.org] web site the following comments caught my eye:

    "One thing you can be certain of is that it DOES work - the developers run it all day themselves - There is a reason it doesn't work for you - it is likely something on your system."
    "Please make sure you also have a stable Xserver - Enlightenment can push X hard - often X breaks. When your server goes down - your server is at fault."

    Those two sentences gave me the distinct *impression* that the authors didn't really care about the end users, "it works for us, if it doesn't work for you, it's your fault, not ours"

    Of course, with any software, it is always possible to be a user configuration problem, and nothing to do with 'E', but the attitude that came across in those sentences would leave me very reluctant to even attempt to report a problem.

    So before he throws too many stones about redhat believing users don't really count, he should check if he's living in a glass house.

  • Apparently you've never been threatened with "you'll never work in this town again"-esque punishments for quiting a job.

    I find some of the attitudes of employeers equally unprofessional.

    I also like to be called stupid for quiting a job at a company that everybody was certain to get rich at. Two years later, the stock still hasn't moved. :)
  • As a Linux newbie who installed RH6, maybe I can add my $0.02...

    Hell - I didn't even know I had to configure them seperately...or maybe I did and didn't know it. :-p

    Anyway...GNOME crashed. Or Enlightenment crashed. Or Netscape crashed. Whomever. They just wouldn't run together on my clunky machine - I don't care whose fault it was.

    I switched to FVWM2 and nothing crashes anymore. This makes my happy. E sure looked nice, but I was more concerned with reliability, and FVWM seems to be providing it.
  • I read an interview with the developers of Gnome where Miguel essentially said he thought E was a piece of sh*t and he kept threatening to re-write it from scratch. How can work in a place that treats you like that? E is a very kewl Window Manager and I was very surprised at how lame the default them for RedHat 6.0 was. Geez it looked just like Windows 95. :(

    My $.02
  • To add a little comment to shutton's post (and grab some other things along with it), this whole thread seems to be slightly off topic from the original topic, but it does bring forth an interesting view.

    Most people believe that since 'we' support Linux, Gnome, KDE, E, whatever, we shouldn't be emulating Windows.

    Now hang in there for a second. Most people have worked with the windows GUI (which admitedly has some nice things, though they kind of get snowed under by the absolutely horrendous things), and know how it 'feels', expect certain looks, etc.

    So let's take that to the 'Linux' community, if you'd be able to write a desktop that acts like the Windows one, but with Linux as a kernel, instead of the extremely buggy, inefficient Windows 95/98 kernel (NT is slightly, just slightly, better), you'd still have a Linux system.

    It just *looks* different. I think a lot of people just immediately react to the fact that AAAAAH, It Looks Like Windows! Kill Kill Kill!, completely forgetting the fact that the driving force behind this Windows look-alike is something they so fervently support.

    (Why would you not buy a 16 processor dec/alpha machine because it comes in a yellow instead of a purple box? :)

  • by Morgaine ( 4316 ) on Monday May 31, 1999 @04:32PM (#1873744)
    AFAIK, Raster has always welcomed people's contributions to Enlightenment, both in terms of ideas and even more so in the form of patches. I seem to recall some quite explicit note to that effect either on the E website/mailing list or in the sources. That doesn't seem to be the mark of someone that won't accept input from others.

    Are you suggesting that this was not really so in practice, that he didn't want to accept certain types of functionality and so he left? Details please. E could be themed to look and behave very very much like W95, so there's no inherent reason why RH couldn't have put E to good use in their plans as far as I can tell.

    Maybe the source of the problem is that perhaps RH wanted Raster *not* to work on the bits of E that he knows currently require a lot of attention, but on other bits instead --- maybe W95 lookalike or workalike functionality, since he mentions something like that. I can see how that would not have gone down too well. It's typical of managerial types to want to direct the course of development in ways that don't take technical necessity into account.

    I guess we'll never really know the full story though.

One good suit is worth a thousand resumes.