Linux vs Windows vs Mac

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:06 pm UTC

Steax wrote:"Others" have only pointed out that 2 new OS X features (of a new OS that hasn't even been released yet), neither of which are critical gamebreakers (alternatives exist), are limited to appstore-only apps. That's far from "locked down".

iCloud exists now. Of course there is the alternative of integration with Dropbox instead, but that's not as convenient for the user (simply because it's two clouds to keep track of.) You already mentioned the sandboxing that came in Lion, which is a wonder of security that should by all rights be a universal feature forced on all OSX applications, but is instead limited to Apple-approved ones. And the guess at the moment is that Power Nap will be limited to those apps, too.

Of course it could be much, much worse, if those non-approved apps were, say, exiled to a legacy environment instead. Nor is the fact that the Windows shell up through 7 can be cracked in certain ways a sign of "openness."
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:11 pm UTC

I'm sure every single power user of OS X took a massive step back in worry when the whole sandboxing thing came up, especially if it became default. If it did, it'd probably take me about 30 seconds to decide to switch operating systems.

You're also right, iCloud's filesystem access exists now; I was misreading the iCloud filesystem UI changelog for that. For most intents and purposes, though, it's an inconvenience, not massive gramebreaker. From what I see, most apps that must exist outside the App Store are either tweaks or developer tools, both of which would suffer much more from other sandboxing limitations like the inability to access the general filesystem when not asked, the inability to communicate with other tools like the terminal, and so forth.

Also, Max, I wouldn't disagree with you that Apple's lawyers are currently being hypocritical scum. I hate these patent wars, it's just damaging to everyone.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Arariel » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:28 am UTC

Steax wrote:"Others" have only pointed out that 2 new OS X features (of a new OS that hasn't even been released yet), neither of which are critical gamebreakers (alternatives exist), are limited to appstore-only apps. That's far from "locked down". There are ways to remove, disable or otherwise avoid the dock. I'm not sure about the DE.


Still features that are locked down, no? Just a matter of degree. Apple is sort of into the control thing here, no matter what system. Hell, even Java is (or was) provided to OS X through Apple, which led to a slight problem, no?

And brilliant. You can't remove the Dock itself without breaking the system, talk about being locked down.

So I take it you're against people using the BSD license at all, and anyone not using/self-enforcing copyleft is hypocritical scum? Alright, then our views differ completely, and should probably go off in another thread.


I'm for free software, and only free software; the BSD license is too loose and allows for proprietary software based on it. A work issued on a nonrestrictive license is better than no work at all, but the BSD and MIT X11 licenses do not truly ensure freedom.

Anyone who takes free software, and writes proprietary software based on it is hypocritical scum. I don't see how self-enforcing copyleft comes into this at all, because copyleft involves usage of copyright law to keep works free.

To me, that's just preventing innovation.

To me, that's just protecting freedom.

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:20 am UTC

The dock thing didn't occur to me, I figured it was just like docky and you could do whatever you want with it or install a different version like cairo or something.

As for the free software, I prefer it "free as in beer" but specifically as in open source software. If I'm paying for software I'd rather pay whoever wrote it, personally.

Same idea as buying music from an artist or a record company.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:44 am UTC

Arariel wrote:Still features that are locked down, no? Just a matter of degree. Apple is sort of into the control thing here, no matter what system. Hell, even Java is (or was) provided to OS X through Apple, which led to a slight problem, no?

And brilliant. You can't remove the Dock itself without breaking the system, talk about being locked down.


It's not as black and white as you make it out to be with "locked-down, overrated BSD ripoff". It's not horribly locked down. Restricted and simplified in many ways, but not to the point where it becomes an issue with your average user, or even most power users.

The dock in OS X is like the Taskbar in Windows. They're basic concepts of the OS. Sure, you can switch out the taskbar, but that's not by design. And seriously, is there even a significant portion of the population who needs to replace the shell? I can't help but feel you're exaggerating about "locking down".
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:44 am UTC

Steax wrote:And seriously, is there even a significant portion of the population who needs to replace the shell? I can't help but feel you're exaggerating about "locking down".

I know what I need better than apple does, whether people would or not, defaulting to preventing choices which there is no good reason to prevent a competent end user from making is lame, unless you consider that a feature, I suppose.

If you're worried it will get broken, don't force users to break things to get them working as they want?
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Mon Jul 23, 2012 11:55 am UTC

The dock is part of OS X's core services, and integrates directly with a plethora of other systems like the Finder, Spaces (multiple desktops), and other parts of the system. It's integrated into it as a radiator is to your car (and it's been part of OS X since forever). Yes, this doesn't justify making it difficult to modify (it is, however, skinnable and extendible), but it means if you don't want the dock and how things work with it, most of OS X probably wouldn't work anyway.

Sure, they could dig into OS X and decouple it from the rest of their things. I understand how that's not in any way a priority, however. It's not like an engineer walked in a room and said "guys, let's make sure nobody can remove the dock, so now they're stuck with it! MUAHAHAHAHAHA!"
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:03 pm UTC

If the radiator is integrated as an important part of your user interface, your car is poorly designed.

"Hmm, I don't like my stereo... I think I'll pull it out and put a new one in."

*gets blasted with hot pressurized water for my trouble*


Question, what happens if the dock crashes?
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:05 pm UTC

I'll hand it to you, it may be poorly designed. It's been that way for 11 years since the first version of OS X. I'd say that understandably, it's not a high-priority thing over at Apple.

If the dock crashes, it relaunches automatically.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:12 pm UTC

Well, not something I have to deal with, though I'm glad I don't have to mess with it because I'd be hard pressed to accept that there is something I don't have complete control over.

Seems odd that it can crash without taking everything down, yet remains an integral component. If you just mean integral as in you lose some functionality from notifications and such, I get what you're saying.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:17 pm UTC

To be precise, it breaks Spotlight (the systemwide quick-search feature), Spaces (multiple desktops), Expose (that show-all-open-windows-at-a-glance view) and, apparently, undocumented bits of the OS. It's just something people don't find worth doing, so there's not really much research into what it does.

Again, I think it's the classical conflict between "I want control" and "I'll give you guys control, I want to get my stuff done". So yeah, just different needs.

Edit: Apparently there are ways to remove it.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:36 pm UTC

Yeah, you're talking to someone who condensed his entire firefox menu/tabs/address bar into a single row. I would definitely be the type who would have something like that dockgone were I to use that os. I'm picky about my screen space.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Endless Mike » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:27 pm UTC

You can hide the dock so it only pops up when you hover over where it goes.

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:41 pm UTC

Doesn't it take up the entire side of the screen though?

Right now I leave my taskbar visible for my clock/some icons/window list, have two hidden dockys center left and center right, top right corner is desktop/window switcher. I know putting docky in panel mode means hitting that side of the screen pops it up, whether you're in the corner or not, which is irritating.

Corners are prime real estate.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Endless Mike » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:53 pm UTC

Max™ wrote:Doesn't it take up the entire side of the screen though?

You can adjust its size to whatever you like (to a point). (At least when it's on the bottom. I haven't really ever put it on the side since I keep it hidden so I don't really care where it is.) All corners can be set to various actions without any of this interfering with each other.

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:21 pm UTC

Yeah, you can just adjust the size to anything between some 16 pixels (per icon) to a ridiculous 128 pixels or something (whichever side you put the dock on). And yes, you can set it to auto-hide until your cursor hits the side of the screen where the dock is (there's also a delay). Additionally, in the UI itself, very few actions are bottom-aligned; most is top-aligned. There tends to be little reason to bring your cursor down to the bottom of the screen.

Between all this, the dock mostly never interferes with how I work, even though I use a lot of keyboard shortcuts and and launcher apps and multiple desktops to switch between apps.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:27 pm UTC

Ah, I read something that implied that the dock pops up from mousing into any point on it's side.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Arariel » Tue Jul 24, 2012 7:57 am UTC

Steax wrote:It's not as black and white as you make it out to be with "locked-down, overrated BSD ripoff". It's not horribly locked down. Restricted and simplified in many ways, but not to the point where it becomes an issue with your average user, or even most power users.

The dock in OS X is like the Taskbar in Windows. They're basic concepts of the OS. Sure, you can switch out the taskbar, but that's not by design. And seriously, is there even a significant portion of the population who needs to replace the shell? I can't help but feel you're exaggerating about "locking down".

It's not horribly locked down, just horrible and locked down. :P

And yet, the point is not if people 'need' to replace the shell. The point is whether people can. A system that arbitrarily prevents its users from doing certain things is locked down no matter how you cut it.

Steax wrote:The dock is part of OS X's core services, and integrates directly with a plethora of other systems like the Finder, Spaces (multiple desktops), and other parts of the system. It's integrated into it as a radiator is to your car (and it's been part of OS X since forever). Yes, this doesn't justify making it difficult to modify (it is, however, skinnable and extendible), but it means if you don't want the dock and how things work with it, most of OS X probably wouldn't work anyway.


That's silly. I don't suddenly lose the ability to switch desktops when I kill lxpanel, why should multiple desktops depend on the dock?

Steax wrote:Edit: Apparently there are ways to remove it.


Perfect, more proprietary software to buy!

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Tue Jul 24, 2012 8:15 am UTC

No, it's only partially locked down: there's a difference with fully locked down things, like iOS or proprietary firmware entirely. No, I just said it was never designed to be replaced; call it locked down if you want, Apple and the vast population just sees little reason to care. And great, now you're comparing 3rd party software as if Apple made it themselves!

Okay, I hereby conclude that you're just trolling. I'll reply when you get past that allergy of everything proprietary or even the slightest bit controlled.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Tue Jul 24, 2012 8:45 am UTC

Uh, when you say vast population, remember we're talking about 92%+ windows, 5% mac, 1% linux, and a couple chunks of a percent here and there for various niche and legacy oses on desktops.

If you meant tablets, that's about 60%~ mac, 39% android, 1% windows, and 1% assorted others.

Though, if you're allowed to bust out your arbitrary dickmeasurement methods, can I point out that damn near all of the top 500 supercomputers (including the 10 fastest) run linux? :P
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Tue Jul 24, 2012 8:58 am UTC

Yes, I'm well aware of those numbers. How does that relate? I'm saying that most OS X users don't try to remove the dock, so Apple doesn't care. Note that I'm not saying that's justification; I'm just explaining why apple isn't doing it.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:10 am UTC

Yeah, so you have 5% of desktop users who either don't want to, don't need to, don't know how, or don't even think to ask if they can do things like choose their own docks or window managers and the like.

Hardly a "vast population", apple users are still over here in niche-land with us linux-dweebs as far as desktop use goes. :P

Is it possible that things like the limited hardware options and "apple knows best" prevent more people from using OS X?
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Tue Jul 24, 2012 9:22 am UTC

I'm not talking of all desktop users, I mean OS X users. Why would a non-OS X user care about removing the dock? By "vast population", I mean "the vast majority of OS X users."

Yes, likely, and the costs involved, of course.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:17 pm UTC

And it's not as if the vast majority of Windows users are concerned with changing the shell, either.

Arariel wrote:That's silly. I don't suddenly lose the ability to switch desktops when I kill lxpanel, why should multiple desktops depend on the dock?

Presumably because it's the app listening for keystrokes (where in Linux that would a role of the WM.) But, you know, the reverse can be true under Linux - from scrotwm to Gnome's Mutter and Unity's Compiz, there are a fair number of wms that provide the system panels. So yeah, you might be able to kill the panel without disabling features of or changing out your wm, but you couldn't do the reverse.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Wed Jul 25, 2012 3:14 am UTC

Funny you mention that, I've been playing with a few of the other WM's and such to see how the new stuff is working out. Right now I'm playing with a Mint fork (Pinguy) which itself is an Ubuntu fork, it came with Gnome Shell, I didn't like that so much so I tried Cinnamon for a while, but it didn't quite have the right feel. Said fuck it and put Unity on since I didn't like raw Ubuntu itself quite as much, but really dug the HUD.

I can't exactly tell what the difference is, I just noticed that it insisted on grabbing the packages, but I think Unity uses Qt something now, not Compiz.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:38 am UTC

Qt is a graphical toolkit for applications, not a window manager. There's no contradiction between the two, any more than there is to be running GTK applications under Openbox.

The main Unity project is a plugin for Compiz, and given the state of the Compiz dev team right now, I believe that Compiz is essentially Ubuntu's project to maintain now. There is a 2d alternate Unity shell (using Qt, yes) that can run under any wm, but it's not the same code base. (It's supposed to go away in 12.10.)

Unity has become crazy awesome - I can't think of any practical excuse for the fact that I'm still using Gnome now. The HUD is amazing - I love the integration with Tomboy. And the new webapp control from the dock is just gorgeous.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Arariel » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:47 am UTC

Steax wrote:No, it's only partially locked down: there's a difference with fully locked down things, like iOS or proprietary firmware entirely. No, I just said it was never designed to be replaced; call it locked down if you want, Apple and the vast population just sees little reason to care.


Only partially? The system is entirely DRM for crying out loud. Sure, that's less of a pure software lockdown, and more of a locking between the software and hardware, but it's there nonetheless. And that causes some other issues.

For one, why does Apple arbitrarily disallow older computers from upgrading? Sure, you can argue that you can install a new Windows or GNU/Linux distro onto it, but then why bother with the hassle of switching entirely different platforms?

For another, what happens if you want some kind of hardware that Apple doesn't have? Well, you're shit out of luck there, aren't you?

And great, now you're comparing 3rd party software as if Apple made it themselves!


Errr... no, I wasn't? I was merely pointing out it's ridiculous to count a 3rd part proprietary application you have to buy as an option to remove a simple feature.

Okay, I hereby conclude that you're just trolling. I'll reply when you get past that allergy of everything proprietary or even the slightest bit controlled.

Well, I don't have an allergy to everything proprietary; I still have Flash, proprietary codecs for audio and video formats, and maybe proprietary drivers (haven't checked, but Fedora has binary blobs).

Steax wrote:I'm not talking of all desktop users, I mean OS X users. Why would a non-OS X user care about removing the dock? By "vast population", I mean "the vast majority of OS X users."


And I'm sure the vast majority of iOS users don't care that they can't install apps not from iTunes. Of course the vast majority of users don't care. That's trivial.

Copper Bezel wrote:Presumably because it's the app listening for keystrokes (where in Linux that would a role of the WM.) But, you know, the reverse can be true under Linux - from scrotwm to Gnome's Mutter and Unity's Compiz, there are a fair number of wms that provide the system panels. So yeah, you might be able to kill the panel without disabling features of or changing out your wm, but you couldn't do the reverse.


... I'm not sure exactly what you mean by 'the reverse'?

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Steax » Wed Jul 25, 2012 7:52 am UTC

Arariel wrote:
And great, now you're comparing 3rd party software as if Apple made it themselves!


Errr... no, I wasn't? I was merely pointing out it's ridiculous to count a 3rd part proprietary application you have to buy as an option to remove a simple feature.


I'm not replying to the rest, since, again, it's an issue of opinion, but this is just wrong. Obviously, this software shows that it is possible, just that these guys decided to sell the software. Whatever license this software has has absolutely nothing to do with OS X itself.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Iranon » Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:44 pm UTC

If you have too many options, you either overload the GUI configuration tools or expect users to break out a text editor and fiddle with configuration files instead. I actually like the latter, but most people don't consider either elegant or user-friendly... something Apple cares a great deal about. Also, removing the dock sounds like a newbie trap - "eek, how do I get it back if I can't access my settings any more?". Also something I expect Apple to care about.

There's a trade-off between making it easy to to basic things and making it easy to do advanced things.
Someone who finds OSX/Windows/GNOME restrictive may prefer something like KDE and its rich GUI setup tools.
Someone who finds KDE restrictive may prefer a window manager that's configurable through open-ended plaintext (example: FVWM).
Someone who finds that restrictive may prefer something configurable through a proper language with hooks in the right place (example: Sawfish)

If users just miss a couple of features, there are always add-ons to the more integrated and less tweakable environments (dock removal or pseudo-tiling for OSX, multiple workspaces for Windows, a whole extension ecosystem for GNOME). Inelegant and occasionally buggy, but easier than giving up the integration and moving to something more configurable by design. Especially since many things in proprietary OSes may not work outside the default GUI.

Others care deeply about their personal workflow, "I don't want to learn how someone else's idea of a usable environment works. I want to learn how to make my environment work the way I want". Those will appreciate the free world with highly tweakable software, tough love and prompt 4-letter-initialism support for clueless newbies.
Personally, I'd prefer if everyone used flexible and powerful geek toys for interfaces... and if their makers updated the defaults to be palatable to average users.

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Wed Jul 25, 2012 4:57 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:Qt is a graphical toolkit for applications, not a window manager. There's no contradiction between the two, any more than there is to be running GTK applications under Openbox.

The main Unity project is a plugin for Compiz, and given the state of the Compiz dev team right now, I believe that Compiz is essentially Ubuntu's project to maintain now. There is a 2d alternate Unity shell (using Qt, yes) that can run under any wm, but it's not the same code base. (It's supposed to go away in 12.10.)

Unity has become crazy awesome - I can't think of any practical excuse for the fact that I'm still using Gnome now. The HUD is amazing - I love the integration with Tomboy. And the new webapp control from the dock is just gorgeous.

Ah, that's what it was, I was in 2D mode, and yeah, the HUD is very cool. I was looking to see what other similar programs there were and said fuck it, I'm using an Ubuntu fork, why the fork can't I use whichever forking WM I want? :P

Compiz is unmaintained except for Unity though, yes.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Wed Jul 25, 2012 9:39 pm UTC

Arariel wrote:
Copper Bezel wrote:Presumably because it's the app listening for keystrokes (where in Linux that would a role of the WM.) But, you know, the reverse can be true under Linux - from scrotwm to Gnome's Mutter and Unity's Compiz, there are a fair number of wms that provide the system panels. So yeah, you might be able to kill the panel without disabling features of or changing out your wm, but you couldn't do the reverse.


... I'm not sure exactly what you mean by 'the reverse'?

Exactly this thing that Max™ and Iranon are talking about - the integration of elements into a single UI. The Unity or Gnome Shell blends of Gnome might be replaceable environments that run on top of the OS, but in themselves as environments, they're no less integrated than Aqua is with its dock. So window management in Aqua might depend on the dock, but no more than some docks or system panels in Linux depend on the window manager. And you can't remove the dock in Unity, by the way.

But I'm really not sure what you're arguing for. I mean, I like modularity as much as the next guy, and I could see the argument that OSX would benefit from it. Would that then make it qualify as something you wouldn't be allergic to? (And then, theoretically, better than Linux, on the basis of all these features you're categorically disqualifying?)
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Arariel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 7:59 am UTC

Steax wrote:I'm not replying to the rest, since, again, it's an issue of opinion, but this is just wrong. Obviously, this software shows that it is possible, just that these guys decided to sell the software. Whatever license this software has has absolutely nothing to do with OS X itself.

Yes, it just takes an entire application to do so. And seeing as they're selling it for $15, it's evidently easier than figuring out how to do it yourself.

Copper Bezel wrote:Exactly this thing that Max™ and Iranon are talking about - the integration of elements into a single UI. The Unity or Gnome Shell blends of Gnome might be replaceable environments that run on top of the OS, but in themselves as environments, they're no less integrated than Aqua is with its dock. So window management in Aqua might depend on the dock, but no more than some docks or system panels in Linux depend on the window manager. And you can't remove the dock in Unity, by the way.


Yes, well, to have a GUI, you pretty much need a window manager. But why have a dock integrated into the window manager itself?

Copper Bezel wrote:But I'm really not sure what you're arguing for. I mean, I like modularity as much as the next guy, and I could see the argument that OSX would benefit from it. Would that then make it qualify as something you wouldn't be allergic to? (And then, theoretically, better than Linux, on the basis of all these features you're categorically disqualifying?)


Better? That would require having more and/or better features (that I would use and have a noticeable impact on my productivity). Maybe on par, feature-wise, at best. Of course, to be on par, it'd also need to have some way to install free applications, libraries, codecs, and documentation from repos as full as the Fedora, rpmfusion, and Ubuntu ones (and not requiring an iTunes account), and a way to add third-party repos. For example, easily installing PIL, BLAS, and a plethora of other libraries from repos. Yes, you always have the option of compiling from source, but then you can't keep all your software continuously up to date. Of course, the repos would have to be well-maintained as well, i.e., not another Java screwup.

And even if it were on par, why would I use a non-free OS that's only as good as a free OS? If I have a choice between two products with equal merit, I obviously should choose the option that not only provides more freedom, but is cheaper, too.

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:05 am UTC

To be fair, I had long ago moved to having a main auto-hiding left side dock with a small right one just for files/folders/volumes.

Swapping to the Unity launcher in exchange for the HUD alone is worth it, but being able to just super-button -> type two or three letters and get to an application or file or menu is actually awesome.

I did not like Unity the first time I tried it, I would like to see more HUD type integration from other GUI/WM options, but it really is nice. Having it context sensitive so it searches in firefox if I'm there, libreoffice if I'm using that, and such is a really obviously good idea after you actually play with it.

Beats GNOME Shell anyways.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:45 pm UTC

In terms of productivity, yes, it does. It's still an ugly sunnabitch. I mean, they're very similar feature-wise, except for that HUD (and a more functional Dash in Unity, and dock badges, and the new webapp stuff, and the fact that Compiz at least has a close animation for windows.) The Overview is a very good feature for avoiding claustrophobia that Unity doesn't have, but it's still simple enough to bind Scale to the upper-left corner, and in Unity, thanks to that integration of wm and panel, the dock is functional during the window spread, which makes for a close approximation.

I like workspaces and Unity still has no bleeding idea what to do with them, but they're incidental for most users.

I just really wish Unity wasn't so godawfully hideous. I mean, log in, and the first thing to grab your attention are the thirty-seven giant icons in the system tray in the upper right with a clock dropped in somewhere for flavor. If you don't have the dock hidden, you also have the window title hanging parlously out beyond the left margin of the window, over the dock, in a mad drive to save screen space or ... something, and which for some reason also conceals the window controls (but only for maximized windows, because that makes sense.) The system panel also has to match the window them (making for a desktop that's hard to read and dull as you please) or maximized windows just look weird. And unlike the Shell, there's only one way for the Unity Launcher and lenses themselves to look, which is the "Glittering Advent of Plastic" motif.

Basically, it strikes me that if someone set out to create an extraordinarily efficient window manager out of spite for such such petty human notions as aesthetic sensibilities or consistent visual metaphors, Unity is more or less what they might come up with.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby EvanED » Thu Jul 26, 2012 3:22 pm UTC

Iranon wrote:EDIT: It's a shame many good ideas are tied to a particular interface. I love Ubuntu's HUD (searchable menu of an application, analogous to the semantic launching that's become commonplace during the last few years) but that's tied to Unity, which is otherwise one of the worst desktop environments for my needs and tastes.

I've seen the videos of the HUD and think it looks awesome. I don't like the direction Unity is going (e.g. I hate the Unity dock for the same reasons that I hate the OS X dock, and I dislike the menu hiding it does), but I'd like to give the HUD a try. Alas, no way is it worth moving to Unity from my tiling WMs. (I have actually given it a fairly fare shake as I use it on my laptop because I've been too lazy to get my window manager configurations working in a way that it'll run on there and because my laptop usually is running Windows.)

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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 26, 2012 3:40 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:In terms of productivity, yes, it does. It's still an ugly sunnabitch. I mean, they're very similar feature-wise, except for that HUD (and a more functional Dash in Unity, and dock badges, and the new webapp stuff, and the fact that Compiz at least has a close animation for windows.) The Overview is a very good feature for avoiding claustrophobia that Unity doesn't have, but it's still simple enough to bind Scale to the upper-left corner, and in Unity, thanks to that integration of wm and panel, the dock is functional during the window spread, which makes for a close approximation.

I like workspaces and Unity still has no bleeding idea what to do with them, but they're incidental for most users.

I just really wish Unity wasn't so godawfully hideous. I mean, log in, and the first thing to grab your attention are the thirty-seven giant icons in the system tray in the upper right with a clock dropped in somewhere for flavor. If you don't have the dock hidden, you also have the window title hanging parlously out beyond the left margin of the window, over the dock, in a mad drive to save screen space or ... something, and which for some reason also conceals the window controls (but only for maximized windows, because that makes sense.) The system panel also has to match the window them (making for a desktop that's hard to read and dull as you please) or maximized windows just look weird. And unlike the Shell, there's only one way for the Unity Launcher and lenses themselves to look, which is the "Glittering Advent of Plastic" motif.

Basically, it strikes me that if someone set out to create an extraordinarily efficient window manager out of spite for such such petty human notions as aesthetic sensibilities or consistent visual metaphors, Unity is more or less what they might come up with.

Image

The top edge of the dock is under the top panel, shown here with ff maximized:
Image

Top left corner opens window switcher, top right opens workspace switcher, or I can hold down L2+R2 and right/left/up/down on the PS2 controller I use as a mouse and swap between them.

It's not quite as elegant as the Cinnamon one was where it shows the window selection in the desktop selection, though I'm sure there should be a way to get back to that version.

Oh, in the top image I had the static blur effect on so it was showing the desktop background instead of what was underneath like it does with active blur on.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:24 pm UTC

Yeah, when I used Compiz, I had the upper-right hot corner set to the workspace switcher, as well. Obviously, not necessary under Shell. (The workspace filmstrip in the Overview is not a Cinnamon thing, but a Shell thing that's preserved in Cinnamon. Compiz doesn't have a mode like that that offers access to workspaces and windows at the same time. KDE does, sort of.)

The top edge of the dock is under the top panel,

I know. That's the nonsense. = ) Why is the top panel treated as a part of the window by half of the on-screen elements and not the other? It really makes no sense.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:33 pm UTC

I'm not sure what you mean there, would you prefer if the dock overlapped the top panel?

I never did that with docky, I would prefer if I could take the trashcan off and center the dock on the left side, but I'm ok with it as it is since it's really not much different from how I had it originally, except for the integration of HUD/Dash.

Do you mean the Dash overlapping the top bar bothers you?

Image

Like that?

The Launcher/Dock ends just below the top panel, the Dash/HUD overlap the top panel because they're stealing focus from the window underneath anyways, so I'm not sure I get what you mean.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu Jul 26, 2012 4:59 pm UTC

Yeah, I would prefer the dock without the trash can and centered or, if it must take the full height of the display, overlapping the top panel. As it is, it just looks weird as hell for the dock to slide out over the height of the screen -20px, and if the dock isn't on auto-hide, you have the opposite problem where the window controls are weirdly separated from the window. Earlier versions of Unity just had that space reserved as the home button, instead of the home button being on the dock itself, and that made much more sense.

The Dash and HUD screens are fine.
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Re: Linux vs Windows vs Mac

Postby Max™ » Thu Jul 26, 2012 5:05 pm UTC

Eh, that's pretty minor though really, I wouldn't like it at all that way actually.

I use the menu buttons over there enough that it would get annoying having to rehide the dock to hit them, and I have the window switcher up there too so I'd have to fight between dock priority and switcher priority.

It was wrong as fuck with the dock always visible though, fo sho.

You can just move the dock to the bottom though, but I like it on the left.
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