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Author Topic: What is everyone working on right now?  (Read 15181 times)

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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2014, 10:39:03 pm »
Well, Kendall,   I'm familiar, as much as possible, with X11 -- LXDE (Lightweight X11 Desktop Environment!).  When I think of LXDE, I think of Peppermint and Lubuntu.

Now Enlightenment seems to be a pretty rare desktop environment.  From what I can find, it had pretty much faded away, with the exception of Bodhi Linux, and now Makulu Linux-- which interestingly enough, in Makulu's case, has also incorporated Xfce into the E 17 distro.

Xfce seems to have become a toolkit DE!  I like Xfce, but it is not as light as LXDE.

Do you know if Enlightenment desktop uses Wayland and/or Mir?  I've heard you talk about Wayland and Mir before, and I will look the terms up.  I've put Bodhi linux Beta onto a flash drive, and I'm trying to understand what's going on with it.  It is an interesting DE,  but I can't say I've figured my way around it that much yet.  From what I've learned, the desktop is the menu, and that is a very clever idea.  Still, at least for me, it is not, as of yet, an up and out-of-the- box distro as Ubuntu or Peppermint is.  I'm just wondering if it has the potential to be made so.

Here's what Jacque Raymer, the developer of Makulu Enlightenment says about Makulu's E 17 desktop, and it sounds as if it is a very difficult desktop environment for a developer -- and a lone developer at that, from what I can tell.  It sounds as if he had a very tough time working with it.

http://www.makululinux.com/enlightenment.htm

I find all these different DEs very interesting to look at and explore.

Thanks for sharing these ideas with me.  It is a fascinating topic.

P.S.

I've never been able to successfully install Makulu.  Bodhi Linux installs much the same way as Ubuntu and Peppermint does.

« Last Edit: May 05, 2014, 06:51:58 am by perknh »
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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #16 on: May 01, 2014, 06:40:14 am »
X11 does not  = LXDE .. LXDE does not = X11 (though it sits on top of it like pretty much all other DE's including E17/Enlightenment)

X11 is NOT a desktop environment, it is the framework that has provided the underpinnings to all Linux desktop environments to date... It covers things like windowing, graphics and input driver hooks, and some networking protocols:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X_Window_System

It has been an amazing piece of software over the years, but in the opinion of many has become a bit overly complex as bits were added to it, and patches applied.

Like most software - things tend to get added, taken away, changed, and patched and after a while it all becomes a bit of a tangled mess where nobody can fully understand the implications of adding another patch will be .. ie. you add a patch to fix a shortcoming, and that patch inevitable breaks something else or opens a security hole as an unforeseen circumstance, which may go unnoticed for quite some time.

So eventually there comes a time where software tends to be either rewritten from scratch, or broken down into constituent parts where the most tangled or outdated parts can be rewritten .. these times are also often used for a complete change of direction.

X(11) has in many people oppinion become a bit of a behemouth, Wayland and Mir are two projects to replace "part" or the X server functionality .. hopefully allowing faster/better graphics, and a cleaner path for future development.

What (I presume) Kendall means is - desktop environments will to a certain extent need to be rewritten to work with Wayland or Mir, how will this affect DE projects that only have small development teams .. will they have the manpower to do it ?, will they stick with X11 ? .. will that make them outdated themselves ? .. or will it make them appear more stable whilst the others that move to te new tech seem buggy at first ?

It's all anyones guess at this point.
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #17 on: May 01, 2014, 02:06:02 pm »
Thank you for explaining that to me.

Now Peppermint OS has been the easiest operating system I've ever worked with, and Bodhi Linux' operating system is the lightest OS I've ever seen that has a GUI.  Might the menu items of Peppermint be placed within the light desktop environment of Enlightenment be a solution to LXDE's, and therefore Peppermint's future problems?

I'm beginning to guess the answer is "no" as of now -- because of the needless complexity and patches added to X11, which both Peppermint and all current Enlightenment DEs share.

We, meaning Peppermint Nation,  have many things that other Linux distributions do not have.   We have a light set of tools that are practical and understandable right out of the box.  We have a fantastic introduction to what Peppermint is, even including some very easy and practical commands for the terminal.  I was guessing we could transfer what we have here to an Enlightenment DE, but today I'm beginning to think things might not be going this way.

Am I working with an interesting idea, but one that is already out of date?  Or might both Peppermint, and the Enlightenment desktop environment, all one day morph into a direction both working with Wayland or Mir -- two development concepts I admittedly know nothing about?

Am I being helpful here, playing with this idea of Peppermint possibly being also within an Enlightenment DE?

Hey, I know I'm only an honorific Jr. Member of Peppermint, but really I'm a complete and utter N00B.  Still I can imagine the Enlightenment desktop as an extraordinary palimpsest in which to place, and possibly breath even more life into Peppermint.  And I may be the only dreamer around imagining such an idea.  I do not know.

You know, I'm sure, I'm just playing with ideas here as an end user.  I'm looking for usability, security, speed, stability, lightness, and understandably.  I also know the OS of the future has to be able to sync well with all types of interface platforms.

I don't know why, but I just seem to think about this stuff a lot these days.

So this is the idea I've been thinking about lately -- pure Peppermint but within an Enlightenment DE.  Would that be a realistic marriage of concepts, or something else?  I do not know,and that's why I'm asking the question.

All should know, I'm just playing with an idea here, based on my own observations.   Any and all opinions -- yeas, nays, or something in between -- are all welcomed and encouraged.  This is just a conversation concerning an idea, and hopefully a fun one, nothing more.

Thank you,

perknh
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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #18 on: May 01, 2014, 02:18:32 pm »
At this point nobody knows where the X11/Wayland/Mir thing is going, and which DE's will survive, or if completely new ones will appear.

I can't see Peppermint going with enlightenment as a DE, nor would I want it to .. Enlightenment has some great tools such as terminology but it still feels a bit of a mishmash to me
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #19 on: May 01, 2014, 04:40:25 pm »
The brilliant thing about the Enlightenment desktop, to me, is that the desktop is the menu.  Left click and we have all the default menu items right there, and that's pretty darn impressive.  Now the frustrating thing for me about Enlightenment, with what I've seen so far, is that when I left click and I see the menu items, I'm not so happy with them.  In my very layman's opinion, the lighter desktop environment is probably Enlightenment, and not LXDE, but LXDE seems to have a better set of default menu items.

And, at this point, PCNetSpec, I can't even backup what I'm saying about CPU or memory between the two DEs.   Why?  Because, believe it or not, I haven't found the task manager yet.  It must be there, but I have yet to find it.

Still I see the concept of the desktop as the menu as fascinating. 

As for terminology, I passed it by about a half dozen times before I realized it was not a vocabulary lesson!
« Last Edit: May 01, 2014, 04:45:26 pm by perknh »
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Offline rjm65

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #20 on: May 01, 2014, 05:06:08 pm »
I am a huge fan of LXDE, in fact when I look for an distro to try I look for LXDE distros, or distros I can switch over to LXDE with very little issues... Like for example antix has a metapackage manager, and inside if you choose Desktop managers, then you have a choice of about 10 you can install and lxde is one of those....  :)
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #21 on: May 01, 2014, 05:50:09 pm »
rjm65,

I'm a fan of LXDE too.  I just keep hearing it's on its way out, and because I run Linux on laptop computers at home, I'm always looking for the lightest desktop environment that will use less cpu.  (Our computers have good memory so I don't worry much about that.)  I keep hearing that Enlightenment desktop environment is the lightest desktop environment for system resources, even lighter than LXDE.  This is the reason why I'm playing around with Enlightenment DE -- in this case Bodhi because it does run on 64-bit computers, and I know how to install it!

I still haven't found an OS easier to work with than Peppermint, with the possible exceptions of Ubuntu's Unity OS or Ubuntu with Xfce (Xubuntu).  I tend to keep away from Lubuntu.  After using Peppermint I always feel as if I'm taking a step down with Lubuntu.  I know that sounds terrible but that's what it feels like to me. Also I've never warmed up to Firefox either, no matter how wonderful I keep hearing it is.  On lots of fronts, I believe Peppermint just works better than Lubuntu.   

I'll now go to DistroWatch.com sometime and take a look at AntiX.

Thank you.

perknh

P.S.

I looked at AntiX.  I see it's based on Debian testing (Makulu is too), and I sometimes find Debian very difficult to install.  How was the instillation process?  I know how to install CrunchBang, but that is based on Debian's Wheezy, but I always return , time and time again, to Peppermint.   Peppermint has proven to be home turf to me.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2014, 09:42:12 pm by perknh »
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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #22 on: May 01, 2014, 06:09:25 pm »
Right-click menu is nothing new .. indeed standard LXDE uses the openbox window manager that can do that

LXDE distro's then tend to use PCmanFM to control the desktop right-click menu but that can easily be changed back to the openbox default behaviour if you choose

Peppermint on the other hand no longer uses openbox as the window manager, instead we opted for the xfwm4 window manager because of its built in compositor and richer features.

That said, there's nothing stopping you from installing openbox if you REALLY want a right-click menu.
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Offline rjm65

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #23 on: May 01, 2014, 06:24:47 pm »
Yup the right click is there on antix mx14 running LXDE they are using openbox like pcnetspec said....
I won't bore you about how I feel about firefox, let's just say I started online in 1995 with netscape, and when netscape turned into mozilla, well I guess that about says it all, I will not run a system unless firefox is on it....  :)
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #24 on: May 01, 2014, 07:57:18 pm »
From what I can tell, left clicking gives you the menu in Bodhi Linux, and right clicking gives you your favorites.

I hear Firefiox is becoming, at least superficially, more and more like Chrome.  I know Firefox is open source, and I know it is one of the better browsers in existence.  Since I believe deeply in open source, I respect your decision to use it.  I know you've chosen your browser wisely.

For me I guess Chrome, and Maxthon,  have just gotten their hooks in me. Both browsers are so user friendly, and I like so much the built in flash within Chrome.  But you know, if Firefox begins to work more and more like Chrome, I may give it a whirl again.  I know, in theory, even if I don't practice it, that Firefox is one of the best open source browsers to use.

I would use Chromium, if it came with flash, and if the Ubuntu repositories would update it more frequently.  I tweak the settings like mad within Chrome, and I use DuckDuckGo, StartPage, or Ixquick search engines just about 99% of the time.  I've also added the DoNotTrackMe extension.  I hope this extension is helping my household secure some privacy -- at least to a more reasonable degree.  That is, if privacy actually exists anywhere is the US any longer!

rjm65, I'm curious, have you ever tried an Enlightenment desktop environment?  Did you find it easy to use if you did?  And what were your impressions of it if you have?
 
I can't say I understand Enlightenment DE very well, but it feels very, very light.  I'll have to go to their forum and ask where the task manager is located.  I must admit, I am at a loss as to where it is located.  This may be all in my imagination concerning Enlightenment's lightness.  I have no records to compare between LXDE, Xfece, and Enlightenment.  I need to do more homework.

Thank you,

perknh





« Last Edit: May 02, 2014, 09:26:43 pm by perknh »
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Offline rjm65

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #25 on: May 02, 2014, 06:18:24 am »
Yes I have tried Bodhi and I did not like the DE at all... I love cinnamon and mate and LXDE those are my 3 favorites, however LXDE is the easiest one to tweak and find scripts for to do the things that you want done....    :)
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #26 on: May 02, 2014, 08:38:09 am »
rjm65, I'm modifying my posts  My home experiments concerning cpu and memory did absolutely no one any good or justice.  But I sent you a personal email concerning a new Mate distribution that its developer, Jaque Raymer, is very proud of.

I can see why Kendall, PCNetSpec and Team Peppermint are wondering what the replacement will be for LXDE in the long run.    Still, no doubt LXDE can, and will, be able to accommodate a few more patches over the next several years.  And I believe Ubuntu's 14.04 kernel will prove itself to be very good when it shows up in Peppermint 5.  LXDE is a great DE, and now I'm understanding more clearly why its days are considered numbered.  But, maybe I'm wrong here, maybe it is just X11's days that are numbered.

And now, to answer Kendall's original question as to what I am working on right now-- well nothing any longer, I guess.  My experiment with the Enlightenment desktop has proven fruitless so far.  My new project now will be to study the concepts behind interface and desktop environments, and this will take me a long time to study.

I would like to help us here with ideas, but in this particular case, my idea with exploring Enlightenment desktop didn't end up being very helpful.  I see you guys have explored it long before me.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2014, 07:05:42 am by perknh »
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Offline kendall

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #27 on: May 05, 2014, 10:39:22 am »
I can see why Kendall, PCNetSpec and Team Peppermint are wondering what the replacement will be for LXDE in the long run.    Still, no doubt LXDE can, and will, be able to accommodate a few more patches over the next several years.  And I believe Ubuntu's 14.04 kernel will prove itself to be very good when it shows up in Peppermint 5.  LXDE is a great DE, and now I'm understanding more clearly why its days are considered numbered.  But, maybe I'm wrong here, maybe it is just X11's days that are numbered.

We're not really "wondering what the replacement will be for LXDE" so much as we are trying to hedge our bets on a couple of potential technology shifts in the relatively near future. I have a very good idea of where I want to take Peppermint in the future, but the timing of certain things I'm not willing to disclose just yet will mostly shape this direction over the next 2 or 3 years.

I would like to help us here with ideas, but in this particular case, my idea with exploring Enlightenment desktop didn't end up being very helpful.  I see you guys have explored it long before me.

I really hate to say it but I've been shooting down the idea of using Enlightenment for years now. Even back when I was a Linux Mint developer the topic came up about once every month or so. I know this might sound counterintuitive but I actually like Enlightenment quite a bit. In fact I'm extremely happy that distros such as Bodhi exist and are well maintained. Rather for years, Enlightenment seemed undermaintained and was quite a bit of a mish mash of a desktop. Now that it's become significantly more cohesive (and understanding the risk of me sounding incredibly reductionist) I find that there are really two types of people: those who really like Enlightenment; and those who really don't like Enlightenment. I haven't really found a lot of people who have used Enlightenment and don't have a strong opinion about it. For me this is the death knell for using it as a default desktop environment. For years I've tried to abide by the philosophy that a desktop environment shouldn't be seen as a feature, rather it should stay out of one's way and provide the most seamless means possible for the user to accomplish what they need to do. When people use a computer they're 99% of the time using the desktop environment as a means to accomplish some other task (surfing the internet, checking email, writing a paper, editing a picture, etc, etc) so the focus needs to be on letting the user accomplish those tasks as efficiently and intuitively as possible. When a desktop environment inspires strong feelings, then I feel it's fundamentally failing at this. Similarly when I talk to someone about a distro and they don't/barely mention the desktop, I feel that the desktop is succeeding in this regard. That said, I maintain the stance I've kept for several years now: You aren't going to see a project from me that uses Enlightenment as a default desktop, at least not for the foreseeable future.
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Offline perknh

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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #28 on: May 05, 2014, 03:36:17 pm »
Thank you, Kendall,

I can see my ideas about Enlightenment weren't nearly as enlightened as I had thought!

I went to Wikipedia today to looked up X11, and then Wayland, and Mir.  I've learned that these are Windowing systems.  I read that Fedora has tentative plans to go with Wayland, but that Mir has qualities better suited for portability. I also read that Wayand puts a great deal of emphasis on security, which may be, and I'm just guessing here, why one very important department within the U.S. Navy is allegedly going for Red Hat or Fedora.

That's all I know so far.  I'm starting from scratch in order to understand this stuff, but I find all this information about development within Linux fascinating.

Thank you very much for giving me a better understanding how a Linux distribution is developed.

perknh
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Re: What is everyone working on right now?
« Reply #29 on: May 05, 2014, 03:59:19 pm »
I've found the more I try to learn about Linux development the less I actually understand so I can only judge a desktop environment on how it works for me personally, and recently I tried Gnome Shell with Lubuntu 14.04 and I have to say I really like it, it's very easy to navigate and very polished and to be honest I don't find any significant speed difference with LXDE and I don't have a particularly powerful PC.






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