10 things Linux Ubuntu should REALLY copy from Mac OS X

Linux grows up less than Mac OS, Why? It is free, secure, portable and (relatively) easy of use (Ubuntu).
The most important reasons are: Mac still offers a better user experience (as Mark Shuttleworth admits) and not enought commercial software are avalaible for Linux.

So, what is this "user experience" that Mac has and Linux lacks?

Consistency

Linux, Free and Open Source Software permits to adapt them to your needs, but this shouldn't mean to rediscover the wheel every time!

Deb or Rpm? Pulseaudio, Esound or Alsa? Gtk or Qt? Metacity, Xffm or Compiz? Who cares! The important is the modulariry and interchangeability!
If a lightweight and a full-feature project can't merge their effort at least they should propose a public API to Freedesktop(e.g Xesam), so third-party application should grow up without to be broken to every release.

GUIs

There are still basic tasks that you MUST use a terminal to understand what is going on and to fix it. The terminal is useful but not easy for the majority of users.

Eye Candy, Look 'n' feel


(Different kind of selection highlighning on OS X)

Ubuntu default font is not very nice and many GUIs could be more informative and a gray window isn't a good way to show that the system is busy.

Dock

Windows and Linux are used to waste a lot of space for application.

  • Icons on menu: applications launchers
  • Taskbar: applications running
  • Tray: application controllers for common tasks (stop, start, next song,..)
  • Applets: see Tray

The dock does almost all the things above in one place and the "Application" is displayed ONCE. Linux has Cairo Dock, which is good and very customizable, but in isn't integrated with the rest of the system. (I mean Transmission, Calendar,.. icons change behavior directly in the dock)

Time Machine

Linux has good mature backup tools, rsync, tar, .. but these tools aren't for anybody while the backup is. Flyback it's a nice frontend for rsync but everytime it scans the entire directory structure, so it isn't so smart. Inotify is there, it just should be more used.

Quicklook: an unique viewer

It is the only rational way to manage different type of data. A global viewer for Images, Video, pdf, slides,.. and different applications to edit different data in specific tasks.
Gloobus should be integrated in Nautilus in a non-hacky way.

Filesystem Hierarchy and .config file hell


This could be a techie topic but it isn't, anybody would prefere to see a better path for the system files (/lib, /usr/lib, /usr/local/lib, /usr/X11R6/lib) Gobolinux tries to simplify this legacy outdated Unix fashion, but no mainstream distro is going to support it.

A similar situatiation is for user confiiguration files. Where does THIZ app save my config? Try .config/, .gconf/, .app/, .gnome2

Poor hardware experience

This topic is improving each release but there are still no ufficial support for remotes, tv receivers, webcams, synchronization devices, scanners, power managment .. SEE BRAINSTORM

Updates shouldn't break the box

All-in-one updating system is nice but it shouldn't provide regression! Ubuntu support proprietary drivers like Nvidia and Ati/fglrx, Intrepid Ibex release broke several working installation causing a regression. This is very bad.
The users should be more cosciensciusness but Ubuntu should advertise better this regression!

See the forums for reference or stay with Hardy Heron LTS as long as possible.

Marketing

Apple makes products that promote itself and it does video screencast to explain to everybody how to use them. Ubuntu started a screencast tour/tutorial but now it is seems abandoned and outdated.

 

Using 646-363 sample questions with testing engine is definitely a good idea to capture first rate success in 642-611 exam and build strong foundational knowledge for next 646-985.

commenti

The source is open mainly to allow people and you to do it ....

I partially agree with what you say, but I believe that it must strongly be pointed out that Linux is an Open Source project. So among it's main features it grants access to sources and documentation for everybody willing to put hands on or simply to study.
Configuration files are mainly in plain text, terminal access allows to perform tasks at the very inner level and to strictly control what they do. Moreover there is so great a choice of applications that I think few people has tried them all.
Gui interface should be thought of as an application, instead of as a sort of kernel.
Users must be granted access to the whole system without exceptions (of course when properly authenticated) and the configuration parameters must be directly accessible and documented.

Have you ever tried to use "regedit" ?

It is really a great evolution since the days of "win.ini" but let me hope it will never be "backported" to Linux....

Bye.

imchairmanm

I agree with a fair amount of what you said, but I think you were off with a few things. For one, although it's part of the usage experience, poor hardware support can hardly be blamed on the OS. Hardware works very well when vendors take the time to provide drivers for their own equipment. Otherwise, it's up to developers to reverse-engineer drivers or fool them into thinking they're running on a different OS. Linux has done an unbelievable job at getting as much working as they have now. Neither Windows or OSX has to worry about that problem because windows is so widely supported that every vendor provides them with drivers and OSX is there too, coupled with the fact that they're designed to run on very specific hardware. If you put Linux on very specific hardware also, it would run without problems.

Another thing, updates that break the system or decrease functionality are indeed something to be worried about, and the fact that they happen in the most popular distro right now might be cause for concern. But some distros are much, much better about their updates. Try looking rolling-release distros.

I also think that marketing shouldn't be worried about before any of the other problems, but that's just me I suppose.

Like I said, I think you're right with a lot of what you said though. Especially with consistency. There's got to be some standards!

If you're interested, here's a look at it from the opposite side:

http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/10things/?p=461

So nothing's really perfect, it just depends on what you like. I do think that it's good to always be trying to improve though!

imchairmanm

I agree with a fair amount of what you said, but I think you were off with a few things. For one, although it's part of the usage experience, poor hardware support can hardly be blamed on the OS. Hardware works very well when vendors take the time to provide drivers for their own equipment. Otherwise, it's up to developers to reverse-engineer drivers or fool them into thinking they're running on a different OS. Linux has done an unbelievable job at getting as much working as they have now. Neither Windows or OSX has to worry about that problem because windows is so widely supported that every vendor provides them with drivers and OSX is there too, coupled with the fact that they're designed to run on very specific hardware. If you put Linux on very specific hardware also, it would run without problems.

Another thing, updates that break the system or decrease functionality are indeed something to be worried about, and the fact that they happen in the most popular distro right now might be cause for concern. But some distros are much, much better about their updates. Try looking rolling-release distros.

I also think that marketing shouldn't be worried about before any of the other problems, but that's just me I suppose.

Like I said, I think you're right with a lot of what you said though. Especially with consistency. There's got to be some standards!

If you're interested, here's a look at it from the opposite side:

http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/10things/?p=461

So nothing's really perfect, it just depends on what you like. I do think that it's good to always be trying to improve though!

inglisc

du gust is megl che uan :D

Right!

You are perfectly right. I'm a 10 years linux user, pretty tired of linux and using hackintosh on my notebook.
I think linux package environment is pretty much heterogeneous. I used archlinux for a while (3 years), and it is really good.
But I actually can't waste my time anymore reading wikis and writing configs to make my webcam or my SD reader work.
Ubuntu is not the best distribution at all. It is probably the more "linear" and supported for the common user. But there is no "stupid user" betatest.
A big problem is also hardware, and you should mention it. Linux do support a lot of hardware, but crappily a lot of times. Bad performances and disrupted working. An example: Intel GMA 950. The video driver i810 was crap. The new one (called "intel") is even worst with really bad performance. I can accept not widespread, hardware but this is too much for a user!

talk about the file system

talk about the file system of osx

wow

The file system in linux. You a retard. The file system in linux is just like that of unix almost of which macosx is derived. Have you tried the console in macosx yet?

WOW complaining about the file system. WTF is this? While you choose something random to complain about, plz plz plz don't go ahead and make fun of the windows and macosx file system while you're at it because you don't like the file system physical layout of the folders. Do you know why the filesystem is laid out like so? NOOOO!!!! Go take a look a look at your own file system first and note the similarities tard.

narf

I think linux has enough consistency. If you want consistency. Well then there's the command line, that's quite consistent on all linux distros. For a program in ubuntu to show that it's busy it shows the program grayed out? TRY TURNING OFF COMPIZ-FUSION YOU RETARD!!! Compiz-fusion is a hinderance to most and unnecessary horse power eater. Turn off compiz-fusion and you'll get quite one obvious way of seeing when a program is busy.

You want more consistency? Choose a desktop environment and stick with the apps made for it. I know that when using gnome everything looks and sounds like gnome no matter what. Because i was using gnome apps with gnome. Not something else that would have no consistency like gnome with kde apps. This is not consistent.

You can have easy consistence in linux. Gnome with gnome apps, kde with kde apps, xfce with xfce apps, etc. Your comment about linux being inconsistent by perhaps comparing window managers was really uneducated.

Linux has modularity. Linux has more than just one window manager and desktop environment. What does this mean for the people who want consistency? An argument in an area of what they don't know what they're talking about. For people who like consistency stick with your normal ubuntu or kubuntu installations...with compiz-fusion turned off i recommend. Ubuntu, everything gnome baby! Kubuntu, everything kde baby. That's consistency on the same OS with two different desktop environments. Linux you have consistency and with choice. I much prefer consistency myself, the days of messing around with gnome using openbox as the window manager didn't yield any extra freed memory so i just went back to metacity (gnome's window manager for gnome) in gnome. Using gnome apps only in the gnome desktop environment with gnome daemons is quite consistent in my head.

STFU

sneert

the author fails to realize that there's thousands of linux distributions out in the world today. they all have their own consistency based on their own way of doing things. Don't like a distribution, go find another one that fits your needs. Deb files are for debian linux of which ubuntu is based off of so it uses debs. Rpm files are for redhat linux. Why is there two or let alone even more kinds of linux install packages out there? Each distro has it's own way of doing things. Debian didn't like rpm at all, so it made it's own package format called deb which works great for anything debian based. Sort of how like rpm's work great for anything redhat based.

Linux has backup tools also. Linux has tons of image viewers (wtf is with you pointing out macosx's image viewer?). Well i guess mac users aren't used to customizing their desktop. Personally i find the taskbar where all active applications get held is more informative than macosx's docker. First off the taskbar shows me the icon of the app and differentiates itself from the rest of the apps with text. Have 3 instances of firefox open and at different web pages? No problem i can tell which is which. Have 3 instances of firefox open at different web pages in docker? Do i remember which firefox icon is which or will i accidentally hit the firefox icon that was the launcher for firefox in docker? The docker in macosx is highly uninformative and has little use and is there to sit and look pretty while it slowly reaches down your pants.

Umm again with the filesystem thing you retard author you (you're so funny). Have you tried looking for the user config files in your folder in the home directory? They'll be hidden files so be sure to turn on the show hidden file feature to see them. the only place in unix because of the permissions and file system you get to have read write access to files is in your user folder in the home directory. Why is it like this? So people like you don't screw the system up because you didn't know what you were doing and then you get to pay me to fix it. If you're just a user who needs to save files does it need to go some other place besides your home directory? Well sure, thumb drives, external hard drives, and burnable media, besides that everything of yours just needs to stay inside the home directory. Same with user config files.

GET A FUCKING CLUE, YOU AUTHOR PERSON IS A FUCKING IDIOT AND DOESN'T KNOW SHIT OF WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT!!! WHAT A FUCKING TERRIBLE ARTICLE!!! What was proven? PEOPLE WH0 KNOW WHAT THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT SHOULD BE THE ONLY ONES TALKING!!!

ARF

Wow, that comment i read about granting the user access to the whole file system i read. LMFAo. The bad idea of that is tenfold. First off boneheads will screw up there computers right off the bat because their boneheads. And they'll have deleted or modified an OS file that was necessary. Yes, boneheads with admin access 24/7 will guarantee you a broken anything. That's why you stick a bonehead in user space and not admin space. They don't destroy the underlying system which is the OS because they can't. And if they want to do something administrative, then they better know the admin password. Multiuser environments are great.

The other great thing is that being stuck in user space means viruses, trojans,...blablabla malware in general wont be able to do crap because they wont have admin privileges in a user profile. Using user profiles on windows works this way too, the few windows computers out there in existence that aren't retardedly given admin profiles 24/7 that is.

OH GOD IT'S A TARDED AUTHOR!!!!

an individual

The problem with the hardware drivers is probably going to be persistent, at least in some cases, due to the licensing of the GPL. It is, in a sense, much easier to convince device manufacturers to write drivers for your OS if they can keep them closed source, etc...

And in general, perhaps it's still a little bit too much of a moving target, there's too many projects trying to do the same thing, and the chances of everyone agreeing on important stuff like a FHS that makes it easy to install 3rd party apps without using repositories are almost nil. Likewise, having one distro gain enough critical mass to influence these issues is also nil. Ubuntu, Red Hat, Novell are powerful forces. They're not going to up and change how they do stuff -- stuff as important as FHSs, perhaps even kernels, overnight. It isn't going to happen.

As influential, stable, and fun as Linux is, it's really sad to compare it to OS X and see what it could have been if it had just gone a different route. That being said, it's not like OS X or OSX86 is going anywhere, the option is available to you, and through MacPorts, you've pretty much got any app that you're used to using on Linux anyway.

It's not so much that Linux can't do this, it's that it requires cooperation from more than within the Linux community itself. It's how Linux interacts with the larger environment -- and until this can be standardized (which is going to be difficult seeing as how Red Hat and its free clones, Novell with the Microsoft compatibility, and Ubuntu on a more personal level are as powerful as they are, and not apt to make significant changes in how they do things) Linux is just going to fail as a general purpose OS (especially on the desktop).

Routers, sure... servers, sure -- there are places where Linux does real well. But it really doesn't stand a chance against OS X and especially OSX86. And unfortunately, I don't see any way right now that a "new and improved" version of Linux that addresses these issues can gain the critical mass that it needs (especially on a commercial software level) given the current state of affairs.

You'd need a new distro, a completely new distro -- and even then, you've still got licensing issues. You need to attract the talent, you need to spend countless hours working out the bugs, and ideally, you'd need a new, non-GPL kernel as well. With OSX86, you've got that.

It's so sad, because Linux is really stable, efficient, elegant and all that. It's just not going to make it in this way, unfortunately. At least not in the forseeable future. GoboLinux is probably the best hope, but can it gain the critical mass?