That's just one of many frustrstions I run into anytime I try to use ios (or Android) for anything other than consuming and so I'd really like to know am I doing it wrong? Is there some magic to work around these issue? Do others just never need to do the things I need do regularly?
It's so bad I recently bought a headmountable camera to document the frustrations in the hopes of generating some awareness of the issues because I'd love to be able to get by with just a tablet.
It's the same with my phone, although I am pretty decent typing on it. But long comments and emails I find myself forced to get out the laptop.
I sort of miss the Blackberries in this regard - I could comfortably get over 50wpm on the physical qwerty keyboards.
> or the fact tbat I can't copy the text of a link, only the link itself.
I wanted to share a tip in regard to this: select some text before or after the link text, then use the markers to adjust/refine down to just the link text that you want.
Anything I would have gotten done on my iPad, I could have just done on my iPhone. And if I can't use my iPhone for it, I would have used a real computer.
There's a lot of discussion here about the stock apps in elementary. However, since I am an experienced Linux user, I don't really care about stock apps. The Linux app ecosystem is extremely diverse, and over the years, I have found my best solution for each task. For example, Clementine for music, Atom for text editing etc. So these apps get installed immediately after every installation of elementary and then I never look back at the stock apps again.
Agree about the general sentiment, also. In general it's an excellent project.
The other approach they could take is the Mono/.net approach, which is to have some core domain logic, and then use that as a back-end for multiple independent UIs. A well-designed back-end allows the UIs to be relatively lightweight and hopefully maintainable.
The trouble is, some of what makes "existing Linux desktop staples" is non-trivial UI work. And sometimes adding a back-end front-end split can add a lot of complexity.
In the end, I think the reason we see such division on the question of custom app VS custom skin VS reusable back-end is that there are serious trade-offs in each direction.
One's preference for programs is really a matter of personal taste. You can try to make the stock programs "suck less", but I doubt you're ever going to really eliminate the need for third party programs. Distros like KaOS (KDE with all-QT apps) have tried, with limited success. The best thing any distro can do, IMO, is to have an extensive App Center and use a flexible packaging format such that it encourages more apps to support that format.
At work, people get awed all the time - "wow, is that Winamp?" :D
And I keep thinking, what the hell are people using these days?
Before I had to worry about space and moving my music around. Now it's on every device. Has all my playlists, all the music I listened to + discover new stuff, friends can send me songs I might like, can even download for offline if I'm worried about not having internet, etc.
It's been a much better solution than playing everything in Winamp which I used forever or iTunes.
People like this bore me to death. Let's be frank - you're just biased and you're probably wrong, despite all your good intentions. What OS you prefer is a matter of taste and of choice, and there's no "better" or "worse" unless you're so narrow minded as to only measure an operating system's worth by the features that happen to put your chosen OS ahead. These days if I was a dedicated gamer I'd probably say Windows. In fact, after the Surface Studio presentation, it's tempting as a creative platform.
I used one form or another of Linux on my main desktops and laptops since 2002, until 2009. In 2009 I bought a Macbook and since then I've switched to OS X (or macOS) as my main OS of choice. I still install GNU coreutils on macOS, and still keep a separate desktop at home with Linux on it - appropriately named `lab` in my home network.
So, in 2016 my main laptop is a Macbook Air with macOS on which I do most of my work, my desktop is running various flavours of linux (arch which i keep the most updated, but also alpine, ubuntu, fedora... etc easily accessible in grub). Don't lecture us on what OS is better, we've made a decision and it doesn't have to be the same as yours.
> Don't lecture us on what OS is better, we've made a decision and it doesn't have to be the same as yours.con
I would agree with that but you don't have to be so harsh, he may actually convince people with arguments as to why Linux is actually "better" (i.e. privacy), rather than "lecturing" them.
It has proven to be significantly more stable and simple to use than Windows and the default applications really nicely hit the simplicity and usability for a user that primarily needs web, email, photos and minor document editing. I'd even argue it's better than macOS for that user profile (especially since it's not localized to my local language, which eOS and most of major Linux apps are).
The fact that it actually looks good by default is nice as well.
- It's based on Ubuntu LTS (which is great!), but the new versions tend to lag after Ubuntu LTS releases by months at a time.
- No upgrade path between versions.
- Releases tend to be buggy on some hardware after release.
Is Elementary OS significantly different?
One of the biggest problems in the Linux ecosystem is the lack of any good source on hardware compatibility tracking.
Damn it, there is at least one documented case of a motherboard giving a junk ACPI return if the OS identified itself as anything other than Windows.
I'm currently using Archlinux now, so far I enjoy using it, but the fact that we have to put much effort on installing it makes me don't want to recommend it.
I try to find simple-to-install-with-Arch-linux-based-OS, still with rolling release and pacman -Syu to update the entire OS.
eOS is a really nice looking thing, but it's buggy, release after release it's losing features, like  - this specific one was never fixed in the previous release.
The built-on music app collapses under a reasonable amount of music, same as banshee or quod libet can easily handle. Geary, the mail app looks nice, but lacks basic features and has a tendency to corrupt IMAP folders.
The window manager of eOS, Gala, is indeed impressive, but lack options to tweak. In the previous release, it was impossible to disable the ALT+TAB effect, even if all the other effects were set to none.
So overally: it's looks nice, the window manager is fast, and if you're fine with the defaults, you're probably going to be a happy user - until you find something you miss, and there is no way to fix that.
Geary was forked after Yorba wound down, and Elementary are moving it over to the Evolution backend, incidentally.
After over a decade of using Mac OS X, I am considering switching to Linux for my dev laptop. The tools I worry about are those that interact with audio and webcam - Go To Meeting, Google Hangout etc. My work involves me having to teleconf with others often.
Does anyone here have experience using Linux well in such scenarios. If so, what hardware are you using?
Also, does sleep-on-closing-lid work well?
Funny story: My new-ish Dell laptop (Inspiron 15 7559 i7 with 4k touchscreen display; which I got at an absurdly low sales price from the Dell outlet store) does not reliably recover from sleep under Windows, but does under Linux (neither worked when I first got the laptop, but now only Windows fails and now only some of the time). That's a first, for me, as I have had a huge variety of sleep related bugs in Linux over the years, but fewer under Windows.
Google Hangouts works fine under Chrome on Linux, but is quirkier under Firefox (I don't think I ever got the voice/video plugin working under Firefox, but I rarely use the video features these days, so I just run Chrome when I need it). Both video and audio Hangouts work fine under Chrome.
With very new hardware, you probably need a very new Linux distribution, and newer hardware can have installation quirks. Getting Linux onto my box took a lot of fiddling, but it now runs Fedora 24 quite nicely.
A couple of years back I was having persistent sleep/wake issues that seemed to stem from graphics driver issues. I switched between the open source and Nvidia binaries, trying to find a stable combination. What a nightmare. In the end, I decided that I didn't want to mess around and tried out a few Live CDs (think I tried Ubuntu, Mint, and Fedora). In the end, Fedora worked out of the box and completed my "stress test" of sleep, wake, sleep, wake. I had to give up stellar 3D performance, but have found things to be working quite well and consistent now through all the Fedora updates.
Might give Elementary OS a spin. This old Thinkpad T510 is getting dated, but still solid as ever (besides battery life).
However, I have two devices with a Skylake processor and neither have on Linux (as of recently, there were some minor ones with bad power states on cores). One of them dualboots Windows, and windows has some random weird issues with Skylake and BSODs randomly (but rarely). Sometimes it "wakes up" into BSOD.
I'm still seeing powersaving issues even on Haswell. I believe basic support for Skylake only shipped in Ubuntu LTS only recently, too.
Basic "just run code" stuff seems to be working well enough, and on a desktop which always runs at max in my case it doesn’t need to support power savings modes either.
Linux is better for development, but worse for collaboration. You can get almost everything working, but it takes effort.
GotoMeeting screensharing tends to work, but not always. Join.me doesn't. The tools for Windows (my other OS) are much better if you need to capture screenshots or recordings often (typical use case: hotkey -> record part of the screen -> paste into Slack.. this is doable on Linux, but on Windows, it takes almost zero effort).
The audio is getting better on Linux, but I have many audio devices (external DAC, audio-through-Displayport, analog headset, etc.), and switching between them quickly is more painful than how it is on Windows. This is aggravated by the fact that I hate all DEs (except maybe Gnome3), so I use i3 WM -- which is brilliant but stuff like clipboard management doesn't work well out of the box.
In general, Linux can work for my (your?) use case, but it's significantly worse than Windows. It's better for development though (in general). Currently I run Linux VMs under Windows, that works okay.
Ah, and Skype for Linux alpha works fine.
edit: this article mentioned MacOS and Linux and so that's all I thought OP's comment was referring to. We all know the advantages compared to Windows. Of course Windows is constantly improving.
Having a Windows VM on Linux seems workable albeit clunky for the ~5% of things that I must have like GoToMeeting, etc. Thing is I already use a Windows VM on Mac for some things like that because I am very security-conscious and OS-pollution-conscious and don't like installing intrusive stuff like GoToMeeting on my main OS.
Last time I tried (2+ years ago, it might be different now) Go To Meeting also wasn't working on Linux.
I've used Linux on the desktop between 2009-2014 and basically anything multimedia related was a chore.
Now just need a 'stop sharing my desktop' button.
Full disclaimer: I'm a friend of the founder, however I'm a paying customer due to the fact that
1. It's worked wonders with my clients
and 2. It's so much better than hangouts or skype.
Compared to the big boys it may be considered a bit spartan but for what it does, it does it extraordinarily well.
I can tell you that for the most part it's worked flawlessly. The only issues I ever had were that linux rendering wasn't great, so sometimes the CPU was high just from rendering!
We are browser-only, so because we don't have a native app we just use browser functionality. The only thing we use the extensions for is for security to ask for permission to use the screen (it's really like a dozen lines of code).
Bluetooth is kind of a mess, on Xubuntu at least.
(Speaking as someone who likes Xfce, and is currently switching from MacOS to Linux and is mostly settled on Xubuntu), I think that's mostly an Xfce thing. GNOME (and therefore Unity, Budgie, possibly Cinnamon and maybe MATE) handle it better.
Sleep-on-lid-closing works reasonably well nowadays; I can't remember the last time I've run into a laptop which has issues on that front. However, I'd definitely do my research before buying a new laptop, especially if it's a very new one (in other words: you'll have better chances of power-management compatibility on laptops that are a bit more battle-tested).
I used to use Ubuntu and had Hangouts and GoToMeeting work just fine (also, Skype and Appear.in).
I switched to Mac for two reasons: browser testing Safari and quality hardware (aluminum case, retina screen, support for 3+ monitors, nice hinges). I suppose iOS app development is another reason you'd want it.
I don't have time to tinker with compiling kernels, configuring X11, figuring out which photo management software to use, setting up reliable backups, getting my Bluetooth headset to work, and, yes, getting the machine to suspend when I close the lid and wake up when I open it.
These are basics that will just work with OS X, very, very, reliably.
That said, if anyone can point me to a Linux distro (Debian/Ubuntu preferred) and hardware that actually work reliably together, please do.
In 2009 I installed Mandriva on a laptop--everything just worked. In 2011, I jumped ship to Mageia, the community-driven offshoot of Mandriva. Everything still just worked. Fast forward several laptops later, including mine and friends' and relations' laptops, and it all just works. Compiling a kernel? Wouldn't know how anymore. Fiddling with X11? No idea. I don't even have problems with Pulseaudio.
Compare that to dual booting this one with Windows 10. For several months, Windows 10 had a bug where it wouldn't save the touchpad settings. Every time, I'd have to disable tap-to-click. UGH. They finally fixed it, but what a pain.
(And when I had an OS X machine, received as part of payment for a job... between the beach ball and the not-infrequent crashes, where the screen dims and displays that fatal error message, it was a pain to get any work done.)
I haven't heard of the need for compiling kernels, configuring X11 etc. in a loong time.
> setting up reliable backups, getting my Bluetooth headset to work, and, yes, getting the machine to suspend when I close the lid and wake up when I open it
Again, works out of the box, just pick a laptop that is known to work well, i.e. a Clevo, Lenovo or some of the newer DELL machines to give Linux a proper chance - there's no point in trying a laptop that is known to work only with Windows and then complain about it - the same way you don't complain if macOS doesn't work well on a DELL.
You pick a specific machine to run macOS, do the same for Linux and everything will work beautifully out of the box.
If not, then I can vouch that my wife's Thinkpad runs Ubuntu with no issues. I concur with others that kernel compiling and X11 configuration have long been non-issues.
I use Fedora on a ThinkPad X230. It works an absolute dream. GNOME is my favorite of all the desktops, and Fedora by default ships a fully setup and functioning Gnome on Wayland session (which will also be the default session in the next release, coming in a few weeks).
The reason I chose to run Fedora on a ThinkPad is because it required no tweaking and fiddling at all to get working nicely. I'm all about that seamless out-of-the-box experience.
I was amused by the post here today about the Touch ID fork of sudo for macOS, because I already use the same feature on my ThinkPad every day, and it required absolutely no configuration or setup (other than enrolling my fingerprint).
Since you are asking for specifics, I run openSUSE Tumbleweed on an Asus Zenbook UX 305, and with the exception of keyboard backlight, all the builtin hardware works as expected. I have never tried to attach an external display. I did not try Ubuntu on this machine, the Debian installer pretty much bailed on me. (Tumbleweed is a rolling release distro, so the amount of updates it receives can be slightly annoying at times, OTOH the software is very much up to date.) I have to admit I have not tried suspending the machine by closing the lid, but Fn+F1 works reliably.
That's fine, you are paying a premium for all this, it better "just" works. Elementary OS is free of charge.
hangouts works brilliantly. skype (even the old version) works great with both audio and video. in fact i have switched over to the skype web version which works on the chrome browser (no video call for now.. but audio works brilliantly).
i use fedora 24..which just works and is pretty cutting edge. i switched over from Ubuntu pretty recently and have been very happy.
im on a xps 13. previously i was on a thinkpad. there is no dearth of cool laptops on Linux.
plus it comes with all the new systemd security integration. i dont think cinnamon has been rebased on gnome 3 yet
su -c 'dnf install http://download1.rpmfusion.org/free/fedora/rpmfusion-free-release-$(rpm -E %fedora).noarch.rpm http://download1.rpmfusion.org/nonfree/fedora/rpmfusion-nonfree-release-$(rpm -E %fedora).noarch.rpm'
sudo dnf -y install cabextract lzip p7zip p7zip-plugins unrar gstreamer1-libav gstreamer1-plugins-bad-free gstreamer1-plugins-bad-freeworld gstreamer1-plugins-base gstreamer1-plugins-good gstreamer1-plugins-ugly gstreamer-ffmpeg gstreamer-plugins-bad gstreamer-plugins-bad-free gstreamer-plugins-bad-nonfree gstreamer-plugins-base gstreamer-plugins-espeak gstreamer-plugins-fc gstreamer-plugins-good gstreamer-plugins-ugly gstreamer-rtsp amrnb amrwb faac faad2 flac lame libdca libmad libmatroska x264 x265 xvidcore hexchat mpv smplayer vlc
Sleep-on-closing-lid has worked fine for me for many years.
It's funny that, with regards to Just Working after installation, Linux seems to be way ahead of Windows. I installed both of them on my laptop and while on Linux everything worked fine from the start without needing extra setup steps (including the multitouch trackpad; the not-so-standard function keys like keyboard brightness; even the this weird external subwoofer that came with the laptop), on Windows i had to download and install special drivers for all those things, and even for much more basic stuff, like the wireless card (had to dig through old computer stuff to find an ethernet cable to connect to the internet).
Now, i understand why this is the case. Linux distros are designed to be installed by their users, while Windows is designed to come pre-installed on computers. But i still find it curious how Linux is much more non-tech-savvy-friendly in this particular regard.
WebEx's Linux support is excellent though.
Google Hangouts works fine under chrome on linux.
As far as hardware, webcam support is generally good. It's now at the point where if you bought a random webcam, there is a better than 50% chance it will just work. That being said, it's much safer to check if others have used it, or to just buy a laptop that has a webcam and ships with linux support (Both Dell and HP have laptops that ship with linux installed). I have a Creative Labs USB webcam that unfortunately has no model number printed on it (I have a long list of things I don't like about built-in webcams).
Sleep has worked on all laptops I've tried in the past decade or so. Hibernate (i.e. suspend to disk) is much more spotty.
Battery life lies somewhere between windows 7 and Mac, though certain applications are particularly bad at draining the battery (powertop can be useful in identifying these).
In general linux on a laptop has gotten way better; in particular networking is much more bearable now that NetworkManager actually works and it's much easier to find laptops with linux supported wifi gear preinstalled.
I saw someone mention audio issues; that reminds me. The situation there is more like what networking was like 5-6 years ago. Pulse Audio promises to provide all the basic features people expect from an audio stack), but sometimes crashes, or drains your battery or just causes weird sounds to come out of your speaker. On the other hand, getting ALSA+dmix setup correctly without pulse audio (which is the only real alternative), is fairly arcane, and leaves you without things like per-application volume control (though many linux applications provide their own software-implemented volume control).
That I think would be the best of both worlds for me.
1. The graphic card (Intel onboard Crystal Eye) switches to low-power mode on battery. The windows Intel driver has an option to switch it to performance mode. No such option on the linux drivers.
2. The damn Xf86Display Key (Projector shortcut) isn't supported.
However, I've realized over time that irrespective of your choice, you will face issues on _your device_. NTFS would stop working on your Mac, or your iPhone will refuse to connect to your Car's bluetooth one fine day.
webcam both on the mbp and my logitech hd work out of the box. sleep on closing lid also works quite well -- and i feel waking it up is faster.
which kernel were you installing?
For some reason I had to install "cheese" to make it work. But that's all. No extra drivers needed or anything else.
2. It just works. You don't have to configure anything, every hardware part functioning properly and it's guaranteed that this will work in the future without any hassle. You don't have to think about drivers, kernel versions, sleep/wake up scripts, swap. You just install OS and start to work. That's on macs, of course, hackintoshes are more like Linux in that aspect.
3. A lot of hardware designed for Macs. I have yet to see a device which will claim that it support Linux. Yet almost anything will work in Mac. Windows is better, of course, but Mac is good too. With Linux you better google it before you buy it, and even then something might be not perfect.
4. They are nice machines overall. Good enough quality, good casing, good design, good internals, good service. Not best, but not much drawbacks.
5. GUI is pretty nice and pleasant to use, there is a lot of GUI software for macs and almost every useful Linux program will have mac port (but not the other way). Linux doesn't have so polished user experience. Though it's not that important for power users, but it's nice to have IMO.
I wish this was true, but I always hold off updating my work MBP at least 6 months, before all the issues with the newest release are resolved.
I remember updating to 10.7 since 10.6 was a solid release and it was a nightmare.
There's a bunch of stuff broken with 10.12 as well, including a bug which prevents curl from working well and a bug which makes Duet less reliable under Sierra.
I'd agree with the aluminium casing and good external design, but in regards to internals; the GPUs are very lacklustre in performance, I had a problem with my MBP showing green tint on the screen after just months of usage and have a dead/red pixel on my new display already.
The fans also do a terrible job at cooling and the CPU can reach 95 degrees C while compiling code, which makes it not so hot a dev machine, (pun intended :-)
But I agree, the service is good.
I may have misunderstood this, but System76 specifically make 'designed for nix' desktops and laptops.
System76 looks really interesting and if it works like Mac, it's awesome.
The extent to which other *nixen deviate from this determines how much of an uphill battle one will face. And I say this as a lover of OpenBSD, and someone who wishes Linux weren't such a dominating de facto standard.
But the Open Group--I can't think of one reason why UNIX certification has mattered for a good number of years now.
I don't want to single out your comment, but there's been a lot of this lately (and every time this discussion comes up).
There's no one true version of a 'developer' or a 'pro.'
Broadly speaking, people will be most productive with the tool they know best. And the 'real' pros can be productive with just about anything.
For myself, I consider myself a developer too, but my workflow is probably very different from your workflow. My main machines are a MacBook Pro (2012) and a hefty HP workstation (64GB RAM, dual Xeons) running Ubuntu. There are things I use the Mac for that I'd struggle to do on the HP, and vice versa. But that's just me... But the idea that there's 'one true dev' or 'one true platonic ideal' of a development machine, is just crazy. And that's why I think a lot of this recent Apple criticism is missing the mark (especially when there are plenty of things to criticise Apple for, if that's what one wants to do).
To address your point about this being a recent trend I actually noticed the mismatch when I first moved to the bay area 5 years ago. It seemed weird to use a mac as a dev machine and then deploy to a ubuntu box in production. There was always some issue that came up because whoever was doing the deployment didn't verify things in a VM first and then had to do some firefighting on a production box.
This wouldn't be a problem if workplaces gave you the option of getting a linux box or a mac. At most places you don't have a choice. All the IT management software is built for a mac so you get a mac.
I actually ended up switching from OS X to Linux (on a MacBook) for this reason. Things break all the time, but at least I can usually figure out how to fix them on Linux. (OS X would freeze at random times, requiring a hard shutdown, and also sometimes resume from sleep with a black screen and no way to change it, the former happening across every version and the latter only after I upgraded to Mavericks).
A lot of time was spent fighting to get tap-to-drag without a release delay. Still nope.
Overall, it can be a pretty infuriating operating system as well.
I've never run into any issues with my dell machine and it started with ubuntu 12.04 when I first got it. Each upgrade has gone without any hitches or glitches.
Why you are trying to group everybody together is beyond me. There are hundreds of programming languages, dozens of popular platforms, maybe hundreds of niche ones. There is no one single, correct solution, just as there is no one single answer to your question, because there is no one single deleveloper, there are millions, and some enjoy the stark look of a terminal and others prefer to look at pretty icons.
Virtualization is a bit less efficient but it certainly does not prevent you from utilizing multiple CPU cores or all your available RAM -- minus the resources consumed by the host OS of course.
Because there are developers on this world that don't develop for UNIX, rather native applications for macOS, iOS, tvOS and watchOS.
Being a developer doesn't mean one is only allowed to work on UNIX.
Maybe I'm not a real developer according to your standards. Not enough configuration files and build systems modeled in my brain to qualify. I just prefer code to black boxes.
Wow, that's a pretty great idea. Enough people do this wrong manually that it seems like something that could be better solved by the OS.
One example I've seen of doing it wrong is adding black opaque rectangles as layers and then sending out all layers including the original. Another is pixelating it in a way where it's possible to revert the pixelation since the font is known (e.g. parts of a facebook post)
Moving to Linux seems like a romantic idea, but I can forsee there being a number of problems that would make it unfeasible for me
1. I use 1Password, no Linux client
2. Spotify client is no longer being developed for Linux
3. YouNeedABudget software is not Linux compatible - I have 2+ years of financial transactions in there...
4. Google Drive, no (official) Linux client
5. I have a number of Alfred workflows, and enjoy using Alfred in general.
Yes, there are a number of open source alternatives, but I've built up enough inertia on OSX it's going to be very difficult for me to switch.
There are things about OSX that couldn't care less about like iTunes, Apple Maps etc, but overall it's not so bad
2. Spotify will still receive updates for Linux, they just don't have a dedicated Linux developer on it anymore. On my machine it still works fine.
3. I prefer GoodBudget, which IMHO is much better than YNAB, especially when it comes to their iOS/Android apps. The desktop client just runs in the browser. Also, I've heard YNAB will be discontinuing their desktop apps?
4. There's https://github.com/odeke-em/drive, a fork of the official drive client, and it's still being actively developed.
5. Haven't used Alfred, but you can get some of it's features using other tools, e.g. indexed search using Tracker, clipboard history using Diodon, and perhaps some other things. However you are right that you can't get the kind of polished automation Alfred seems to provide. Rather, you'll have to write shell scripts and use the commandline tools to get what you want. Absolutely everything is possible, but it'll feel a bit like using lots of duct tape at first.
Note: I'm not saying you should switch right away (1). But I used Linux (Ubuntu) full-time for work and at home for the last 5 years and I was able to do everything with very few exceptions (2). Most peripherals that I bought just worked out of the box. Going Linux full-time is 100% doable.
Also, with so many apps running in the browser (or on Electron) the choice of OS matters less every year.
(1) in fact, I'll probably get a Mac myself this year for developing iOS apps.
(2) Only exception: Windows VM for Microsoft Word/Excel/Powerpoint & iTunes for iPhone syncing. All other software ran in WINE or had a reasonable Linux alternatives.
I run 1Password in Wine in Docker on my (secondary) linux ThinkPad with Dropbox sync. It works, but it's clunky. Part of that is that I don't like the Windows 1Password application compared to the macOS one, though.
You may want to check-out Albert. 
> Yes, there are a number of open source alternatives, but I've built up enough inertia on OSX it's going to be very difficult for me to switch.
The longer you work on one platform the more you get locked into it. This may not be a problem for the time you are happy with the platform you are locking into. But keep in mind that you are currently locking into a closed source platform. I migrated from MS to Linux about a year ago after being on Windows for about 2 decades. The burden migrating out of it was heavy. With the upcoming closed source cloud platforms this will get even worse. An open source platform gives you more control and freedom over your workflows and data. IMO this is something which cannot be valued highly enough.
As a consolation, I'm aware of a number of music clients on Linux that can stream from Spotify via their API. Ad-supported accounts don't have access to the API, of course.
 - https://www.googleplaymusicdesktopplayer.com
Good luck running a program in full screen on your main monitor, while also doing stuff on a secondary monitor, where you have to switch windows, open new ones, etc.
Gnome3 is only useful on non-touch laptops, not on any other usecase.
The only multi-monitor complaint I had about Gnome 3 was that opening the Activities bar or changing apps led to both displays dimming. This makes Gnome 3 horrible for presentations, screening films, or pretty much anything you'd want to use a projector for. I'm hopeful that problem has been fixed, as I've rarely felt so annoyed at a piece of software. Notifications were also problematic, in that they would pop up over full screen applications (which is, IMHO, never the right behavior...full screen apps should really be treated as sacred, by default). But, at least notifications can be disabled. The misfeature of screen dimming and shrinking app windows across displays could not be disabled last time I messed with it (admittedly, a year or two ago).
"Gnome3 is only useful on non-touch laptops"
Which touch features do you think are missing? Mine seems to work fine, though I so rarely use the touchscreen that I may be missing something important. I find touchscreens hard to use for anything more than basic scrolling, so it's not a feature I even wanted, but it came with my laptop, and I was surprised to see it worked fine out-of-the-box with Linux. I didn't even tweak it.
That’s exactly what my issue with multiple screens is.
Still not fixed.
> Which touch features do you think are missing?
It’s not that I think touch features are missing, it’s that I think non-laptop features are missing.
On a screen with 1440p or 2304p height, and 27" diagonal, I can afford to have a lot of things directly in view – I don’t need to have them hidden behind things like the dimmed activity menu.
Which, btw, isn’t very ideal for touch users either.
(Well, there's also http://papyros.io, but I'm not confident that it will amount to anything)
BTW, that practice of making keywords (which often repeat throughout the text) into links (often to your own damn blog) is abhorrent.
> An overlinked article contains an excessive number of links, making it difficult to identify links likely to aid the reader's understanding significantly. A 2015 study of log data found that "in the English Wikipedia, of all the 800,000 links added ... in February 2015, the majority (66%) were not clicked even a single time in March 2015, and among the rest, most links were clicked only very rarely", and that "simply adding more links does not increase the overall number of clicks taken from a page. Instead, links compete with each other for user attention."
When I, an internet user see a link, it's visual distinctiveness cues to me that it might lead me to more information that emphasizes something. It's fine for websites to link to their own tags, but there's also overdoing it.
Things like handling gracefully video card/dual monitor, audio switching, and sleep mode recovery end up being headaches that use up a lot of time googling around and generally learning about stuff you shouldn't have to know.
It would be nice to see a company that specializes in a linux flavor sell a machine that is specifically built for that OS and with high build quality. Chromebooks are the closest thing to that but pushing a web-only interface is a major drawback.
Are there any serious projects in this direction?
I've spent a few minutes on a Librem 13, and it seems like an extremely high quality piece of hardware. It's cool that they're assembled in South San Francisco, too. I really really want to like System76 machines, but they're just so damned ugly!
Your best bet for a Librem-quality machine that is actually designed to run Linux is a Google Chromebook Pixel. If you want a truly 100% open from the chips up laptop, right now your only option is Bunnie's Novena, but it's not for the faint of heart; it's a true hacker's machine and not a ripoff of a MacBook.
Their Developer Edition laptops get special treatment with regards to Linux compatibility. At one point, the made the the company they sourced some new touchpads from develop drivers for Linux and got it upstreamed.
Since 2012, I've tried Elementary several times but I always come back to whatever other (Debian based) distro with LXDE because there's one thing, really JUST ONE THING, on Elementary I can't stand: the Application Switcher (alt+tab) animation. It's slow and distracting and, even switching any and every UI animation off, I couldn't speed it up.
I still like the project and I really want to use it as my main OS some day (at least for 1 year or so. I'm always switching OSes)... I'll give it a try again next month to see how things are going.
My biggest complaint is actually that the OS file selection interface (like what I get opening things in Sublime Text) is not same as the fancy finder application, but the default Ubuntu one that doesn't look consistent.
For the moment, for my use case it's the best distribution, but it's not quite at the stage where I'd want to put it on a relative's computer, and I think given their stated aims that's the litmus test.
 - https://antergos.com
I did pull out gnome and swap it for i3wm. I recommend if you haven't tried i3wm give it a try, there's less graphical flair, and panels -- but you gain in performance, speed, and productivity, everything is just a shortcut away, and the i3 config file makes adding more shortcuts even easier. Definitely worth the time to learn.
I personally want that feature too.
Did they improve on this front?
EDIT: I stand corrected. This has not happened yet. I confused this with some other changes.
There is a problem with Epiphany, namely that the webkit version that ships with Ubuntu is long outdated, hopefully that's going to get fixed: https://blogs.gnome.org/mcatanzaro/2016/02/01/on-webkit-secu...
(I also pick the right kind of image depending on your display DPI, and resize them on the back-end, but that's beside the point here)
I just refreshed again and everything seems to be working now.
Qt has a flag to use the GUI key for shortcuts, but it's hard-wired to the platform. I keep hoping there will be enough OS X refugees to make it a user-configurable setting.
Is this really that big a deal? I am genuinely curious.
Having a system-wide set of shortcuts without having to fight the system is extremely powerful. I have suggested Win-C/Win-V to the elementaryOS guys -- as an addition, not a replacement -- but they weren't interested.
Hmm, backtracking to my grandparent comment, if you can map the terminal emulator to do the equivalent of C-c upon C-S-c, then why not do the same with C-v and C-S-v. Just send the ASCII keysequence for C-v down the shell.
> Having a system-wide set of shortcuts without having to fight the system is extremely powerful.
This follows the exact same argument OS X has to not using Ctrl-c, Ctrl-x, and Ctrl-v for copy, cut, and paste: history. When I first used OS X, coming from a Windows and GUI Linux keyboard usage background, I found that odd similarly to how OS X terminal users find Linux's terminal shortcuts.
But hey, historical decisions have stuck. And it's not that hard to commit to muscle memory a few platform differences here and there. There certainly are many OSX-isms a not-primarily-OSX user has to deal with.
But then I would have to press some keystroke to copy/paste in terminal, and some other keystroke everywhere else. This is the default state of things in Linux today. This means my muscle memory needs to be contextually aware; today it's not.
I'm not sure why you need a shortcut for copy, select copies by default on linux[x11] - middle-button pastes (or shift-insert).
But it's not necessary that I copy from iTerm; maybe I have something on the clipboard and want to paste it into iTerm.
Now, Linux vs MacOS vs Windows -- I get the difference, it's like moving from a manual car to automatic. But imagine you're given a manual car where every gear works normally except for the second -- and second gear requires some extra movement; like pressing a button, or turning a gear stick 90 degrees clockwise. How soon before this car would absolutely infuriate you?
And now imagine that people who learnt their driving on this car are coming to you and just aren't getting what's the big deal.
One could argue that you have a broken keyboard (which can of course be fixed with xmodmap). Certainly, it's odd to complain about going from a non-standard command-c/v combination, that your keyboard is missing an insert key.
> and Ctrl-V means something else in Vim, for instance.
Sure, ctrl-keys are semi-consistent in each niche - and vim can paste and yank from the standard X11 cliboards (yes, sadly plural): "+p and "<star>p (where <star> is * escaped for hn formating).
You're free to make up your own mappings, just like Apple has done. And Apple deserves credit for forging a consistent user interface. And Microsoft at some point gave up fighting over ctrl and alt, just like Apple did, and rather than copy "command" they made the "windows"/super and "menu"/super keys.
So again, for all the faults one can find with inconsistencies in Linux/Xorg, the clipboard is actually fairly consistent IMNHO - especially considering the various archaic software packages it continues to support (eg: vi(m), emacs, tty's etc).
You can also configure urxvt to copy whatever you highlight.
Now I need to constantly follow whether I am in terminal or somewhere else, and invoke shortcut A or shortcut B depending on that.
Basically every time I've tried desktop Linux (which is many times) I have always, always struggled with graphics drivers. Even if I get it to work fine, they always suck compared with a Windows installation. Last year I ran desktop Linux and first I had Linux installed and ran CS:Go, I had some issues with frame rate and when I installed Windows on the machine I got about 10-20 more fps which made a huge difference under heavy load.
I love the idea of desktop Linux but I've come to terms last year after about 8 years of trying that it will never be as polished, as good as Windows. At least for me as a gamer. I think a big part of the problem is that there is just too much choices and software out there. Either it's Gnome, Unity or KDE or 20 other window managers. Writing GUIs for Linux is hard compared to Windows/MacOS. Small issues in many appliations, errors that show up when you really try to replace programs with open source ones etc.
I love open source and of course I understand why things are the way they are, it's incredible hard for a smaller open source project to compete with a company that has lots of resources to throw at the issues.
It works with nvidia, but as soon as you have multiple monitors or do heavy gaming the faults are there and it's obvious that they don't put in the same effort as in their windows drivers.
I've been preparing a "plan B" for my iOS developer career, and I've installed elementary and a Fedora 25 alpha to see what's going on in Linux land. To me, Fedora's GNOME 3 seems just as pretty and minimal as elementaryOS. It's way less cluttered than GNOME 2. I actually had to figure out how to clutter it up again (I want files on my desktop!).
On things like ThinkPads, XPS Developer Editions, etc. the battery is rather comparable to their Windows counterparts for most cases.
But I intend to use this on a beefy desktop crammed with VMs and Docker containers, so that's not a problem for me.
I use Elementary OS as a secondary OS, and I have to say I'm loving it more and more while the quality of MacOS continues to drop.
System Preferences > Accessibility > Mouse & Trackpad > Trackpad Options > Scrolling > Without Inertia
System Preferences > Accessibility > Mouse & Trackpad > Mouse Options > Scrolling > Without Inertia
Elementary is nice, it is also my backup OS, and I also donated some money to them 1 year ago.
iMovie: Pitivi, OpenShot, KDEnlive and even Lightworks for something more advanced.
Lightroom: Darktable, Rawtherapee and Corel Aftershot Pro.
ASP is just buggy. I tried it on Debian Jessie and Ubuntu 16.04 and on both it lasted a few days before simply refusing to open, even after install. It's also slow, even though they claim it's faster. And it does annoying stuff like paint its own window borders to look like a Windows app.
Darktable is the best RAW editor I've used, but it's got essentially zero file management. Batch output requires a new mental abstraction with the 'queue'. For volume work (hundreds of images at a time) it seems ill equipped as you have to create a style or copy the history stack (which doesn't seem to have an easy keyboard shortcut). I'm still working on this one as it has so much power and control it could be fantastic, but more work needs to be done on the process of the edit or you can get stuck in the editors rabbit hole of fine detail.
RAWtherapee - that's the next one to test for me. My initial feature check showed it suffers some of the complaints of Darktable like no file management (as far as I can see) and an involved edit process.
If you pair any of the above applications with gThumb you can get some of the file management back in the most LR style I have found, but (infuriatingly) gThumb doesn't seem to display images in subfolders for whatever reason.
My conclusions so far (as a former pro photographer) is that there is potential in the linux world to equal and even do better that LR but it's definitely not there yet and definitely not in one programme.
And let's not start talking about Photoshop/GIMP - which of course ISN'T photoshop, as they keep telling us.
Has it improved in that area?
Does anyone know how this is implemented?
Edit: pretty simple: http://bazaar.launchpad.net/~elementary-apps/pantheon-termin...
For instance, all I had to do was include `\a` in my `$PS1` and now whenever a command finishes running and bash is ready for a new command, my terminal emulator gets a bell.
Konsole (and any Konsole based terminal emulators, like Yakuake) shows a notification if a bell happens in a non-foreground session.
Konsole also has explicit tab-specific settings for "Monitor for Silence" and "Monitor for Activity".
It's up to the terminal emulator to do what it wants with the beep character. Technically, it's up to whoever has to display the character; if you're running bash at a tty — an actual terminal — then the kernel gets to decide what to do, so it beeps, since there is little else it could choose to do.
Terminal emulators, on the other hand, know they aren't actually in a limited environment and can do a lot more than playing a sound. That's why there's such a thing as "visual bell" among terminal emulators. Some highlight the tab title upon visual bell, Konsole merely sends a notification if a bell occurs.
> And/or interfere with any programs that use the beep for their own purposes?
I don't quite understand what you mean here. There isn't any way for arbitrary programs to listen for / wait for / register callbacks for the beep.
If you're thinking about the `\a` in `$PS1` ... well, PS1 is shown only when bash runs as an interactive process.
Also, the beep control in ALSA is muted by default.
But I have some problems with the Nvidia support.
Also v-sync doesn't really work, I get lots of tearing.
The terminal is nice and the window manager is good as well.
( elementarty-tweaks should be in there by default )
GNOME in a sense also takes a lot of inspiration on macOS but it is different. I personally use GNOME.
Elementary OS seems great, though, don't get me wrong. I hope it helps bringing more people into Linux.
Not a bad writeup. For me music is via XTools->mplayer
/r/unixporn crowd is always interested in posts that customize their Linux setups to the max: use Window Managers almost exclusively, have a unified color scheme all over the system etc. That's not minor tweaking.
Also, that fact they're trying rather hard to get you to pay for it seems a little...icky. Yeah, I know, just click custom amount and enter 0 but still...
- eOS is built on top of Ubuntu rather than Debian
- The team doesn't officially support Pantheon outside of eOS, so you've probably got it from an unofficial PPA that could break with the next version.
- I don't think the Pantheon DE would get you eOS's included apps like Geary.
Please be nice :(. Some of those so-called "neckbeards" probably helped build the stack upon which things like elementaryOS rest.
- dismissal of design as a sort of thin veneer, somewhat fake, lipstick-on-good-bacon
- design as a kludge aimed at amateurs, to the point of preferring the worse UI (all else being equal) so as to prove something
- design = prettiness, and, by extensions, design being entirely a matter of taste and therefore impossible to criticize
- the complete rejection of any argument or evidence that cannot be derived from any of the laws of thermodynamics, Shannon, or at least an RFC
That being said, having browsed the elementary OS website, I'm not sure if isn't the victim of some of these errors itself. It sure seems to be a ripoff of macOS ca. 5 years ago applied as thin veneer to Linux. Their "brand" page may also be the first implementation of cargo-cult design.
Secondly, "good design" is subjective as opposed to a program that achieves its goals. No matter what you do, you will have a substantial amount of people hate your designs. So when people come in and tell them that the design sucks, there are a lot of people also telling them that it is good and it works.
What needs to happen is people come up with objective shortfalls in existing designs and let them know how that can be fixed.
An API is almost as binding as a law of nature. People will grumble, and maybe write adaptors, pile on abstractions, possibly even send you pull requests. But to change an API against the owners' will requires a bold and binary decision to fork with all it entails.
It also doesn't matter. There's only one limitation programmers are often exposed to: that of the choice of language/framework/platform... And witness how much flack a perfectly innocent language* like JS gets.
Within their implementation, programmers have free reign (within reason, don't get your hopes up, tab-indenting freaks)
For design, it starts out with a somewhat arbitrary definition of what is meant by a "style guide". Methods to validate implementations are tacked-on (if existing). A fully-formed style guide (...doesn't exist, but...) would reduce those implementing it to mere tools, while any style guide that allows creativity will inevitably lead to design-by-committee-that-never-meets. At a company, this tension is resolved by iteration, team-work and constant communication, allowing people to form a group identity. But that requires some sort of authority, a hiring/education process that creates a group with some basic, shared understanding/ideology/vocabulary and lots of FaceTime.
*applying the insanity defense
As a front-end web-dev with a passion for Design/UI/UX I can tell you that many designers just don't know how to contribute and a large portion don't know that contributing to a project as large as an OS is even something you can do.
Programming has a history of collaboration going way back, and because of things like Git/package managers etc, this sharing economy is presented very early on and it sticks on the programmers mind. The designers equivalent is stuff like free stock-photo websites and icon packs, their sharing economy lacks comparable concepts.
This is why many of us that enjoy UI design ended up going to platforms where it is praised.
That said, not all design is made equal, sometimes a little dose of reality check from the community can be helpful.
Which means it took 4 years to get it to usable state where i don't have to download tons of plugins to make it effective environment for work and multitasking.
Designers do their own part by putting out the design equivalent of free open source code, in other words free icons, fonts, templates, concepts, etc.
The only well designed open-source projects are usualy from people who are designers who can code. Or led by company hiring designers.
Most of the open source software manages to ask for logo and thats it. Logos are hardly passion, in fact its boring and its not design.
- There is a lack of contrast for the text in the left bar.
- The icons in the bottom bar are off: the colors are dull too (too low saturation is a common theme in elementaryOS).
- The size of the icons in the bottom bar is also off. They are way to big if you compare them to the main navigation (left bar). The visual hierarchy is not ok.
If you ask me: the best looking linux distro atm is manjaro kde.
That said, my favorite UI design was mid-to-late 2000s GNOME, as implemented by Ubuntu 6.09 Edgy Eft. It was simple, and everything just worked. Sadly, Ubuntu has become a bit more complex and buggy these days.
I think that, if I want to get the best of Linux as a developer, running a text-based keyboard-driven environment (mutt, emacs...) on a tiling manager is the best route to happiness.
Part of the problem is that people confuse good design with pretty design (on both sides). The purpose of design is not to improve aesthetics but to improve usability. Aesthetics is an important component of usability, to be sure, but it is not the primary goal.
The difficulty is that power-user control/discoverability/aesthetics ends up being a pick-two triangle. And most designs pushing aesthetics also push discoverability, and power users feel shafted with an overly simplistic tool that isn't as productive as their tool which emphasizes control but totally lacks in discoverability and maybe leaves aesthetics to plug-in themes.
Good design tries to maximize all three.
I'm not aware of any slurs against designers that are equivalent to the slur against OSS developers as "neckbeards."
Ugh, I know exactly what you mean. It's maddening to see stereotypically uncultured nerds celebrate ugly UIs and clumsy CLI apps. It's so ridiculous.
I'm sick to death of XFCE and KDE setups with poor proportions and crazy alignment issues, I don't want an interface that is spatially hyper-compact, I want one that looks pleasant.
I mean Christ, you can't even vertically align elements in XFCE Panels, the whole thing has an aversion to aesthetics.
for example, my firefox looks like something out of windows 95, but if i want to pretend i'm using i3, f11 -> fullscreen, ctrl+tab and i'm set. and if i want to see a bookmark toolbar, url bar, tabs, a title bar, and a menu, i can. why not?
and yeah, the real goodness (which is not unique to gnome3) is the snap alignment stuff and ease of using virtual desktops and setting keyboard shortcuts. gnome3 could be a lot worse than it is. (edit: for me, everything gnome3 does, kde does better, but gnome3 "just works" a lot better than kde and, to some degree, unity. i'd rather be using i3 generally, but that can be more effort to maintain than its worth in certain situations)
For my taste, Gnome 3 only needs a few small tweaks, dash to dock, dropdown terminal, and jetisoning adwaita out of the nearest airlock.
Do you not use the tiling? Do you simply use it for greater screen real-estate?
I'm curious as my preference of i3 focuses on the tiling
And while not as good as real tiling, keyboard shortcuts to the various snapped positions go a long way for the couple minutes of effort they require to configure in the settings UI.
Edit: e.g. super+arrow keys for various areas, or add in shift. Not a lot of planning required.
the unearned appreciation of elementary has always baffled me. i mean, the developers are not hacks or anything. i quite liked geary, and i'm fine with distros multiplying (why not? just use what you want, it doesn't matter). but elementary is barely any more mac-ish than ubuntu with unity, and it's always felt like the beta version of someone's side project.
to sum up, i'm happy that they have interest in their project, and i respect the effort they put into it. however, most of the praise for elementary seems to come from and for the wrong places; it's not particularly polished or user friendly (they have a history of "i'll choose for you," but not in as an intuitive way as Apple), its thematically unified design does not last unless you either use a vanilla install forever or put in just as much linux-y work in maintaining your install as you would w/ arch or debian or ubuntu (and you cared about how everything looks).
to me, elementary is a nice little niche distro like bodhi linux. it's bizarre to me that people can use it as a main system unless they're very advanced (read: they play with config files like a sysadmin and code decently in at least bash), and it's outright unthinkable that people use it for anything beyond checking email if they're keeping a vanilla install. this stuff keeps the ecosystem healthy, but the articles and comments i read about it look like they're coming from people who simply don't use linux that much (and aren't aware that all the good things they see in elementary are done better in other distros).
However, I can also confirm what you say about bugs - a vanilla Ubuntu LTS is quite a bit more stable than eOS is. Having said that, most of the bugs I encountered on eOS were either avoidable (by switching the browser to Firefox, for example) or I could live with them. The one I found most annoying was a bug in the music app that didn't let me save songs to a playlist. I did actually dig into the source code for that one, but eventually gave it up and went back to trusty old (terminal!) mocp.
All in all, I enjoyed using eOS, but when the time came for me to buy a new laptop, I decided to go back to Ubuntu. ElementaryOS is a great project that deserves more attention (and more programmers working on it), but unfortunately does still feel too much like a perpetual beta. I'll keep my eyes on it, hopefully some day I'll go back, but not just yet.
This was simply a "surface" observation of mine too, until I've first hand met people who were impressed with it, and haven't actually used used Linux, but merely used it occasionally.
UNIX support was never a goal for macOS, neither for NeXT, rather a nice way to bring developers from Sun and SGI into their platforms.
The business value for developers was always the Objective-C libraries, which is quite clear from most presentations done by Jobs, some of them available on YouTube.
It is as if some people needed this week's presentation to wake up for the real Apple culture, that goes back to the days when they kind of toyed around with A/UX.
I have no delusions about Apple culture. But apparently you're forgetting that Apple heavily marketed OSX's association with UNIX after the merge with NeXT, and that it made a lot of noise about how the Mac would be the best UNIX workstation ever.
I lived through those years and saw the same presentations you mentioned - some on VHS tapes that were shipped to us after the events. There was no toying about OSX as a workstation, it was even on the sales pitch guides.
The real Apple culture was Object Pascal, Common Lisp, Hypercard, Dylan, Newton, MacApp, PowerPlant, QuickDraw,...
Now they have money and they actually need is macOS, iOS, tvOS and watchOS developers, not UNIX developers deploying code on GNU/Linux servers.
Many of our customers follow similar patterns, I hardly see new desktops being deployed, so I have some sympathy for Apple thinking that it might not be worthwhile to keep doing them.
Also it sounds like you want the ability to develop for osx on a non-osx device. That seems counterintuitive.
2-year old MBP. Created a boot disk with the Elementary ISO and started up. Fairly snappy, connected over a USB 3 connection to a 500GB SSD.
First thing I tried to install was Google Chrome. DEBian package. Fail. Google search for others who have tried. Found recent article, followed step-by-step. Failed. :-(
Depending on how the live boot OS is set up, installing new applications may not work at all. Some live USB creator apps I've used give the option of setting aside some space for a writable filesystem that will with with Ubuntu live images (and possibly others).
In either case, the best way to get a real sense of how much you like the OS is to do a proper install of it in a VM. The live ISO will mostly just show you if the OS supports your hardware and everything (WiFi, etc.) works.
Can't understand how that would fail, really. One thing you might try is doing an apt-get install -f, since there might be implicit dependencies depending on the build, and this forces apt to figure them out.