[ubuntu-uk] How I learned to stop bickering and love Unity.

Liam Proven lproven at gmail.com
Sat Dec 3 20:30:19 UTC 2011

On 3 December 2011 20:27, Steve Pearce <me at stevepdp.org> wrote:
> Evening Ubuntu-UK,
> Just thought I would post my thoughts about the current release, to
> counteract the flood of negative criticism that's been hitting our mailboxes
> throughout the day.
> I should admit that I reacted negatively when first using Unity in Ubuntu
> 11.04. I hopped to the other Ubuntu flavours like several others have
> mentioned and I would often complain about Unity with my techie friends.
> After reading some Ubuntu Planet posts about bickering in the community, I
> realised that I should give Unity a good couple of weeks on my workstation
> to see if it was just me instinctively fearing change, or Unity and it's
> design decisions that was the problem.
> Since Ubuntu 11.10, I've been using Unity with great ease and stability.
> I've learned that if you give Unity (and the Zeitgeist backend if that's
> correct?) some time to learn what programs and files you use often, then
> access to these is often quicker and easier than most other platforms.
> Here's a run down of some of the features I feel makes Unity (and the whole
> Ayatana effort) great,
> 1. I love that Thunderbird and Gwibber each tell me how many unread messages
> I have waiting for me.
> 2. Whenever someone pings me on IRC, the xchat icon wiggles to let me know
> that I'm needed – that's awesome!
> 3. I love that I can launch applications in a few keystrokes. I can launch
> medit for example just by typing SUPER M RETURN. That's far less effort than
> most other desktop environments.
> 4. I love that I can reach my files quickly in the same manner. I could open
> my CV with LibreOffice by keying SUPER CV RETURN.
> 5. I can pin the applications I use most often, which totals to only about
> ten icons. So when I hit my desktop after boot, I can click all of them in
> just a couple of seconds to background them ready for use.
> 6. System indicators and configuration – they're all in one place! A single
> click to browse them all, and a single click to action something. It's
> consistent and beautiful.
> 7. Notify-OSD provides subtle and smooth notifications unlike anything we've
> seen on other platforms. Programs like Gwibber which show recent tweets or
> Brasero which tells me when an operation has finished are great!
> 8. Screen real-estate has been greatly improved. I love that the window
> controls for each program collapses into the top bar when an application is
> full screened. It means that you can gain extra readable lines in a document
> or program and it gives you a sense of total immersion in whatever it is
> you're working on.
> 9. The Ubuntu font family – lush!
> I'm pleased I gave Unity a real chance on my desktop and I later learned to
> stop being reactive whenever anything new hits town.
> Unity has made my desktop an exciting place to be. It's a pleasure to use
> and all other desktop environments including the old Gnome 2.* series now
> feel dated and clumsy.  Anybody who isn't using Ubuntu 11.10 and Unity is
> missing out in my opinion.
> And so we arrive at the initial question, “Ubuntu – Wrong Direction?”.
> Absolutely not! The desktop paradigm needed to change and given the
> developments we've seen in the mobile and tablet space, it's about time we
> took those usability lessons and applied them to the desktop. I'm looking
> forward to Ubuntu's future and I look forward to experiencing an Ubuntu TV
> and Phone.


Liam Proven • Info & profile: http://www.google.com/profiles/lproven
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