Canonical Ubuntu splits from GNOME over design issues

Liam Proven lproven at
Fri Oct 29 16:59:27 UTC 2010

On Fri, Oct 29, 2010 at 4:20 AM, Rashkae <ubuntu at> wrote:
> On 10-10-28 10:51 PM, Liam Proven wrote:
>> (OK, so, OS/2 Warp 4 and BeOS and other systems copied it too, but
>> still, it originated with Windows. The classic MacOS Apple menu is
>> often held up as inspiration but that was primarily supplementary, for
>> "desk accessories", not a p
> No, no it did not originate from Windows at all... I once saw an Amiga
> from the 80's that had an interface identical to Windows 95.. I know it
> didn't originate from Amiga either, but that's as early as my experience
> goes with the Start Menu Bottom left thing.

References, please. I was using Amigas in the '80s - I was at the UK
launch of the Amiga 1000 in about 1985 - and I never saw anything like

I'm sorry, but that is a big claim; you need to corroborate it.

The *taskbar* is not new, no; Acorn Arthur and later RISC OS had the
Icon Bar, which was conceptually very similar; more powerful in some
ways, less in others. That dates to 1987. One could also point to the
Wharf in OpenStep from NeXT Corporation as being similar in some ways.

But Microsoft took the idea and made it work, very very well.
Rectangular buttons, labelled with text, each representing a window; a
reserved area for notifications (early on called the "system tray");
making it resizable and movable and indeed the core UI element of the

I am *no* Microsoft-lover, but the UI work that went into Windows 95
was very good stuff.

And what's more, the KDE panel, the GNOME panel, the BeOS task
switcher, the OS/2 Warp 4 Launcher, the QNX Neutrino task bar, the
LXDE task bar and others too, all /directly/ copy the MS version.
Apple does something different, as it owns NeXTstep and OpenStep and
the Dock and the Wharf; its take on the concept is significantly
different. (It amuses me no end that in Windows 7, Microsoft has aped
Apple's Dock, partly abandoning its own taskbar concept.)

I wrote about this at some length a couple of years back - you might
find it interesting. I spell out the argument at greater length:

Liam Proven • Info & profile:
Email: lproven at • GMail/GoogleTalk/Orkut: lproven at
Tel: +44 20-8685-0498 • Cell: +44 7939-087884 • Fax: + 44 870-9151419
AIM/Yahoo/Skype: liamproven • MSN: lproven at • ICQ: 73187508

More information about the ubuntu-users mailing list