Sunday, May 06, 2012

Ubuntu 12.04 and Unity Thoughts

About a week ago, I decided that I wanted to try out Ubuntu 12.04, since I was disappointed with my first experience with Unity, I wanted to give it another try.

My first mistake was to put it on a USB flash drive. I thought that perhaps that because I set it up to use the ext 3 file format that it caused it to be sluggish. So, after a day of on and off fiddling with it, I re-installed it onto the flash drive with ext 4. Still not very joyful. Screens would "freeze up" for a few minutes But it looked nice. So, Once again, I installed it on an external USB Hard Drive, after I created a partition on the HD for it. (I really need to make a partition on my hard drive for testing distros, but that's another tangent that I need to stay off of). 2-3 days later I finally get it installed where I could use it.

It's nice and it's usable.  Canonical stated that they wanted  to get away from X and move towards Wayland.  This movement might lead to other new and great things for the Linux world.  I also realize that Canonical wants move onto other platforms for their OS, to make Ubuntu useful on touch screens, and other interfaces, such as TV's. They've got great plans. I applaud them for that.  I support them trying new things.  I think that their vision is working. Canonical says that they're about 2/3 of the way done.  When and or If I ever get a tablet, I'd like to try Unity on it.

By default, it feels sparse.  I think that I'm finding my self with a love/hate thing going on with dash. I think that's kind of the "less is more" thing going on with it, of if it's just due to the newness of the desktop interface. In any case, there's a few things that I'd like to change if I were to use this full time.

  • Dash Home: Find away for it to default into the Apps Filtered Results view, as an option, and move it to the left of the screen, since everything else is on the left, why traverse across the screen to click on the lists? 
  • Nautilus: I'd want to put Nautilus Elementary on it. 
  • A viewer such as gThumb or FSpot that allows one to quickly edit (crop mostly for me) an image. If all I want to do is view an image, Nautilus handles that ok. 
Some of the changes are kinda snazzy. 
  • Dash Home, bringing up the list of the most recent apps does look like it could be useful. I never made use of the "most recent docs" in the old gnome menu, as my mouse never ventured that way most of the time. This, being presented to me like this does seem to be a positive and useful change that I'd use. 
  • The use of opacity in the menu's etc. Looks really shiny and well polished. 
  • The Ubuntu Software Center, and the suggestions that come up in Dash.  I downloaded Chocolate Doom. It was kind of nice to re-visit DOOM for 20 mins. (My Trackball even worked well!).
  • When there's a program notification the "shaky" icons in the launch bar are nice touch, along with the snapshot sound when you take a screenshot, along with the little pop when turning the  volume up or down via my keyboard buttons. 
All in all I think that they've done a good job with a lot of the design, and usability of Unity. 

1 comment:

  1. Great writeup!
    I'll have to give it a try.



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