Archive for the ‘lxde’ Category

Nice screencast, presents amazing new features of the LXDE program launch panel LXPanel:

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The LXDE wizard Hong Jen Yee (“PCMan”) makes some bitter remarks concerning the Desktop standard process:

Why should we always be forced to follow all those things we don’t like or don’t even need? If we don’t follow them, we lost compatibility with many existing Gnome/GTK+ and KDE programs. In addition, they modify the specs frequently, and always break backward compatibility. So our precious time are wasted on re-implement everything in their new specs and try to fix all broken compatibility left by them. It’s enough!

And his recommendation:

So, every enthusiastic developers/users of lightweight desktop environments, please join their xdg mailinst list and join their discussions and let them listen to your voice.

For me that is not only an issue rooted in my genuine interest in LXDE but me and my colleagues discussed within the Digital Standards Organisation, which we established in The Hague, how to make standardisation work and I researched policy options in standardisation for quite a while. Of course you won’t find a magic bullet, and most problems concern the correct application of the openness concepts concerning disclosure and licensing. The typical predatory pratices are patent ambushes. Likewise the European Commission IDABC develops a multidimensional standard/specification evaluation model named CAMSS and some EU whitepapers outline the way forward in standardisation.

Another aspect which is often overlooked is technology infection. What I mean is that certain commercial interests abuse a standard to mandate specific services. This is the scenario here and concerns standards on a different level.

To members of the XDG list Hon Jeng Hee now proposes a voting process. If I understand his motivations correctly he wants to see the interests and requirements of lightweight desktop environments better considered or considered at all, and the voting process is a means to this end.

Liam R E Quin disagrees:

Voting inherently disenfranchises minorities. That is, the nature of a majority vote is such that the people who vote No get overruled; this is very different from achieving consensus.

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What is MoonOS? You can compare it with Linux Mint, it is a flavour of Ubuntu with a focus on theming and user appearance from Cambodia:

moonOS is a complete and fully functional operative system based on the LXDE, Enlightenment DR17 and powered by the popular Linux Distribution Ubuntu. moonOS, a project started and designed by the Cambodian artist Chanrithy Thim (12rithy), is perfect for any Desktop, Laptop PC or even for a Virtual Machine.

For the third edition Thim has set inspiring LXDE goals:

# Slim instead GDM in LXDE Edition
# moonSlim the graphic tool for configure Slim
# moonComposite easy to enable composite manager in LXDE Edition
# Use Openbox in LXDE Edition again
# Redesign LXDE Edition desktop

Slim is the Simple Login Manager, hosted by Berlios.

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LXDE in user comments:

I’ve been with KDE 3.5x, and got sick of the sluggishness. I went to Gnome. Pretty but not much faster. Tried E17. Fun if you like to fix things constantly. Tried KDE 4.1. Uggh. Tried LXDE. Win95 revisited. Tried OpenBox. Quick but too basic and unconfigurable (ok, I cannot be bothered wading through text files to configure a gui).

Do people actually remember what Win95 was like? It is always the same: make a top bar menu, oh, they follow the mac, place a panel left bottom corner, oh, it looks like Windows. Did you notice that the Windows7 watch “looks KDE”? Now with all the experimentation, where start menues at once “look different”, where you cannot be sure anymore that the blue icon is the web, we are on the path to user interface indifference.

Nobody is expected to configure his Desktop Environment but those people who want can do. The basic concept of a windowing environment hasn’t changed much over the last twenty years. It was time to rethink that component of the user experience. What we found out was that a panel is actually no application but a means to launch your programs and switch between applications.

In this Sesame Street classic it is explained from a memory footprint perspective how to make the perfect match.

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Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on mobilising Information and Communication Technologies to facilitate the transition to an energy-efficient, low-carbon economy

COM(2009) 111 final, 13-03-2009

This Communication presents a set of ambitious measures that focus on what can be achieved in the short term both by the ICT sector and by fully exploiting the enabling capacity of ICTs in all sectors of society and the economy. It provides the background to a Recommendation to be adopted by the Commission in the second half of 2009. The recommendation will set out tasks, targets and timelines, for industry stakeholders and Member States to accelerate progress towards these ends.

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A memory footprint comparison:

LXDE wins the lightweight contest hands down. Now, it is time for the Xfce community to get back in the game.

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Panel background

Daniel Schneider publishes some alternative panel background images. Distributors, he criticises, paid attention to unique widget styles and window themes but failed to improve the visual appearance of panels.

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Open source software development in Russia is one of the most important directives for Igor Schegolev – the Head of the Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications of the Russian Federation. At a key meeting with Werner Knoblich, Red Hat Vice President for EMEA, he announced support for a Russian Fedora association and for Red Hat development in the Russian Federation. He also expressed support for open source infrastructure and applications, and the development of a repository for industry best practice.

February 9, 2009 — Open source software development in Russia is one of the most important directives for Igor Schegolev – the Head of the Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications of the Russian Federation.

On February 5, 2009 Igor Schegolev, the Head of the Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications of the Russian Federation, met with Werner Knoblich, Red Hat Vice President for EMEA at the Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications of the Russian Federation, and other industry leaders.

At the meeting many questions regarding open source software market development and the use of open source software with existing systems were discussed. The Ministry is supporting Red Hat’s initiative to create a Russian association of Fedora developers. Through this association, Russia has become one of the countries, including the USA and India, which participate and influence the development of the world’s most successful Linux project – Red Hat.

“Software development is moving so fast, that it would be impossible to take an available open source product from abroad, re compile it and name it “Russian windows”- because the moment it would be launched it would be already obsolete. The formation of a Russian association of Russian Fedora developers (www.RussianFedora.com) who will be working in Russia is the basis for the creation of a national operating system,” – the Minister says. “We think that the intellectual potential of Russian specialists would allow us not just to build but also to develop
the code,” – Igor Schegolev said.

The Ministry moved beyond the limits of operating systems to further open source software market development and use. “We should pay attention to database management systems, portals, mail systems based on open source software, without it the practical use of such software would be too narrow,” – Schegolev said.

For this purpose the Ministry is ready to support working in co-operation with Red Hat. It would also be sensible to consider the creation of an information resource to gather together “best practice” in the use and adoption of open source software.

Milan Prohaska, director of VDEL – the Red Hat Master distributor for Russia and Eastern Europe, who was present at the meeting stated afterwards: ‘We believe that the creation of a best practice competence center is the most logical next step in wider adoption of Open Source in Russia.”
“Both Red Hat and VDEL, the organizers of Russian Fedora projects, will provide this center with financial and technological support and also help to build the wider local and international IT industry network needed for this Ministry initiative”.

The good news is that Russians will be able to use LXDE as their default windows environment for the Russian Operating System due to the excellent support of RedHat/Fedora. So LXDE is still in the race to win the hearts and minds of the Russian officials.

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Heise about LXDE speed

Heise: Fosdem 2009: Mit Open Source aufrecht durch die Krise gehen

Das gilt auch für einzelne Packete wie den abgespeckten X-Manager LXDE, mit dem Open Office in drei Minuten gestartet werden kann. [It also applies to smaller packages as the lightweight X-manager LXDE, with lxde you can start Openoffice within three minutes.

What did Heise get wrong here?

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Right, I gave the brandnew KDE 4.2 a try. I ran into a few bugs but I was quite impressed to see a KDE4 Desktop that is ready for users and the Plasma user interface concept finally starts to make huge sense to me. What I also noticed is that my PC is getting outdated and slow. It is not a fault of KDE developers. KDE4 will rock. Vista won’t run on that machine either.

Then I downloaded Knoppix 6 out of my curiosity in LXDE. Knoppix is a live-CD distribution, some call it the mother of all live-CDs. A few years ago Klaus Knopper demonstrated with his nice preconfigured Knoppix that a more desktop-friendly Debian is possible and you can carry it around with you on a cd. Knoppix featured KDE as its desktop environment. At some time Knoppix CDs becam as ubiquitious as formerly “AOL-CDs” or as my grand-grandmother used to say, as “field beans”. In my collection I even have a Knoppix CD with the logo of SUN Microsystems. When the Knoppix live-CD was replaced by a live-DVD my computer failed to boot it but you didn’t need Knoppix anymore as there were many alternatives.

Now Klaus Knoppers gets back to the electronic frontier. Back to basics. With Knoppix 6 it looks more hackish but Knoppix is an innovation showcase in terms of speed optimisation and resources. When you boot the CD(!) you have to manually type knoppix. It will boot up the lx desktop environment in almost no time. As I had the comparison with KDE 4.2 on the same machine the desktop feels amazing. OpenOffice aside applications start up very quickly. You start it and it is there. The whole live-CD felt “ncurses”. I found out by my own surprise that this is actually the innovation I really want. I just want a very responsive desktop, no blink blink. I run LXDE on my computer, but the Knoppix CD was even much faster and felt better. “Feeling” and intuition is the best indicator of Desktop Experience, and you need to find out what makes you happy and feel great as a user. I started to work without taking much notice that this was a live CD. Gnome Mplayer plays your mp3 files. Iceweasel gets you in javascript trouble. Paradise. The essential tool missing was irssi, oh well…

KDE 4.2 is impressive but Knoppix 6.0 impressed me. It is because both releases are completely different.

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