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Re: Uniform look-and-feel on GNU/Linux




> One of the accusations made against GNU/Linux is that there is no
> established "native" look-and-feel on it

That accusation comes from GNU/Linux users themselves, because they know how it is well done when you have only GTK+ apps or Qt apps etc.That accusation comes from people who just dream to something better (I'm dreaming myself to), but not from users from other system. Users of other system don't have a need at such high point for uniformity. This need comes from the very polished experience of GNOME desktop or KDE desktop when you use them alone and you *discover* how awesome it is to have an environment so highly integrated. Windows users don't have a such need at a such high point because they never experience integration enough to want more. Mac OS users can develop that need, but they also have many issues and they just accept to not have a very polished experience, because it's the life, and because like in Windows, proprietary software editors just do what they want to whatever the system do, and because they paid very high those software with inconsistent UI so they restrain themselves to complain because no one like to get the feeling of not liking an aspect of something they paid very high to get. Even on iOS, people do not expect so much consistency between apps than GNU/Linux users do.

> When I used Windows, one of my biggest complaints about GTK was that it looked and worked different from native apps. (For example, the standard context menu when right-clicking in a text field was different.)

The idea of a an unified windows experience is a dream that only exist in people minds because we all were forced to be accustomed to. And this dea specially exists in free software user minds. On Windows, even "native apps" look and work so different themselves, often more than between GTK one and native one.

> These days it seems like even Microsoft's own apps don't have a consistent look and feel, so, *shrug*.

Please, no, you are doing wrong assumption, If you want to get consistent look and feel in Microsoft apps, you have to come back to Windows 3.1, and even there I'm not sure you will not find consistency issue.

http://thomas.debesse.free.fr/fourretout/fouillis-pub-microsoft-windows-sux.edite.png

This is a screenshot I made The 6th of july in 2006, yes, almost ten years ago, this screenshot only featured official apps from Micosoft at this time (Word, Viso, Media Player, Messenger, Internet Explorer…) and see how no one had the same look and feel than other apps. All these apps were official ones from Microsoft. I'm sure we can redo it today with current apps from Microsoft, using latest office apps, skype etc. Thinking that Microsoft have or had a consistent look and feel isn't possible without a bias. Thinking that the Microsoft inconsistency is a recent problem isn't possible without a bias. It's the same kind of bias people have when they say Windows XP was great, polished and stable, it's just because they were forced to accustomed themselves to for more than ten years, so they learned to forget the initial problems they had first, and they learned to be accustomed to, and they learned to like it, because it's easier to live with something for ten years when you start to like it, even if you don't want to like it.

The better consistency experience you can find nowadays on computers is on GNU/Linux if you restrain yourself from GNOME or KDE, but of course, both projects have excellent software you don't want to exclude from your life so you just get the taste of a very good consistency experience you can only dream off. And that taste is the GNU/Linux consistency Hell. Consistency on GNU/Linux is not painful because it's worst than other systems, consistency on GNU/Linux is painful because it gives you a taste of how it is awesome when something is consistent, and that gives you great expectations that will never be full-filled.

--
Thomas DEBESSE
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