Unity: 3 Rants And A Tip

Shawn rants a bit about Ubuntu's new Unity interface, and gives us a couple tips on how to adjust.

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Its a good thing, really.

Josh Leverette's picture

The 'dash' (the annoying program launcher menu replacement) is the only thing that's questionable, because you can't get to a list of applications quickly, but as long as you know what you want, which is most of the time, you just start typing the name and then hit enter and it'll launch. Its very efficient if you know the name or general concept. The sidebar is nothing to complain about, seriously. It takes up 0px of space. What?? you say? because it autohides whenever a window collides with it. And the reason the menus are at the top is because research proved to apple that users can more quickly throw their mouse to the top of the screen and access the menu than trying to pin point the menu at an arbitrary location on the screen. This is good on its own, but this also saves pixels. Lots of pixels. When you maximize a window in unity it gets integrated into the top bar saving EVEN MORE pixels. This is good stuff. And unity will be much more customizable in 11.10, they just needed to stabilize its main features for this release. Not to mention being able to do the windows 7 style drag-to-edge functionality is nice, just drag to the top to maximize, or drag to one side to split the screen.

Another gripe

Snaga's picture

I agree with everything Shawn has to say, plus I'll add one of my own. I use the workspace switcher in the panel extensively. I realize that there is one in the Unity side bar, but the fact that I have to click on it to see the spaces makes it as useless to me as the OSX workspace is.

I think I could learn to tolerate the sidebar if some of the other problems weren't so limiting. I'm all for making it easy to learn for new users, but I don't understand why so many useful features for experienced users have to be taken away.

I'm very curious to see how Linux Mint changes in the coming months. I think I might be making a switch.

On OS X at least you don't

Anonymous's picture

On OS X at least you don't have to click it to see the workspaces. You can set up hot corners that will show all the workspaces, or Fn F3.

The new Ubuntu look is nearly identical to my OS X interface as I keep the dock on the left, except for that launcher window thing. I don't really know how it's an improvement over Gnome or the new Gnome shell, but I don't work for them. I wonder if this has anything to do with the fact that Ubuntu artistic designers use Macs.

phew

istok's picture

you all sound like battered housewives also suffering from the stockholm syndrome. why the hell adjust to something you don't want, need, or like??
there's a whole world of distros out there.

Unity & Gnome Shell both suck

Matt's picture

I can't stand Unity or Gnome-Shell. They both suck.

I've been an avid gnome user since before 2.0. I've never liked KDE, but I just installed it last night.

Thanks GNOME & Ubuntu.

why unity is better

Anonymous's picture

I don't know that it's better, but I think it'll be easier for unsophisticated computer users coming from a Mac or Windows platform. From a usability perspective, there just isn't much to learn!

I am a professional software engineer, yet when I first installed ubuntu, I struggled with it for days. Unity looks like something that a person could be up and running with in hours.

+1

Wine Curmudgeon's picture

I'll never understand why Linux users rag on changes on distributions with such vehemence. If you don't like the hamburgers at McDonald's, you go to Burger King. If you don't like Unity, use something else.

And, as anonymous has noted, Unity may be easier to use for more people. Which, of course, is something we don't want in Linux.

re: why unity is better

Once_was_a_winblows_user's picture

>> "And, as anonymous has noted, Unity may be easier to use for more people. Which, of course, is something we don't want in Linux."

LOL! Well put!

First Anonymous back now, I

Anonymous's picture

First Anonymous back now, I just installed Unity and I have a good impression of it. I might keep it on my system for when I just want to log in, check a few emails and read news. However, when it's time to do some work I'm sure I'll log into my KDE based mepis install.

I think it's great to have a stepping stone for the masses, to get them into the foss world. People who have chips on their shoulders about this and that OS should just get over it. Really! If your grandma wanted to use Linux, would you set her up with Slackware?

It's great that Ubuntu is putting out an entry-level distribution. And from the looks of it, for 75% of all users it may be all they ever need. I just wish it were a little more stable - that's what caused me to move to Mepis

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