Why the Linux desktop is not dead

Because you will never, ever, see this headline:

Linux Corporation discontinues desktop product, fires developers.

As long as there are people who want a Linux desktop, there will be a Linux desktop.  And by any measure, there are more people who want it now than every before.

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11 Responses to Why the Linux desktop is not dead

  1. sulfide says:

    What was it when nokia let go all of those Qt developers?

    • Michael Hall says:

      It was a change of scenery for the Qt devs, as many of them have been hired by other companies to continue working on Qt

  2. Zuppo says:

    Actually Miguel de Icaza was fired from Novell.
    Don’t get me wrong, this goes to Novell’s credit, but still…

  3. jonc says:

    In the literal sense, the Limux desktop is not dead. Obviously, people continue to use it. (Although I’d like to see how many Linux desktop users stick with it for, say, 3 years.)

    But, de Icaza is right to highlight the deficiencies of the Linux application ecology. The GUI’s are good enough. The stuff you run in the GUI isn’t.

  4. SAB says:

    The biggest problem Linux has is the some kind of anarchy… If someone decided to remove the minimize and maximize buttons than it will happen and the only way to stop it is to fork the complete project which leads to even less developers on it.

  5. cble says:

    I can imagine this headline: “Canonical goes out of business, developers looking for new jobs.”

    • Michael Hall says:

      Sure, but there were Linux desktops before Canonical existed, so that wouldn’t kill it either. Even Unity would survive, since a number of Canonical employees working on it got their start working on it as part of the community, and it’s starting to make it’s way into other distros now too.

  6. Matteo Nardi says:

    The title of Miguel’s post was just being provocative. He created Midnight Commander, the Gnome project, the Mono project (Well, some think it was a bad idea, but the goal was pretty clear and noble: make Linux application development more productive), a company (Ximian) whose business was Linux and another one (Xamarin) which, even if less focused, still beneficially affects Linux. I don’t think he will ever think the Linux desktop is dead. =)

    The blog post was a rant over one of Linux problems: libraries and other subsystems get broken and replaced too often for an effective third party application developer story.
    We really should take note.

  7. Pingback: Desktop Linux is Dead. Again. « miketelahun

  8. manny says:

    I think linux desktop is more alive then has ever been :)

    But the next step for linux (ubuntu in particular) is to keep up the preinstalled momentum and user/devs interest/friendliness, as Linus also agrees:


  9. Alan Berends says:

    Yup, it’s dead. Unless someone steps up and is willing to take the effort to make it NEW user friendly. 10.04 worked well for me and I was impressed. Then came 11 and I couldn’t get my wireless to work, back to 10.04 after reading more blogs than I care to mention and more WRONG fixes laced with an ongoing battle among various warring divisions. And nobody cared that it is ridiculous in this day and age that Newbies don’t want to manually install drivers or whatever from a command line. Jeez, Windows hasn’t done that since DOS!!!!

    Yes, it really matters. Most people don’t want to have to learn all the gobbledeegook it takes to run this. Yes, if you don’t have troubles, it’s a nice operating system. Many built-in easy to install programs but the hiccups suck.

    Yeah, I am a semi-newbie who wants this to work. I don’t think anyone is going to wake up soon enough to save it? Which does a new guy choose, Mint, Ubuntu or what? Where does one go to see what the difference is? Just choose one and try it? Really? Quit the fighting, get together and fix the big problems first and then do your neat little widgets and upgrades.

    Great idea though. Hope it works, soon. What is the expected timeline when this operating system reaches 25% of Windows. Goals for success, not change for the sake of change. Pride over constant change but to what end? Make a simple, entry level program that newbies can install and run in less than 4 hours. No hiccups allowed. What do you think it will take to double the usage of this operating system within ONE year? You’re not that far off, if the desire were there, you guys could do it.

    Do you need Unity? I betting you can’t get a consensus on that. And trust me when I speak for the Newbies, WE DON’T CARE! Just make one of them work the first time every time. It is just added confusion. Which Distro should I choose and will it be with or without Unity? I don’t think you get it. And that’s why Linux will follow the same path as Dr Dos and others.

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