Early Rising

Simon, I have been following the early riser program for 8 months now. I wrote about my experience some time ago. It still is working well for me, although I had a little trouble with it when I moved to Edinburgh. However, my headaches warn me and make sure I stay in the program.


It has been quite a meme to bash GNOME the last few weeks. Since bashing generally doesn’t help the motivation of any hackers and people working hard to accomplish a goal, I want to rebuke it a bit.

Two and a half years ago I got my PowerBook. After five years of using a Pentium-233 with 64MB I suddenly had some CPU power. Since my old environment (WindowMaker) was broken on PPC at the moment, I decided to go with GNOME. Coming from WindowMaker it really felt like things were done quite differently, but being open-minded I tried to let it all go.

The thing is, do I really want to configure everything? I liked configuring a lot back then, it was like an addiction. Now that I have gotten used to GNOME (let’s call it The GNOME way™), it just feels bothersome, getting in my way. When I encounter a GNOME desktop I immediately can work with it and don’t feel the need to redo the complete setup.

When I look back, the only things I really want to change are the programs I use, the information I see and the way I control it all. This basic stuff I easily can do with launchers, applets and keybindings. Also have I been observing and helping some new users. And somehow I still keep reaching the moment that I can hear myself say, “Ow, hehe, yeah… that doesn’t work quite right yet. Just open a terminal (eek!) and edit this and that file.” So, we are not there yet. For me GNOME offers innovation, sufficient configurability, and an efficient do-not-get-in-my-way workspace. The change from WindowMaker to GNOME has been to me as my switch from Windows to Linux, a thing I ventured into open-minded and worked out quite well.

Won’t this result into a dull monoculture of desktop setups? Maybe so, but I don’t have to be different in every way just to make the statement that I am different. OK guys, bash away now… oh, and thanks GNOME people!