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.jar (the last time I checked), and while there exists a binding
configuration plugin for overriding them, it also offers access to a very
small set of bindings, and configuring any others depends on hunting through
the developer documentation, mailing lists, and forums, for the necessary
being snippets of code, but for rather standard operations that already
have keys bound to them, there should exist a ready and easily accessible
configuration file or an interface for changing these keys,
instead having to hunt through the web the for the snippets themselves.
The answer to even the simplest customisation in Firefox is “write a
plugin”. It's only meant to be customised by people who have taken the
time to learn how to program for it. Same with Gnome. To the developers of
these pieces of software, either you're one of them, or you're an
“idiot user”. There's nothing in between.
While KDE, Qt, Opera also offer suboptimal usability, they do at least offer ways to configure within the program itself a wide variety of bindings, as well as many other features – admittedly and unfortunately only within the suffocating confines of the WIMP paradigm.
It being difficult if not impossible to customise the Gnome
etc. software itself is not enough for these mono-culturists
They want to fuck up the settings of the rest of your programs
as well. Start up
gnome-settings-daemon, and soon you'll find
that your keymap has been fucked up, your xterm background has been
turned into eye-hurting white, programs can't find their fonts
(this last one may actually be an Xorg bug, that only Gnome however
seems to trigger), and so on. And the
settings daemon is not the only program that fucks up your settings:
gdm has occasionally been resetting to US keymap from X default
as well, expecting user startup files to restore it again.
While it is possible to stop Gnome from fucking up your other settings – at least partly – the most annoying aspect of it are the zillion idiot users [sic] complaining of a problem in your window manager, when it hasn't loaded Gnome's settings for other programs, or when Gnome has otherwise fucked up the environment. By reinventing the wheel, these people make live hell for other people. This has resulted me in refusing to deal with many problems that users might have with my programs, if they're running Gnome.
3. Gnome is for mice, not men. Mice have small brains, which might explain the orientation towards idiot users. Everything is to be done with the mouse; keyboard access is not provided to many things in the default settings (i.e. the hard-coded settings in practise), or is cumbersome. Furthermore, they love dialog and window jungles. (That said, at least they don't love hard-coded separate toolbox windows so much. The somewhat more Gnome HIG compliant Inkscape was a huge improvement over Sodipodi that was as bad as the Gimp still is – and infact has got worse in 2.0.)
Take the abominable file chooser, for example. It has no simple way
to input the path, and one must open Yet Another Dialog™ (with
to do so. There's typeahead completion in the file and
directory list, but these lamers don't consider
.. (two dots) a valid
directory name, and the least cumbersome way to go a level up is through
that Yet Another Dialog (others involving moving the hand to the mouse or
Alt+Up combination – this however configurable if you wade
through piles of developer documentation – but not to
Of course, the keys to access completion
entries in Yet Another Dialog are also the cumbersome
instead of e.g.
Tab itself. And as if the open dialog
wasn't bad enough, the save dialog has been split into – yes – two dialogs,
and you need to open the second one most of the time to get your stuff
saved where you want to. That is very cumbersome to do from the keyboard,
of course. Finally, Gnome does not even support
Esc to close those zillion
dialogs. And, yes, the toolkit should automatically provide that
functionality, not every program itself.
Other evidence of the window fetish in the ethos of the GUI No One Might Enjoy is, of course, spatial nautilus. Every directory – my computer has no stinking folders – pops up a as a new window in the file manager. The result is obviously a totally unmanageable mess. One of the first things to do when seated in front of Windows 95 was to disable that behaviour. Ironically, the producers of the Gnome folks' paragon software – the Redmond corporation – have learned their lesson here. That said, I don't necessarily have a problem with a spatial metaphor – and it might very well fit into e.g. Raskin's Zoom interface – but it is totally unmanageable combined with the WIMP/desktop metaphor.
4. Actually, all that I said about the file chooser above is not completely true. After years of complaints from users there has finally been some questionable work in the file chooser, for toggling the address button bar into a textbox, but that work has not yet propagated into the distribution I use yet, if ever will. (I don't know if it has propagated into an official branch even.) In any case, not fixing bugs and responding to user complaints in a timely manner seems to be yet another essential part of the Gnome ethos. The internal focus tracking bug also took over two years of complaints and hunting it down by the users for them to finally fix. Apparently having a new broken release out regularly is much more important than having something that works out one day. Once again ironically, the Redmond corporation seems to have taken their lesson in this department, what with the constant delays.
5. Finally, the logo says a lot: the huge footprint must refer to either memory or disk usage, or even both.