inessential by Brent Simmons

Ubuntu HUD

Every few years I check out Linux-on-the-desktop, and every few years I’m disappointed because it seems like they’re just designing Windows clones.

The argument for this is that it made it easier for people to switch. Which I think is a terrible argument: why copy something sucky? Why not attract users by doing something new and better?

In recent years it started to get a little better, when Ubuntu started to design Mac clones instead. I say “better” because I think Mac user interface is better than Windows — but the same criticism still applies. Why not try something new? Why not shoot for better?

Maybe, finally, the Linux world is trying something new. Or, at least, Ubuntu is. See Mark Shuttleworth’s blog post about the HUD and the future of the menu.

I don’t know if it’s a good idea, or if it will prove usable. But I’m in full favor of the spirit.