The Gnome project is making a lot of noise in the Internet these days, because it seems like they are planning to become a whole new Linux distribution, or maybe we are just not fully understanding things.
Gnome a new OS?
Let’s see what some important sites are saying about this topic, first let’s see at some articles in OMGUbuntu:
“The future of GNOME is as a Linux based OS. It is harmful to pretend that you are writing the OS core to work on any number of different kernels, user space subsystem combinations, and core libraries. That said, there may be value in defining an application development platform or SDK that exposes higher level, more consistent, and coherent API. But that is a separate issue from how we write core GNOME components like the System Settings. It is free software and people are free to port GNOME to any other architecture or try to exchange kernels or whatever. But that is silly for us to worry about.
Kernels just aren’t that interesting. Linux isn’t an OS. Now it is our job to try to build one – finally. Let’s do it.
I think the time has come for GNOME to embrace Linux a bit more boldly.”
This is a extract of something written by Mr. Jon McCann (primary developer of GNOME Shell), so from that reading one may think that yes Gnome is going to be another Linux distribution.
But in another article, I have read this:
GNOME as an OS is (partly) about interfaces, not defining a Linux only desktop that runs only on Thursdays if the window is open
Which according to a nice reader who interpreted it for me may mean:
This means that even though GNOME will depend on systemd, it will not be an absolute dependency. It will depend on clearly defined interfaces. If distro X (or other operating systems such as *BSD) wants GNOME without systemd, they can provide that interface and still use it.
So, this continue to confuse me, and that is maybe because there nothing still defined, I have found another article about the same story at OSNews, that makes things a little more clear, you can read there:
Let’s make the core issue clear first. Lennart Poettering, creator of systemd, an init replacement daemon for Linux, is proposing systemd as an external dependency for GNOME-Shell in GNOME 3.2. Since systemd has Linux as a dependency and won’t be ported to other operating systems (which would be a very difficult undertaking anyway due to its Linux-specific nature), it would effectively make GNOME a Linux-specific desktop environment
Jon McCann, Red Hat hacker and the main driving force behind GNOME-Shell, takes the idea even further. “The future of GNOME is as a Linux based OS. It is harmful to pretend that you are writing the OS core to work on any number of different kernels, user space subsystem combinations, and core libraries,” he states, “That said, there may be value in defining an application development platform or SDK that exposes higher level, more consistent, and coherent API. But that is a separate issue from how we write core GNOME components like the System Settings.”
That said, it appears that is only some exchange of opinions, but who are talking about it? two big influencers, so this may become true.
This could bring some problems, like for example.
- Is Gnome going to work better on Gnome Linux than in other Linux Distributions?
- Are Gnome based distributions like the famous Ubuntu be in any trouble?
As this is not yet an oficial position and are just proposals, is the time to make your voice be heard, so I would like you to express your feelings about this, what do you think should be the goal of a project like Gnome?, and also if this in any way comes true, is it going to be good or bad for the whole Linux community?