The Fabled New User, Bodhi Themes, Tumbleweed's Latest

by Ostatic Staff - Oct. 27, 2016

Bruce Byfield may have hit upon something in his latest rumination on the "imaginary new user." This "new user" has been used as an excuse to over-simplify Linux to the "detriment to other type of users." In Linux news, Bodhi chieftain Jeff Hoogland posted Moksha themes for last minute testing hinting that 4.0 must be very close. Douglas DeMaio posted a brief on the latest Tumbleweed snapshots and night falls on Linux.

Bruce Byfield today said:

When developers began improving users interfaces, they concentrated on what they imagined that new users needed. They rarely had the actual opportunity to observe new users, but the new user they imagined became a standard figure among developers, often surviving to this day.

Yet after observing this habit for over a decade, I wonder more than ever if the imaginary new user still exists, or ever existed at all. I suspect, too, that the emphasis on this figure has been a detriment to other types of users.

Byfield gave a few examples of software that had been crippled by over-simplification before bringing up Anaconda. He said it has "devolved" into an interface "so obscure" that it makes installing Linux harder than it was a decade ago. KDE was an example of a better design in that its applications tend to have sensible visible defaults with advanced options off in other tabs or the menu. He concluded the true definition of user-friendliness is that which "serves all users, not just imaginary and obsolete ones."

Jeff Hoogland said today that Bodhi Linux 4.0.0 was getting real close to release ready. Testers just need to test all the new Moksha themes and modules. There all 11 different themes for the home-brewed Enlightenment offshoot offering various color palates. Modules to test include a CPU monitor, memory monitor, and a weather module.

After Dirty Cow hit the news folks were asking when Tumbleweed might get a new kernel. They were told the next snapshot. Douglas DeMaio wrote today it was patched by that following Saturday. Two recent snapshots contained kernel updates 4.8.3 and 4.8.4 and KDE Plasma was updated to 5.8.2. ghostscript got a long overdue bug fix and gparted was updated 0.27.0.

In other tidbits from the day, the Linux Journal's Joey Bernard shared his experiences with astronomy software Nightfall. Fedora Magazine carried a story of Fedora being used to upgrade a university computer lab and OMG!Ubuntu! found a video purportedly of upcoming Unity 8 features. Finally, Dedoimedo reviewed Spotify for Linux at OCS-Mag.