TechBytes Audiocast – Episode 56 – 24/07/11 – “The Grilling! ;)”

Intro music: “I fought the troll” by Tom Smith.  You can find more of his work here.

Hosts: Tim (OpenBytes) Roy (Techrights)

A rather different show (and one in which I take a back seat on).

Michael Glasser is our guest for this episode and whilst we cover a few pieces of news, the show is mainly focused around a debate between Michael and Roy which I host.  Both gentlemen have strong, passionate opinions about their topics and this show is aimed at highlighting and debating those opinions whilst at the same time trying to sift through the misrepresentation regarding them both on the net.

A very enjoyable show  and a rather different one.

You can download the latest episode here:

During the course of the show, Michael made several points in regards to PCLinux.  He has produced some screenshots, which will make sense when you listen to the audiocast.  Here is his comments following the audiocast from comp.os.linux.advocacy:

Well, a sneak preview at some of the discussion I had with Roy and Goblin.
I agreed to do some "homework", if you will, to test to see if my views or
Roy's were more accurate (in this one area... not stated as a universal
claim).  Here are the requested screenshots, along with the conclusion:

    I have made two predictions in terms of desktop Linux in
    general and PCLOS in particular:

    1) UI issues will continue to get better - there will be
    greater consistency, for example, but also there will be just
    general progress toward following well respected GUI
    guidelines in general

    2) Contrary to what others in COLA have told me in the past
    and what Roy Schestowitz told me recently, PCLOS will not
    show as much consistency as does OS X.  This includes when
    the programs used on PCLOS are *only* the ones that comes
    with it (or, in this case, one Roy suggested) and on OS X
    programs are included that did not come with the OS if they
    are popular (which is fair - OS X comes with fewer programs).


    1) As predicted, PCLOS has come a long way since the last
    time I reviewed it (see:
    <> and
    <>).  I might even
    say it has come along further than I would have predicted...
    which is good news for everyone.

    2) Unfortunately, Roy was not correct that PCLOS had caught
    up to the competition.  Even ignoring the fact that one
    program would not install (even though it came with a
    ³Manager² icon on the desktop!), the tested features were
    considerably less consistent on PCLOS than they are on OS X.

Frankly I would have been pleased had Roy been right... and, to be fair,
while he was wrong, he was not as wrong as I would have guessed.

Tim (Goblin)

If you are new to this blog (or have not yet read it) please take time to view the OpenBytes statement, here.

Skype: tim.openbytes
I can also be found in #techrights, #techbytes on

4 thoughts on “TechBytes Audiocast – Episode 56 – 24/07/11 – “The Grilling! ;)”

Add yours

  1. The problem there are these apps are developed with use two different desktops in mind, some are gtk and others are qt. just from looking at the slides, i’ve not heard the podcast yet, if you had made that distinction.

    1. Yes the distinction is mentioned. This COLA reply and screencasts is courtesy to the guest Michael and his opinions.

  2. Part of the point is that Linux distros are not designed as systems – the OSS model makes this almost impossible at this point. To get there, the KDE and Gnome teams need to work together – and they do this already to some extent.

    Here is my ideal: the distro manager (or user) select the system dialogs and the like. Let me have my Print dialog with a preview and options for printing multiple pages on a sheet and all sorts of other goodies, and let the next guy have one where there are just very basic options. Let me have – for the system – a color selector with HTML codes as the main focus and the next guy have one with crayon “swatches” as his focus. In other words, give users *more* choice.

    Additionally, this would give distros a chance to better brand themselves – Ubuntu dialogs can have Ubuntu branding of some sort (say with unique styling and maybe even a logo). Of course, users could easily override / swap these out and many would… but most users likely would not and you now have an additional way to “advertise” a desktop Linux distro and build mindshare. Of course, distros would not *have* to do this… for those where the idea of having branding is against their view, nothing is forcing them. And users can swap out these things as they wish. In other words, give users *more* choice.

    Also, let users be able to override things on an app by app basis… say you have a color selector for your system… but you want a more advanced or different one for GIMP. No need to have all the “extra” stuff for picking a font color in your text editor… so override the system settings for GIMP and keep the rest of the system simple. In other words, give users *more* choice.

    See the theme: more choice for users. More choice for distro developers. And *meaningful* choices that benefit productivity, efficiency, reduce error rates, increase enjoyment, etc.

    Not saying this is easy or that it will happen overnight. Or that it will ever happen perfectly (it will not). But the desktop Linux situation is, right now, far from this – and there are many ways it can be improved.

    Also: Tim, thank you very much for having a chance to voice my views on your show (and thanks, Roy, too… we may disagree, but it is your show too and you allowed me a voice on it… it is appreciated).

    1. I’m very pleased you were able to come on and as I said to you after the show, more than welcome to do so again. It was important to me that you had the opportunity to put your views across.

      I was very much the spare wheel for that show, but it was still very interesting enjoyable experience. I think both of you put forward your points well.

      Cheers! and maybe speak with you soon on Skype?

      Kind regards


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