Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (783 mails)

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[opensuse-project] openFATE feature #306967 , my KDE summary
  • From: Lubos Lunak <l.lunak@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 3 Aug 2009 01:09:55 +0200
  • Message-id: <200908030109.55769.l.lunak@xxxxxxx>

The original thread has grown quite a lot over the weekend, 150+ mails, and
also parts of it is rubbish (like suggesting that by default both KDE and
GNOME are installed, which somehow magically solves the problem of the
default selection), so I suppose it will be a pain to process for those
reading it only now after the weekend. Therefore I'd like to present an
attempt at a summary of the KDE view of the issue. As interpreted by me, of
course, since different people still have slightly different positions, but I
hope it at least gives an overview to those who do not want to dig in the
whole thread. It might be useful if somebody did the same for the GNOME side
(and maybe 3rd party, if considered useful too). So:

The openFATE request says "make KDE the default desktop" and it doesn't
request anything else. It doesn't request anything happening with GNOME, in
fact it explicitly mentions that it should remain supported as a choice. It
can be interpreted in slightly different ways, my personal interpretation is
that this can be achieved by just preselecting KDE in the installation
dialog, nothing more. I consider it to be the minimum acceptable for the
request and at the same time I believe it can bring the benefits described.

An important point that many people here fail to realize that this is not
asking for granting a special priviledge to KDE. In fact, it is asking for
removing a special priviledge that makes many in the KDE community feel that
KDE is treated unequally in openSUSE. In all other cases, when there is a
clear preference, it is selected as a default, sometimes not even offering
the user an easy choice. In this case, however, while KDE is the clear choice
in the openSUSE community, it is not treated the same like in other cases.
Instead, GNOME is given a priviledge that a preference must be explicitly
expressed here, and this priviledge, to my knowledge, is not given to any
other openSUSE component. No other non-default browser, mailer, shell,
filesystem, etc. has this luxury. This is interpreted by the KDE community as
a message from openSUSE that it values GNOME more, that GNOME is forcibly
pushed into openSUSE and that KDE is not equally welcome in openSUSE. The
openFATE request, in practice, asks for removing this GNOME priviledge and
fair treating of all openSUSE components.

This should also make it obvious that the current situation is not considered
correct. Since now openSUSE positions itself as an open community
distribution, refusing this openFATE request would also be an action that
would further stress the perception that the KDE community is not as welcome
in openSUSE as the GNOME community and that openSUSE can again choose to hurt
the KDE majority despite the obvious preference. Therefore, just as there is
the risk that aknowledging KDE's position in openSUSE by accepting the
openFATE request would have a negative impact on the GNOME community, there
is also the risk that continuing to treat GNOME specially in openSUSE would
have a negative impact on the larger KDE community, already treated
negatively.

For similar reasons I believe that the pros/cons analysis in the original
thread is partially incorrect, as it assumes that the current situation is
not problematic and keeping the status quo does not cause any harm, or that
resolving the situation requires removing choices. And yes, I believe that
just changing the radio button would be a sufficient message from openSUSE
that KDE is not considered less important than GNOME, likely resulting in
increased KDE interest and involvement with openSUSE that could even lead to
openSUSE becoming an outstanding KDE distribution, without having to
negatively affect GNOME in the process.


So, once again, the openFATE request is not about granting KDE any special
advantage, nor it requests doing anything with GNOME other than removing this
advantage that is considered unjust. It is about signalling the KDE community
that they are not treated as 2nd class citizens in openSUSE, which would
prevent further alienating of the KDE community and allow increase KDE
involvement in openSUSE, currently hampered by the perception that this is
not as welcome as GNOME involvement. And while it is considered that focusing
openSUSE more on KDE would bring openSUSE more advantages, it is not
necessary for KDE, nor any removal of choice of GNOME in openSUSE.



This is my interpretation of the openFATE request and the position of the KDE
community on this issue and what would be the minimum acceptable to make them
actually feel welcome also by openSUSE acts and not just words. As I said,
different people have slightly different views, so there are certainly people
who have stronger views on this or would disagree with me somewhere (in fact,
my own personal opinion here is not exactly in line with this, so am I not
just pushing my personal agenda). I however hope this gives an overview and
explains some things that many people seem to misunderstand. If you want to
have a complete view, of course, enjoy reading the whole thread. In the worst
case I've at least saved you reading my mails there :).


PS: For those who still don't undestand how the current situation can be
considered unfair, an attempt at an analogy: There is an art gallery, showing
and selling pictures of two artists. One of them is considerably more popular
than the other, thus clearly the gallery benefits more from this artist. Yet
the gallery pays both of them the same. That is maybe equal, but it is very
unfair. In addition to that, it is also demotivating - the more popular
artist has no reason keep doing well or may try to go elsewhere, and the less
popular artist does not have a very big motivation to try harder.

--
Lubos Lunak
KDE developer
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