Regular users already use Linux through Android invalidating your point.
His point is still valid, because they use Android because it comes with the phone. Most of them don't even know they are running Linux.
DEs are targeted to desktops. Almost none of the desktop/laptop computers come with Linux installed, and yet most of the ones which comes with it can be purchased with Windows, too. And again, regular users usually buy Windows computers. Linux was always for professionals and enthusiasts, along with people who wasn't able to pay a Windows copy and didn't want (or lacked the know-how) to use a pirated copy.
Having said this, there is a slight intersection between regular users (as in technical knowledge) and enthusiasts, but they usually go with vanilla Ubuntu.
Originally Posted by finalzone
Done in practice. Problem is preinstallation and manipulation of consumer desktop market by proprietary companies like Microsoft by hook and crook.
Actually, not. There are things at which Linux kicks Windows' ass, but there are still things where it's the other way around, like power management. The point about the manipulation and installing is true, though.
The only complaints I have heard from real people switching to G3 (i.e. not random people on the Internet) is "it doesn't look like it used to". None of them have switched to something else, and everyone seems happy about it.
Well, my brother switched exactly because of that; he liked the old vanilla Ubuntu look. I'd switched anyway, because I like to test different DEs and while doing that I met XFCE and loved it. This doesn't mean I dislike GNOME, but XFCE fits me better.
Originally Posted by finalzone
Have you tried the Classic Gnome interface introduced in Gnome 3.8? For you information, gnome-tweak-tool comes by default in 3.10.
I didn't know about it, thanks. I'll install it for my brother to give it a try. I saw some pics and I think he's gonna love it
I agree completely. Developers in the Linux world would be better off targeting the needs of the enthusiast users. The regular joes might come along afterwards if there's enough hype.
But targeting the regular people who just browse and do facebook is chasing after a segment that would never even use Linux, while alienating your primary users. The people in that former group buy a computer and use it as-is. They're not going to buy a system and then install a Linux distro.
Regular folks generally follow the enthusiasts, not the other way around. They're certainly not the trend-setters.
In theory, making something technically superior to Windows really shouldn't be that hard.
I wasn't thinking about windows, more osx in particular. The reason is that osx users have been grunting their dissatisfaction about the direction the desktop's being moving. They could move to windows, but it's in worse shape (though I happen to like w8 as a convergence ui, there doesn't exist a great ui for people with dynamic workflows that I can recall).
The original gnome design document from 2009, or so, had some ideas in it that made me really hopefull. Even now it has a great technical base. I've seen some good ideas about how to make GS more useful (which have a chance at being implemented if Fedora starts moving away from upstream Gnome). Things I haven't seen from any other DE.
The one technical change Gnome needs to make is something like windows power shell integration, or osx automator (frankly, this might be better created at the fd.o level with a new dbus interface schema for scripting/recording user actions).
If the Gnome group wasn't given so much autonomy rh ux experts could've pointed these problems out early on.