the DE wars

January 4th, 2005

A favorite topic in flame wars is the choice of desktop environment on Linux. This article on OSNews reviewing SimplyMepis, ends up giving a comparison between Gnome and KDE. The author gets it right in two places where Gnome is concerned, it does need a better CD burning tool one which is as good as K3b. The other being Rhythmbox, an application with good potential to become the iTunes for Linux but currently extremely unstable.

A very good CD burning application on Linux is Xcdroast, it provides excellent features for burning ISOs, Audio CDs, and matches all features provided by K3b. Sadly, the GUI sucks and the usability level is way too low. A redesign of GUI using Gnome HIG should make it killer app for the Gnome desktop.

I could rave about Rhythmbox on how it recognizes my iPod and displays it as a playlist similar to iTunes, or how the interface is as good as iTunes with the Album, Genre, Artist browser, or the use of Gstreamer media framework. But it is frustrating that it crashes everytime I try to access my iPod, or it does not allow me edit tags very well. Gtkpod on the other hand behaves close to iTunes and handles reading, displaying of iTunes playlist very smoothly (hint hint :) ). As the author says JuK seems the perfect Gnome HIG-fied application.

Note: I am not against the use of KDE, Enlightenment, Windowmaker or any other DE. I use XFCE4.2 and Gnome.