The Thunar Path

aussiefax at aussiefax at
Thu Nov 17 15:25:54 CET 2005

Sorry I missed the Thunar mailing list.  Seems a little redundant to  
matter.  I'll happily use it but like I said I'm not a developer so my input really 
belongs here.

I don't claim to be as technically savvy as most of you.  I assume  
you're all mostly developers.  I am an artist.  I see things  
visually.  My thoughts on this are more simple than yours. To really break it  
down, I'd love to use a system that looks and feels like iTunes to  
manage and dig through my files.    Eventually, this will happen.   
Whether on linux, OS X or Windows.  In fact it's obviously already  
started in many different forms.  The average user doesn't remember  
where they've saved their files.  I know this because I sell  
computers for a living.  I'm not sitting in my mom's basement writing  
code and watching Babylon 5.  I see my confused customers every day.  The 
same customer's that can't remember where they saved their Office 
documents could tell you exactly where their Bob Dylan songs are.   
Something like the iTunes interface (Type Manager) along with  
something like Spotlight (or Beagle) for searching would sure make it easier 
for the average user because a file hierarchy is no longer  
between them and their data.  When I first thought of the idea it  
sickened me as well.  I like to keep all my files in their nice  
little folders.  I know where everything is.  But I'm not the average  
computer user either and the more I think about a change in file  
management, the more I embrace the idea.

Point well taken that the Type Manager is currently used in countless  
programs to organize more specific files.  But lets break out of our  
box for a moment shall we?  When I run iTunes I'm no longer JUST ,  
managing music, I'm managing: jazz, rock, punk, opera, etc.  Then  
suddenly I'm a level deeper managing: Beatles, Elvis, They Might Be  
Giants, etc.  Get the picture?  What kinds of files do most NORMAL  
users have?  contacts, jpegs, gifs, calendars, notes, movies, word,  
etc.  I could break these up into separate folders (playlists).  Not  
folders that the system has made and named for me, but folders within  
a type manager program that are listed out alphabetically that "I"  
have made and named myself!   Suddenly, they're much easier to find  
and search for than ever before!  A type Manager (in my opinion) is a  
good all around system for managing ALL of a users files.

Personally... building a normal file manager like Thunar, that is  
really nothing different than OS X's Finder or Gnome's Nautilus,  
really seems like a waste of time.  By the time it's out, it will be  
outdated.  The link to the article was meant as an opportunity to  
perhaps inspire some of you.  A few of you seemed to like it while  
others did not.  Whatever your opinion, you cannot deny that this is  
a system seriously being considered for the future to replace the  
standard file manager.  It's something that any developer (I would  
think) would take interest in.  Especially one working on the  
development of a file manager like Thunar.  I'm not saying it's the answer to 
all the file management problems in the world, just something worth looking 

It's sad to see some linux developers living up to the hasty  
generalizations that are attached to them.  I'm glad you're so  
opinionated, but I'd loose the cockiness or you'll miss out on the future,  
and people will be yawning at your point-of-view instead.  Developers should 
be taking the opinions of their users seriously, no matter how mundane or 
idiotic they may seem.  After all, It's the user's choice that matters, not  
the developers'.  I am looking forward to using Thunar (it sure looks nicer 
than ROX), but I'd really like to see it become something unique, because I 
believe in what the developers of XFCE are setting out to accomplish with 
their desktop.  Simplicity.

That's all I have to say on the matter so thanks for taking the time to read my 

Ryan B

> From: "Brian J. Tarricone" <bjt23 at>
> Date: 2005/11/16 Wed PM 12:22:33 EST
> To: XFCE general discussion list <xfce at>,  thunar-dev at
> Subject: Re: The Thunar Path
> Hash: SHA1
> On 11/16/2005 8:58 AM, aussiefax at wrote:
> > Interesting article off Slashdot today about Type Managers replacing
> > the standard File Manager.  I thougth perhaps the Thunar team should
> > take a look at it.
> Thunar has a list of its own: thunar-dev at; please use it.
> >
> > 
> > Point being.  Why develop a new File Manager only to turn around and
> > have it be outdated.  Linux has a LOT of files and the average user
> > doesn't care about 99% of them.  A Type Manager system closely
> > integrated with something like Beagle, in my opinion, is the best
> > path to take for XFCE.  I know it's easier said than done, and I am
> > no programmer.  But as a user I know the Type Manager system is what
> > I'd like to see in my favorite linux desktop.
> I don't really see how this is at all applicable to Thunar.
> The first 90% of that article talks about type managers, which it
> defines as a *variety* of different applications suited toward managing
> certain types of files (so you have a music manager, photos manager,
> documents manager, video manager, etc. etc.).  That's fine and dandy for
> each of those types of files, but useless for generic file management
> tasks.  Thunar isn't meant to be a photo-managing app, or any other kind
> of specialised "type" managing app.
> The 10% that actually talks about file managers just offers some -- very
> useless, IMHO -- "rules" on what a file manager should do.  I just love
> point #1: "While providing a means for the user to view the literal file
> system hierarchy, the default view would be the user's home folder along
> with a set of virtual folders that sort their content logically."  Er,
> logically?  What does that mean?  Thunar will do points #2, 4, and 5,
> and it'll probably be possible to do 3, 6, and 7 through some extension
> mechanism in version 2.0.
> So basically, most of the article describes things that already exist:
> iTunes (or countless OSS apps) for music, something like digiKam for
> photos, etc. etc., and cries for tighter integration with a normal-ish
> file manager.  I'm not seeing how this article is interesting or
> informative, really.  There will always be a place for a standard file
> manager.  Relying on having a new type manager for every single possible
> type of file out there is pretty stupid.  "Outdated", my ass.
> In a word: *yawn*
> 	-brian
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