XFCE modernisation

Darac Marjal mailinglist at darac.org.uk
Sat May 27 14:33:52 CEST 2023

On 27/05/2023 05:59, Euri wrote:
> Hi, after everything, let me introduce myself: My name is Euri (means 
> rain in basque language), and I'm psychologist, I'm taking a degree in 
> teaching arts in basic education (elementary and high-school), and I'm 
> taking a UX/UI design degree too.
> So, I'm really close to the GNOME project (but I'm not part of them), 
> and I want to help to improve GNU/Linux desktop, so, I want to offer 
> my help to you, Xfce.
> For me Xfce is a great DE, and I think it is getting old and out of 
> time, and I don't want to see the project die (It should keep updated 
> to the modernity).
> In the past, I posted an [Article talking about 
> it](https://www.eurinaiz.com/blog/GTK-HIGs-And-The-XFCE-Future/), In 
> that moment I had no idea about UX and UI design, but now, I think I 
> can collaborate more than in the past.
> A week ago I asked on [reddit about a place to do 
> surveys,](https://www.reddit.com/r/xfce/comments/13nle5p/where_can_i_do_surveys_for_gnulinux_desktop/ 
> <https://www.reddit.com/r/xfce/comments/13nle5p/where_can_i_do_surveys_for_gnulinux_desktop/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3>) 
> and nogafam.es gave me a nextcloud account (to use nextcloud forms).
> I have some ideas to make Xfce even more great, I have in mind a big 
> changes that can be done to make a real modernisation in Xfce.
> But, first, I'd like to do some surveys to know about Xfce user's 
> expectations and what would be appreciated, I've read the roadmap 
> already, so I know about the Xfce's vision and I think that my 
> apportions would be appreciated.
> Today I joined a GNOME Latam (I'm a spanish native speaker) conference 
> talking about the design team in Libre Software projects.
> In general my ideas are the following, I just list them to expose em, 
> but I don't want to discuss them in this thread and right now, 1st I'd 
> like to make the surveys and next, start to discuss em. Also I wont 
> base my propositions right now, because it should be done in the 
> discuss thread and topic by topic.
>  1. New website design
>  2. Rebrand Xfce with new logo, new slogan, typography, etc.
These points are fair enough. They don't touch the style of Xfce at all, 
just the website. But it doesn't really seem to do much. For example, 
you've not stated what's wrong with the current website. Change for 
change's sake just diverts effort from the maintenance of the project. 
The current website is clean and light; it gives you all the relevant 
information right on the front page, above the fold even - what XFCE is, 
what it looks like, what's new and where to get it are all immediately 
accessible. The logo is simple, but clearly identifiable.
>  1. Move the forum to a new discourse instance (to replace mailing
>     list and FluxBB instance)
No thanks. Mailing lists have the unique advantage that they are 
delivered to the subscribers, rather than requiring the subscribers to 
go fetch the information themselves.
>  1. Redesign Xfce default layout and make the designs predictable to
>     theming
To what end? The website says that XFCE aims "to be fast and low on 
system resources, while still being visually appealing and user 
friendly." People actively choose XFCE over GNOME because of the fact 
that it's lightweight and familiar. I'm not saying there isn't room for 
improvement, but you'll find the users more conservative than GNOME 
users, I believe.
>  1. Adopting Libadwaita as part of Xfce (as well the HIG, anyway Xfce
>     has GNOME's HIGs as its official HIGs)
That seems unlikely to happen. libadwaita appears to be a GNOME thing 
and XFCE isn't GNOME.
>  1. Redesign all the apps to use correctly CSD and headerbars
Why? What's the point of CSD? Doesn't that decrease the visual harmony 
if every application is responsible for drawing it's own borders? And, 
with X12 (sorry, Wayland) being much less network based, does it really 
>  1. Apply all UX fundaments to make the system and apps more usable
>     and accesible
I suspect XFCE already has its own UX guidelines, although you seem to 
be implying that there are none at all. Or had you something concrete in 
>  1. Adopting Flatpak & Flathub as the official distribution channels
Haha, no. Vendorisation maybe well and good for end-user applications 
such as web browsers or editors, but for something at a system level 
like a desktop environment or a window manager, these REALLY SHOULD be 
in the purview of the distribution. Vendorising a desktop environment is 
just insane because - well, let's take your idea of libadwaita. How many 
copies of libadwaita would you have on a system if you had flatpaks for 
the window manger, the session manger, the taskbar, each of the plugins?

Is it just that you're being lazy and you'd rather just compile things 
for one target, rather than several?

>  1. A fully Matrix adoption (Irc is too old to nowdays and it hasn't
>     advantages)
That's a bit eager. There's really no reason to ditch IRC when 
IRC<->Matrix bridges exist.
>  1. A self-support plan for XFCE
What do you mean by this? There's already a mailing list, and forums and 
>  1. Adopting technology (don't reinvent the wheel) to focus in
>     creating new and better GNU/linux apps
This feels very vague. What are you trying to say with this one?
> I'm gonna wait your replies, merci beaucoup.
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