Podcast Season 2 Episode 14


Title: KDelay

In this episode: Gnome 3.0 has been delayed while the Gnome team releases its first census results. KDE 4.5 should be here, and Mark Shuttleworth dislikes tribalism. Discover our new 'You Dare Us' challenge, and we reveal our discoveries from the last two weeks. Finally, hear us discuss one of the most compelling Open Ballots in living memory.

What's in the show:

  • News:
  • You Dare Us:
      Listen to what we thought of last episode's 'positivity challenge', and hear our awesome idea for a new one.
  • Discovery of the week:
    • Andrew:
      • XFCE is still excellent.
    • Graham:
      • If you have to use Windows, install GNU on Windows (GOW 0.4.0), and make your life much easier to tolerate.
    • Paul:
      • jQuery is a fantastic tool for web-site building. Slides from the OSCON tutorial can be found here.
  • In the Hot Seat:
    • Graham finds himself alone in this episode's hot seat challenge.
  • Open Ballot:

  • Special offer: subscribe to Linux Format magazine and save up to 40%

Presenters: Andrew Gregory, Paul Hudson and Graham Morrison. Mike is likely to return for our next episode, if he's still our friend.

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Music by Brad Sucks.

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Your comments

Love that name!

Excellent name for this episode... whoever chose it!


Look closer..


Awesome! :)

That ballerina ...

That ballerina is doing my head in. First, I don't see it as left or right, but clockwise versus anti-clockwise. And sometimes I see her spinning clockwise, other times anti-clockwise. Is this an illusion or are you messing with my head?

Loving it

Excellent show, the squeaky ball put in a great show. Enjoyed the applause as well.

Thanks for pointing out GOW, that's going to make working on Windows so much easier.

Thou shall only bash if you have the knowledge to...

If you have no clue about KDE 4 do everybody a favour and just SHUT THE FUCK UP!
Srsly guys, your BS about KDE is wrong on so many levels it just makes you look stupid.
Please stop.

Thou shall only bash if you have the knowledge to...

@Guinomus If you have no clue about Linux do everybody a favour and just SHUT THE FUCK UP!
Srsly man, your BS about the podcast is wrong on so many levels it just makes you look stupid.
Please stop.

What happened to stop bickering??

Guys above me here... I didn't hear any bashing on KDE4 so I don't know what you are getting annoyed about.

I wonder did ye listen to the podcast because one thing that was emphasized was to stop this stupid bickering and embrace positivity.

I think this is something we should all focus on and get rid of this negative energy surrounding Linux.

Could you guys swearing just

Could you guys swearing just cut it out please? stfu would have been sufficient :P
and adopt the positive attitude too ;-)

Suggestion for Open Ballot


I would like to make a suggestion for an Open Ballot question for an upcoming podcast:

Is Ubuntu becoming too windows/apple...ish?

I raise this point as I have been getting increasingly frustrated with Ubuntu over the last few releases.

There are many issues, too many to list them all here, but here are a few to illustrate my point:

1. What do volume control and social networking/IM have in common? Nothing, so why are the applets combined?

2. What do social networking/IM and shutdown/logout have in common? Nothing, so why is shutdown/logout combined with the me menu?

3. Why have the clock and weather applets been combined?

4. I do not use evolution, so why can I no longer change the mail applet (combined with the volume control applet????) to use a different client?

5. Why can't the user change the IM applets (indicator applet) to use pidgin or another client other than empathy?

6. Personally, I do not use social networking, so why am I forced to have those applets when all I want is a volume control and shutdown applet?

7. UNE lockdown. Where has user config freedom gone?

To me it seems that in the last few Ubuntu releases, user choice is gradually being eroded and feature lockdown is being embraced. This attitude belongs in Redmond, not Linux.

I have been getting more and more concerned with each release, but I think my increasing 'dislike' with Ubuntu can concretely be traced back to Mark Shuttleworth's comments (during the window buttons debate) that Ubuntu is not a democracy......the downhill trend has increased ever since....

I am interested in other people's thoughts on this.

In the meantime, watching Ubuntu 10.10 very closely, and sizing up other distros just in case.....


I'd like to respectfully disagree with your observations that Maemo isn't terribly good. As an N900 owner, I've found it to be pretty much perfect. Of course, YMMV!

Did you like how I did that without flaming of any kind? :o)


Just installed Nethack on my Android phone - best version I've played so far.

Try beating this next time for a death story:
I found out you could use a cockatrice as a weapon to paralyse monsters (turn them to stone). I killed a cockatrice, put some gloves on to protect myself, and picked up the corpse. Later in the level, I was cornered by a straw golem, so I wielded the cockatrice and attacked. The straw golem turned into a stone golem. It killed me.


Ubuntu is yet another flavor of linux distro's. They choose their user base through the choices they make in each release so if their choices are going in the opposite direction of what you want for your desktop why don't you try another flavor? :D

kde developer framework

This is for the podcast gurus in tuxradar(since this podcast is yours, then you are it's gurus...lololol). I believe that KDE's team bet on good development frameworks will be loved, sooner or later by the users. Just think about it...
A good framework gives the developer the opportunity to concentrate on the task at hand, rather than the way it works on several systems (you always have to mind the system you want your app to work in, but, the better the framework the less you think about it). A good development framework spawns, mostly, better apps, and this is good for the end user and the open source community in general.
Now that you have my thoughts...why do you say that KDE is on the wrong track????


In your podcast's KDE is always painted as a copy of the Redmond user interface philosophy, but i can't find any of the choices that KDE presents in any of Microsoft's OS's. How can that be???


is the most amazing firefox plug-in that makes firefox great within KDE. I'm amazed that you didn't promoted this peace of art in your podcast(maybe because you only have eyes for gnome????).


Good points, and I too have been concerned about Ubuntu, and thus have been playing with other distros, as it would appear that when 10.10 is released, I will be distro-jumping for the reasons you gave, among others. The new Unity interface for my netbook is a nightmare, and it would appear that the Ubuntu desktop is regrettably, headed in a direction I am not happy with. I will likely settle on an Ubuntu based Distro that neglects to adopt the 10.10 changes, or perhaps just stay with Lucid for the 3 year cycle. Zorin is excellent, has almost all of the software that I add to Ubuntu when I do a clean install, and I have suggested it to several recent Windows converts, as it is brilliantly packaged to be an easy transition for them.

But I digress...

I do disagree with you on one point: The attitude you speak of originates in Cuppertino, not Redmond. Windows is EASILY customizable, and tons of little tweaks are possible. I have been hacking the registry since W95, and I find I can get it to behave as I want it to, and my desktop is exactly as I want it on the rare occasion when I actually boot into Windows.

OSX on the other hand is very klutzy and unusable to me, and as hard as I have tried, it is just impossible for me to develop a smooth workflow. OSX is simply illogical TO ME, and it is too bad, because there are flashes of brilliance in it. These flashes of brilliance unfortunately do not outweigh the fact that the design and function of the OS slow me down terribly.

This is just my opinion, and yours may differ, so before I get hammered, I have to say I use it every day for work because I HAVE to, but I would rather use virtually ANY other OS if I were actually given the choice...

It really amazes me when the Linux community beats up MS, and gives Apple a pass. Apple has become the antithesis of their 1984 commercial, which suggested they were all about freedom.

@Prolific Puffin

Go on, make the switch. Ubuntu is going in a direction that is hard to comply with. It is becoming more windowsy by the day and I don't think that's a good thing. I have no idea what the hell has gone wrong with a project that was originally so brilliant. It's lost stability in the past few releases starting with 9.10 and it's made the wrong descisions. Ubuntu has just become too big and I would now not recommend it even to begginners at the moment. Even mint is better. It's gone terribly wrong and I hope so much that the word 'Ubuntu' doesn't become the new word for 'Linux'. That would be catastrophic for every other decent distro as it would leave them stragling in the dust while ubuntu enjoyed suppremecy and a non worthy third alternative to windows and OSX. That said it's still better than windows.

@ Prolific Puffin & @ bananaoomarang

@ bananaoomarang

I have made the switch to Mint, for the time being, and following the 'proposed' change to being based directly on Debian rather than Ubuntu.

@ Prolific Puffin

Agreed, Windows is customisable, let me clarify, as Ubuntu too is still customisable.

I should have referred to simple GUI customisability. While I myself am happy, where necessary, to delve into config files and scripts to customise the DE, I have found the move away from GUI customisability to be very frustrating. To attract users to linux, we need to embrace GUI customisability, as I'm sure you would agree, the vast majority of PC users are non technical, and they do fear (albeit unnecessarily) the command line.

Of course, we cannot expect every aspect of the DE to have a GUI to customise, but my original point re Ubuntu is that this appears to be eroding.

And an addendum to my original post:

The windows button debate - yes, you can change them back, but for the non technical user, fixing the default themes to work correctly is not an option.

And finally, notify-osd, again, in similar fashion to the windows debate, the non-customisability of the new notify framework is frustrating. My system tray is in the bottom right corner, not the top right. Hence my notifications appear detached, and quite simply, I prefer notifications in the bottom right corner. A big debate has been raging regarding this, but again, Ubuntu appears to be assuming that their choice is right and you must live with it. I can only assume they placed notifications in the top right corner as that is where they default the system tray. I myself have removed notify-osd and replaced it with notification-daemon, but to the new and general user, would they really understand that you can do this?



While I can hack Ubuntu with ease, the changes proposed threaten to change the entire UI. The "windicators" are going to be as nightmarish as the Unity interface, and I can see them causing serious havoc with several programs, and at least for the first year or so, creating a very inhomogeneous look and feel as I would think projects will have to create Ubuntu specific binaries (unless Debian adopts these changes in the UI), but being a non-programmer, perhaps I am wrong about that.

Having seen the interface, I also fear Gnome3 will ruin my entire desktop experience, and have begun examining KDE via a SUSE 11.3 Live CD on my Mac.

My PC will either keep Lucid for a very long time, or I will find something else as I had mentioned.

Frankly Padfoot, I hadn't even thought about going straight Debian until you mentioned it. That may indeed, be the workable solution I have been looking for...

@Prolific Puffin

I relly want to go directly to Debian as well. Going to wait for squeeze first though, as I really like AWN, and the current Debian packages are still 0.2.x, while AWN is currently in the 0.4 series.

I know I can get around it by using SID, but just not in the mood for an unstable system ATM.

Brings me to another point, does anyone know if libimobiledevice will be available in squeeze?

Switching to KDE aint much of an option

I know that come people may not like Gnome 3 when it comes out. I myself am unsure as to whether I will like it or not.

However I recently tested out Kubuntu. I wanted to try and upgrade to KDE 4.5 but before I could do this KDE completely crashed on me.

I couldn't even get to the login screen anymore. Also when KDE did work it had enough options to literally blow my head off!!

@dylan C

Kubuntu IS NOT a good example of kde4. Kubuntu has problems. It crashes alot and just seems to not work. Go another distro like sabayon or openSUSE (personally I find arch linux to have the best kde4)you could even try chakra. Try any kde4 distro OTHER than kubuntu. I have never tried pardus but that's supposed to be good as well.


This comment is not intended to correct or disagree with your post about kubuntu.
That said, i would like to say that my kubuntu 10.04 is not crashing or giving me any headaches. It did, when I upgraded from 9.10 and it crashed on logon, but it was an easy fix and after i added the kubuntu ppa my desktop became very stable and enjoyable. Even when I install software from source, like knemo, everything run smoothly. The kubuntu distro stays very close to the kde releases and makes very few changes to the kde original setup, in fact, if you install fedora 13 the usability will be very similar and even opensuse as only little differences that I believe to derive from the different philosophy behind the distro. Summarizing, unlike ubuntu with gnome, kubuntu stays very close to the kde philosophy. It may not be much, but it's good for me, and i tend to stir things up in my desktop very often.



I tried booting up Kubuntu again and for some reason it didn't freeze.

I now successfully upgraded to KDE 4.5. Its faster, more simplified and just better.

However Im still struggling to find certain configuration options.

1. How do I disable the splashscreen after login?

2. How do I disable certain services at bootup such as bluetooth?

@Dylan C

2. -> bluetooth??? no mather what distro i tried, i can't make it go away on startup... /etc/(whaterver) makes no change in the behavior of my dongle. My gess is that you have to go pretty deep to change this. I just don't have the energy. Maybe our gurus will help us....

Umm... Okay

Q: Why do we care about the location of window buttons?
A: I don't. I got used to it after a week or so.
Q: Do we really need a million options for one thing?
A: No
Q: The Me menu is quite convenient and everyone is by nature a social person so whats the problem?
A: We are accustomed to have the collection of volume and so on to be in one place. So what its on top?
Ubuntu rocks Linux rocks more, lets cut out the b.s. I have a problem though and its with "Open Office, it's really bad and not speed or anything like that but features man! features! where do you find them if someone from Oracle is reading this please I beg you whole-heartedly please features, you guys are big in the software gig give us an office suite that has features that are modern, coz at present its more like something out of the 90's, eveyone who has switched to "Ubuntu Linux" because of me is frequently asking me about where do I do this or where do I do that, heck I don't know ask Oracle they bought out Sun someone there should know. Okay I have rambled my bit FOSS is great I am not switching back anytime soon.

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