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Linux Orbit: Y2k and the Desktop Experience; Reflections from the year 2000 on The Linux Desktop

Jan 01, 2001, 15:03 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Terril West)

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"Another year peels off the calendar, and it becomes time to reflect upon the year gone by. This year was an interesting year for Linux desktop aficionados. The release of KDE 2.0 was seen as a huge leap forward in desktop environments. More distributions are targeting the desktop market with user friendly installation programs and easy-to-use utilities in their distributions. The two largest desktop environments have received major industrial backing in the form of the GNOME Foundation and the KDE League. And finally, there has been a bounty of good software to ease the Linux neophyte into the world of Open Source and free software (my personal favorite is Konquerer)."

"I see 2001 being the year of the anti-aliased font as well as the year of standardization. As larger software manufacturers begin to write big-time applications for Linux, they are not going to want to deal with the packaging requirements of Red Hat, and then Debian, then Mandrake, then Slackware, etc... These companies will find that wasteful and begin to package for one or two distros, with the end goal of only developing and packaging for one standard flavor of Linux. Package management will be a key area of standardization in the coming year. It will likely take the form of a universal installer that can install and keep track of all package types. Helix Code's Red Carpet and Eazel's Nautilus and services are already pointing us in that direction."

"Linux has indeed "come a long way, baby". The OS has been the hotpoint of tech news for a large part of the year, the desktop is maturing faster than a teenager on growth hormones, and every day someone from the community gives me another reason not to use Windows. The year 2000 has definitely been a success for the Linux desktop, and the future holds even more promise. Here's hoping for a stellar 2001, because we've come a long way, and we've got more ground to cover before the race is done."

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