The Linux desktop isn't dead (yes, this again), it's aging and
mellowing like fine wine:
"...So what of the Gnome, KDE and hundreds of other
developers out there? Should they start packing up their bags and
go home? Did they all miss something while they were happily using
their computers that never seem to crash and work the way they
want? No, instead we should look at the desktop Linux like a fine
wine, if you uncork it too early it will be bitter and unformed and
hard to swallow. Similarly, desktop Linux will take time to mature.
Today Linux is at the 'workstation' level, this means it is
highly powerful, and ready for serious users. These users don't
look for the cute little buttons or glitz to get their work done,
they look for systems that work well and are stable. Users like me.
Everyday I develop Web pages using Linux. Linux offers me something
that Windows can't: stability, tools, and freedom to work the way I
want. And while some out there complain about hardware support, I
can tell you that I can't think of a single 'type' of hardware that
I need that won't work with Linux. Now it means finding a model
that is compatible but the same holds true for Windows
So what about the desktop? Well, it may never get there for
everyone. Just like Microsoft seems to not care about a few Mac
users that it can't reach, there are going to be users for which
Linux will never be a good fit. Choice is what Linux is all about,
and if we didn't acknowledge that there are going to be those for
whom Windows is going to feel 'right' we would be fooling
ourselves. However, desktop Linux is coming quickly. KDE and Gnome
development is moving fast, and while Gnome may have paused a
moment to mourn a fallen friend, it is still going strong. Desktop
Linux means accessibility. And this goes beyond installation."
Alternatively, there's LinuxToday regular Martin Vermeer's take
on the matter, which is that if nature can solve the chicken and
egg problem, Linux can, too.
"Those few*) of us that have made Linux their primary
desktop still do not form enough of a market. We are still before
the critical mass event, the phase transition. Adobe tried with
FrameMaker, but withdrew. They were probably right at the time. But
expect, as KDE/Gnome, Mozilla and OpenOffice mature and make at
least for some large subset -- millions -- of mostly corporate
users the Linux-only desktop a realistic proposition, also here the
floodgates to suddenly open, as eggs beget chickens beget eggs,
into a self-fulfilling, self-perpetuating process.