Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Linux Mint 14 "Nadia" released

As it is usually the case, not long after an Ubuntu release, there comes a new Linux Mint release. This time around, we get release 14 and probably the most interesting Linux Mint release to date.

Since its inception, Linux Mint started as a "tamed" Ubuntu, a visually appealing take on Ubuntu with all the nerdy stuff taken care of (codecs installed, full support for all kinds of media, a more relevant application selection, etc.) As it gradually evolved, Mint started to deviate more and more from Ubuntu, very much becoming an entity of its own, which is what we see today.

I have not tested Mint 14 yet, but I plan to soon. Those who have read earlier reviews from me probably know I am not a fan, but I am interested to see what this new release is all about, mostly because there seem to be many appealing new features. To take a quick look at what's new, please visit the official New Features ANNOUNCEMENT page.

After I read that announcement, I must admit I had mixed feelings. It is clear that Mint is developing fast and it is exciting to see Cinnamon grow at such an amazing pace, but it is sad to see yet another Linux project reinventing the wheel. Workspaces? Notification applet? A shy take on activities? Much deeper customization?... This is all KDE!... Why on earth do we need another take on the same idea when it already works (and looks) better on KDE? Like I said before, I have to try it for real before I decide about Mint 14, but I would be hugely disappointed if it ends up being a watered down version of KDE on MATE.

At the end of the day, I can only imagine what KDE would be like if all the resources and talent from the Linux Mint project actually joined in and a hybrid, much improved project, came out as a result. It is obvious that the Mint developers have talent and push hard to make their ideas come to life, but even more important, they also have more of a pragmatic approach that would fit in perfectly in KDE to simplify things and make them more practical.

...Of course, this is all daydreaming, good thing it is free!

5 comments:

  1. Can't wait to hear your thoughts about it seeing as Mint is my favorite distro.

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    1. Will likely take another 2 weeks before I can seriously run it through its paces, then I will put something together.

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  2. KDE and Cinnamon are very different. Yes, they share the same general layout, but Cinnamon is simpler and much less cluttered. Also, personally I find KDE too gaudy and flashy when it comes to appearance, although you can configure it differently. Basically, if you want ultimate configurability, go with KDE, if you want a gentle blend of simplicity, configurabilty, and good looks, go with Cinnamon. Cinnamon is not there yet in terms of stability though.

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    1. Well, I agree with that view if we look at present times, but looking at how Cinnamon is evolving, I am not so sure. In any case, you said it yourself, you can configure KDE to be less cluttered, which leads me back to my initial point: What's the point of creating Cinnamon from scratch?

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