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Re: Debian on the Desktop - plans for Lenny?

On 08/08/2007, Tim Hull <thully@umich.edu> wrote:

I'm a new (though fairly knowledgeable) Debian user and possibly a prospective developer. Anyway, though I do like Debian a lot, one thing is obvious - it lags somewhat behind as a desktop (or laptop) distribution as compared to many other distributions (notably Ubuntu, which is of course based on Debian).

Anyway, I'm curious - what are the plans for Lenny to help bridge this gap? I have heard the DPL's statements about "making Debian sexy", and I'm wondering what the plans are and how I can get involved.  A few particular areas of interest for me are:
* Making laptop frequency scaling/suspend/etc work "out of the box" when Laptop task is installed

We already have this on the desktop, from what I can see (there is evidence of a scaling-module-loading-thingummy running on boot)

* Installing all (free) codecs that are commonly used by default in the Desktop task (FAAC is one that comes to mind as one that could be added, as it is in main now)

A good idea, but this might swell the CDs beyond what is desirable.

* Simplifying debian-installer for new users (this could include by streamlining the steps as well as having an Ubuntu-like 1-CD live installer)

The Ubuntu installer is a horrible mistake IMO. The installer is streamlined as much as is possible, and we already have a perfectly good live cd project (debian live.)

* De-uglifying the default fonts - currently, many applications in Debian use poor-quality fonts or even *bitmap fonts*.

Which programs are these? The default for GTK is Bitstream Vera Sans (or clone), which is perfectly good.

* Simplify installation of out-of-tree kernel modules, possibly by adapting Ubuntu's Restricted Manager to work with m-a.  Non-free drivers would *only* be displayed if non-free is in the sources.list.

This is a good idea. Simplifying the installation of non-free graphics card drivers should also be a priority, though not to the extent Canonical are currently planning.

Ben Goodger

B.F . Goodger, Age 16½
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