Phoronix: Subtle Improvements In Ubuntu 9.04 Alpha 5
Due out tomorrow is the fifth alpha release for Ubuntu 9.04 (the Jaunty Jackalope). Ubuntu 9.04 is now in a feature freeze so there isn't much to expect in Jaunty Alpha 5, but there are a few items worth highlighting. For one, the new desktop notification system has landed for Ubuntu 9.04, which looks nice if you are running on a composited desktop...
When people pick their location, it needs to give that information to the clock so it can show them weather where they are by default. For this to work, however, it needs a more complete filterable list of major cities..
For instance, I live in Omaha, NE (Omaha Steaks, etc), and it's not a city in the time zone selector, while it has three locations for weather. Heck, I don't even think Kansas City is in there, I always click on Chicago..
I think 9.04 is going to be a fail. This is the first time I said this about an Ubuntu distribution.
First, the login screen. It's ugly, out of place and does not have the Ubuntu-feel (orange/brown).
Second, the notifications. It's ugly, again out-of-place and it will be annoying as hell.
Is the graphical look that ugly to be a deal breaker? If the canonical notification system is at all like Growl is on OS X I think it's a good thing. Also personally i think the orange/brown look is quite ugly and tired. But that's just me.
If I have to level any criticisms at ubuntu it's mainly my own desire to see it be more of a bleeding edge distro, which it is not.
The only issue I have is that they block out part of the top panel - the above video doesn't have a panel at the top and it works better. Hopefully the popup location is configurable.
It'd look a lot better on a non-composited desktop if you could add some fake translucency as well (like gnome-terminal, you just blend in a section of the desktop wallpaper, ignoring any windows underneath it).