Damn, they already even have a website.
This is Havoc Pennington’s “vision” for Gnome.
I like the old saying about how those who do the work get to decide.
I’ll reserve judgement on this whole online desktop thing, but what I don’t want to see is a bunch of code written in a way that makes it hard for others to leverage GNOME and build new things.
While I don’t mind people having vision, open source is about allowing different people to have different visions, sharing visions, and most importantly, working together on pieces that are common among these visions.
If anything, the GNOME project should be worrying about the boring stuff.. allowing 3rd party apps to integrate better, ABI compatibility, providing more reusable libraries as part of the core desktop, providing more wrappers to make programming for GNOME easier.
Most likely, the next great OSS innovation will come from a small group of people who get together and write some code to implement a new idea. The idea and/or the implementation will happen to be really good, and the product of this work will spread and be re-used.
The less code that such efforts have to produce, the faster the open source platform will evolve. The last thing we want is to have the limitations of a single vision causing these innovators to look elsewhere for a platform to build on. Maybe someday it will get to the point where combining available components will be easy enough that a small company could realize their single vision in the form of a distro.
So while Havoc and crew can go and make the “online desktop” possible, I don’t buy into the single vision argument, since it seems to go against what actually makes open source software interesting.

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