Ideas for improvements in future releases

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  • This topic has 177 replies, 24 voices, and was last updated May 23-4:44 pm by Brian Masinick.
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  • #46584
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    SamK
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    :D

    MS has literally decided to toss all these people with older computers by the wayside.

    This is not a new phenomena. For years MS has been making old kit obsolete in terms of running their OS. It has not resulted in large numbers of Windows refugees moving to Linux.

    I have some ideas to nix the Welcome Screen concept itself, and replace it with something that will help the newcomers but without bothering experienced users…

    Not bothering experienced users is only a part of the matter. A request was made for input from the devs. Reservations were expressed, with a clear indication it is highly improbable it will be adopted. Redressing it in different clothes is unlikely to change that.

    I don’t want to suggest it if…

    If you see value in it go ahead and do it on the basis it is valuable to you and your local users. The way it is phrased makes it look like your willingness is conditional on the outcome being adopted by antiX. Not I nor any other dev (other than anticapitalista) is guaranteed to have work included in antiX. It will be a matter of regret if your enthusiasm is dependent on such a guarantee.

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 2 weeks ago by SamK.
    #46595
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    BobC
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    :D

    SamK, There isn’t any threat or reservation. Xecure, PPC and I are just trying to help and trying to focus on things that are likely going to be acceptable. The point was to try improve the likelihood that newcomers would get successfully installed and running and make their first experience with antiX a good one. We are trying to help make forward progress on that is all.

    Yes, I wasn’t suggesting a useless blurb screen, or a list of patches screen, and all the effort it would take to save the “Don’t show me again” seems silly, but its very sad to see people angry when they just needed to change the language, read a little, and make a few clicks. People that are experienced don’t need EZ buttons, but Normal people need to be able to find solutions for the simple problems like reading the screen or connecting to WiFi quickly, before they get lost and frustrated, or we end up reading a sour thread or review.

    Here is the idea. It will cost next to nothing. We have 2 desktop Icons by default, Files and Help. Lets add 2 more to the Rox desktop that are oriented to helping the newcomers. As Manyroads says, he never uses desktop icons, but I bet Moddit’s kids would be happy to find them 🙂

    Add Icon 1: Add an Icon to change the Language/Keyboard right there at the top corner of the desktop. It would be the first thing on the screen.

    Add Icon 2: Add an Icon for Xecure’s EZ Setup. We will already have the HiDPI screen fixed and WiFi working in the startup. They should already have the language right. They probably don’t need a firewall. But they might need to Set the date and time. That needs to be done before Update, and before Install Apps (Package installer) or those have problems if the date/time is wrong. We could add PPC’s shortcuts menu off of a button and if they want more settings, there would be a button for the Control Centre. Xecure has some great customizer ideas on the other tabs, too. Maybe we start out with just what we can get working quickly, and in time we could add tabs, and maybe more for customizing IceWM, Fluxbox and JWM and make it easy for newcomers to make adjustments without needing to go edit the configuration files. Since it’s a desktop icon, the experienced users who know how to set things up don’t need to click this if they don’t want to, but the newcomers at least will see the rational steps in the sequence they are needed and find solutions for the most commonly requested adjustments.

    Help!: The Help icon has so much good info, but its pretty technical for newcomers. It likely does provide the info, but with Dillo, they don’t see anything on the first page after clicking the links, and today most people are used to finding the better browsers and know how to work them. It could use a link to the Wiki, which is important if its going to get used and improved, but that is very minor. When they have a full version with Firefox, we could bring it up with that rather than Dillo, and it would give a much more up to date look and feel.

    And if the answer is no, at least we won’t waste more time on the concept.

    #46597
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    anticapitalista
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    :D

    Just 2 points.

    1. Opening the FAQ with firefox eats c350MB more RAM than opening it with dillo. It also opens it much slower.
    2. I also doubt if such users will actually click on the icons. Such users just do their own thing regardless of
    icons, Welcome screens etc.

    Philosophers have interpreted the world in many ways; the point is to change it.

    antiX with runit - leaner and meaner.

    #46599
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    BobC
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    :D

    Both very true. Not everyone can be helped.

    It does make me feel better to try if they are willing, that’s all.

    Thanks for listening and all the effort you’ve put in over the years. There have been many time I was the one helped.

    #46600
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    SamK
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    :D

    Over the last few decades there has been a obvious tendency for people to do little or no reading and researching. Instead there is a general expectation that others will always guide them, as can be seen from repeated forum questions.

    Neither reviewers of the distro nor those evaluating it read guidance info. They are interested in whether the distro works, then expect it to work exactly to meet their preconceptions, all this straight-out-of-the-box.

    Excluding videos, antiX currently provides guidance locally via the menu (Help and FAQ) and online (FAQ, wiki, home). If these are not sufficient another alternative that users have the option of reading will not succeed. What it will do is add to confusion and extra work to maintain.

    In the past the best source of info on antiX came from its friendly forum. There are signs of this returning. Having knowledgeable support delivered swiftly in a friendly manner is one of the best adverts antiX could have. This is one of the ideas behind expanding the group of forum mods. Instead it seems the group is expecting its ideas to be automatically adopted into antiX. Everyone should produce their scripts and modifications in the knowledge they are valuable to them rather than being conditional on adoption.

    The discussion is starting to go around in circles. I think it has been fully aired and the decision made.

    anticapitalista has signaled some of the work that has to be done for the next release. Perhaps your enthusiasm might be redirected to those things that need to be done rather than the things you would like to be done.

    Edit
    Cross posted with #46599

    #46601
    Member
    PPC
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    :D

    Hi everyone- considering anticapitalista’s previous statement I think it will be fruitless to work on a Welcome screen/EZ setup/Control Panel icon…

    [My personal opinion is that a desktop icon to some sort of welcome screen, either a basic one like the one I suggested or a more elaborated one, like Xecure’s) could/should be added. Seriouly- if an user had all those resources available staring him/her right in the eyes, and still refused to try it and came asking for help or complaining to the forum, a RTFM cold answer would be well deserved… Xecure’s idea should be, at least placed in the help menu, that unfortunatly no one reads anyway..]

    Asking for all you folks opinion:
    This resources can be added to costume isos so I’m thinking about creating one with my min-fluxbox/tint2 desktop that features this:

    1- tint2 toolbar configured to be very similar to the Default Windows 10 one:
    – it has a Startmenu (A sort of X), a search icon (left click searches files using a rofi-locate script/ right click searches apps using rofi drun, displaying app icons), a task switcher icon (launches skippy-xd), folder icon (spacefm)
    – launchers for chrome, firefox, and Edge, app installer, Writer, antiX updater.
    – running apps icons (when user overs the mouse over an icon, the full title and a graphical preview pops up)
    – The right side of the bar features CPU percentual load, RAM usage in Mb, Wi-fi icon (launches cmst -d), volume icon (launches a costume horizontal yad-volume), weather app (launches wttr.in), system tray, Clock and date (launches yad-calendar), and power button (exit session).

    2- My flubox menu is “simplified” and includes:
    – icons for searching for apps (app-select), recent files (using my tiny yad script as GUI)
    – icons for the default apps organized alphabetically (audio player, video player, browser, etc, with also calculator (gcalculator), Writer and Calc with the descriptions “word processor” and “spreadsheet”;
    – applications submenu (includes update menu and Desktop menu);
    – run…, Kill window, Control Centre , Fluxbox settings;
    – Exit

    This setup only added packages are tint2, skippy-xd and rofi (all available on the repository).
    I’m considering including Edge browser and also an icon to Ms Office Online – just to give Windows refugees familiar tools (even if they aren’t the best or more private ones) and also my welcome screen (available on the menu, as “Control Panel”)
    This spin off could be called something like “antiX 10” or “X 10” – it does not try to emulate Windows 10, just configure antiX to run in a way that most non Linux users find more familiar. It can be made to run with only installing tint2 (and use spacefm-file find as “file finder” , app-select as “app finder”, and fluxbox list of open windows as “task switcher”)

    I’m only resisting doing this because it adds nothing that a user can’t install and have it running in 10 minutes tops… it’s not a fundamental change, like Xecure’s spin, that add drivers for Sis and Via chips…
    I also don’t think that anyone would bother downloading this spin-of- antix is not very well known, and I would hate if people only came to antiX because it’s “that OS that looks like Windows 10” 🙁
    … that could bring added user frustration when they noticed that, in fact, Linux is not Windows and they can’t run all their apps, or even all the hardware, the way they want…

    So what do you think???

    P.

    #46604
    Member
    skidoo
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    :D

    install and have it running in 10 minutes tops
    [..]
    So what do you think???

    I think a scripted “overlay” or “customization” can suit very well:
    https://github.com/KERNELULTRAS/LegacyIce-antiX
    — project has its own, separate, issue tracker
    — opportunity to embed screenshots, to provide lengthy description and/or wiki pages.
    — avoids need to maintain//update//upload additional ISO files
    — interested users can “try before you buy” ~~ can run the script during livesession to assess the resulting overlay. If they decide “yep, suits me fine”, can save persistence or install to disk.

    Specific to the example I linked, I’m wary of (would recommend against) reassigning, and re-documenting, the stock keybinds.

    #46612
    Moderator
    ModdIt
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    :D

    anticapitalista wrote:

    I also doubt if such users will actually click on the icons. Such users just do their own thing regardless of
    icons, Welcome screens etc.

    Not my experience: I will not bother to repeat myself after this post, over the last few years I have spent
    many many hours with new users between the ages of probably 14 and 60 something, noting which problems occur,
    how long users need to adopt. Vast majority are given a live stick as a starting point for the first installation,
    help where needed. Others prep a stick with what they have from redmond Some came through other Linux distros.

    Since I moved to antiX have been trying to help reduce hurdles one by one, either by myself or with help from some
    fantastic forum members. Keeping new users within an acceptable level of frustration and giving time to accomodate and
    build up enough confidence to look after themselves.
    Eventualy others. Initialy I was banking on group self helping each other. Thanks to COVID DOA.

    I would appreciate it if user improvements in progress become available to a wider range of users in one form or another..

    We will stick with icewm as it allows at least a feeling of familiarity as well as other desirable traits.
    Maybe it makes sense to further discuss privately rather than continue in a public thread. .

    install and have it running in 10 minutes,
    would have been really nice today for a fresh rather special setup with runit ice.
    Ass and eyes hurting it took sooo long. :-(. Good the weather was not so nice..

    #46615
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    christophe
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    :D

    Not my experience

    I think your experience is very valid. You apparently guide a large antiX user group.

    anticapitalista wrote:

    I think this is a very fruitful discussion and well worth continuing.

    Now he has to sift through the suggestions & see what fits best for his vision for the OS.

    #46620
    Member
    manyroads
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    :D

    I apologize for not having read everything in this thread… but what I have read regarding Intro help brings something to mind I do for myself on my window manager installs. I use Zenity with embedded html links to provide quick access to web site info. Yes this does still open a browser (but it is the browser a user [me] has installed, presumably because I like it.) Anyway here’s a screenshot. It’s drop dead simple to do…

    Attachments:

    Pax vobiscum,
    Mark Rabideau - http://many-roads.com
    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken
    dwm ~Reg. Linux User #449130
    20 Jan 2021 ~ "End of an Error"

    #46626
    Moderator
    christophe
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    :D

    (I’m sure antiX is listed first because it’s the best, right?) 😉

    #46628
    Moderator
    ModdIt
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    :D

    Christophe wrote: You apparently guide a large antiX user group.

    I would sooner say I assisted installs with quite a number of persons.
    Not taking things out of others hands and Encouragement is the most
    important part. It is an intense learning experience for all.

    I long for a Pizzeria meetup with Linux kids, friends and classmates of my daughter.

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 2 weeks ago by ModdIt.
    #46630
    Member
    manyroads
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    :D

    Or I put them in alphabetical sequence… 😉

    Pax vobiscum,
    Mark Rabideau - http://many-roads.com
    "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken
    dwm ~Reg. Linux User #449130
    20 Jan 2021 ~ "End of an Error"

    #46636
    Member
    skidoo
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    :D

    /usr/share/firefox-esr/distribution/distribution.ini
    can be configured to specify multiple tabs at default startup.
    Multiple URLs are separated using pipe symbol character(s)

    browser.startup.homepage =”https:www.antixforum.com | file:///path/to/helpdoc | https://antixwiki…”

    #46647
    Forum Admin
    SamK
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    :D

    I think your experience is very valid. You apparently guide a large antiX user group.

    I would appreciate it if user improvements in progress become available to a wider range of users in one form or another..

    This is where the existing capabilities inherent in antiX come to your aid. There is no need to wait, those scripts/ideas can already be implemented today.

    By design antiX is extensively configurable to cater for local circumstances. A standard version of antiX can be modified by removing unwanted progs, adding wanted progs, scripts, guides etc. That modified version can then be made available/distributed to local users to install and run from disk/DVD/Live. That can be achieved using standard antiX tools, which have been provided specifically for that purpose.

    When viewed from that perspective, the process fulfils parts of the antiX philosophy:
    • Put the choices into the hands of the user by enabling antiX to be fine tuned to suit their personal/local desires.
    • Encourage the user to learn Linux and understand what they are doing.

    The following is a pertinent example of modifying standard antiX oneself. It demonstrates the the principle but does not indicate whether the extra step is taken of making it available to others.

    …what I have read regarding Intro help brings something to mind I do for myself…It’s drop dead simple to do…

    https://www.antixforum.com/forums/topic/ideas-for-improvements-in-future-releases/page/3/#post-46620

    Afterthought
    The way of working taken by manyroads is a good model. He produces work for his own reasons/benefit. When complete he shares his work so others may employ it if they so choose. This approach to working is a good fit with antiX. Thanks manyroads.

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