Unity Desktop ever since its arrival on Ubuntu 11.04, has been the bane of power-Linux users, who once basked in prowess of the facile GNOME desktop. On the other hand, new adopters of Linux and its extended family of open source software, love the tablet-type-touch-based user interface that Unity Desktop offers.
Meanwhile, GNOME desktop itself went it for rich overhaul, with newer, path-breaking features, differing greatly from its earlier versions. This new age GNOME too, has mostly had a stoic acceptance.
Unity continues to be groomed…
Ubuntu’s backers Canonical remain much focused on building the new generation of desktop ecosystem, introducing newer, smarter and faster elements such as touch-sensory UI but the device-type easy search functionality as well.
In the words of Mark Shuttleworth, “the sophistication of this search system will grow but the goal is to keep it visual and immediate – something anyone can drive at first attempt.” This is handled by the Dash feature on the Unity shell and has now made its way onto the Mac OS X Lion as well. Some of the newer features are moving from the dark desktop color to a washed-look. In fact, dash color can be feature-adjusted to the color of the wallpaper.
The Dash and the Panel are now integrated for a holographic display within the dash itself. Display is now dramatic
Next, place of action for the Ubuntu crew is the Unity Panel. Changes happening here include the closing successive windows using the top left corner, even if minimized. The principle applied here is that, whatever is in focus currently is closed at the top left corner of the window. This corner of the window was ultimately chosen as the title bar is integrated into the panel and will continue forwards to the maximized window. This is expected to be a full-fledged feature by Ubuntu12.04.
Scopes and Lenses-a feature combination, which offer seamless data resource search, filters and the multiple ways to display the results of the search are now full-fledged.
Now, the Places feature is under the developer scanner to give them the same level of robust search-and-display capability as Scopes and Lenses. Currently the area of intense action, Unity is looking for innovative scopes to be developed in this module.
Another area of focus is the interface. Calling Dash now is a part of Launcher. The developers justify this move, as it was consistent with closing windows on the top left corner besides invoking Dash is best with the large key or the Super Key.
Unity to acquire speed
The GLpipeline allows for blurred real-time effect for clarity and legibility on the Dash. Unity-3D will have the Nux widget toolkit based on open GL and so will Unity 2D with Qt, the most popular open source graphics software. These ensure your native graphics are optimized for your hardware framework and are yet powerful and smooth to work with, even if they are low end. Therefore, the graphic libraries, consisting of a wealth of features, can be accessed later to improve your desktop’s performance.
Unity is feature-rich and classy from the Windows 8 hatchling interface and looks to rule the future of desktop platforms.