[xmonad] EWMH Panel in Haskell

Matthias-Christian Ott ott at mirix.org
Wed Feb 10 16:45:18 EST 2010

On Tue, Feb 09, 2010 at 08:29:38PM -0500, John Yates wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 9, 2010 at 11:31 AM, Matthias-Christian Ott <ott at mirix.org> wrote:
> > The rest of my environment consits of several urxvts/uxterms and
> > firefox.
> (Please forgive me if the following attempt to extrapolate from your
> brief response is off target.)
> It sounds like you are a "dyed in the wool" command-line user.
> Further, it sounds like you are saying that not only do you _not_ run
> a mainstream window manager but also that you choose _not_ to run any
> of the components associated with a mainstream GUI desktop
> environment.

None of the mainstream desktop environments meets my needs (I tried
them for several years), though I really appreciate visualisation. It
may sound a bit odd, but software that uses technology and concepts
from an era when people used dot matrix printers and terminals simply
works for me better. It's not that I'm happy with it, but I simply
couldn't find something better.

> I too am a command-line devotee though I run most of my shells within
> emacs.  That said I am happy to run bits of the gnome GUI in a single
> bar across the top of my screen (gnome panel and a handful of
> applets).  Within that panel I use dzen2 to displays what would
> otherwise appear on a title bar if I chose to have my windows so
> decorated.  Again in that panel I have Mod4-p bound run dmenu for
> launching programs.  And much as I love tiling window managers in
> general and xmonad in particular I still appreciate the Gnome
> Workspace Switcher's visual presentation of my 9 workspaces.  (A
> picture can truly be worth many key strokes and much searching.)
> Bottom-line: even after replacing my window manager I find that a
> desktop environment still offers many reusable components that I would
> never think of reinventing.  I encourage you to read the wiki pages on
> xmonad integration with Gnome and/or KDE.  (I use Gnome because it is
> Ubuntu's default environment and therefore best supported under that
> distribution.)

It was not long ago that you could live very well without GNOME and
KDE. But since then people tried to unify hardware configuration and
the result of this is hal, NetworkManager and GNOME Power Manager. This
has the unpleasant result that nearly all major GNU/Linux distributions
just work with them out of the box.

You have a herd of daemons idling on your system (which aren't even
decoupled from the user interface), not to mention the unnecessary
abstraction and redundant security layers. If you choose to live
without them, you have a hard life, because now you have to imitate
their functionality with the previous generation software, just
because developers want to give users graphical user interfaces.

I really regret this development and developed a certain antipathy
against GNOME and KDE. They don't fulfil my needs and make my life
harder that it could be.

Generally speaking, this is an outcome of the UNIX history, an
operating system that is the evolution of Space Travel. The worse is
better approach and general UNIX philosophy are just a bad joke.
> /john


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