How Apple has influenced in the design and shape of Ubuntu #1

This story begins at a time when Ubuntu is still using the old GNOME 2.x. We had, therefore, Ubuntu based on Debian with a custom kernel and default Gnome environment with all its amenities.

For many who do not know, Gnome (and Ubuntu) then were much freer. What does that mean? Gnome was then, as now, could maximize to further adapt to the user a taste of it with Ubuntu. So here’s how it looked standard Ubuntu at the time:


As seen in the screenshot, Ubuntu desktop consisted of two panels, with interchangeable positions and their number. The panels were moved, many accessories could be installed which allowed great freedom in choosing the shape, design and Ubuntu flavor. Each user is able to create the Ubuntu desktop that would suit him.

So in this environment can easily achieve the look that is different from the previous screenshot. So we just had a wide range of different working environments that are created by the users themselves seeking something in their own way.

And so Ubuntu users slowly aspired to something that can be seen in Apple desktop. Then have followed many ways of copying the look which Apple has.

In the meantime, they even created and separate operating systems that were based on Ubuntu and had copied Apple Mac look like Pear OS, or settings that Ubuntu design converted to Apple Mac look.

Over time, it was even easier to achieve the following appearance:


What happened next with Ubuntu?

Ubuntu policy has been based on listening to the needs and desires of the users have, but in this case they could not just copied someone else’s design. Instead, they decided to consolidate customer aspirations with their way of expressing Ubuntu way. Ubuntu developers are refresh Unity project that has so far been designed only for netbook users and small screens. And just this detail and function related to the small screen has contributed to a fantastic yet simple idea that will continue to save space on the screen and that users did not even notice.


With a few changes and adjustments for larger screens Unity was transferred to the big screens. Large screens have now become much more efficient and Ubuntu has a new design.

Unity has brought together two useful things:

  • modern and unique look with the wishes of users
  • wide screen with an interface that saves space and use it where it is most


Unity also brought some limitations:

  • Ubuntu appearance is no longer possible to change easily
  • Many addons are no longer supported for panel
  • Even Unity no longer possible to change easily

In the end we got …

Ubuntu with limited options, design changes, but with much more of what might be called Ubuntu authentic. It is very difficult to remove Unity and manage its appearance, unless you installed a completely new working environment or some unofficial tools and gears.

Ubuntu is now thanks to the users who strove Apple look, got the idea for their original flavor. Not only that, Ubuntu has brought great innovation in the layout area of the screen which, although simple, can be called revolutionary.

We got fantastic yet simple, revolutionary design that saves space on your screen but with a lot less freedom in choosing the look and feel. All together, pushed by the user in accordance with their wishes and without stealing other people’s ideas.

Fantastic but simply…

Аутор: Иван Благојевић

Радим као Engineering Lead у Адриахосту. Највише времена проводим на Линукс серверима.

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