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.comment: A Whole New Desktop with Anti-Aliasing - page 4

A Really Polished Look for Linux

  • March 14, 2001
  • By Dennis E. Powell

As I understand it, Gnome users will have anti-aliasing available by year's end; my guess is that if it becomes as popular with others as it is with me, it will be far before year's end. This is a good thing in many respects, and a sad one in others.

For instance, there are dandy but minimalist desktops such as XFCE that do not bring applications with them. There is no way presently conceived that these can extend anti-aliased screen fonts to all the applications they launch. The independent development of X-based applications, not tied to any desktop, may well suffer as a result. This is not good; indeed, it leads to the kind of centralization that many of us adopted Linux to escape.

Related and perhaps worse is the unhappy fact that anti-aliasing provides the illusion that some kind of unified typeface handling exists when it doesn't. It's a step, but it isn't the destination, yet it allows us to think about something else for a little longer.

We can't do it forever.

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