B.Goode wrote: ↑
Fri May 25, 2018 9:24 am
And secondly, since there is clearly a need to be able to distinguish between the two distinct hardware variants of the "Desktop environment"
Is there? Or, rather, perhaps the issue is who
needs to be making that distinction. From a branding perspective, it might not make much sense trying to get users to distinguish between what they see running on a PC and what they see on an RPi. I'm also thinking of systems like the Mac, which has made multiple hardware transitions over the years and is still called a Mac (and which has Darwin at is core, which is a "brand" that 99% of Apple device users probably have no idea exists).
Sure, we'll have to make technical distinctions at times, but when it comes to the general public and branding, things should be simplified in a way that makes sense. For most people, that means going from the outside in, so what they see is what they want to call something. The hardware it's ultimately running on is mostly an afterthought from that perspective.
So the only issue is how to distinguish vanilla Raspbian from Raspbian with the Raspberry Pi Desktop - officially, the image we offer for download from our site is "Raspbian with the Raspberry Pi Desktop" or "Raspbian with Desktop" for short. Given this and vanilla Raspbian are downloaded from completely different sites, and our download is clearly labelled as above, is there really that much scope for confusion?
It's not just about needless confusion, but coherent communication. There's a reason
why Apple uses different names like XNU, Darwin, macOS, etc. They're not just different things, but of differing importance to different levels of users. The question that needs to be asked and answered is what different pieces of the RPi puzzle need to be distinguished to certain users. If that means using a new name for the core components that support the RPi hardware, it should be done. It's not
"vanilla" Raspbian, it's something else. Whether or not that something else needs a special name a la Darwin (and/or XNU) depends a great deal on how the RPF wants different people to interact with the different parts of the system.
I would be delighted to have a shorter name than "Raspbian with the Raspberry Pi Desktop" for our desktop product, which is why I attempted to introduce one a year or so ago. But it is surprisingly hard to come up with a catchy, short, descriptive name that eight other companies haven't already trademarked...
But you must still keep in mind that "desktop" is generally synonymous with traditional PCs. As a GUI metaphor, the desktop just is
; it only creates confusion when you call attention to it. What a better name might be depends on what the actual goal is. I still say that using "Raspberry Pi" in a brand name strongly implies something about the hardware rather than the software. If you want to brand the core software or just the GUI layer(s), a brand new name would be needed to add clarity.