Steve, Have you considered gnome-shell extensions.  GNOME Shell Extensions
  
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GNOME Shell Extensions
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Therein I discovered a collection of "maintained and unmaintained" gnome-shell 
extensions geared to extend gnome's regular interface.

 Regards 
 Leslie
 Leslie Satenstein
Montréal Québec, Canada



      From: Steve Schooler <sgschoo...@gmail.com>
 To: desktop-devel-list@gnome.org 
 Sent: Tuesday, March 6, 2018 1:35 PM
 Subject: should gnome's user-customization strategy be overhauled
   
I Apologize if this email is misdirected - I couldn't fathom where else to send 
it.  Please forward this email to "gnome software administrator's", if 
feasible.  This is a one-off message, so I have not subscribed to 
desktop-devel-list@gnome.org.  If you feel it is appropriate, please respond 
directly to sgschoo...@gmail.com.

The sole purpose of this email is to ask "gnome software admin's" to CONSIDER 
WHETHER IS IT FEASIBLE AND ADVISABLE FOR GNOME TO ADOPT A LONG TERM STRATEGY OF 
OVERHAULING IT'S DEVELOPMENT OF USER-CUSTOMIZATION FEATURES.

The customization features offered by gnome have been steadily increasing, 
while (critically) gnome (or gnome-3) remains STABLE.  My understanding is that 
in general, linux-gnome users may customize their desktop in one of three ways:

1. gnome tweak took, as mentioned at 
https://wiki.gnome.org/action/show/Apps/Tweaks?action=show&redirect=Apps%2FGnomeTweakTool.

2. gnome layout manager, as mentioned at 
https://www.fossmint.com/gnome-layout-manager-make-gnome-into-unity-mac-windows/.

3. add a different desktop on top of gnome.  One example is cinnamon, which is 
discussed at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinnamon_(software).

-------------------------------------------------------------

Please see my query at 
https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/427785/manually-layout-gnome-to-cinnamon.

I can think of two separate (? mutually exclusive ?) long term strategies that 
gnome developers might consider:

a.  A variation of the (apparently extremely well documented) approach taken at 
https://www.gnome.org/get-involved/.  I'm a programmer with moderate 
"linux-bash" skills, and I merely want to be able to customize my own desktop.  
For my skills and purpose, grappling with GTK+ and GObject feels onerous.

I would prefer a "higher-level-language", with perhaps the NARROWER 
capabilities that a user might want.  Analogies are assembler -> [cobol, c, or 
java] and (within latex) postcript -> pstricks.

Hopefully, this approach would drastically simplify (for example), the end user 
coding and customizing their own "bottom-of-the-screen" taskbar from within 
gnome.


b.  The approach taken by Firefox v. 58.  In this browser, specifying a url of 
about:config provides a long list of user-customizable parameters.  An 
analoguous approach in gnome might group the parameters into categories (e.g. 
desktop appearance, font sizes, power-mgmt+screensaver+monitor attributes, 
...).  gnome could accompany this with (for example) a pdf or 
website-maintained documentation (i.e. manual) of these attributes, with a 
"user's guide" + examples included.

--------------------------------------------------------------------

I consider both gnome-tweak-took and gnome-layout-manager excellent SHORT TERM 
APPROACHES.  Long term, a high-level scripting language or voluminous set of 
user controlled attributes would allow (for example) gnome to RE-UNIFY WITH 
CINNAMON, WITHOUT JEOPARDIZING GNOME'S STABILITY.  If this approach succeeds, 
gnome might be "universally accepted" ACROSS LINUX DISTRIBUTIONS.

This approach could reduce "desktop crashes", eliminate redundant enhancements 
across different linux desktops, and (perhaps) better entice users away from 
microsoft windows.


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