GNOME plans for run up to 3.0
A roadmap for the immediate future of GNOME desktop has been published on the GNOME Live site. The roadmap charts the planned progress of the Linux and Unix desktop from its recently released 2.26 version and the 2.26.1 update due in April, through a GNOME 2.28.0 release in September to a GNOME 2.30.0, which will be renumbered as 3.0.0 when released in March 2010.
A major overhaul of the user experience is planned for GNOME 3.0. A planning page on the GNOME site outlines the new GNOME Shell which is described as "a compositing manager for the desktop". The Shell will display both applications and other objects held in a Clutter scene graph, which should afford the developers a lot of flexibility in creating a richer desktop view.
Another aim in refining the user experience is to change the way documents are accessed by using timelines, tags, bookmarks and other mechanisms and make things less file system centric. GNOME's internal development over this one year road map is also planned to see much cleaning up of the code, with numerous dependencies on libgnomeui and libglade being stripped away and a migration from Mozilla/XulRunner to WebKit for the desktops rendering of web content. GNOME 2.28 should see that change in place for September, while the roadmap has a feature freeze on Gnome 3.0 planned for January 2010.