Please, do me a favour and look at this not very remarkable screenshot:
Yeah, two Linux distros in the mid-twenties range of DistroWatch’s Top-distro ranking, what’s that all about? I’ll tell you in the immediate future … Now: We see here Ubuntu MATE, the bestest existing Ubuntu distro, beloved by young and old and everybody with a hint of brain in their noggin. Why’s it sooo far down? How come the boring and abrasive original Ubuntu – the one with unbearable Gnome 3 as standard desktop – is still on #4? I can’t and won’t rant about the bad taste and general cluelessness of Ubuntu users buuut what I want you to have an eye on is Sparky Linux on #26. That’s one spot above the Ubuntu spin with the same desktop environment, Mate DE.
Maybe you remember how I really really liked Sparky when I reviewed it the last time, it was August one year ago. I guess nothing much has changed between then and now, so Jack M. Germain and Orca Flotta were both correct when they loved Sparky in their reviews.
So Sparky is more or less just standard Mate on Debian base, while Ubuntu is a highly over-engineered desktop, geared towards beginners, with a lot of hand-holding and nanny-ism. Can you guess why Sparky is above Ubuntu MATE, with tendency up, while Ubu stagnates on #27? Yes, exactly that’s the reason! As nice as all the interference and “Do This! Don’t Touch That!” might be in the first couple hours, while you’re still struggling to get your bearings right, the unbelievably nerve-wracking and abrasive it becomes as soon as you leave the initial n00b status. From then on we prefer the lean, mean speed machine over a bloated nanny any day! I just love the humble demeanour of Sparky, that no-nonsense aproach and quasi-autistic focus on its job.
Oh, also the main theme of Ubuntu MATE features the most fugly shade of green ever. Sorry, we don’t want that crap on our desktops. 😦