If you are reading Opensource.com, you might be able to code, and you are probably reading this on an open source browser on some elusive Linux distro. You probably have not seen a browser ad in years because you are running an open source ad blocker. You feel warm and fuzzy when you think about penguins.

Sadly, as superficial as it may sound, open source software also needs to be visually appealing for people who’re used to commercial software. Most (F)OSS software isn’t exactly attractive when it comes to visual design, and that makes people turn away. It’s only recently that open source devs are giving visual design the importance it needs.


“attractiveness” is very different from UX and it’s often quite secondary. Practicality and usefulness is more important.


Yep. When you really look at something like macOS it doesn’t have actually have too many flashy animations. It’s just well polished, consistent, and practical in that you can do most things that feel intuitive. Functions like backups don’t need much thought, and you can preview / open any file without having to download extra software.

If you’re on a set like a photo shoot you can jump on someone else’s Mac and everything is where it usually is. You spend zero time figuring their specific UX or getting basic things to function, and you can just focus on the actual task.


Open source has to be practical. The majority of people are not thinking about their privacy, data, ways around it, etc…

What they are thinking about is how easy it is to get the things they want… saving time, connect with people faster, search quickly, and using thngs (ie software) that does most of the heavy lifting for you.

And that’s where the problem with open source is.

People will choose to own their own data/self host when it’s as easy as a click of a button.


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Yeah, that’s the thing.

People don’t want to think about checking / upgrading software, configuring hardware, keeping up to date with github, etc…

They just want it to work. And not think about it.

Open source has to offer something like, " How You Can Own Your Own Google"… then provide a plug-and-forget system out of the box… with easy 1, 2, 3 setups… and stays up to date without maintenance… for it to have mass adoption.

But the community has been growing steadily so you never know what could happen lol


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