Gnome 3 developer Allan day blogged about some interesting new design concepts for both gnome shell and applications for the future Gnome 3 releases.

Here is a Preview of what gnome developers are proposing for the design changes and improvements in the future releases.

Lock Screen

Lock screen will display the time and updates about notifications (the notifications part will also be configurable).

Following video mockup below demonstrates what should happen once the machine has gone idle. The screen blanks, is woken up to display the lock screen, then the lock screen is removed and login occurs.

Notifications and the Message Tray

Under the updated designs, pop-up notifications will avoid the mouse pointer and linger around until we are sure they have been noticed. The expanded notifications will also queue up so you can always see when new messages arrive.

Message tray indicators will be larger, about 48x48px size.

Improved Printer Settings

Here is a mockup for new print dialog that allows quick print preview and simple options.

Initial Setup

Initial setup is a specification for what the user should see the first time they boot into GNOME 3. This should only include a few essential steps:

  • Get onto the network
  • Creating a user account
  • Set the correct timezone / location
  • Set up online accounts

Improved Software Updates

Software update experience will be made more seamless and intuitive sans much technical details.


Clocks is planned to be a new core app, which will provide handy tools for viewing the time in different parts of the world, alarms, setting timers and a stopwatch.

A nice simple app to view, create, and edit notes. Notes will be tightly integrated into Gnome 3 UI.

To Do

New To Do app will be optional and not a core part of Gnome 3 stack. However, it will be designed as per Gnome 3 guidelines.

Content Selection

Gnome 3 will bring the benefits of the new content applications (e.g. Documents) to selection operations. Choosing an item to attach to an email will work in exactly the same way as it does in one of the new content apps. This will closely tie the content applications in with the rest of the system.
Application Menus

In Gnome 3.4, new application menus were enabled for some applications and these menus will be now implemented for more Gnome application to improve consistency.

Activities overview search
Ensuring that applications are able to effectively integrate with GNOME 3 is also a big focus for ongoing design work. Integrated application search is one area where this has been happening.

Some of these changes may land in upcoming Gnome 3.6 release.