This will be re-evaluated before jessie is frozen. The evaluation will
start around the point of DebConf (August 2014). If at that point gnome
looks like a better choice, it'll go back as the default.
Some criteria for that choice will include:
* Popcon numbers for gnome on jessie. If gnome installations continue to
rise fast enough despite xfce being the default (compared with, say
kde installations), then we'll know that users prefer gnome.
Currently we have no data about how many users would choose gnome when
it's not the default. Part of the reason for switching to xfce now
is to get such data.
* The state of accessability support, particularly for the blind.
* How well the UI works for both new and existing users. Gnome 3
seems to be adding back many gnome 2 features that existing users
expect, as well as making some available via addons. If it feels
comfortable to gnome 2 (and xfce) users, that would go a long way
toward switching back to it as the default. Meanwhile, Gnome 3 is also
breaking new ground in its interface; if the interface seems more
welcoming to new users, or works better on mobile devices, etc, that
would again point toward switching back.
* Whatever size constraints exist for CD or other images at the time.
Hello to all the tech journalists out there. This is pretty boring.
Why don't you write a story about monads instead?