We’re very fortunate in that Greg Annandale, one of the Foundation’s developers, is also a very talented (and very well-travelled) photographer, and he has kindly allowed us to use some of his work as desktop pictures for PIXEL.
There are 16 images to choose from; you can find them in /usr/share/pixel-wallpaper/, and you can use the Appearance Settings application to choose which one you prefer.
Do have a look through them, as Greg’s work is well worth seeing!
If you’re curious, the EXIF data in each image will tell you where it was taken.
I should mention that the code for the splash screen has been carefully written and tested, and should not slow down the Pi’s boot process; the time to go from powering on to the desktop appearing is identical, whether the splash is shown or not.
Desktop pictures Once the desktop appears, the first thing you’ll notice is the rather stunning background image.
The old window design always looked a bit dated compared to what Apple and Microsoft are now shipping, so I was keen to update it.But I had no idea where to start in terms of changing Raspbian.I clearly had a bit of a learning curve in front of me…It was a nice reminder of my days learning to program in BASIC on the Sinclair ZX81; nowadays, everything from your TV to your phone has pixels on it, but back then it was a uniquely “computer-y” word and concept.I also like crosswords and word games, and once it occurred to me that “pixel” could be made up from the initials of words like Pi and Xwindows, the name stuck in my head and never quite went away.To get all the fixes, open a terminal and enter: It was just over two years ago when I walked into Pi Towers for the first time.I only had the vaguest idea of what I was going to be doing, but on the first day Eben and I sat down and played with the Raspbian desktop for half an hour, then he asked me “do you think you can make it better?Finally on the subject of icons, in the past if your Pi was working particularly hard, you might have noticed some yellow and red squares appearing in the top-right corner of the screen, which were indications of overtemperature or undervoltage.These have now been replaced with some new symbols that make it a bit more obvious what’s actually happening; there’s a lightning bolt for undervoltage, and a thermometer for overtemperature.” Bear in mind that at this point I’d barely ever used Linux or Xwindows, never mind made any changes to them, so when I answered “hmmm – I think so”, it was with rather more confidence than I actually felt.It was obvious that there was a lot that could be done in terms of making it a better experience for the user, and I spent many years working in user interface design in previous jobs.