As you (probably) already know, the most awaited desktop environment of the year, GNOME 2.24 was released two days ago and... it brings a lot of interesting features and new functionality. Just to name a few of them, GNOME 2.24 includes the highly expected Nautilus with tabs, Empathy Instant Messenger, a new time tracker applet, Ekiga 3.0, clever Deskbar, Totem with improved support for digital TV, new screen resolution controls, and new sound theme support.
The development will not, happily for us GNOME enthusiasts, end here, as efforts for the next release have already begun, GNOME 2.26's final release being set for March 18th, 2009. To be featured in Ubuntu 9.04 (codename Jaunty Jackalope), scheduled for release in April 2009, GNOME 2.26 will introduce numerous changes in many areas:
· IMAP relook/revamp;
· More plugin loaders;
· WebKit or GtkMoz integration;
· Full fledged logging support;
· Exchange 2007/MAPI Connector.
GNOME Control Center
· Support for launching arbitrary commands via keybindings.
· Replace gnome-volume-control with a PulseAudio mixer, and/or a higher-level device control UI.
· Dark widget theme;
· Flat widget theme;
· Compact widget theme for small screens;
· Color variations on some of the existing themes;
· Initial set of 256x256 icons;
· Nicer GNOME Panel icons;
· Update outdated desktop emblems.
GNOME Power Manager
· Better ConsoleKit and PolicyKit integration.
Here's the release schedule for GNOME 2.26:
November 5th, 2008 - GNOME 2.25.1
December 3rd,2008 - GNOME 2.25.2 release
December 17th, 2008 - GNOME 2.25.3 release
January 7th, 2009 - GNOME 2.25.4 release
January 21st, 2009 - GNOME 2.25.5 release
February 4th, 2009 - GNOME 2.25.90 Beta release
February 18th, 2009 - GNOME 2.25.91 Beta release
March 4th, 2009 - GNOME 2.25.92 RC release
March 18th, 2009 - GNOME 2.26.0 Final Release