Gnome will end gtk theme customization with libadwaita, so what will zorin do when that comes?
they aren't going to end it, they already did.
LibAdwaita 1.0 has existed for a bit now
The way Gnome set this up...
Distros may seek permission from Gnome to enable using a different theme than LibAdwaita.
This is spelled out in the fracas between POP_OS, Canonical and others vs Gnome when Canonical and POP_OS pulled support, and Gnome claimed that the two major distros were "in the wrong" because Gnome had set up a means for them to kindly ask them, "Please sir... May I please use my own theme?"
Smells like Microsoft.
GNOME can be a bit...questionable, I agree.
honestly, the entire reason why LibAdwaita was created in the first place could've been solved by just creating some official outlet for themes, or guidelines for GTK widgets that your theme has to include, and how they should be implemented to avoid the issue that GNOME brought up: Users reporting issues because of theming.
Whilst this is a valid concern, I think restricting choice is not the way to fix this issue.
This is bogus.
Themes Do Not Break Applications. Period.
The reason is and has been made Clear by the Gnome Developers themselves out of their own mouths: The Iconic appearance of Gnome Desktop is their brand Image and users theming Gnome made Gnome less recognizable.
They have been complaining about it for over a decade.
The Gnome Devs have broken theming - with intent - up until 3.20 when the Stakeholders for Gnome had them sign a pledge to stop breaking themes.
Which is when they started development of LibAdwaita.
It is not because themes somehow (by magic, I guess) break applications (Show me the code for how that works...) but because Gnome Wants Control.
I would strongly recommend having a look at Plasma (KDE) and LXQt - the latter uses the same Qt libraries as Plasma. I think I prefer KDE to Gnome now and LXQt over xfce, especially how Devuan have managed to get the screen-reader to work with all DE's not just Gnome which it was designed for!
GNOME's words, not mine :P
Don't worry, I am already familiar with those words. Intimately.
There's also the "Open letter to Distro Developers..."
It is true that a theme can be misapplied, causing it to visually appear broken.
This does not break an app, though.
It does not damage the app.
Let's say in a moment of sneaky evilness, I sneak onto your computer and insert a custom gtk.css that makes all your buttons invisible. This could cause you problems.
But in such a case, the theme is what is broken, not the application.
As a themer, I can tell you something particular about theming: You must Know Your Widgets. And when you theme, once you deviate from Adwaita, much becomes obvious: Such as boxes being coded as buttons, when they are not buttons. Widgets being repeated in places that they shouldn't (and functionally useless).
I can give you an easy example: Thunar File manager has a redundant and useless menuitem button in the far upper right side of the menubar.
Sometimes, this happens simply because the developer has an easier time repeating the code for a button widget, than in writing a new line for a box widget.
Flat monochromatic themes hide all of these unpolished imperfections. They smooth them over, making them harder to notice, but not entirely unnoticeable, either. You can see this plainly on many Gnome Applications that even with a flat single color theme, have different sized headers and different proportions - or different borders.
Developers can have a valid reason for detesting themers: We find all their "oopses" or their "lazies."
Maybe they should focus on development instead of Silencing others with sneaky code.
Worst case scenario, Zorin will make a fork of Gnome or switch to something else.
As for Gnome killing customization, it has already happened. Unfortunately, Gnome is acting like Apple more and more. Claiming it's better for developers, but removing barriers and adding their own. On the brighter side, KDE is learning from Gnome's mistakes and is aiming to be more refined, but giving more choice for everyone else.
I reading many distribution leave gnome.
i think zorin's best choice would be to go with KDE. Is much easier simplify and mordantize KDE than to try to fix gnome issues.
I agree with HunterGX. It is interesting that on the distribution that I am currently using only has Gnome flash-back, but also has other DE's including MATE. I tried Ubuntu MATE once and instantly disliked it's poor accessibility options in that the menu could not be read by Orca, the Linux screen reader that is normally present in GNOME. That said, Devuan, my current goto Distro, Orca runs great with all DE's - the only tweaking having to be done on KDE was to change the default menu "Application Launcher" to "Application Menu" - yet another reason to go with KDE as you can add different menu alternatives, such as "Tiled Menu" (looks like Windows 10), or KDE Windows 11 Menu. And let's not forget that a lot of recent Windows releases, certainly from Windows 8 upwards have had features that were originally built on GNU/Linux - true to form, M$ plaguerises better software!
I don't really care what Gnome does as I will just keep using Cinnamon DE .... it has all that I need to be my daily driver .... I hope they don't go to KDE because when I downloaded it with my other DE's it didn't play well and tried to take over everything making life very unbearable so I disabled it .... but that is just my experience ....
at the same time though, we can already see in FerenOS that reaching the same level of polish with similar features is hard