The GNOME developers have provided a screenshot of the tentative new lock screen design for GNOME 3, and it’s a neat summary of everything that’s wrong with GNOME’s design process in a single image. It’s an incoherent mish-mash of the new Metro login screen on Windows 8, and the new minimalist login behaviour in OS X Lion.
Crucially, though, regardless of how ugly it is, the touch screen is finger-friendly. Which leaves us with a problem–what will users be presented with once they log in? The present GNOME experience is hardly optimised for touch. Microsoft and Apple both get this, and have written APIs for touch-friendly applications.
To my knowledge, there is no “GNOME Touch” in the works. If the GNOME developers think anyone will want to use GNOME in its present form on a tablet, I do wonder what they’ve been smoking.