The top website advertisement of 'Ubuntu MATE' states that distribution has to offer a user an experience in 'retrospective future' - but what is a 'retrospective future', though?
relating to or thinking about the past
They're building on the past in order to improve the future with the continuation of the traditional desktop metaphor that is Gnome 2 instead of building something new from scratch. That's the user experience they offer.
Yes, I love the Traditional desktop. It works, it is efficient, it is user friendly. Yet tech loves change for the sake of change, and will try to convince you that what they have is better and you need to change. Not true, the traditional is tried and proven, it is my future for sure.
Therefore, a future based on the notion of how things were done in the past - or the past framed in the notions of future, however to bring it?