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Thread: Matthew Garrett: How-To Drive Developers From OS X To Linux

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by peppercats View Post
    So what you're saying is...
    ChromeOS isn't linux because it's not using GNU userland?

    Linux is getting plenty of adoption. What's not getting adoption is GNU.
    My understanding is that Chrome OS does use a GNU userland, but is hidden from the user and developers (so no applications can use those commands/interfaces), unless one enables the developer mode. What Chrome OS doesn't use some are some components of the usual freedesktop stack. It is a sandboxed environment, so despite it using gnu under the hood, it doesn't expose it to the user and applications have to be specifically developed for Chrome using the Native Client API or more generally with the standard HTML5 javascript apis.

  2. #22
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    Yawn. Another "analysis" why desktop Linux doesn't catch on. And as usual it misses the point: People use the OS they "have" and which they are used to. 90% use Windows because it comes pre-installed and it gets the job done. 5 to 10% get Macs because they look and feel cool and - again - come with a working OS pre-installed (which is hardly an achievement when you only have to support a very limited range of hardware). Why should people change to a Linux-bases OS? Safety? Lack of backdoors? Package management? The versatile shell? This whole Open Source idea? I suppose 99% percent of the people neither know nor care (Photoshop and the alyways mentioned "AutoCAD" won't work; you don't get drive letters any more, and worse...)
    Instead Linux-desktop advocates constantly blame some "inconsistent user experience" (if I want that I should definitely pick Windows) and "setup problems" - my two Thinkpads and all their peripherals worked out of the box with any problems, let alone my desktop computers. I haven't touched xorg.conf in years and dabbling with fstab is anything but a necessity.
    I'm eagerly waiting for blog post analyses explaining, why ChromeOS is on the rise - again missing *the* USP: It comes pre-installed.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tuxee View Post
    Yawn. Another "analysis" why desktop Linux doesn't catch on. And as usual it misses the point: People use the OS they "have" and which they are used to. 90% use Windows because it comes pre-installed and it gets the job done. ...
    I'm eagerly waiting for blog post analyses explaining, why ChromeOS is on the rise - again missing *the* USP: It comes pre-installed.
    +1. The majority of people will never, ever reinstall an operating system. For Linux to succeed in this market, it has to be pre-installed. And being able to choose the hardware to support in advance would eliminate 99% of the problems with installing Linux on random hardware configurations. I wonder what would happen if Canonical sold Ubuntu LTS laptops, with hardware that was guaranteed to "just work" for the 5 year lifetime of the LTS. Would there be any success?

    It's amazing that Chrome OS has managed to take 20% of the laptop market in a few years. There was a big demand there, but the Linux suppliers failed to offer what people wanted. The question is simple: can I go into a shop today and buy a well-priced decent quality Linux laptop? Because that is what it would take for Linux to succeed.

  4. #24
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    Every time I have to do development on OS X I groan. The whole DE is decidedly not set up for certain workflows, like software development.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisb View Post
    +1. The majority of people will never, ever reinstall an operating system. For Linux to succeed in this market, it has to be pre-installed. And being able to choose the hardware to support in advance would eliminate 99% of the problems with installing Linux on random hardware configurations. I wonder what would happen if Canonical sold Ubuntu LTS laptops, with hardware that was guaranteed to "just work" for the 5 year lifetime of the LTS. Would there be any success?

    It's amazing that Chrome OS has managed to take 20% of the laptop market in a few years. There was a big demand there, but the Linux suppliers failed to offer what people wanted. The question is simple: can I go into a shop today and buy a well-priced decent quality Linux laptop? Because that is what it would take for Linux to succeed.
    Chromebooks are also backed by a big, popular and very well known brand - Google - along with the Google ecosystem.
    Plus they are dead-easy to use.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by amehaye View Post
    Chromebooks are also backed by a big, popular and very well known brand - Google - along with the Google ecosystem.
    Plus they are dead-easy to use.
    Have you bought a laptop with Ubuntu on it? Also pretty dead easy to use.

    The problem, like has been said, is that when you go to best buy or whatever, you will *not* see Linux notebooks - you see Microsoft and Google products. And maybe an Apple showcase, but to get Macbooks you need to go to their stores.

    So of course people buy and use those - that is what they see. Hell, even on major shopping websites like Amazon / Newegg / Tigerdirect / Rakuten there are no Linux notebooks anywhere - you have to go out of your way to find them if there even are any, and nobody understands what that even means because of MS ruling the industry for a decade and manipulating everyone into thinking PC == Windows.

    But yeah, if you wanted Linux to take off, the only real roadmap would be Novell, Canonical, or Red Hat buying or starting a distribution chain as a notebook supplier, or getting on really good terms with Dell / HP / etc to market and sell Linux notebooks broadly. And it would be expensive. And Novell / Red Hat don't even care about those customers, so its pretty much Canonical. And they are too busy circlejerking around vaporware phones to see the writing on the walls of how to push Ubuntu now through their partners - Dell already did the Sputnik, et al.

  7. #27
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    I posted this comment on his blog earlier this morning but it's worth referring to here:

    I don't think those are the real reasons for using Macs. The real reason is that if you want a premium laptop, the only option you have out there that isn't compromised in any way is a MacBook. It's the only way you can get a high resolution screen, PCIe storage, Iris/Iris Pro graphics, a quality trackpad and top notch build quality in a single package at a reasonable price. Even if other OEMs come close on these points, they'll either cut corners somewhere or price it way beyond a Mac. The popularity of Macs is indicative of the garbage in the rest of the market. At this point the only other laptop I would even consider is a Razer Blade.

    The other problem stems from Linux itself. In 2014, you still need to wrangle with the terminal to get certain drivers working correctly. Even if you do get them running, you're still stuck with inferior performance and lower battery life as compared to Windows. This is particularly true for GPU drivers - whether closed-source or open-source, they suck a lot. On a Mac, the driver setup and optimisation has already been done for you, leaving you free to get on with your work straightaway. You get great performance and great battery life out of the box.
    I'd also add that in desktop land, the market has shifted towards the high end as it's mostly gamers, enthusiasts and users doing "workstation" stuff that buy or build desktops. Hence there are plenty of options for very high quality hardware at good prices and you're not stuck with what comes in the package as with a laptop. The aforementioned driver issues aren't nearly a problem on desktops as they use fairly standard hardware with standard configurations and mostly-standard firmwares. Still, anything GPU related sucks in comparison to desktop, which is why I dual-boot with Windows 8.1 when I want to game.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by zanny View Post
    Hell, even on major shopping websites like Amazon / Newegg / Tigerdirect / Rakuten there are no Linux notebooks anywhere - you have to go out of your way to find them if there even are any, and nobody understands what that even means because of MS ruling the industry for a decade and manipulating everyone into thinking PC == Windows.
    Interesting that Chromebooks are selling well on Amazon:


    And direct sales:


    There is nothing magical about Chromebooks; arguably, if Google had instead used a more traditional desktop, capable of deploying both native apps and web apps from the online store, they would have been even more successful.

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricequackers View Post
    The real reason is that if you want a premium laptop, the only option you have out there that isn't compromised in any way is a MacBook.
    Its's not just that. As far as I can see, Macbook is the only premium laptop still sold in retail that does not have a touch screen. My local stores have laptops that are:

    • Low/Mid/Premium Windows 8 touchscreens
    • Low end (physically huge, low resolution) Windows 8 non-touchscreens (these are rare, but I do see some)
    • Macbooks


    Where are the premium non-touchscreens? Where are the high resolution matte displays?

    It is suprising that PC laptop manufacturers were so quick to embrace the touchscreen, when the best selling laptops in the world at the time were non-touchscreen. According to NPD, only 11% of notebooks sold in 2013 have touchscreens, and yet that is all I see in my local stores. Where are the premium non-touchscreen PC laptops? Did manufacturers really believe that every premium laptop buyer wants a touchscreen? Or did Microsoft buy/bully them into it? Despite all the evidence to the contrary of premium buyers continuing to buy non-touchscreen Macbooks?

    Disclaimer: my local stores may not be respresentative of all areas, but no doubt are representative of many.

  10. #30
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    There is nothing magical about Chromebooks
    The magic is the supermassive international company that can buy the banner ads on those sites to advertise their notebooks and the back room pressure on them to sell them. It doesn't hurt that if you search by cost, chromebooks are always on top, but desktop Linux has no problem price matching that.

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