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  • movieman
    replied
    Originally posted by elanthis View Post
    Even when everyone is using Windows and doesn't need to learn anything new or deal with massive amounts of incompatibility with software,
    Uh, like XP to Vista? Even I can't find half the things I want when I have to use a Vista PC.

    I do agree with your general points, but the idea that Windows users 'don't need to learn anything new' seems bizarre when Microsoft just radically changed their user interface so that even people who've used Windows since 3.0 can't find anything anymore.

    In addition, I suspect that anyone who does free tech support for friends gets a lot more questions about how to fix Windows ('why's it running so slow?' 'You have three hundred types of malware installed') than how to fix Linux.

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  • amphigory
    replied
    Originally posted by elanthis View Post
    In retrospect, I would have paid out of my own pocket to put XP on all their machines to save myself from the massive freaking headache that experience turned out to be.
    Yes indeed. I've made the same mistake. If someone has already decided to take the Linux plunge I'll give them advice, but in no way will I ever again be a Linux evangelist. I don't know how many hours I have wasted providing support for people I pushed into using Linux, only to have them eventually return to Windows. If a tool works, use it: OS X, Windows, Linux, BSD, Solaris, BeOS... hell, even SCO UNIX... whatever the user is familiar with and is comfortable using.

    I use Linux because I prefer a Unix environment and Linux has better support for my hardware than the BSD variants. I use Linux despite the rabble-rousers. I support open source software projects by donating money (***gasp***) and/or time (simple fixes/correcting build issues). In my opinion, Richard Stallman made a HUGE mistake calling open source software with user friendly licensing "free". In the immortal words of Robert Heinlein, "There ain't no such thing as a free lunch". TANSTAAFL.

    Linux should not be a social cause. There are approximately 2^26 social issues of more importance than an operating system or application software.

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  • barbarbaron
    replied
    you really are full...

    That just means the new computer they bought is broken.
    It seems you didn't read my first post saying:

    "There are good points in this discussion, like effectiveness, user friendliness, flexibility, market lock that really make (or force) an OS a choice for the masses. In our case it is hard not to agree that this OS is windows and also I agree that Linux has much work to do to reach that level."

    There is only "needs to be learned" and "already known."
    No there is another thing: The first OS the user learns. There are users used to windows and also tons of users that begin using computers each day or CAN'T GET A COMPUTER because the price is unnecessarily high.

    and that's all it comes down to -- it works or it does not.
    And also comes down to: people can buy the computer or not, also simple to understand.

    Mike is an idiot if he wants to spend all of his day constantly supporting a ton of friends.
    Mike supports his best friend Steven, not tons of them, nobody does. If you did support tons of people in the past its your problem. Also if your girlfriend thought that she could impress you by using linux its your girlfriend. Not everybody acts the same.

    My point of view is not "Lets glorify the linux god". By saying "I used to be like you." you make a mistake there. Rather it is "How many more computers can we sell to the third world market (or middle-low class) by replacing windows with linux (with improved driver support)? If there wasn't any point in it, would a company like google be working on chrome OS? (which is based on linux?). They work on it because more people using chrome OS on the computers they can buy mean more customers and more google members. So the important thing is: Is there an opportunity for the market to expand? Yes.
    Last edited by barbarbaron; 11-13-2009, 07:08 PM.

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  • elanthis
    replied
    Originally posted by barbarbaron View Post
    If that free program comes preinstalled with new computers?
    That just means the new computer they bought is broken. Been there, done that. We sold off a ton of old equipment, we didn't have the right to leave our organization's licensed copy of Windows on the machines, so we installed Ubuntu. Over half the people that bought the machines at auction (which very clearly stated that the machines did not have Windows) came back the next day wondering why "their CD didn't work" (e.g. some various app would not install and run).

    The OS DOESN'T MATTER to people -- they don't care about your damn evangelism. The software that runs on top of the OS is what matters. If the OS can't run the software the users want, the OS is "broken" and the new computer should be returned for a refund. It's that simple. The users don't care about Windows at all either, other than the part where it actually "works."

    I don't get why this keeps being such a shock to Linux fanatics. Regular people have more way software they want to run than Firefox and OpenOffice. ESPECIALLY if you're talking about college kids. Tux Racer is not an adequate substitute for Left 4 Dead, a MUD is not an adequate substitute for WoW, and a collection of abandoned half-complete little random clone apps on SourceForge is not a substitute for the big professional software packages they're cloned from.

    Sure, okay, Linux _could_ run all that software if that software was written for Linux and Windows wasn't the popular choice. Windows itself is not technologically better than Linux here. But practically, it is better, because it does run that software, and that's all it comes down to -- it works or it does not.

    And therefore has a good and populous user base and does everything a user wants it to do and its easy to learn? Yes, certainly, why not?
    There's no such thing as easy to learn. That entire concept is a lie. There is only "needs to be learned" and "already known."

    I have seen very intelligent and computer-skilled people go nuts over the change from XP to Vista -- that's changing operating systems in the same damn family, not switching to an entirely different beast -- because an icon moved from one place to another and they couldn't find it.

    Geeks like us see a new interface and explore it. We go find out where the icons or whatever else we need are located at. Regular people don't do that. They go, "omg where the hell is it!?" freak out and then call someone who knows, because they're afraid they'll break something. This is NOT because they're stupid; it's because they're not computer people, don't want to be computer people, and hence don't put any time into learning the ins and outs of computers. Just like I have no idea how to perform anything beyond basic maintenance and operation off my car because I'm not a car person, don't want to be a car people, and hence don't put any time into learning the ins and outs of cars.

    PEOPLE DO NOT WANT TO LEARN NEW CRAP THEY DON'T HAVE TO. They just don't want to. Normal people don't have fun sitting in front of a box re-learning which rectangles to click to make it go. They want to go outside. Play games. Go to the theatre. Get laid. Sitting in front of a box and relearning how it works every 6 months is a massive waste of time that they don't want to do.

    Computers exist to make people's lives better, not to be the focus of their damn life. Computer nerds -- and especially most Linux nerds -- don't seem to understand that. We have fun with computers. The computer itself is entertaining to us. Just like some people love to work on cars all day as a hobby. It's fun to them, even though it's not to people like me. Those people buy magazines about car engines and geek out when new advances in after-market hot-rod parts come out. I geek out when new CPUs come out or new low-level driver frameworks for Linux come out. Different interests. Their interests do not require them to learn how a computer works beyond the barest of the basics, that's all those people want to put into it, and they get irritated when the computer changes and they have to relearn stuff they already knew instead of spending the time working on a car.

    It is as easy as thinking "hmm if my college friend Mike uses linux, its better for me to use it because I can get support from him".
    First, for every college friend using Linux you can get help from, there are almost certainly a ton more college friends using Windows to get help from. Aside from that...

    Mike is an idiot if he wants to spend all of his day constantly supporting a ton of friends. What a waste of life. All that time Mike could be spending hooking up with co-eds is instead spent helping Aunti Margaret figure out why Bejeweled can't run on her shiny new Ubuntu box, or why Steven can't get the Math department's online test submission form to work in Firefox, or why his roommate's computer can't install software from a CD he got for Christmas, or why dad's computer has no usable graphics acceleration on 3 year old hardware on Fedora 12, or why Joeseph can't install Linux-native software on his new Linux box because the installer script requires shell magic to execute and then shell mojo in order to fix the script because it was written against an older Linux distro before things got moved around and changed in the last release (or the release before that, or the release before that, or the release before that).

    Mike is going to pretty quickly learn that he either gets to do the work of a full helpdesk call center and fail his classes from lack of studying or that he needs to tell his friends and family to go drop $99 on an XP CD and get out of his hair.

    Even when everyone is using Windows and doesn't need to learn anything new or deal with massive amounts of incompatibility with software, any computer professional with a brain bigger than a marble very quickly learns to tell his friends and family to screw off when they come to him with computer questions, lest you spend your entire waking day helping people figure out why their mouse doesn't move anymore or why their sister's "l337 h4ck3r" boyfriend can't get his custom build PC to work after he bought an Intel CPU and somehow managed to jam it into a Socket 939 motherboard.

    I used to be like you. I tried to get my parents on Linux to save them money. I helped my poor college friends get Linux-enabled machines up and running to save them the "Windows tax." I even had a girlfriend who tried to use Linux because she thought I'd like her more if she did (and there's probably a ton of Linux dipshits that _would_ like their girlfriend more if they used Linux... which is absolutely pathetic). Every last single one of those persons reverted to Windows within 6 months. I spent the first month answering a near endless stream of questions from a mere 6 people, I spent the next 3 months explaining over and and over why they were better off with Linux instead of being able to run whatever random-ass piece of software they wanted to use (mostly games), and then the next 2 months transfer data and settings to XP installs. I haven't had a single support request from a single one of them other than my father since they switched to XP, and my father's support questions have dropped from weekly to one every few months.

    In retrospect, I would have paid out of my own pocket to put XP on all their machines to save myself from the massive freaking headache that experience turned out to be.

    Leave a comment:


  • barbarbaron
    replied
    And you think people would rather learn to use a new free program than break laws and pirate a program they already know how to use?
    If that free program comes preinstalled with new computers? And therefore has a good and populous user base and does everything a user wants it to do and its easy to learn? Yes, certainly, why not? It is as easy as thinking "hmm if my college friend Mike uses linux, its better for me to use it because I can get support from him". So if Mike uses linux, Steven will too.

    I think you're drastically overestimating human ethics.
    Let me tell you something about this. One of my teachers (not a student) at the university uses an expensive program's cracked version and because of the copy protection method, he cant use the program while connected to the internet... If he does that the whole program gets locked! And if they can do that copy protection for a particular program, they can do it for all. The important thing is: COPY PROTECTION INCREASES THE PRICE OF PROGRAMS! Because many of the companies buy copy protection code from other companies. So this is how our industry gets bloated and stuck...

    And guess what? He uses a macbook pro which cost him at least 2000$ including the overpriced OS. So, why live like this? Just get a machine for less, OS for free and buy the software. Its much much better.
    Last edited by barbarbaron; 11-13-2009, 07:04 PM.

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  • nanonyme
    replied
    Originally posted by barbarbaron View Post
    (because the OS and other essential software is free) so the user doesn't have to pay for example 200$ to the super-pro-mega version of windows that has all of these essentials. So if the software company makes a linux port of its proprietary software the user will more likely go and buy it. EVERYONE IS HAPPY.
    And you think people would rather learn to use a new free program than break laws and pirate a program they already know how to use? I think you're drastically overestimating human ethics.

    Leave a comment:


  • barbarbaron
    replied
    I don't get the connection between lack of linux support and increased software piracy in the developed world (in your point #1).
    Yes it doesn't seem connected at the first glance but is indeed connected concerning the software usage culture. When using linux the user generally uses licenced software thus doesn't steal it, crack it or anything else and when he or she needs a particular proprietary software (like photoshop) this fact increases the possibility that he/she will actually buy it, because:

    1. The software stealing culture will be beaten
    2. The amount of money the user has to pay for software decreased (because the OS and other essential software is free) so the user doesn't have to pay for example 200$ to the super-pro-mega version of windows that has all of these essentials. So if the software company makes a linux port of its proprietary software the user will more likely go and buy it. EVERYONE IS HAPPY.
    Last edited by barbarbaron; 11-13-2009, 07:04 PM.

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  • bridgman
    replied
    I don't get the connection between lack of linux support and increased software piracy in the developed world (in your point #1).

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  • barbarbaron
    replied
    There are good points in this discussion, like effectiveness, user friendliness, flexibility, market lock that REALLY make (or force) an OS a choice for the masses. In our case it is hard not to agree that this OS is windows and also I agree that Linux has much work to do to reach that level. But without having a general view of the worldwide hardware-software demands and trends the discussion is doomed to be short-coming:

    There are three types of companies in our industry; The first one is companies like IBM, HP, AMD, Intel, Nvidia, VIA, Xillinx, Samsung, LG and etc. that focus on selling hardware rather than software. The second type is software oriented companies like Microsoft, Adobe and etc. The third type is internet oriented ones like Google, Yahoo etc. The point is there are major differences of interest between these compaines, because the "average user" has a limited amount of money to spend on computers and IT. And there is an important fact that the majority of the third world "average users" can't reach technology because of the bloated nature of our industry.

    Lets assume that our Third World Average User has 500 dollars (in average) to spend on computers. It is enough to reach a low-end hardware with this money so the HARDWARE COMPANIES CAN BE HAPPY, but not enough to get the overpriced software (WINDOW$) needed to operate this hardware so our TWAU has two options: 1. steal the software (which many of them do obviously) and 2. stay away from this "computer shit" because it is too expensive (again many of them do because that "computer shit" the reseller sells comes with windows preinstalled which adds roughly 100$ to the total). And as a result NOBODY IS HAPPY.

    So our industry gets stuck by this bloated hardware-software junk and hardware companies (mainly IBM, HP, Intel, AMD or Chronos Group) seek a way out of this jam and a good option is supporting linux. Sooner or later, as the global crisis deepens, this fact that the industry gets stuck by companies like microsoft will be better realized by the hardware companies and they will improve support for linux or otherwise two things will happen:

    1. More and more people will start stealing software including the developed world (it is %40 now worldwide) and the percentage will skyrocket to %80 - %90 and software companies will shrink.

    2. Computers will become a luxury instead of everyday need and a smaller portion of the society will be able to buy them.
    Last edited by barbarbaron; 11-13-2009, 07:03 PM.

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  • movieman
    replied
    Originally posted by RealNC View Post
    Windows XP, released in 2001, is still supported. You can't claim the same for Ubuntu 4.10, released 2004, 3 years later than XP.
    XP is an anomaly. Look at 95, 98, ME and now Vista/Win7; a new version of Windows has typically come out every 2-3 years, even less if you count things like 95 OSR2 (aka 'you want USB and AGP support? buy a new OS'). Microsoft really, really want people to pay them money every two years and won't make the XP mistake again.

    And I doubt there are many people still using PCs from 2001; my girlfriend has one and we haven't booted it in a year because it's basically incapable of doing anything with modern software (Firefox, for example, wants more RAM than the PC has). She now uses a $400 Linux machine instead (perhaps I should add that it's an AMD, to bring this back somewhat more on topic ).
    Last edited by movieman; 10-31-2009, 04:33 PM.

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