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IMO Microsoft is a company designed by a criminal to dominate the computer industry. It has been well documented by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (Washington, D.C. - the seat of American government) that Microsoft is criminal. Bill Gates 'got his start' by stealing computer time from Harvard, selling a company a hacked version of it's own software and cheating both them and his partner (Paul what's his name) in the process. Bill Gates has established a MO of lying, cheating, and stealing. When a real threat arrives against his poorly-coded Windows OS, or anything else Microsoft has, he first tries to buy out the competition. If that doesn't work, he uses whatever means necessary to destroy that company; the main one being suing them in court. Because he owns so many lawyers and judges, and has so much money, he usually succeeds in either forcing the company to sell to him, or putting them out of business because they can't pay the court and legal fees to defend themselves. This is not an unfounded rant, but facts which are verifiable.
In most countries of the world, Bill Gates would be locked in jail and the key thrown away. Why not America? Trace his money trail and see how many politicians he owns.
When it comes down to it, there are software packages designed for all operating systems. We have choices, and I dare say there's nothing that can't be used in the OS you choose. I happen to prefer Adobe InDesign for desktop publishing, and Adobe Photoshop for image editing. There is nothing comparable to InDesign in open source. There is GIMP which isn't a substitute for Photoshop, but will work for most things. So for these two apps, and a few more, I installed QEMU in Slackware. Then I installed a Windows OS which I purchased prior to using Slackware in QEMU. Then I installed those apps only designed for Windows in Windows inside QEMU. So now I can use the superior software that is only designed for Bill Gates inferior OS in the much superior Slackware Linux OS -- without having to reboot.
If open source applications comparable in quality were available, I'd never let anything from Microsoft touch a hard drive of mine again. But at this time, there are professional services for which I use those apps, and no suitable replacement for my needs.
I'd like nothing better than to see Microsoft's monopoly dissolved as AT&T's was -- and Bill Gates jailed for his criminal activities. But as long as Bill owns the politicians, it's not going to happen.
It's not that one is better than the other, it's just that they both take into consideration the needs of different kinds of users. Some users that are inexperienced require Windows to get anything done, or need it for ease of use. Other users require Linux because they need to do certain specialized tasks, or require more advanced configuration/usage of available resources. In fact, it practically comes down to the basic 'opposing forces' idea, yin and yang, good and evil (Not that Microsoft's operating systems are inherently evil, or that Linux is beyond doubt good. But I'll be the first to admit that there are times when my system (In Windows or Linux) gives me errors that make me want to believe it is possessed by some satanic ritualist and needs to be exorcised. We've all been there, I'm sure.)
Bill Gates has always been someone who wants money for his software, and that's fine. He has every right to profit from his operating system. Though, whether we admit it or not, his operating system has spurred the growth of Linux. While I do believe we are moving toward a future that will see Linux as the predominate operating system (mainly due to China's useage) it is also apparent that Windows isn't going anywhere anytime soon. So rather than be forced to choose, go with the flow and dual boot.
Building on what Vagrant just said, it's better to debate the other side's good points respectfully, rather than to insult them outright with their bad points and misgivings. Microsoft has done bad things, but their effect on the economy is noticeable. They have created jobs, so don't forget the good things they've done.
That's true as well, but usually any user these days has more experience with Windows than Linux. You'd have to hit them pretty young in order to get them into Linux before Windows. It's just that Windows is everywhere; schools, businesses, even on most computers available for purchase.
From my experience, it seems most of the people who know Windows pretty well are willing to try Linux, but then there's the many people who don't really know much about Windows either. I would say that not much less than half of the people I know can only browse the web, write documents, and turn on and off the computer. Heck, some of the people I know can't even turn a computer on!
I think that if developers want Linux to get more exposure, they need to consider the people who could care less about computers, and just want to write a document or something. I know that all these things can be done in Linux just as easy, if not easier than in Windows, but Linux also comes with many other things that probably the average user doesn't need or want. I think that the general public could benefit from distributions where they can just click a couple of buttons, and then they are ready to browse the web or whatever. Perhaps there could be distributions specifically designed to do only the tasks that the average person wants to do. A lot of people hear about Linux, and they are just scared of it because there are just too many nooks and crannies in it. I know, a proprietary desktop distribution would be pretty crappy, but it just might be what the public wants. Right now, Microsoft is the one selling the crappy proprietary distribution.
"Windows is everywhere," yes, but Linux is in a whole lot more places than you realize. There's an excellent chance that most of the electronic devices now in your pocket are running Linux, or very soon will be.
Like most techno-monopolies, the "assured future" of Windows depends upon the one thing that never, ever happens: constancy in hardware. As long as "a word processor" was "an expensive machine that you bought and put into your law-office and used for no other purpose," Wang had it made. The personal-computer blew them out of existence. Now, as long as "the personal computer" is "an Intel-x86 based machine that fits on your desk or sits in your lap and runs Windows," Microsoft "has it made." But that's changing fast, and it won't change back.
Suddenly, there are lots and lots of types of hardware that "your application" might need to run on, all of them different except for one thing: they all run Unix/Linux. That's big. That's really big. That's the Rosetta stone. (Or maybe the Philosopher's Stone...)
And this is what makes the OS/X-86 project from Apple so enormously important: Unix has arrived on the Intel-x86, Microsoft's own turf, and it's not being led by a bunch of scruffy hackers with no social skills (bear with me...), it's being led by the company that owns music right now. An absolutely household name; a sexy, cool name. This is something that everyone, including Wall Street, can understand perfectly.
Doesn't matter that, with Linux, "Unix arrived on the x86 a long time ago..." Wall Street can nod at a college kid in the icy north who did miracles in his dorm-room, but Wall Street can't understand that. Can't see money in it. But they sure can see money in an ambitious new project that arrived on-time while Microsoft so completely fumbled Longhorn/Vista. Apple's accomplishment encourages investors to see that "it's the software, stupid!" And Linux, of course, can come right along for the ride.
Linux started the talk. Apple dazzlingly proved them right. And Microsoft's in a world of hurt. All without any court doing a single thing. When the market sees a better mousetrap, you can't stop the tide.
Look at it like Wall Street does: you're not a geek (you have servants for that). You want to know when someone has something new and different; you know you don't have to understand all the techhie details. "Apple" is, by now, a name that you know... everyone knows it now. And what they did, seemingly without effort, was to port their entire system to a new processor. "It's still a Mac."
... Meanwhile, Microsoft gutted all the nifty new features out of the (already late) Longhorn, released it belatedly as Vista, and promised Longhorn "real soon now." You begin to wonder if they can deliver. And, no matter, you smell money. When company-X does everything right and company-Y blows it, there is probably money to be made. Especially if company-Y was the reigning monarch. And that's what happened. Apple did something radical, on-time, when Microsoft proved itself unable to do what ought to be a very mundane thing, "yet again."
And here's what's different: thanks to the iPod, "Apple is a name that Wall Street knows and loves." Steve Jobs can walk on water, because he delivers Earnings. And, in a stroke, he's legitimized everything that Linux has been saying for years. No college kid in Finland, accompanied by no-matter-how-many brilliant unwashed geeks, could have accomplished that impression.
AAPL has the numbers. Capitalization. Earnings per share. Pixie dust. The trader observes that "my teenage son wears an iPod everywhere he goes."
Microsoft totally missed its profit-projections in the same period and is babbling excuses. "Gee, I don't think my Blackberry runs Windows, come to think of it..."
The notion that "Windows is supreme" is finally shaken because the notion that "a personal computer equals thus-and-so and need be nothing else" is dispelled. Linux and Unix have their opportunity at last.
I don't really see your "Apple Connection." Apple has ripped off the BSD Community. Ok. I get it. But so what?
Certainly, Apple has graciously taken BSD source code and donated very little back to the community. Wow, "Rendezvous." It makes no contributions, even to the Samba project, for which without it Apple would be irrelevant. This goes for more projects than simply BSD and Samba however.
Nevertheless, you haven't really made a point. What has Apple done that "no kid in Finland could have accomplished" that has any relevance to this discussion. Apple has stolen more from the Open Source community than any kid in Botswana could ever dream to, what's your point?
You keep going on and on about some mystical Wall Street and these magical fairies that Apple produces but none of it is relevant.
How does this Apple business have anything to do with Linux? If you think Apple is somehow not a proprietary software company because it rips off an Open Source project and donates nothing back then I think you are mistaken. Microsoft for years used the BSD TCP/IP stack code, so what? Is Microsoft, then, championing the cause of Linux? I,frankly, don't see the connection.
I just can't fathom how DRM, proprietary music formats, vendor lock-in, proprietary hardware, proprietary software, and ripping off the Open Source community further the "cause" of Linux. Perhaps you can enlighten me.
I don't think Apple has ripped off BSD at all. BSD is open source, they have the right to use it. It's not like they've ever denied that they use BSD. Also, if Apple never returned anything to the community, then how come they support Darwin so much?
Windows will fail. I don't know when Linux will overtake Windows. But it WILL happen.
Closed Source software works to the exclusion of everything else. That segregration is the very reason that Windows stands no chance.
Open source software works to the inclusion of everything and everyone, even the people and systems that they were excluded from in the first place. That inclusionary attitude coupled with cutting edge computing advancements guarantees the success of Linux.
Example: Try to read a Linux partition while running Windows. Windows only recognizes Windows.
Try to read a Windows partition while running Linux. Voila, it works like a charm. Linux is versatile enough to recognize and use any filesystem.
That is just one example of the inclusionary attitude that gives Linux the upper hand.
Distribution: Primary: Windows XP Home Edition SP3/Secondary: Ubuntu 9.10 (Gnome)
I started with windows 98se for about 1.5 year the worst i have ever try i have use windowsXP home sp1 for about 2.5 year now with sp2 it is much better when 98 special atfer i added sp2 but not as good as 1 mounth i have with Ubuntu 5.10 i now use Suse 10.0 Evalnut i run it with KDE because in like interfase it look very much like xp home.