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Old 05-26-2003, 01:45 AM   #1
sridharinfinity
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Post Why GNU/Linux is Better than Windows


Why GNU/Linux is Better than Windows.

Well its time to do some review on OSes. Today the statistics says that the number of Windows users are incomparable to that of GNU/Linux users. The whole the computer users community is divided into Programmers(PG) and Non-Programmers(NPG). We all know the number of PGs are negligible when compared to NPGs. Thus the choice of OS selection lies solely on the hands of NPGs. NPGs are novice people to some extent, because they are not programmers. GNU/Linux is a good platform for programming. Programming is all we wanna do with computers. The architecture of Linux is the most ideal. When you talk about how a OS should behave (rather than look) it is GNU/Linux. Well then why people were sticking towards that muddy Windows. The reasons are "Standard Look and Feel", "Ease of Use(No flexibility, Tools are predefined, say if u wan't to dial up to internet there is only one way that is easier for novices - dialupnetworking, but in linux tools are flexible but harder for NPGs, for windoz just a click of mouse, but they are difficult of PGs), "Rival Microsoft having secret collboration with hardware manufacturers".
These 3 reasons should be taken into account. Lets examine each one of these.

First, "Standard Look and Feel". Linux has two popular destops KDE and GNOME. They vary in look and feel (But RH8 bought a consisten BlueCurver feel). Also We wanna create a themes ( or perhaps a window manager itself ) that imitates microsofts look and feel. I know most of Linux users won't likes this. But I warn those PGs. Remember you are writing program mostly for NGPs. So for making NGPs use ur program, they have to first stick to the Linux platform. For this to happen u have to make the transition easier. That's why I wanted to imitate the look and feel of windows, with all those stuffs like "my computer", "dial up networking" , etc . The NGPs should fee like windows. After using such a system, they will fee the power of linux, because Linux never hangs like that of windows. It was stable. Thus the NGPs came to know about the the powerfull linux, so they can adopt linux. They will strive to search for softwares on the internet than we PGs. After becoming comfortable with windows they will eventually try to use GNOME or KDE. Thus there will be a major shift of users from windowz to linux. This makes the developers ( or even companies ) forced to develop their software on linux since their clients (NGPs) are comfortable with linux.

Next "Ease of Use". This is am important point. Now we have changed the mind-set of NGPs to use Linux. But they may get irritated and started taking about switching to windows, because the linux was not of ease use to them. At this stage we have teach them (NGPs) the basic tools on linux. (I know most of the NGPs were lazy to learn new things, but we have make this happen). After learning just the basic tools, the NGPs were no more novices. Thus ease of use doesn't matter them.

At last, "Rival Microsoft having secret collboration with hardware manufacturers". I don't think this would be a great problem , since most of the drivers are available for linux. But beware, the users may have some hardware which don't have any linux drivers or that hardware may be windows only. This was a difficult situation. The only solution is advising the NGPs to dual boot between windows and linux. Later they can be encouraged to buy a new hardware ( with enhanced features than current one ) that is compatible with linux. Life seems comfortable after that isn't!

Exiting.....

Well these stuffs are possible according to me. Why I can't try it. Probably people (PG) can start working on this. If you feel stuff can't be achieved or have any problem you discuss about this here or mail me at sridharinfinity@yahoo.com

The Most Ideal OS: GNU/Linux
The Most Worst OS: Microsoft Window

The Most best C Compiler: GCC
The Most worst C Compiler: VC++

My HOMEPAGE (old one - currently developing new one)
http://sridhar.has.it
 
Old 05-26-2003, 07:27 AM   #2
Korff
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Good job learning English. I know how difficult learning a foreign language can be - I've taken Spanish for 3 years - and I'll say that while it is still obvious that English isn't your first language, I can easily understand what you're trying to say.

I think another major issue is public awareness. There are people out there that don't know that Linux exists. It's a shame because Linux
1. Is extremely stable
2. Is powerful - Lets you change any facet of the computer with relative ease
3. Has a solid GUI
4. Is a great platform for programming. What other operating system comes with a compiler on the install CD and distributes half of its programs in source code?

A major problem under "ease of use" is installing programs. You have to configure it, maybe patch your kernel, check dependencies, compile the binaries, use make && make install from a terminal, and then run it and hope it starts.

About Microsoft dominating the hardware drivers, I think that if such a mass migration of users from Windows to Linux was achieved, hardware manufacturers would be forced to develop drivers for Linux.

I agree that look and feel is important in an OS. That's the reason Windows 1.0 and 2.0 failed. They got it right at 3.0 and no one switched OSs from Windows after that. Before Windows 3.0 the dominant OS was DOS. You know what was the other popular OS at that time? UNIX. Anyway, look and feel has come a long way, and if the object is to get users to switch to Linux from Windows, it is important that Linux can look like Windows
 
Old 05-26-2003, 08:12 AM   #3
jt1020
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There are actually similar threads if you search this forum...
 
Old 05-26-2003, 08:43 AM   #4
gungrave
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First off, excellent review man! (especially from a guy that's first language isn't english, nd i totally understood every word)

Next, I'm a newbie to linux myself, and I've just installed RH8, and i think it's awesome, i find a lot of it very easy to use, the GNOME and KDE desktops, I have to say are far superior to windows explorer, and hey, it never crashes. However, windows users like myself do have problems with some gliches in linux (that can be solved with some help in here about 99% of the time), but these problem are very minor ones. I'll be honest, linux now, compared to linux when i first had a go at setting up a linux box in '98 is much easier to use and install. I would never have even bothered with it again until i first started browsing through these forums.

So, basically, if a lot more people know about linux, and can find out more about linux, then they're more likely to be turned on to it. The main problem is advertising i think, cos big bill at MS seems to have a monopoly on advertising in the industry....

Who knows, maybe in 5 years, the number of *nix users will rise, and hopefully above the number of windows users....
 
Old 05-26-2003, 08:49 AM   #5
unSpawn
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Once in a while these kind of threads pop up, usually full of well-meant recommendations on how to Make It All Better...

The whole the computer users community is divided into Programmers(PG) and Non-Programmers(NPG). We all know the number of PGs are negligible when compared to NPGs. Thus the choice of OS selection lies solely on the hands of NPGs.
I disagree. One reason being that if no "PG" codes apps for your platform then basically you're forced to seek an alternate one.
Also if you change your point of view and try not to divide the world in haves and havenots you'll see a lot of communities working hard towards the same goal: making Linux better. Hell, they just don't *talk* to each other that much...

GNU/Linux is a good platform for programming. Programming is all we wanna do with computers.
I disagree again. Those boxen Netcraft shows in it surveys running Linux/Apache are servers. AFAIK serving stuff still is reason #1, "getting away from proprietary software" a close nr 2 and "just cuz its leet, its kewl" being the usual runner up...

But I warn those PGs. Remember you are writing program mostly for NGPs. So for making NGPs use ur program, they have to first stick to the Linux platform. For this to happen u have to make the transition easier.
A lot of "PG's" write code to "scratch an itch" or at least that's how many apps started their life. Baseline being an app "should do one thing, and do it well". The majority of the coders don't code to make any transition easier. It just isn't the point.

What you're talking about in "Standard Look and Feel" and "Ease of Use" is not based on learning Linux, but based on the fact you don't want to ditch your "investment" in other words loose whatever you learned using the way the interface called "Windows" deals with user interaction (UI).

What you want is a standard for dealing with user interfaces and user interaction. Hurdle #1 is there are nearly *no* ppl in the "PG" community (or any community for that matter) that deal with, consider or make user interaction and user interface design to be a major part of the success of their app: Gnome and KDE each have *one* project and that's about it. Since many "NPG's" are familiar with the Windows user interface, that's what some "PG's" decided their app should look and behave like, with all consequences (like apps determining a file by it's extension instead of doing it the *NIX way: using proper "magic"). If you're used to how Motif, Tk or other toolkits build interfaces and react to user interaction that definately will piss you off :-]
Hurdle #2 is there are too many toolkits, they are not equal and on top of that each decided to do things Their Own Unique Way Because Our Way Is The Best And Only Way.
Hurdle #3 IMHO is that diversity (in the widest sense of the word) is one of the major features of Linux. Trying to make each and every toolkit, widget set, or library adhere to a singe standard will set of a lot of alarms. Linux/GNU ppl have a distinct sixth sense for someone trying to build Another Monopoly, even if the intention is good. Even worse, you would be forced to take for instance all the good parts of Gnome and KDE and ditch the rest. A lot of "PG's" won't take lightly to you trying to amputate, snatch away, part of their "baby" :-]

Having Unified UI would definately make a difference for those who depend on it. What Unified UI would need is a basic framework "PG's" and "NPG's" all can agree on how to handle system tasks, user-initiated tasks, basic building blocks for handling the interface. You then for example see why Red Hat's attempt (don't misunderstand me: I applaud them for at least *trying*) at creating the Blue Curve desktop is superficial, because it doesn't drastically alter the "building blocks" it depends on.

Even tho I should be more clear (I've definately got a problem with this Occam's Razor gizmoidal thingie) I hope you see changing the interface is linked to how the systems underneath are designed, and that for unifying these dependencies these needs to be a serious, everything overruling and compelling reason to do so, and to this date, there is none.
 
Old 05-26-2003, 12:22 PM   #6
gungrave
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man, you should be a spokes person for Linux.... I haven't a clue what all that just meant....
 
Old 05-26-2003, 03:19 PM   #7
unSpawn
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Me neither. Can I buy a vowel now?
 
Old 05-26-2003, 04:06 PM   #8
BryanMC
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Won't M$ including palidiam (oh, i mean "secured computing") detour people? I think it could be M$ downfall, it's just too radical, the world likes their free music, and whatnot... Half the time When I download it's completely legal, I have the Cd's just I can download faster than I can find my cds then rip the song I want.

They also made a study that most of the stuff downloaded isn't even music (to the recording industries dismay) it was porn.

What I'm trying to say is that this will be the most major case of M$ killing itself.

My prediction.... I think linux will win someday, probably sooner than anyone thinks. Open source is community based, no hiding anything. Ever heard of open source spyware? I haven't. M$ even tracks what sites you go on, not even clearing the history will get rid of the list. Just makes you wonder what else is hidden in the code, the code we can't see. Actually I don't want to know, I don't care, I have linux.

Standards. IMO They can be good and bad. I think we need standards for certain things to ensure the most realiability possible in as many cases as possible. Standards are bad too though. They kill diversity, because your busy adhearing to the "standards", you have no time or care to be different, or find a better way of doing things. Standards are important but I think the good thing about open source is the actual PEOPLE get to decide which standards are best, not the corperations. The corperations will choose the standard THEY want, and because "It's M$ WORD -- IT MUST BE THE BEST!", nobody fights back. That is why open source will control enentually, it's like a democracy, the PEOPLE vote for the officers and whatnot, not the PEOPLE will vote for what we want in our OS.

I like democracy, so I like linux
If you like Tyranny go spend 200$ on WinBloze

--BryanMC

Last edited by BryanMC; 05-26-2003 at 04:19 PM.
 
Old 05-27-2003, 01:09 AM   #9
sridharinfinity
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I should say that I am not a better translator from and to the same language. Sometimes I mis-type what I think in my mind. I have seen lot of spelling mistakes in my posting.
 
Old 05-27-2003, 09:46 AM   #10
schatoor
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Well, in my opinion, and I think it is shared by unSpawn as well, is that diversity in linux is one of it's greatest features. But it also complicate things.
If you write some software, what toolkit do you use? Qt, motif, tk/tcl, gtk ? If for example you build your app in qt, you'r assuming the user has qt. If he/she hasn't, it's going to mean the user will have to install the lib, which means linux will be perceived as user unfriendly. This, in my opinion is one of the biggest obstacles linux has in becoming a main stream OS.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not lobbying for a single gui toolkit in linux. I'm just pointing out a problem
 
Old 05-27-2003, 03:10 PM   #11
slightcrazed
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You know, I kind of like these threads every now and then.

In my humble opinion, and please don't take this the wrong way, Linux will probably never dominate the desktop market, at least not in the near future. It may continue to make inroads in the server market, and with Companies like IBM, peoplesoft, Oracle, and Sun backing it, we can expect continued growth, but the desktop market is a '| dream'. (pun intended)

To use an analogy: Windows is a family car with an automatic transmission; everyone has one, everyone knows how to drive one, and most people use it only to go from point a to point b. Linux, on the other hand, is more like an indy-car; Fewer people are comfortable driving it, its fast, stable, but not seen as an every day commuter. I guess what I'm trying to say is, linux meets a need, but that need is not one shared by the general public. As long as all the general public wants to do is share files, surf the net, play games and check E-mail, Linux will have a hard time fighting with the 'family car'. Until the needs of the general public change, linux will always have a small market share on the desktop.

Now that being said, I think that the needs of the public will change, and that can only mean good things to the Linux community. Windows thrives on the computer-illiterate. It is meant to be as user-friendly, point and click as possible, and therefore is an easy learn for most people. The computer illiterate only stay illiterate for so long however, and many of tomorrows computer users will want more from an OS.

Lets go back to my analogy. There have been many calls from the linux community to make Linux more user friendly, to standardize it, to simplify it. Often times this argument is made because people feel that Linux needs to compete with windoze. I think this would be a big mistake. Linux can not compete with windoze when it comes to ease of use, and it shouldn't try to. Just like the Indy-car will never compete when it comes to being an A to B Family car, the Family car will also never compete with the Indy car on a race track. They both offer different things to different people.

So how do you get more people to try the indy car over the family sedan? Get more people to like racing.



slight
 
Old 05-29-2003, 03:39 PM   #12
a4anmol
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Can someone please throw light on..the difference between..BSD , Unix and Linux..and difference versions of BSD's that seem to be round..Also is BSD and Unix Free source code and can be given and modified like linux..please some one tell me more about the basic philosophy of these things so that i dont get confused...i know about linux in totality..and completely advocate it...it's the best os around..but sometimes loses its speed compared to free bsd
 
  


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