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Old 07-28-2009, 05:21 AM   #1
Bamawing
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Open letter to Linux Developers


So many of y'all seem so willing to help Windows converts. Windows is like representative democracy: it sounds so nice, but as any American can tell you, it's pure crap. It doesn't work. The only reason we keep it around is the lack of good alternatives.

Linux is not a good alternative to Windows. I'm sorry. It's just not. I think you all have a different idea of what we want when we switch.

Here's what Windows converts want:

*a computer that does the same things it did before with a minimum of fuss

um, OK, that's actually it.

Surprised? We're not interested in security. I don't know a virus from a hole in the firewall. I'll admit it. Viruses are bad primarily because they keep computers from doing the same things they did before. I don't particularly like the idea of a computer tracking my every move, but I know they do, and I know I can't do anything about it, so I accept it.

(Oh shut up. I know I can do something about it by "Simply installing Linux." You may be able to prove through complex technospeak how Linux doesn't keep track of what we look at. But we're not going to understand, and as long as it doesn't interfere with our trying to use the computer, we aren't going to care.)

Another thing y'all aren't getting is what we're wiling to learn. If we wanted another version of Windows, that's what we'd get.

Here's what we're willing to put up with:

*a new list of vocabulary
*Getting used to files being in different places
*a desktop that looks really different
*using different methods to get done what we want to get done
*learning more about our machines

Especially if we're told up front that this is what we'll need to put up with. But too often, all we get is "faster and more secure than Windows! Download here!"

Here are the things we don't want to deal with:

*spending hours trying to install things like Java and mp3 players that we always took for granted.
*being told, via repository, what we can and cannot install
*it being nothing short of bloody ridiculous installing anything else

The way Linux is now, it's appropriate for two users: a fellow techno-geek, or a computer-illiterate slob who isn't used to fancy things like ways to open jpg files. But for those like me, who dabble in programming and use the computer for a lot of things, but barely know the difference between RAM and ROM and screw it, it's all memory anyway... Linux is not for us.

And I don't think it ever will be. There are too many technogeeks who are still incredibly smug and feel that my lack of dedication makes me unworthy. And they're right - it does.

I love the idea of open-source stuff that people share and use and improve upon in a community. But that's not for regular joes. That's for members of this community. Linux is not for the undedicated.

Please stop this "Linux for ordinary people" nonsense. You're only fooling us Windows slobs for as long as it takes for us to realize that the computer won't do the stuff it did before, no matter how much research we put into making sure our favorite programs were "Linux-compatible" and researching distros. And it will take waaaaay longer than a few hours simply finding the applications that mimic the programs what we want and installing them. If you can figure out how.

Linux is not for regular people. Accept it. The only true "success stories" I've seen involve an experienced Linux user setting the computer up for the Windows convert. If you're willing to do that, fine... best of luck and I hope gas stays cheap. But if you're not in my home right now...

You're a genius. You know this. You're smarter than I am. Your computer runs faster, smoother, and better than any computer I will ever own. You know this. I know this.

Let it be enough.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 05:36 AM   #2
pixellany
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Could you repeat the question?....

Seriously, it sounds to me like you should consider staying with Windows.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 05:47 AM   #3
brianL
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Y'all don't like Windows. Y'all don't like Linux. Y'all git yerself a Mac!
 
Old 07-28-2009, 05:50 AM   #4
nowonmai
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Wow... just wow.
I don't recall anywhere that says that Linux has to replace Windows.
You registered here in 2005, and still bitter in 2009. 1+ what pixelanny said... stick to Windows.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:05 AM   #5
pusrob
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing
Here's what Windows converts want:

*a computer that does the same things it did before with a minimum of fuss
Well, with linux you can do the same things you did before with even less fuss than with windows.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing
*spending hours trying to install things like Java and mp3 players that we always took for granted.
Just open your package manager and install the jre package and voila, you have java. It's easier than in windows. Mp3 players are the same. Open package manager, and install the desired media player. Don't forget the libmad package for mp3 support. Actually, most modern distros include these by default.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing
being told, via repository, what we can and cannot install
Repositories don't tell you what you can install or not. They only tell you what compiled packages are available to you for immediate use. And to be honest, these repos include 99% of software you will want to use. The rest (1%) can be installed by compiling them. And don't even try to tell me in your reply that compiling is hard, because it is not. Typing 3 short commands (./configure; make; make install) cannot be hard in any way (if it is for somebody, then I feel sorry for him/her).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing
The way Linux is now, it's appropriate for two users: a fellow techno-geek, or a computer-illiterate slob
There are multiple distros that are far easier to install than any Windows (try mepis, fedora, etc...). These distros are also very easy to use. Don't forget that if something is not familiar and not the same as your prevoius something, than it doesn't mean that it's hard. It's simply unfamiliar and you need to get used to it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing
And it will take waaaaay longer than a few hours simply finding the applications that mimic the programs what we want and installing them. If you can figure out how.
Well, maybe it takes some time to find the windows alternative, but you need to do it for once only. After you found them you never ever have to look for them again.

It seems that your complaints are coming from the unwillingness to learn and unwillingness to search for solutions for your problems. You should stay with Windows then...

Last edited by pusrob; 07-28-2009 at 06:18 AM.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 06:52 AM   #6
jomen
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rhetorical question:

How is the OP getting to define the terms "regular/ordinary people"...?

Since I spent the time reading the initial post, I might as well give a suggestion of what the OP might want to read some day
http://linux.oneandoneis2.org/LNW.htm

...beyond at least some documentation of what he wants to use or has been using - (my impression from reading his other posts)

There is a nice saying:
Argue for your limitations and you will get to keep them.
(from R. Bach, I think, in "Illusions")

Last edited by jomen; 07-28-2009 at 07:14 AM.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 07:15 AM   #7
pixellany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jomen View Post
There is a nice saying:
Argue for your limitations and you will get to keep them.
(from R. Bach, I think, in "Illusions")
I think this also fits the situation:
"Never try to teach a pig to sing---It wastes your time and annoys the pig."
 
Old 07-28-2009, 08:33 AM   #8
johnsfine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing View Post
Here's what Windows converts want:

*a computer that does the same things it did before with a minimum of fuss
I'm sure you're right. That's what most Windows converts want. They're not going to get it. Windows is only available from Microsoft with all the costs and problems inherent in getting software from Microsoft.

Quote:
We're not interested in security.
That is silly and contradictory to what you said in your other thread. Maybe you mean you're not interested in worrying about security or expending any effort to get security. You do want more security because you have been injured by malware. You just want to get it without any thought or effort. (Me too. I put much less thought and effort into securing my Linux system than experts say I should. So far I've gotten away with it).

Quote:
Here are the things we don't want to deal with:

*spending hours trying to install things like Java and mp3 players that we always took for granted.
Most of us don't have that problem. I still don't know why you did, because I don't see any place where you asked for help with that in any constructive manner. Here is a significant quote from your other thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing View Post
I forgot that the "repository's" name was synaptic. I did do the synaptic, dumbass. It didn't work.
I'm fairly thick skinned about such things, so the part that actually offends me is the "It didn't work". I help people a little at LQ and more in some other forums and people often describe a problem with just "It didn't work". How is anyone supposed to provide any help? I could answer "It worked for me". Have either of us provided any real information?

One of the big advantages of Linux is LQ. I don't know any Windows forum nearly as helpful as LQ. I've sometimes overlooked the obvious in Linux (because I also mainly use Windows) and asked some stupid question about something that works for most people and didn't work for me. That usually results in a prompt and helpful response. I've also tried some difficult things and asked some hard questions and while the responses haven't been that prompt or helpful people did make an effort (more than I've ever seen when asking hard questions about Windows).

You are wasting that powerful advantage of Linux.

Last edited by johnsfine; 07-28-2009 at 08:41 AM.
 
Old 07-28-2009, 10:41 AM   #9
konsolebox
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Since you are open, I'll be open as well. I'll make my replies based from my experience and observation with linux and windows. Perhaps also combine my experience with DOS if applicable .

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamawing View Post
So many of y'all seem so willing to help Windows converts. Windows is like representative democracy: it sounds so nice, but as any American can tell you, it's pure crap. It doesn't work. The only reason we keep it around is the lack of good alternatives.

Linux is not a good alternative to Windows. I'm sorry. It's just not. I think you all have a different idea of what we want when we switch.
OK. Yes I also think that way. Linux can always be more powerful in many ways but I think it can't fully morph into something that will make windows people feel what they felt in windows.

I also installed Linux for other people but they still go back to windows. Many reasons yes but the highest probability is that they find windows easier to learn and use.

I also think that windows is a big representation of the difference between DOS and UNIX in the old days. Why was DOS created by the way?
Quote:
Here's what Windows converts want:

*a computer that does the same things it did before with a minimum of fuss

um, OK, that's actually it.

Surprised? We're not interested in security. I don't know a virus from a hole in the firewall. I'll admit it. Viruses are bad primarily because they keep computers from doing the same things they did before. I don't particularly like the idea of a computer tracking my every move, but I know they do, and I know I can't do anything about it, so I accept it.

(Oh shut up. I know I can do something about it by "Simply installing Linux." You may be able to prove through complex technospeak how Linux doesn't keep track of what we look at. But we're not going to understand, and as long as it doesn't interfere with our trying to use the computer, we aren't going to care.)
Not all but I find most people always asking about anti-virus softwares. But even so, people don't really mind installing a better firewall, adding some more security tools like procexp, etc. What do you think?
Quote:
Another thing y'all aren't getting is what we're wiling to learn. If we wanted another version of Windows, that's what we'd get.

Here's what we're willing to put up with:

*a new list of vocabulary
*Getting used to files being in different places
*a desktop that looks really different
*using different methods to get done what we want to get done
*learning more about our machines

Especially if we're told up front that this is what we'll need to put up with. But too often, all we get is "faster and more secure than Windows! Download here!"

Here are the things we don't want to deal with:

*spending hours trying to install things like Java and mp3 players that we always took for granted.
*being told, via repository, what we can and cannot install
*it being nothing short of bloody ridiculous installing anything else
For the average, yes I think that most windows users think that way.
Quote:
The way Linux is now, it's appropriate for two users: a fellow techno-geek, or a computer-illiterate slob who isn't used to fancy things like ways to open jpg files. But for those like me, who dabble in programming and use the computer for a lot of things, but barely know the difference between RAM and ROM and screw it, it's all memory anyway... Linux is not for us.
Hmm.. Here we mean people who learned using Windows on a PC with a windows system already installed there right? Thinking that people also try to learn how to use Linux on a machine that already has Linux on it can we still generalize things to conclusions like these?

It depends on many factors like intelligence level of a person, Linux distro, etc. My cousin easily learned Linux when I installed Damn Small Linux on their laptop with a trashed HD and only a CD drive.
Quote:
I love the idea of open-source stuff that people share and use and improve upon in a community. But that's not for regular joes. That's for members of this community. Linux is not for the undedicated.
Sorry I can't agree with that this time. With respect to my explanations above, Linux can also be for regular joes. Also, do you mean a dedication that's greater than the dedication a person makes when he or she starts learning windows?
Quote:
Please stop this "Linux for ordinary people" nonsense. You're only fooling us Windows slobs for as long as it takes for us to realize that the computer won't do the stuff it did before, no matter how much research we put into making sure our favorite programs were "Linux-compatible" and researching distros. And it will take waaaaay longer than a few hours simply finding the applications that mimic the programs what we want and installing them. If you can figure out how.

Linux is not for regular people. Accept it. The only true "success stories" I've seen involve an experienced Linux user setting the computer up for the Windows convert. If you're willing to do that, fine... best of luck and I hope gas stays cheap. But if you're not in my home right now...

You're a genius. You know this. You're smarter than I am. Your computer runs faster, smoother, and better than any computer I will ever own. You know this. I know this.

Let it be enough.
The only thing I find difficult that I think is not for *regular joes* is the installation of programs in Linux. I mean not only the ones that are available in the distro but rogue or alien programs as well. But aside from installation, I don't see any other things that average people will find difficult in Linux and not all windows people bother installing they're own programs right? Try using an easy distro like Ubuntu and perhaps you'll have my point.
 
  


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