Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (4633 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] 'Goes along with those mad at Novell/SUSE and leave.
  • From: John Meyer <john.l.meyer@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 24 Dec 2006 19:36:51 -0700
  • Message-id: <458F3943.1040801@xxxxxxxxx>
Fred A. Miller wrote:
> Linux on the desktop has been a year or two away for over a decade now,
> and there are reasons it's not there yet. To attract nontechnical
> end-users, a Linux desktop must work out of the box, ideally
> preinstalled by the hardware vendor. Right now, Linux is usually an
> aftermarket upgrade on desktop and laptop systems. Default installations
> of Linux usually have poor multimedia support, are missing numerous
> codecs like QuickTime and WMV, and often lack even basic 3D
> acceleration. Linux can't even play DVDs without introducing the risk of
> lawsuits, and multimedia support files are usually hosted on non-US
> sites for legal reasons. Third party software support (from Quicken to
> World of Warcraft) is almost nonexistent.
>
> You can't win the desktop if you don't even try. Right now, few in the
> Linux world are seriously trying. And time is running out.
>

I've heard this argument too many times to count.
With all due respect to the author, the argument is based on the
assumption that we want to be mainstreram, that we want everybody and
their grandmother to be running Linux. Personally, I don't. Why?
Because inevitably software manufacturers will dumb down Linux to the
point where the protections cease to be relevant. People will be
running their computers 100 percent of the time in root mode because
they can't be bothered with the hassle of using 'su' when and only when
they really need to upgrade something.
Part of the reason why I believe Linux has been insulated from so many
worms and virii and other things is the crucial part between the
keyboard and the chair; the user that understands not to open every
attachment they get, to be wary of phishing scams and whatnot.
Is that being elitist? Maybe. But maybe I want to keep what is unique
in the Linux world unique.
In as far as multimedia support, yeah, SuSE doesn't have that out of the
box. You know how long it takes for me to set it up? 2 minutes. And
for that little inconvenience Novell and others don't have to ratchet up
the price of every Linux shipment out there.
Those that want to make linux mainstream have their points, and I
respect them. But there are some of us who may not think it is so bad
where we are right now.
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