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2005 Jul 06 14:02

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Re: [vox] Survey: What do YOU use Linux for?
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Re: [vox] Survey: What do YOU use Linux for?



On Wed, Jul 06, 2005 at 01:27:56PM -0700, Micah J. Cowan wrote:
> >   * there is a friendlier user community to which one can turn for help
> 
> I'm also unsure about this one. Some of them are quite friendly; many of
> them are not. There is no shortage of forums which the uninitiated would
> tend to find unwelcoming. 
> 
> There frequently tends to be friendly user communities for
> Windows-oriented applications as well, so I'm not sure you can claim
> this one as a win for us.

I think people are people, and jerks are jerks, and unless someone sat
down and did a _study_, I'm guessing it's about even.

There seems to be a more _available_ user community for Linux/OSS-related
stuff, though.  I swear, any time I have a problem with Windows, once
I fail to find anything by Googling, I start hitting OSS IRC channels on
Freenode, or bugging my mosty-Linux-oriented friends on other IRC servers. :^/


> >   * even though they are typically not as flashy as commercial Windows
> >     apps in terms of GUIs, they are often more powerful
> 
> This one I agree with absolutely. However, the flip of the coin is that,
> because their GUIs are frequently not well-designed, there is usually a
> very steep learning curve. As a hacker, that's sometimes actually a plus
> for me (lust for learning); but for most folks it's a major setback.

The little software I use on Windows is either abysmally designed and
implemented (mostly Qualcomm development tools for cellphone programming)
or are no better and no worse than what I'm used to on Linux/KDE.

The WinXP environment as a _whole_ is much twitchier and difficult to use
than Linux, though.  (From both a shell-user standpoint, and, more
importantly, from a GUI-user point of view!)


As for the 'flashy' programs for Windows, I often think of horrendously
non-standard things like:

  * Graphics software for scanners/cameras
  * Burning/ripping software for MP3 players, CD drives, etc.
  * Printer control panels
  * Music players (like Windows Media Player and WinAMP)
  * Video players

...Stuff that looks like it's from PlaySkool that's been dropped into the
environment.  This is why I'm liking KDE more and more.  I no longer have
to stand for XMMS's ass-backwards WinAMP-style GUI.  Yeah, skins are fun
for about 5 minutes, but they get in the way when I want to _do_ things.


> BTW, I've never believed that just because something has an accessible,
> easy-to-learn GUI does not mean that you must sacrifice power: it is
> simply that most app designers do so.

Sadly, this seems to be the Gnome mantra these days, from what I can tell.
Since KDE 3, I've found KDE is both an enjoyable, and relatively easy and
sane GUI environment to use, _AND_ they want to keep it powerful and
discoverable.

And don't get me started on FireFox's "about:" kluge. ;^)


Oops!  I've turned this from a survey to my own soapbox, rant-fest
flame-war.


> >   * they are generally not subject to the coerced-update situation that
> >     Microsoft puts people in
> 
> Amen! Microsoft sucks.

But yeah... man do they ever! >:^(

-- 
-bill!                          Picn*x14 --- Linux Anniversary Picnic & BBQ!
bill@newbreedsoftware.com       Sunnyvale Baylands Park, Sunday, August 14th
http://newbreedsoftware.com/    http://linuxpicnic.org/ to RSVP & volunteer!
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