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Re: [tlug] RE: User-friendliness and windows and Linux

Mancy, Raymond ( wrote:

> the whole concept of an OS that is useable for computer illiterates, and at
> the moment Windows fits that bill.

Very poorly.  MacOS fits that bill a lot better, and I expect 
BeOS probably would have, too.  After all, we don't need to rehash
here how much trouble computer beginners and illiterate have with
Windows.  As simple as it is, a lot of people find getting an
Internet connection working in Windows to be really hard (ISP
support departments spend a lot of time helping people with
that), and Windows' frequent failures really leave beginners in
the lurch and in need of experienced assistance to help them with
the inevitable reinstall.  Microsoft is trying to address those
problems, but they haven't gone away yet.

With Linux, on the other hand, the situation is reversed.  You
may need a knowledgeable person to get it intalled in a recommended
way (we know the installer won't do that for you; it'll install
it, but not in a best-accepted-practice way) and properly locked
down, but after that it will just work.  If we take any major distro
and install and configured it for someone, they will be able to
reliably work, day in and day out, without ever touching a shell
or even knowing there is such a thing (especially true if we choose
KDE, which is more complete in that area than Gnome is yet.  I 
prefer and use Gnome, but I do concede to KDE in that area).

If, thereafter, the person finds themselves in need of expert
assistance, it is highly likely that they would need expert 
assistance under the same circumstances regardless of their OS.

> here (or aywhere) would not have started with *nix as there first OS(that

My first OS was on HP systems in the 1970s.  After that, it was MVS
in the 1980s, followed by DOS, a bit of OS/2 way back when, then
Windows, and from 1997, *nix (chiefly Linux).

> would depend on age as well, 15 years ago we didnt have Windows). Windows
> will help raw newbies to grasp a lot of concepts

Usually, they just use it.  The concepts go totally unnoticed, for the
most part.  In fact, the whole point of click-drool GUI is to keep
people as far from concepts as possible, is it not?

> all computers. I think that Windows actually brings in a lot more new PC
> buyers than Linux ever will for the forseeable future.

Windows doesn't draw people to PCs; people are drawn to PCs by the things
they can do with them.  People buy PCs not because of Windows but in
spite of it, or at the least, it is irrelevant to the purchase.  If
you could buy a PC with a ported version of MacOS on it, and run MacOS
applications (either ported, or via a binary compatibility layer),
the sale of Windows preload PCs would plunge tremendously.   Apple
knows this, but they also know the sale of Macs would plunge even more,
b/c you still get more bang for the buck out of PC hardware.  Since
Apple is chiefly a hardware vendor, and the main motivation to buy 
their (relatively) expensive hardware is the OS that runs on it, 
(the reverse of Sun, where the only reason to run their OS is to get
the hardware :-) they will never port that OS to the Intel platform
unless they should themselves abandon the PowerPC architecture and 
move to Intel (not likely), and even if they did, they wouldn't license
the Intel MacOS to anyone else.  To get a Mac-tel machine, you'd have
to buy it from Apple.

>   I think that the day that Linux becomes as "user-friendly" as windows, I
> will throw my Linux iso's and once again look for somethig which is
> fun/challenging.

I still say the Windows-centric definition of "user-friendly" is
skewed, but yeah, if all Linux distros behaved like Windows, I'd
become an exclusive BSD user.


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