Ease of Use (was Re: Nuke Richmond)

From: Chuck McManis <cmcmanis_at_mcmanis.com>
Date: Fri Jan 12 11:51:41 2001

At 11:02 AM 1/12/2001 +0100, W.B.(Wim) Hofman wrote:
>Can you expect to say to a housewife : This is a Linux cd. Install it on
>this computer and I expect you to have looked at these Internet sites by
>tomorrow morning? It would have to be some housewife!! Linux needs far to
>much work still to make it fit for the masses.

This argument seems compelling when first read, and then quickly becomes
specious when explored in any depth.

If you were to hand a housewife *ANY* PC with only a WinME or Win2K CD and
nothing actually on the hard drive, she would be hard pressed to be surfing
Internet sites the next morning.

If you hand her a DELL PC with WinME "pre-installed" it becomes easier, and
it is certainly no more difficult if that PC has been pre-installed with
UNIX/KDE or some other variant.

The issue will always come when she goes to Best Buy or CompUSA to get
software and there isn't an isle with the software she wants in it.

I actually think the way to crush Microsoft is quite straight forward,
build testable standards and bullet proof installs that allow mere mortals
to create the best environment for themselves. At least put together an OEM
package for the likes of Dell and Gateway such that they can give the same
"out of box" experience to their customers with good software as they can
with Windows.

Finally, whine all you want about Windows it was was the ram rod of windows
that made it economically practical to build 100 million computers exactly
the same. Linux wouldn't exist if it still cost $10,000 to get a "home"
computer that was powerful enough to run it.


(And just between you me and the rest of the world, if GPL hadn't existed,
Open Source software would be a _lot_ further along than it is today. And
since GPL == rms I tend to blame Richard)
Received on Fri Jan 12 2001 - 11:51:41 GMT

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