[plug] hmmm Linus being opinionated again :-P

Jonathan Young jonathan at pcphix.com
Wed Dec 14 10:42:14 WST 2005

Senectus . wrote:

>I find that now I'm 99.999% happy using Ubuntu I'm also much more
>productive and content using Gnome.
>Every now and again I get the urge for eye-candy and flip over to
>KDE... but eventually I get tired of the  less reliable environment
>and flip back to gnome with a happy sigh.
>To me KDE is more of a "toy" environment (even though many of their
>apps are sorely needed in the Gnome arena), and until they stop
>jamming features into it and sacrifice a few deadlines for reliability
>I think it'll stay that way.
>But that's my opinion as a user, whatever that is worth...
<joke> Freely distributable surely?  If the OS itself is free, no-one 
should be charging for opinions! </joke>

I agree with most of what you've said though (Ubuntu rocks!), but it 
seems to me that they are (most of the time) designed for two different 
markets / types of user.

And so what??

As quoted by Mark:

>Whose problem do we want to solve? If you try to satisfy everyone you
>end up satisfying no one.
Exactly.  That is Windows.  One OS must do everything.  I'd personally 
hate to see Linux go that way.  Quite frankly part of the reason Linux 
can be innovative and successful without the massive price tag attached 
to commercial software is because the different distros and projects 
compete and feed off each other in different ways.  They are branches 
off the same tree, not successors to each other in M$ fashion.

If you try to create one "super-distro" that is "the best" and can do 
"anything and everything", I would worry about things stagnating, 
bloated installations full of packages you don't need and all the other 
problems that come with that.  If you try to make it simple for new 
users, you do lose functionality.  So just build a distro for that 
purpose - ease of use.  Leave the others alone for the more experience 
users and heavy duty applications.  Why can't we have both rather than 

Secondly, I have always quite enjoyed the fact that the distro chosen to 
be a good mail server might be totally different to the distro you'd 
choose to run on your own desktop or (play games with), but that they 
were each equally streamlined and optimised for the tasks most relevant 
to their primary purpose.  I hope that never changes.  Entering into 
holy wars over which one is better when clearly they BOTH have their 
advantages is asking for trouble, and ignoring the fact that they have 
two different histories is a shame.

Lastly, I don't think things have got that bad (yet).  I still think it 
is possible to take most computers that are too under-spec for Windows 
and make them run 100% better with a version of Linux installed.  While 
Windows forces unnecessary hardware upgrades just so you can have the 
latest version (including software and features you don't use), Linux 
will generally work and you find yourself doing hardware upgrades only 
because you really shouldn't be using a computer of that age or spec for 
the particular application you have chosen.  Since you are upgrading 
your hardware... you may as well grab a bigger, better distro, but it is 
an OPTION.  You still have may more choice.  Also, I would hope that 
when comparing Linux and Windows running on the same PC, you are using 
versions of both that were current at the same time.  What version(s) of 
Linux were around when Windows 98 was current?  How do they run?  If 
your PC won't run Windows XP SP2 these days, what CURRENT versions of 
Linux would run on that same PC.  No contest really, is it?

Choice, variety and the building-blocks-I'll-install-only-what-I-want 
freedom that it's got is still one of the most significant advantages of 
Linux over Windows.  Trying to please everyone with a single distro and 
desktop is another nail in the coffin.

/rant IMHO also, "my opinion as a user, whatever that is worth..."

Jonathan Young
Director of PC-PHIX
jonathan at pcphix.com

Phone: 0410 455 674
Web: http://www.pcphix.com/

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