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Thoughts on Linux Thoughts

An interaction designer's take on "Linux on the desktop" made it to Slashdot. While his initials statements about laziness and fear of the users to switch are probably true he misses some important points.

In my opinion Linux has never been competing with Windows to become a dominant desktop OS. Linux runs on anything from cell phones, PDAs, watches over laptops, desktop computers, servers, to clusters, big iron and main frames. Linux for the desktop is just one usage pattern and not its primary goal.

Nobody wants anybody to make a switch. I don't give a dime if YOU use Linux or Windows. It is YOUR choice, because YOU must know what you like and what is best for you. Linux is there. You may use it - freely. If you don't, nobody is angry.

There is no point in having the same user experience under Linux than under Windows. Why would I want to switch then? For the name? I am VERY happy that Linux has a significantly different user experience than Windows. Because I think that Windows' user experience sucks a great deal. Yes, I am sure.

We don't need a VB clone to create portable applications. Java, .NET/mono, Tcl/Tk, GTK all allow for portable applications today.

About his statement about controls: All modern object models allow for reuse of such components. Be it DCOM on Windows, or KParts for KDE or CORBA for Gnome, jar libraries for Java. Also the POSIX principle of small, focussed, flexible tools encourage reuse.

Fragmentation: Diversity is good - not bad. It gives you choice. WIth Windows you don't have a choice. The UNIX world has always consisted of dozens to hundreds of OS variants. And almost all applications can run on any of them.

Software installation: The "central installation architecture that all applications must use" already exists and I use it daily: portage (emerge). Other distros have apt or rpm.

posted on 2005-11-02 20:09 UTC in Code | 1 comments | permalink
Thanks for sharing information!