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Linux Business

OSCON 2008 Roundup 182

An anonymous reader writes "Infoweek wraps last week's event with Inside The OSCON 2008 Conference, which pulls together interviews with Mark Shuttleworth, Linux Foundation's Jim Zemlin, MySQL's Zach Urlocker and Sam Ramji, who directs Microsoft's Open Source Lab. Best quotes: 'We will make a significant attempt to elevate the Linux desktop to the point where it is as good or better than Apple,' from Shuttleworth; and 'If I would start a business tomorrow I'd do it in the netbook marketplace. I'd build a dead-simple $200 device that targets sports fans, women over forty,' from Zemlin." We discussed Shuttleworth's better-than-Apple proposition while OSCON was going on. Update Jamie noted this OSCON Summary Video that might also be worth your time.
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OSCON 2008 Roundup

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  • by QuantumG ( 50515 ) * <qg@biodome.org> on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @01:14AM (#24397211) Homepage Journal

    Macs don't "just work".

    People try them because they are told they "just work" and they pay highly for the privilege. When they discover that they have been lied to they are assured to "stick with it" and once they are heavily invested they are afraid to pull out because they don't want to lose that investment. Then they try to enlist other people so they don't feel so abnormal.

    In other words, it's a cult. And if you find that too hard to believe, keep in mind that the leader of this cult is Steve Jobs. If you can't see that he is a cult leader then you're already lost.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @01:48AM (#24397441)

    Core Animation isn't going to turn this UI disaster:

    KDE 4.1 preview

    OS X

    magically into a desktop of OS X's quality. And the same goes for Gnome.

    KDE & Gnome:

    The APIs are junk

    The UI elements are primitive and mostly halfassed Win2k era clones

    There are no UI tools of the calibre of Interface Builder

    The Linux font system(s) are a mismash of crap

    X11 is archaic crap

    Making a desktop of OS X's level of quality is enormous hard work. The KDE and Gnome devs simply do not have the skill, commitment, and maturity to put in the massive amount of work to make their desktops of the level of quality.

    It's been a decade they've been working on KDE. It's time the KDE devs moved on to something else. The total mess that is KDE 4.0/4.1 shows it is time for them to move on to something less challenging than trying to match Apple's OS X.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @02:01AM (#24397547)

    Don't hold your breath:


    A few more years Linux fonts will suck in an equally but completely different way.

  • by ByOhTek ( 1181381 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @02:09AM (#24397595) Journal
    Actually it's both. Without good managment, the project will go every which way like an ADD child with multiple personalities. Then you get things like feature bloat, inconsistent UI and general visual clutter. I could probably add to the list as well. But without good engineers, you have an inflexible UI API that developers don't want to deal with, and end up with less 'flashy' apps. And without good artists, your project will make the users' eyes bleed. No one group is significantly more important than the others. If any of them fail, the project will be majorly set back.
  • by QuantumG ( 50515 ) * <qg@biodome.org> on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @02:24AM (#24397665) Homepage Journal

    We're not talking about the people who "just like it", we're talking about the people who claim it "just works". It doesn't just work! The fact is that for the vast majority of people who get on a Mac for the first, second, or even 20th time, they damn thing doesn't "just work" it doesn't even "just kinda work". What it does is anything but. So stop speaking shit. I challenge everyone who has never used a Mac to go to the Apple Store and try to perform the most basic of tasks.. hell, try to switch from one maximized application to another. Enjoy the learning curve. They don't.. just.. work..

  • by commodoresloat ( 172735 ) * on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @02:39AM (#24397749)
    What exactly doesn't "just work" in your estimation? How are we defining ""just works"? If you take a Mac from the Mac store and sit down and use it (i.e. don't install a bunch of garbage on it before you figure out how to use it), well, most people find it pretty intuitive. You say you have problems switching between "maximized" applications -- which applications are those? Most OSX programs do not start up "maximized", and usually switching applications is a matter of clicking a window behind the front one. Or clicking the red or yellow dot in the upper left hand corner of most windows and then clicking the window behind. Most people figure this out pretty quickly. If that's your best example of Macs not "just working," it seems to prove the opposite case -- Sit down in front of windows and figure out the same thing (a lot of Windows apps actually DO startup "maximized"), or a linux machine (which could look like anything depending on the window manager installed and the programs opened). Of course a Mac doesn't "just work" in the sense that no computer "just works"; the human being always needs to do something to the computer, but MacOS X does seem to make it easier to figure out what the human is supposed to do next.
  • by clampolo ( 1159617 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @03:15AM (#24397953)

    They use Macs because "they just work".

    I constantly hear this quote from Mac fanboys but it doesn't make any sense. The implication is that other computer systems don't work. I'm on a machine that dual boots Windows and Linux, and guess what? It works!

    And you know what else. Nearly every server in the world is on Linux or Windows and they work too. And most businesses are running Windows or Linux and it works there too. And finally Linux and other non-Apple OS's are running nearly all of the embedded systems in the world. And what's most interesting about this is how microscopically small the amount of these people who think Apple "just works" is.

  • by speedtux ( 1307149 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @05:05AM (#24398491)

    The real problem is X and the fact that it is an utter pile of gash.

    That's a pretty ironic statement, given that both Apple and Microsoft had to abandon their previous window systems a few years back and adopt an X11-like architecture.

  • by speedtux ( 1307149 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @05:27AM (#24398595)

    My main problem with Linux right now are the damn fonts... They look like complete crap without heavy aliasing. This should *NOT* be the case even with the extra font packs installed.

    You probably didn't set up the right anti-aliasing in preferences; that can happen on Windows and OS X as well. The OS doesn't know what you need or want.

    When you use X or power management features or bluetooth..etc its not long before something starts going haywire.. at least thats been my experience.

    Did you buy supported hardware? If not, that's like complaining that when you install OS X on your PC, things don't work.

    It's not a Linux problem when Linux doesn't work on unsupported hardware, and that simply will never get fixed.

    Compared to RDP there is no contest in terms of network resources consumed by remote sessions. X11 is a pig.

    That is by design: X11 and RDP are designed for totally different bandwidth/performance/functionality tradeoffs.

    Furthermore, modern X11 applications are not written or tested for remote usage anymore. The equivalent of RDP in the Linux world is VNC, which works very well.

    Give it a few more years and I'm sure Linux will continue to make great strides on the desktop... IMHO they really do just need to kill the damned X11 system alltogether.

    You don't know what you're talking about. Microsoft and Apple had to abandon their idiotic attempts at window systems and Windows UI Server and Quartz now have the same architecture (asynchronous client-server systems) as X11. X11 is still the better system.

  • by lm317t ( 971782 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @07:18AM (#24399177) Homepage

    For the same reason we should care about what Christians believe - cause they are delusional and accepting irrational belief as "ok" is bad for all of us in the long run.

    Their belief in charity and community are just a ticking time bomb. I heard the other day they were giving out free food and clothing to the poor! This must be stopped.

  • by zach_the_lizard ( 1317619 ) on Wednesday July 30, 2008 @08:21AM (#24399619)
    As a Linux user, let me say both "Already done" and "When we will get the marketing power of Apple?"

Someday somebody has got to decide whether the typewriter is the machine, or the person who operates it.