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IBM Pushing Microsoft-Free Desktops 417

walterbyrd and other readers are sending along the news that IBM is partnering worldwide with Canonical/Ubuntu, Novell, and Red Hat to offer Windows-free desktop PCs pre-loaded with Lotus software and ready for customizing by local ISVs for particular markets. The head of IBM's Lotus division is quoted: "The slow adoption of Vista among businesses and budget-conscious CIOs, coupled with the proven success of a new type of Microsoft-free PC in every region, provides an extraordinary window of opportunity for Linux." One example of the cooperation: "Canonical, which sells subscription support for Ubuntu, a Linux operating system that scores high marks on usability and 'the cool factor,' will re-distribute Lotus Symphony via their repositories. Symphony 1.1 will be available through the Ubuntu repositories by the end of August."
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IBM Pushing Microsoft-Free Desktops

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  • Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Dice ( 109560 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:51PM (#24489035)

    ... but can I get one without Lotus Notes too?

  • Finally! (Score:5, Funny)

    by morgan_greywolf ( 835522 ) * on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:52PM (#24489041) Homepage Journal

    The 2008 will be known as the year of Lotus Notes on the desktop!

  • by hasbeard ( 982620 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:54PM (#24489069)
    I not I'm not supposed to read the article, but when I tried to the site gives a "story not found" message.
  • C64 (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:57PM (#24489109)

    IBM should get together with the people who created Commodore 64 and see about modifying it for a networked business environment. We already know the C64 is suitable for networked environments because people have already abandoned Vista to have lan parties on their Commodore 64s. T

  • by motek ( 179836 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:58PM (#24489117) Homepage

    They adapt. They went from proprietary to open, from DOS to Linux. From punch cards to computers.

    ...from 'world domination' to 'also run'...

  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:14PM (#24489301)

    To paraphrase Yoda, "Notes leads to anger. Anger leads to Notes consultants. Notes consultants lead to suffering."

  • by Tumbleweed ( 3706 ) * on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:15PM (#24489317) do you get rid of IBM?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:29PM (#24489487)

    Skinner: No, that's the beautiful part. When wintertime rolls around, the IBMs simply freeze to death.

  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by value_added ( 719364 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:31PM (#24489517)

    ... but can I get one without Lotus Notes too?

    In anticipation of a thousand Slashdotters nodding approvingly, I'll point out that the head of the White House IT Dept. testified (during the recent missing emails scandal) that Notes is obsolete software, and then went on to explain the problems they were having with Exchange, and why those problems couldn't be fixed. The senators, reassured the White House was using state of the art technology, nodded approvingly.

  • by motek ( 179836 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:41PM (#24489639) Homepage

    Frankly, I'd rather see Microsoft in that position

    But of course. I can't quite imagine Ballmer with a white cat on his lap, anyway. Besides, it is just me who is destined for the true world dominance...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:01PM (#24489865)

    If you administer a Windows network, I don't see how you can describe yourself as 'IT'...without blushing that is.

  • by evilviper ( 135110 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:06PM (#24489919) Journal

    Once you get rid of Microsoft... do you get rid of IBM?

    You convince them to get back into the PC business...

  • by TheNucleon ( 865817 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:14PM (#24490021)
    ...about that OS/2 thing.
  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:26PM (#24490155) Journal

    That's no moon, it's DOMINO!

  • by freeasinrealale ( 928218 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:46PM (#24490357)

    I didn't understand the beer analogy. Can I have a slashdotish car analogy please?

    Oh goody!! My first troll!! Well - OK - being 'trolled' is like having - I dunno - Oh yes - a flat tire!.

  • So what? (Score:2, Funny)

    by argent ( 18001 ) <peter.slashdot@2006@taronga@com> on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @10:55PM (#24491145) Homepage Journal

    This isn't a "proprietary-free" desktop, it's a "Microsoft-free" desktop.

    Surprisingly enough there ARE a few other companies that have managed to survive the Microsoft onslaught and remain in the software business.

  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by CronoCloud ( 590650 ) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [noruaduolconorc]> on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @12:53AM (#24492107)

    How does that sig go:

    Ladies and Gentlement, my killbot features Lotus Notes and a machine-gun. It is the finest available.

  • by Zontar The Mindless ( 9002 ) <plasticfish DOT info AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @02:27AM (#24492565) Homepage

    I'd still rather have the machine gun.

  • by techno-vampire ( 666512 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @02:36AM (#24492625) Homepage
    But of course. I can't quite imagine Ballmer with a white cat on his lap, anyway.

    It doesn't matter. If Balmer picks up the cat, Balmer will become Blofeld. Please note that in each Bond film that he appears in, he looks different, but the cat's always there, and it's the same cat. Clearly, the cat itself is Blofeld and its spirit possesses whoever picks it up. Now, consider: do you really want Balmer turning into Blofeld?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @03:11AM (#24492849)

    "Why does open source imitate more than innovate?"

    Good question. We suspect the problem is that most open source software is written by programmers.

    Although programmers are similar to human beings in many respects, and may even be mistaken for humans when observed briefly from a great distance or under adverse viewing conditions, controlled observations clearly prove they are distinct. Since programmers are a different species (as the term is broadly defined, since unlike other species open source programmers have never been observed to procreate -- or at least the very least we feel sorry for any researcher who might witness such an event) they tend to construct interfaces that are either incomprehensible to the human mind, or in recognition of their own limitations, construct systems that are simply a mimicry of human designed interfaces (aka "human interfaces"). Here the term "construct" is used intentionally because we cannot in good conscience use the term "design," with all that it implies in this context, as most evidence indicates programmer-constructed interfaces are unusable by human beings.

    We performed several tests.

    Emacs, an advanced operating system constructed by a programmer, was tested first. We requested our test subjects start emacs, write a short sentence, save a file containing the sentence, and cleanly exit the system -- all without the intervention of an open source programmer. No human test subject was able to do so. In fact, mere open source programmers were typically insufficient to complete the task: an open source programmer with a gray neck beard was often required.

    We contrast emacs with Microsoft Word. The latter is not regarded as having an ideal interface, but nearly two thirds of human beings under the age of 40 who grew up in a developed Western country were able to complete the open-edit-save-exit task without the intervention of a programmer. Even marketing staff had little trouble opening the application, saving the file, and exiting; most confusion revolved around the requirement to type a short sentence, but in all honesty this wasn't the fault of the software and furthermore this was the portion of the task least likely to elicit effective guidance from the programmer.

    An equivalent test with Open Office, written by open source programmers but sporting a derivative interface, returned similar results.

    Next we tested the GIMP. Several graphic designers simply began to cry when placed in front of the testing terminal. Further testing was aborted on ethical grounds after one designer became physically ill. Although the results were officially recorded as "inconclusive," we remain skeptical as to the usability of the GIMP's interface by anyone other than a GIMP programmer. Similarly, we remain skeptical as to the graphic design proficiency of those programmers, but this is strictly conjecture and remains untested.

    With commercial software from well established vendors we presume there is a high likelihood that one or more human beings will be responsible for the human interface design. Although further research is needed, it is possible that the absence of humans on many open source projects results in unusable or derivative interfaces. Furthermore, there may be aspects of the typical open source development process that discourage participation by humans. Again, further research is needed.

  • Re:Great... (Score:3, Funny)

    by pimpimpim ( 811140 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @05:59AM (#24493665)
    Just for fun, use the "new powerpoint presentation from template" option. It's like you're in 1995 all over again. Can't they put some designer on this and clean it up a bit? At every new MS Office version I check again, and I don't think they ever updated the templates.
  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Gleng ( 537516 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @06:50AM (#24493899)

    A couple of what I will call Old School Developers at place I used to work, which will remain nameless, actually managed to write a relational database system in Lotus script that ran the entire operation.

    It was a buggy, unmaintainable pile of spaghetti that was congealed rather than designed.

    One day, both the developers quit at the same time due to the manager being the biggest unlikeable bastard that any of us had ever met. This left the "database" completely unmaintained.

    The manager ended up contracting a Lotus Notes expert from IBM themselves to do some emergency bug fixing. The following Monday morning, the expert turned up at 9 AM sharp, in an equally sharp suit, and carrying a trademark Thinkpad.

    He sat down at a computer, looked at the code, and cried with laughter for a good, solid ten minutes, then got up and left.

If I had only known, I would have been a locksmith. -- Albert Einstein