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Re: [OS:N:] Re: Linux in schools (cont'd)

On Wed, Jan 08, 2003 at 02:09:46PM -0500, ekunin wrote:
> I do not mean to belabor the point, though it turns out that way and few
> here agree with me, but the issue of one or several distros as is clear from
> Chris's post, is a matter of point of view. If you are a sophisticated
> computer user who gets off on tweaking things, you see limitations on your
> right to tweak as an abridgement of "freedom". If you want Linux to go
> mainstream, I believe you must look at it from the perspective of the
> unsophisticated user who uses his computer like he uses his television set,
> that is turns it on and off.

And of course all televisions work exactly the same way. Especially the
way they need to be set up, and no one ever needs to read the instructions
in order to learn how to use all their features.....

> This strikes me as obvious, but apparently it isn't.

Suddenly it seems you are changing your argument from: 
"There must be one and only one version of Linux" 

And are now beginning to head in the direction of :

"Linux must be easy enough for non-technical users (the general
public) to use without much pain."

Congratulations.  It has taken more than a year but you're finally beginning to

Now Read ESR's documents on open source and you'll get to a place of much better
comprehension and knowledge without making the rest of the folks on this list
wade through 14 more months of rhetoric. (Still haven't read them have you?
:-) )

Mainland China has selected Linux for its official OS platform, Wal-mart is
selling a Linux based PC for $200, Tigerdirect is selling a much better Linux
based PC for $200, Merrill Lynch is using Linux inhouse.  Redhat has released
RH-8 (Blue Curve) which has such simple interface that a history major I know
who works in marketing uses it exclusively with no changeover training at all.
(Formerly a Windows user).  That person edits all their documents including
MS-office based documents using the release of Open Office that came with RH8.

There are literally hundreds of other examples of Linux becoming a valued
alternative to other platforms.

Linux IS moving into the mainstream and no centralized/unified one version of
the product is needed to assist this.  In fact there is no question that the
version that Merril Lynch is using and the version SUN Microsystems is now
selling on their entry level systems are very different and if there had been
only one choice available either SUN or Merril Lynch would have found it

Having only one version of Linux available would be death to the future of

Have you noticed that although most people in America drive cars we don't
all drive an Acura or an Aston Martin or an Audi or a Bentley or a BMW or
a Buick or a Cadillac or a Chevrolet or a Chrysler or a Daewoo or a Dodge
or a Ferrari or a Ford or a GMC or a Honda or a HUMMER or a Hyundai or
an Infiniti or an Isuzu or a Jaguar or a Jeep or a Kia or a Lamborghini or
a Land Rover or a Lexus or a Lincoln or a Lotus or a Maserati or a Mazda
or a Mercedes-Benz or a Mercury or a MINI or a Mitsubishi or a Nissan or
a Oldsmobile or a Panoz or a Pontiac or a Porsche or a Rolls-Royce or
a Saab or a Saturn or a Subaru or a Suzuki or a Toyota or a Volkswagen
or a Volvo ?  Do you think that in Utopia we would all want the SAME car?

And not every car has an automatic transmission, or 4 wheel drive , or AC or
intermittent wipers, or and am/fm/CD/cassette player, or a convertible roof, or
a sunroof, or a back seat, or an 8-foot bed. etc.. ad nauseum.

And yet we all share and drive on the same roads. 

(Sort of, I live near Boston after all, lane choice appears to be optional here)

Jeff Kinz, Emergent Research,  Hudson, MA.  "jkinz ultranet com" 
"jkinz rcn com" copyright 2002.  Use is restricted. Any use is an 
acceptance of the offer at http://users.rcn.com/jkinz/policy.html.

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