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

> Jeremy mentioned people who tweak their cars by reprogramming the computer
> chips that control the engine. Read an article yesterday about a fellow who
> gets 500 horsepower from a 4 cylinder Honda Civic engine. Goes from zero to
> 60 in 3 seconds. Impressive, but Jeremy does not take his apt anology far
> enough. My wife drives a Civic and neither of us has the slightest desire to
> mess with its computer chips. 

Exactly. See how we are both happy? You have a steering wheel where you
expect it to be, a color you like, it burns the most commonly available
fuel. My point was that the balance serves us both. It's more
complicated for me to get what *I* want out of it, but I may be a
motorhead. It's very easy for you to get what you want.

> I do not think Honda automobiles would be as
> popular as they are if there were a Debian Honda, Red Hat Honda, SuS Honda,
> Mandrake Honda-you get the idea. 

Take that back a notch and switch "Linux" with car, car being a four
wheeled vehicle with internal combustion propulsion. You have Honda
Cars, you have Ford Cars. You have choices beneath those. You have Red
Hat Linux you have Mandrake Linux, and you have choices beneath those.

Cars have more in common than they have differences. 

> I haven't taken a survey, but I suspect
> more than 90% of the people who buy Hondas want to turn the key and drive
> off the lot. This does not in any way limit those few who want to add a
> speed chip. The Linux we try to take mainstream should be the best and
> easiest Linux we (everyone-not only Red Hat) can produce and there should be
> just be one of it.

All right Ed. It's learning time. If Red Hat can produce a version that
meets those needs, everyone, not only Red Hat, gets it. What is stalling
your rise to glory? Nothing.

There are many customers with many needs, one distro is not enough, just
ask your friendly neighborhood convicted monopolist. A hundred may be
too many, but you aren't being forced to run all one hundred.

> Getting Linux into schools has other problems exemplified by the high school
> junior who cannot persuade his teachers to let him install Linux. Linux is
> egalitarian which doesn't sit well in hierarchical school set ups. We need
> to add functions and services to make it irresistible. I have some ideas on
> the subject, but it puts the cart before the horse.

It's more a matter of procurement cycles, training and district level
budgets. Bit this problem exists as well.

> Often we avoid facing issues directly. For example, the discussion a short
> while ago about the diversity that comes with affirmative action isn't about
> diversity at all. It's about scarcity. No one objects to the diversity which
> would result if there were enough educational positions to accomodate every
> applicant, but there aren't. We have the lawsuit because when one gets
> accepted, the other gets rejected. That has nothing to do with diversity.
> As for car models in utopia, there might be more than one, but not many
> more. Utopia implies equality. Car models often are status symbols, a means
> to demonstrate inequality. There is such a demand for Hummers they can't
> make them fast enough. Trouble with a Hummer as status symbol is that you
> have to drive it. Living to impress others is tough work. Being rich isn't
> all skittles and beer.

Finally. The root of your thesis. Utopia=Not too many car models + lots
of skittles&beer.

> Ed Kunin
> http://www.egalite.com
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