[oclug] Looking for aquarium screen saver
miden at travel-net.com
Tue Apr 5 09:01:00 EDT 2005
Bill Strosberg wrote:
> Hmm. If you think that the primary future for Linux is use as a
> replacement desktop for clerk/typist/home/recreational users, there is
> some validity to this argument.
Not the primary future but a potentially large and profitable part.
> Most paying commercial installations use
> Linux for server applications, gateway/firewall applications and routing
Yes - a battle that has been won. So maintain supremacy there while
looking to other potential areas of dominance.
> Eye candy, graphics in general, and user interfaces that
> rely on console graphical interfaces cause exponential bloat growth,
> decrease speed and generally make configuration and maintenance more
> complicated and less reliable.
Complete agreement here. Complete. Still, if we want Linux to advance
into a wider market, it is a factor that will have to be taken into
account. And the level of programming skills found in the Linux
community might just overcome this factor.
> 99%? - I think your numbers are suspect.
OK it's only important to 89.7% :-) The important thing to remember is
that design (think of it as a means of sucking up to customers) is so
ubiquitous that there is a danger that it will not be taken into account
by someone looking at the field. It's a huge industry for a reason.
> Linux owns an ever-increasing chunk of the server marketplace, but has
> not made an appreciable dent in the desktop marketplace.
I believe this is because design and fashion as marketing tools have
been rather neglected.
> The ¨kewl¨
> factor does not impress corporate desktop purchasers
But it does impress ordinary users - the potential market.
> - the ¨Ï do not
> have to train people to use this¨ factor does.
> In my calm response to the original flame-happy poster, I was referring
> to ¨using the source¨ from the open source screensaver he did not like,
> not the Windows version. The screensavers he was trashing were written
> in the open source community, and I think of that community as people I
> know, and people I respect. Hearing of someone´s freely contributed
> efforts referred to as poor and of substandard quality always makes me
> mad - he does not realize that he is cruely criticising the very people
> who provided him the opportunity to use this stuff for free.
Yes, somewhat lacking in tact but the marketplace outside of the Linux
world will be much harsher than he was. Much harsher.
> Quality in
> the open source world (and the commercial world) results responding to a
> need better, not pointing out deficiencies in a brutal and unfeeling
> way. I was attempting to outline that instead of complaining, he could
> take the high road and fix his need - and that of other people who value
> things of that nature.
Unfortunately, many of the users and potential users do not have those
skills. The 'if you don't like it, fix it' response simply results in
their turning to (or remaining with) some other product.
Their complaints are a good indicator of an area of Linux marketing
which might be in need of improvement - think of them as a volunteer
> I guess it comes down to values - I appreciate simplicity, speed,
> security and reliability.
So do I. But I'm not talking about us. I'm referring to a much wider and
potentially huge market... and perhaps I'm overly optimistic but I
believe that the high-level skillset drawn to Linux might just be able
to produce a product that is (gui) beautiful AND reliable, and efficient.
> Since I earn my living from installing and
> maintaining server applications, I value stability and reliability over
> appealing to desktop users (who are as a rule unwilling to pay).
Unwilling to pay? Microsoft and Mac might disagree. They probably hope
that you keep on believing that.
> great thing about open source is that everyone is free to tailor their
> installations to meet their own needs.
The ordinary non-tailoring crowd likes 'off-the-rack'. Industries are
built on that.
> Just about ever thing I value
> from a revenue-generating open source system benefits from reduced
> complexity, simpler interfaces and less cruft.
But we mustn't forget that there is another world out there - one which
demands the 'kewl' factor, design, fashion, as well as functionality.
Messy, but there it is.
> Do I personally give a
> bad rap to eye candy? I do not think so - it has it´s place.
'it has it's place' is such a nice, gentle way of downplaying the
importance of the factor being discussed :-)
I think our only real differences here is the importance we assign to
'eye candy' as a marketing tool and what we think of the importance of
going after that large, non-specialist market out there.
Tight, reliable... and beautiful and fashionably 'kewl' - I think Linux
has the potential to deliver it all.
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