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Show me the code!

Show me the code!

Posted Sep 16, 2005 17:12 UTC (Fri) by frazier (guest, #3060)
In reply to: Show me the code! by gallir
Parent article: UserLinux: Autopsy

By selecting one desktop you are taking lot of decisions for the user, not for improving her/his direct experience
Actually, making those decisions simplifies the experience, making it better for them.

It is important to remember that:

  • Typically, it is easier to add software to system than to remove it, especially for less technical users. More technical users will also be more likely to add and customize to their desires.
  • If someone wanted to add KDE (or GNOME if it were a KDE-only system), they could.
  • The real growth for a business distribution on the desktop is people who are not currently using a Linux desktop at all, so the missing KDE (or GNOME if it were a KDE-only system) app won't be a big deal for most of the intended user base and furthermore those who will miss an app are more likely to be able to add it themselves. They are running a Linux desktop enough to miss an app, after all (unless it was somthing cross-platform like Firefox)
  • Consistency: The dialogues among other things are different between KDE and GNOME.
  • People maintaining systems are users too. More to maintain in the default is not advantageous because of:
    • Security
    • Support
      • Help desk
      • Training
...not to mention that more software is also more to certify, it hurts with worker portability, and other things I'm sure that aren't coming to mind right now.

Most people really don't want to use computers, they really just want to accomplish things and the computer is a tool they use. They don't particularily like them, they aren't an interest or a hobby, and they don't follow news for them more than they have to.

More software is not in the interest of the less technical user or businesses in general.

From the UserLinux perspective, look at the mission statement:
Provide businesses with freely available, high quality Linux operating systems accompanied by certifications,
Certifications are easier with a smaller set of software generate certification test for in regards to people and hardware (if applicable)

service, and support options
Easier to service and support software as a new employee or as an ISV if it's the same software you've been supporting in the past.

designed to encourage productivity
The idea tool is what you need and not much else. Though it is impossible to get a PC taylored to everyone perfectly, it is safe to say they don't typically need two browsers or two word processors, and the presence of both is more likely to confuse than aid.

and security
Less software to go wrong.

while reducing overall costs.
Streamlining will reduce costs, and the licensing used for a variety of the software (avoiding free/commercial dual licenses like MySQL uses) helps too.

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Show me the code!

Posted Sep 25, 2005 22:47 UTC (Sun) by dkite (guest, #4577) [Link]

Great ideas. It didn't work.

UserLinux made a so basic mistake, a fundamental misunderstanding of FOSS
that surprised me considering the reputation and background of it's

Free software is only about users when the users can provide a

UserLinux started off by alienating at least 1/2 of the developer base of
free software. UserLinux depended on contribution. Very bad start.

UserLinux attempted to define the free software user experience by
excluding worthy projects and their developers. Bad idea.

It was very predictable. Anyone who used or contributed or thought highly
of any of the excluded packages were uninterested. Not only uninterested,
but actively excluded by comments similar to yours. So the project died.

Ubuntu could afford to pick favorites because they hired the help, and
didn't depend on contributions.

I for one, who contributes substantially to FOSS, was insulted by the
whole presentation and philosophy behind UserLinux. It wasn't for me, and
actively questioned the morality of my contributions. So I, along with
many others, didn't contribute.


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