canopic jug writes:
Bryan Lunduke at Network World calls out what other mainstream media have been too timid, or bought out, to call out. He starts by pointing out that choosing Microsoft Windows for your organization should get you fired and that if you haven't already replaced Windows, across the board, you absolutely stink at your job.
There. Finally the topic is broached in mainstream media and a proper discussion can now start among decision makers who can arrange complete migrations to GNU/Linux, Chrome/Linux, one of the BSDs, or a combination of them.
As Microsoft security problems continue to escalate since even the pre-networked, MS-DOS days, managers and front-line grunts will find themselves increasingly culpable for selecting unviable software, such as Microsoft Windows. If they wish to pay big bucks for maintenance, there are plenty of companies around to participate in the money. Canonical, Red Hat, M:Tier are just a sampling.
[Ed. Note: I debated whether or not to run this story — in some respects it's just the Windows vs *nix argument all over again. Also, there are proprietary programs which are critical for certain industries which currently only run on Windows. On the other hand, gaining a mention like this in the more mainstream media, does that mean we are approaching an inflection point? Witness the increased displeasure with Windows 10's telemetry and the difficulty in completely blocking it. What programs do you use that are only available on Windows? What keeps you from moving to another OS? --martyb]
Basically, Apple hardware is like a tax on the stupid.
Their hardware is really nicely designed. OS X is a decent OS from a user perspective but closed source Unix is a dead end in the long run. I wouldn't touch Apple with a 10 au pole.
Perhaps, but is it necessary to have that (non-upgradeable stuff) in order to do what is being discussed?Hackintosh [google.com]
-- OriginalOwner_ [soylentnews.org]
Or, a tax on people who value their time and would rather spend it being productive than screwing around trying to get things to work.
I don't like working in Windows (see article) and I like working in Linux/Unix. Back before switching there were times where I spent days where I could have been billing, screwing around trying to get hardware to work properly. At one point after spending something like two days rebuilding a bunch of hardware, disk arrays, messing about with drivers, etc. I realized I could have just bought a Mac with the billable time I'd wasted trying to save money. So I went and bought a Mac. A decade or so later, I haven't regretted that decision.
I know my way around Linux very, very well. My current product is deployed on Linux. I've been using Linux since 1997, with HP/UX and Solaris before that. I know the value of my time, and where I want to spend it. It's not that I can't build a computer, but I'd rather spend my time building something else at this point.
All that being said, I'm working on a 2012 quad core i7 Mac Mini at the moment that is literally irreplaceable from Apple. The laptop that finally died was a 2012 quad core i7 15" MacBook Pro. When I look at Apple hardware now, I feel like I'm holding my breath waiting for the stink of their current product offerings to blow over. Much as I don't want to run Linux or Windows at home, I don't think I could bring myself to buy a new Apple laptop right now. Work's paying for my next one though so that's how I'm getting around this dilemma.
Whenever someone makes this argument, I have to wonder when the last time they actually tried running Linux was. I support multiple nontechnical users (family members, friends) who use Linux full-time. I support three machines for them in total, not counting ones primarily used by me and not counting the MythTV boxes. They're not constantly futzing around with the hardware constantly, and neither am I -- supporting them takes almost none of my time.
Are there problems? Sure, but the problems are rare. Meanwhile, talking students through installing Alice (toy programming environment from www.alice.org) or Chrome Remote Desktop so I can help them with some problem is often very frustrating. And the Mac students tend to have more trouble than the Windows students installing Alice, actually, because of MacOS's "we're only going to let you install software if Friend Computer has given it clearance" policy. The Windows students only need to figure out how to unzip a file.
And getting a little off-topic, the single most important concept almost none of my non-tech students understand is files. My non-tech students almost universally have no clue whatsoever how files work. I say, "don't try to open the file from your web browser", and they don't know what that means. They don't know what it means to open a file from a web browser, or, alternatively, not to do that. From my interactions helping them, many of them don't understand that downloading and opening files are separate concepts.
And this is important, because Alice doesn't register file associations, so they think they can't download Alice files, because they try to open them from the web browser and it doesn't work, and they then have no idea what to do. I tell them what they need to do is run the Alice executable and open the file from the program's open dialog box, but they often need to see it actually done before they understand what that means.
So yeah: non-tech users really need dedicated training in the basic concepts of the file system. If they could get that down, I think they'd have a lot fewer problems when something marginally unexpected but not erroneous happens. They'd also be able to backup their machines like everyone always tells them to. I have some slides on files ... maybe I'll make it an actual part of the class next semester, like with homeworks and all. Hey, wait, it's summer: this is going on my todo list.
I just taught a basic computer usage class as an online class. There's a painful bootstrapping problem with teaching students how to use a computer in a class where they need to use a computer to access the materials.