Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Linux on the Desktop

I'm a Linux guy at heart, but I use a Mac. For a long time, I've had a weird love hate relationship with Apple laptops. I was feeling a bit nostalgic today, and I stumbled across these articles:

It reminds me of The UNIX-Haters Handbook, which as a fantastic read :) Warning, do not read any of the above if you're easily offended!

Who would have thought that Linux would be more successful in the mobile world than on the desktop? Who could have guessed that one of the most successful Linux on the desktop projects would actually embrace trusted platform modules and restrict access to the shell by default (unless you put it in developer mode)? What a strange world we live in!

5 comments:

metapundit.net said...

Yup. . Just got a Mac laptop last week after running nothing but Linux on all my computers for 6 years. Still getting used to the Mac way of doing things but hoping to at least have new bugs to complain about.

Shannon Behrens said...

Does that mean you won't make fun of me at BayPiggies when I show up with a Mac? ;)

John Schuhr said...

I would totally make fun of you :P Earlier this year, I made the decision to forsake both Apple and Microsoft as operating system providers, mostly for the same reason in each case: I don't feel like they have my interests at heart. I can't stand the thought of either company making arbitrary decisions on fundamental concepts like where I buy my software, or how the desktop should be laid out. Until earlier this year, I was using Windows 7 and then I saw the future that is Windows 8 and "iOS for Mac". It made me angry to think that such bad design decisions were being made upstream and for the wrong reasons. Note that "bad" and "wrong" are indeed subjective, but from my subjective standpoint, they are real. The problem was that I was feeling less "free" all the time. Everything little thing that I wanted to change about my OS X experience or Windows experience was being turned into "you'll void your warranty" threats. I don't know how to describe it, but having moved into the Linux world, I feel like I no longer have to answer to anyone - I can do whatever I like with _my_ computer, and no one is going to give me a hard time. If I don't the file system, I change it; if I don't like the window manager or desktop environment, I change it; or maybe I don't want Twitter and Facebook integrated into my O/S, thank you very much. It just seems that it's turning into a constant battle to beat back Apple or Microsoft from pushing unpleasant and unsolicited "helpful" changes onto my computing experience. Anyway, sorry for the unexpected rant - it's been a long day :)

Matt said...

Interesting... My movement was in the opposite direction (from Mac to Linux about 5 years ago) and I haven't looked back. For me, easy installation of the latest and greatest packages together with the power to configure everything far outweighed the user-friendliness of the Mac. I found that the Mac's ease of use was largely superficial. OS X makes ordinary computing tasks a bit simpler; but trying to do anything unusual --- e.g., installing dependencies for an obscure *nix package, running an alternate window manager, keeping up with Emacs development, etc. --- could make life much more difficult.

(But, then, my spouse uses a Mac laptop, so I can always grab it when I want to watch a Netflix movie.)

Shannon Behrens said...

Hey, John, you're preaching to the choir, brother! I totally understand where you're coming from! I've been a Linux guy since college, 13 years ago. Nonetheless, all the things I linked to are pretty entertaining reading ;)

Hey, Matt! I don't have anything else useful to say ;)