VectorLinux
December 22, 2014, 11:06:47 am *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
News: Visit our home page for VL info. To search the old message board go to http://vectorlinux.com/forum1. The first VL forum is temporarily offline until we can find a host for it. Thanks for your patience.
 
Now powered by KnowledgeDex.
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Please support VectorLinux!
Pages: [1]
  Print  
Author Topic: Windows 7 and a general discourse on Linux  (Read 2944 times)
Lyn
Vectorian
****
Posts: 652



« on: November 08, 2008, 04:37:44 am »

For a first look at this see
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7714080.stm

Now I don't want this to turn into a general Microsoft bashing thread but I think its interesting to look at the direction that Microsoft is going with this.  The thrust of the article is that Windows 7 has few visible changes, some tweaks to wordpad and calculator, gadgets on the desktop instead of the sidebar and not a whole lot else that is visible.  That the intent is to produce an operating system that is unobtrusive and lets you get on with what you want to do.... I don't think many would disagree with that.  Nothing there seems radical or even challenging.  Most major desktop environments seem to let you do what the new Windows 7 desktop does.  So why bother?  Well stung by the low take up of Vista I suspect Microsoft are trying to make their operating system a tad more user and hardware friendly, nothing radical, nothing shocking, no great advances, just incremental changes to make their systems work better for the user.  All very good then.   

So what is the difference with Linux base systems.... well the time scale.  Several years to produce Windows 7, yet most major Linux systems seem to produce yearly or twice yearly updates - which bundle together the incremental changes found in kernel, desktop environments and software.   While a lot of my windows using friends complain about change, the need to upgrade from XP to Vista being the big one with Linux updating is not such a chore, largely because of its modular system you can update elements or the whole thing if you wish, usually for no or little cost.  I would maintain the modularity of Linux is its great strength.  A let a thousand flowers bloom philosophy also helps with choice. 
Logged
nightflier
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 4039



« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2008, 06:34:26 am »

I remember when things moved a lot faster than they do now. There were real advantages to upgrading. Moving from DOS/W3.1 to W95 gave you long filenames. W98 gave you USB support. W2K gave you stability. Frankly, I think 2K was the best OS produced by Redmond. However, they either had gotten so used to wildly profitable releases every couple of years, or they were anxious to usher in new user controlling features which they hid under a new skin and pushed out XP. The success of XP firmly established it in the leadership position. Apple seemed like no threat. Linux was a curious toy. Without much competitive pressure, it was safe to enjoy status quo and just keep selling the existing product. Things settled down some. At about this time, the CPU MHz race ended as well. You could buy a new computer and it would not be "obsolete" in a year or two.

I think computer OS's are maturing to the point where incremental changes make sense. The visual interfaces are well established and familiar to end users. There is no need to make huge changes for the sake of making changes. Work behind the scenes to make it faster and safer. The OS should be an invisible commodity.

Then get cracking on an audio interface.

Logged
tomh38
Vectorian
****
Posts: 913



« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2008, 11:01:48 am »

I read the BBC article.  I agree with pretty much everything that Lyn and nightflier wrote (read both posts a few times, couldn't find anything I disagreed with, thus the "pretty much").

Yeah, incremental changes are the thing right now (along with bug fixes, and increased security).  If Windows 7 is going to go in that direction, I think it's a good idea.  At some point computer technology will develop in some new direction that will require a re-thinking of interface design, but we're not there yet.  As things are, the WIMP interface is pretty good for most people, and so incremental refinements in that are the way to go.

As far as Linux goes ... well, in my experience Linux users are different from most other computer users in some significant ways.  Generally they tend to be people who like to tinker with their machines (either hardware or software, or both).  They also like to try out new things, even if generally they don't often find something new that they like enough to use regularly.  So I would say generally that more frequent releases (kernel, gui, applications, distro, etc.) is something that the average Linux user is more comfortable with than Windows or OS X users would be.  Also, it doesn't hurt that you don't have to shell out a bunch of money just to get the new version of something.

Tom
Logged

"I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones." - Linus Torvalds, April 1991
Lyn
Vectorian
****
Posts: 652



« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2008, 01:49:08 am »

Microsoft is making a big play for cloud computing - seeing Google as the big rival there.  As MS Office loses it near monopoly to things like Google Docs, Open Office etc it sees the future in remote storage of documents and data and premium add ons to its office product as a way of creating a new revenue stream.   I am not sure that this is the way ahead.  Personally I can see the utility of accessing document from any machine you might be using, and its value in collaborative work - but I don't like the idea of, as a matter of course, storing documents remotely.  Its bad enough that the UK government intend to store a permanent record of all my web browsing and every email I send and receive without my files being stored remotely and presumably being cached by the government too. 
Logged
tomh38
Vectorian
****
Posts: 913



« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2008, 06:07:43 am »

Lyn:

I have a similar aversion to having my files "out there" somewhere.  I don't worry a lot about security, but I would if my stuff were on some remote machine administered by somebody I don't even know.  Also, if my Internet connection goes down (rare, but it happens) I want to be able to work on things.  So ... maybe I'm similar to the proverbial paranoid person who keeps his money under the mattress rather than in a bank, but remote rather than local storage is a non-starter for me.

That doesn't mean it won't happen, at least for a lot of people.  I know quite a few people who have only ever used web mail, and those very people are not even aware that their email is not actually on their computer, or for that matter, what the difference is.

Tom
Logged

"I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones." - Linus Torvalds, April 1991
sledgehammer
Vectorian
****
Posts: 1430



« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2008, 09:20:03 am »

Tom,

I use seamonkey's mail program.  And I am generally aware that the mail is somewhere over at my ISP or some such.  But is it not also on my hard drive?

BTW,  I like linux because I can do things on my schedule, not on Bill Gates'.   I can explore what's out there without giving that SOB a dime. And I refuse to support a company that is interfering with Negroponte's One Laptop Per Child program, a program designed to bring computers to the world's poorest children.  As I understand it, Microsoft, for all intents and purposes, killed it because Negroponte didn't use windows. 

John
Logged

VL7.0 xfce4 Samsung RF511
caitlyn
Packager
Vectorian
****
Posts: 2876


WWW
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2008, 11:50:22 am »

@sledgehammer:  If your isp uses imap rather than pop then, no, your e-mail is not on your hard drive.  It's on their server.

@Lyn:  Look into tor and privoxy -- these are tools for anonymous browsing which, when used with Firefox and setup correctly, should defeat your government's ability to track your every move online.  They do slow down browsing considerably and one consequence is that on multilingual pages you may get what's appropriate for the proxy server you are going through rather than the normal page in English.  I also recommend installing the tor button plugin so that you can disable tor and run at full speed whenever you want.  Both tor and privoxy are in the testing repos for both VL 5.9 and VL 6.0.

In general you are at the mercy of whomever is doing security for whatever part of the cloud your data is in.  Are your documents secure?  Who knows?  You sure don't.  As we've seen in both the U.S. and the U.K. you also have a mich higher level of potential government intrusion.  If you value your privacy then avoid cloud computing at all costs.  I do and expect to continue to do so for the forseeable future.

« Last Edit: November 10, 2008, 12:59:11 pm by caitlyn » Logged

eMachines EL-1300G desktop, 1.6GHz AMD Athlon 2650e CPU, 4GB RAM, nVidia GeForce 6150 SE video
CentOS 6.5 (will try VL64-7.1 soon)

Toshiba Satellite A135-S4727,  Intel Pentium T2080 / 1.73 GHz, 2GB RAM, Intel GMA 950

HP Mini 110 netbook, 1.6GHz Intel Atom CPU, 2GB RAM, Intel 950 video, VL 7.1
tomh38
Vectorian
****
Posts: 913



« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2008, 12:00:47 pm »

In general you are at the mercy of whomever is doing security for whatever part of the cloud your data is in.  Are your documents secure?  Who knows?  You sure don't.  As we've seen in both the U.S. and the U.K. you also have a mich higher level of potential government intrusion.  If you value your privacy then avoid cloud computing at all costs.  I do and expect to continue to do so for the forseeable future.

caitlyn:

Agreed!
Logged

"I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones." - Linus Torvalds, April 1991
Triarius Fidelis
Vecteloper
Vectorian
****
Posts: 2399


Domine, exaudi vocem meam


WWW
« Reply #8 on: November 10, 2008, 03:54:38 pm »



BTW ... 37 days left in the semester. Pie, Jesu, Domine, dona mihi requiem. I want to get the hell out of the valley already.
Logged

"Leatherface, you BITCH! Ho Chi Minh, hah hah hah!"

Formerly known as "Epic Fail Guy" and "Döden" in recent months
sledgehammer
Vectorian
****
Posts: 1430



« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2008, 11:39:08 pm »

Thank you Caitlyn,

Edit/Mail & Newsgroups Account Settings/Server Settings/Server Type says "Pop Mail Server," so I am probably OK there.  But, at my option, the mail stays on the server as long as I request and I requested 7 days..  I used to leave it there as a safety measure, but now, being quite comfortable using simplelinuxbkup I think that unnecessary.  I have unchecked the 'leave on server" button altogether. 

John
Logged

VL7.0 xfce4 Samsung RF511
Triarius Fidelis
Vecteloper
Vectorian
****
Posts: 2399


Domine, exaudi vocem meam


WWW
« Reply #10 on: November 10, 2008, 11:57:21 pm »

Regardless, there's nothing stopping someone from caching every damn thing you get. Even intermediary SMTP servers who are removed from your ISP substantially ... and there'd be no way to tell unless someone blew a whistle. Consider that.
Logged

"Leatherface, you BITCH! Ho Chi Minh, hah hah hah!"

Formerly known as "Epic Fail Guy" and "Döden" in recent months
Pages: [1]
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!