matt | August 10, 2009
Student Arrested for Modifying Consoles – This guy didn’t copy any games (at least, the article doesn’t say he did), thus, he didn’t commit any copyright infringement. This can be used for playing pirated games, but it can also be used for playing homebrew games, or running “unauthorized software” (like Linux). In case it is lost on you, this is roughly equivalent to someone selling you a car, and then saying that you can’t modify it because you might do things with it which the automaker did not intend. And then there is this gem: Piracy, counterfeiting and other intellectual property rights violations not only cost U.S. businesses jobs and billions of dollars a year in lost revenue, they can also pose significant health and safety risks to consumers (emphasis mine). Are you really serious. Health and safety concern? Toolbox.
Does the Hacker Ethic Harm Today’s Developers – Ironically, I tend to agree with the article on both counts. A lot of American programmers lack discipline and a commitment to quality. Let’s face it – code audits, documentation, QA, and testing are not exactly sexy work. On the other hand, in my experience, a lot of Indian programmers can’t make a design decision to save their lives. The right way (in my opinion) to do it is to be the conscientious engineer, and then go home and hack on stuff where the QA bit doesn’t matter quite so much and you can play a little fast and loose.
- Why Linux is Not Ready for the Desktop – Some of this is right. other stuff isn’t. But, it deserves some commentary. In numerical order:
0. Just because proprietary software will not go away (and I agree) does not mean that Linux is not ready for the desktop. As desktop penetration increases, more software will be ported, and therefore this does not hold water.
2.1 The same criticism of a lack of stable GUI API can be applied to Windows as well – Win32, MFC, WinForms… and that’s just the ones MS came out with.
2.2 Slow GUI – I’d love to know what GUI you’re using. XFce, Gnome and KDE are all just as fast (or more) than Windows XP on the same hardware.
3. All the problems across Linux distros. This is the homogeny argument. The problem with “one size fits all” is that it doesn’t work. The reason I use Linux is because I can make it work the way I want. I can’t make Windows or OSX work the way I want. The flip side to the “lack of a common packaging format” is the same issue with Windows. Up until .msi, there wasn’t a common Windows installer format – it was all custom .exes. Even with the .msi stuff, there is still no central software repository and/or tracking of updates on all managed and installed software. It’s up to each program to do its own thing, which leads to a complete and total friggin mess.
4. Need to configure everything via GUI – why? I don’t have this requirement, and I’m the one using it.
5. Lack of software – the crux of this argument is “Linux isn’t popular, so it has no software.” Of course, since the article is why Linux won’t be popular, it’s a completely circular argument. It won’t be popular because it doesn’t have software, because it isn’t popular. Look, the software for it is getting more and more varied and better and better every day. I am amazed at how much better this stuff has gotten recently.
5.3 Bad drivers – Windows has bad drivers too. Remember the 98 to NT changeover? Nothing worked. Vista is supposed to be just as bad, and now with the DRM stuff, MS can actively kill your hardware as the result of bad drivers. All those BSOD issues back in the day? Yeah, most of those were bad drivers too.
5.3.1 A lot of WinPrinters don’t have Linux support – While I’m sure this is true, I haven’t had a problem. That and I remember when I upgraded to NT and my printer which used to work under NT no longer did.
5.4 It is impossible to watch Blu-Ray movies – Really? Why? (I honestly don’t know).
5.5 The audio/video codec problem – All operating systems have this problem. The difference is that other companies are willing to build the cost into the cost of the OS. Or, you can take a free OS and pay the $5 for the codecs. Or, just use free formats.
6. and 7. Bad quality in the kernel and general bugs – That is what distributions are for. They do the testing. Good distros have good testing.
8. Poor interoperaibility between user and kernel space, namely that it takes awhile for user tools to come out which use the new kernel stuff. Or, to put it another way, you get lots of cutting edge stuff which might not be completely ready. So, what, would you rather just not have them because it’s not completely polished? I’d rather have new stuff to play with which might not quite work, but is still cool, and have the option to use it. But, that’s just me.
Most of the last points are either valid, or rehashing of the above. Arguments about “no standard thingy across all distros”, etc.
And then there’s this:
©2009 Artem S. Tashkinov – All rights reserved. No reproduction of any kind is allowed without express permission by the author.
That’s completely lame, dude, but whatever. I didn’t copy your stuff, just responded by the numbers.