Parental control

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Parental control

Postby pinghacker on Wed Nov 21, 2007 9:40 pm

How about an easy to setup and maintain, robust parental control system. Many of the advantages that Mint had over other distros are disappearing with their advancement. A good option for parents would be a big differentiator.

And by the way, GREAT job on Daryna. I am enjoying it immensely.
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Re: Parental control

Postby dracorX on Tue Jan 29, 2008 6:58 am

Hm, parental control in which way? Concerning programs? concerning web access? or what?
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Re: Parental control

Postby JAK on Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:44 pm

I've tried setting up Danguardian and Squid, but not without pulling out a few hundred hairs of my already balding head. I agree, there needs to be more GUI software for Linux or it will never catch-on to the average home user. I must admit, as much as I love using LInux, this is one of the greater downfalls of the OS. Not everyone wants to edit text files and hope that everything is working properly in the background. People such as myself want visual setup and feedback from a program.
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Re: Parental control

Postby proxima_centauri on Wed Mar 12, 2008 6:36 pm

I disagree (in the nicest way possible). I don't feel the majority base needs this sort of application, and with limited CD space for the LiveCD, and with other worthy apps already being excluded for this reason, I don't think there is the space to spare. And I'm generally hesitant for any advancements in censorship programs :D . Even for good intentions. The best internet filter is still the parent IMO.

Not everyone wants to edit text files and hope that everything is working properly in the background. People such as myself want visual setup and feedback from a program.


I generally agree with you, I'm more comfortable with GUI's growing up with WIndows too. However I think some users would retort with "then use Windows/OSX". Linux is still a text-based OS in the sense all of a lot of configuration is done through terminal. It's a different language, and if you don't want to put in the effort to learn, then stick with Windows. You're essentially asking a horse to ride like a donkey. You may not be comfortable with the horse, but once you learn its ways and become comfortable with it, its a helleva lot faster!

(Also) I'd probably argue and against anything right now :lol: , nothings personal thou.

Cheers.
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Re: Parental control

Postby JAK on Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:30 pm

proxima_centauri wrote:I disagree (in the nicest way possible). I don't feel the majority base needs this sort of application, and with limited CD space for the LiveCD, and with other worthy apps already being excluded for this reason, I don't think there is the space to spare. And I'm generally hesitant for any advancements in censorship programs :D . Even for good intentions. The best internet filter is still the parent IMO.


I'm sorry. I guess I wasn't paying too much attention to the thread. I was making a general statement that Linux needs more GUI applications including a good parental control program. I'm sure there are very few parents who stand over their kids shoulders while they surf and sometimes ending up in the wrong places can happen by accident. I didn't mean it should be added to the distro CD. I agree there is limited space on a CD that should be reserved for essential and common applications only.

I generally agree with you, I'm more comfortable with GUI's growing up with WIndows too. However I think some users would retort with "then use Windows/OSX". Linux is still a text-based OS in the sense all of a lot of configuration is done through terminal. It's a different language, and if you don't want to put in the effort to learn, then stick with Windows. You're essentially asking a horse to ride like a donkey. You may not be comfortable with the horse, but once you learn its ways and become comfortable with it, its a helleva lot faster!


It's a lot easier to miss a setting editing a text file that can really screw things up. Checking some boxes and/or type in very little data in a GUI is far easier. My eyes aren't what they used to be so I prefer the GUI, but I don't prefer Windows anymore. Part of the whole Linux argument I see so often is getting Windows users to switch. There is an undeniably huge movement trying to make this happen-- for Linux to replace the Windows desktop. Well, that's not going to happen when grandma finds out she needs to edit a .conf file with a text editor as sudo to get her video driver tweaked properly. Most computer users aren't savvy enough to handle that. I never said I couldn't do it, I just prefer not to if I don't have to. I tend to look at things from another's perspective; ie: Would my wife and kids be able to handle monkeying around with Linux in my absence. My wife can barely handle getting around Windows without calling me for help every time she sits in front of a computer. I don't know what to say, she just doesn't get it..... and she is a teacher. :roll:

At this point with so many Linux versus Windows arguments going on, there is no excuse why anyone should have to do any command-line stuff at all. I am by no means on the Windows side of the this, but until this major issue is resolved, there can be no valid argument. Windows is ugly, bloated, insecure, and limiting in many ways..... but it is still easier to use than Linux in many respects. Damn, that left an awful taste in my mouth to say that. :x
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Re: Parental control

Postby proxima_centauri on Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:45 pm

Yea, I hear you on that. I think the majority of problems people new to Linux face is initial installation and configuration, getting all of their computer's hardware to work flawlessly, nobody wants to switch to Linux if they can not make their machine behave exactly how it would under Windows.

But you are right, and I *never" seriously recommend or advocate Linux for that very reason (unless maybe I know the person and they're not afraid of using their brain and getting involved with the system). But chances are the majority will eventually get stuck with something, blame me for duping them, and become turned off of Linux immediately.

That being said, it appears that auto-configuration in Linux is getting better and better every year, I think in the next couple of years especially Linux accessibility is going to explode if not yet already.

Cheers.
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Re: Parental control

Postby Fred on Thu Mar 13, 2008 6:55 am

My experience has been that as people become more used to linux they gravitate more and more to the CLI. It is faster, more flexible, more precise, and more powerful than GUIs.

You have to think about the massive amount of marketing that has been done over the last 15 years to convince us that we had to have GUIs for everything. And it has worked to a very great extent.

In our early history we communicated and stored knowlege in the form of pictures, (Hieroglyphics). As we progressed into the more modern ages we developed written languages that are so much more efficient for their intended purpose. Now only the illiterate and semi-literate would complain about having to read as opposed to looking at pictures. The fact is that people that must have a GUI to do everything and aren't willing to learn a better way are computer illiterate and will probably stay that way. So why bother to try to convert them? If they are happy with the status quo, so be it. If you want to become computer literate you will have to work at it at least a little bit. Just like you did when you learned to read.

I am not saying we should do away with all GUIs. They do have their place. But if we swing too much toward GUIs and lose the power of the CLI we are going backward instead of foward. GUIs, even totally useless ones can be helpful as learning aids, like childrens books. But you shouldn't become so dependent on them that you never become computer literate.

As far as problems with hardware, which is what most installation and configuration problems really are, this is a tough nut to crack. Understand that traditionally hardware mfg.s didn't and still don't want to share the hardware specs and proprietary drivers with the opensource community. This makes it very difficult to interface with the hardware. Part of the reason this is the case is because Microsoft has used every trick it can to discourage hardware suppliers from supporting Linux in any way. Lets face it, Windows is traditionally been where the market is. They can't afford to piss off Microsoft. As more linux users accumulate though, the tide will turn. No monopoly lasts forever.

Just my point of view. :-)

Fred

EDIT: I sincerely doubt that your eyes are any older than mine, but I still try to read with my glasses. Yes it's harder than it used to be, but so are a lot of things I used to do effortlessly. Getting old is one of those things we just have to deal with. It sure beats the alternative. :-)
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Re: Parental control

Postby JAK on Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:00 pm

You can't deny Fred that the GUI desktop is a great idea. It brought computing to the home user whereas CLI would not have caught-on as well. Sure I remember the day when most programs were run in ASCII text mode and it did the job just fine, but I and many others prefer to just point and click through a program these days. I used to run a BBS long ago that had at least 1/2 a dozen text configuration files to configure it. It worked, and I was fine with it back then, but nowadays editing text files to run a program just seems so cumbersome... comparatively speaking. I agree with pinghacker (the originator of this thread), there needs to be more GUI programs particularly when it comes to parental control, session time limiters, FTP servers, and a whole lot more. Editing Squid and Dansguardian text files and understanding what those setting do is far from being as easy as clicking on radio-buttons in a GUI.
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Re: Parental control

Postby JAK on Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:23 pm

proxima_centauri wrote:Yea, I hear you on that. I think the majority of problems people new to Linux face is initial installation and configuration, getting all of their computer's hardware to work flawlessly, nobody wants to switch to Linux if they can not make their machine behave exactly how it would under Windows.


Even if Linux is pre-installed on a computer and working smoothly, for most people it would be a problem for them to edit text files to have parental control on their system. Linux could easily be a Windows desktop replacement at this very moment only if there was a GUI for every program developed.

But you are right, and I *never" seriously recommend or advocate Linux for that very reason (unless maybe I know the person and they're not afraid of using their brain and getting involved with the system). But chances are the majority will eventually get stuck with something, blame me for duping them, and become turned off of Linux immediately.


I here ya there! You'd be 24/7 tech support for your friends if something goes wrong with their Linux box that you recommended they use. Nobody needs that kind of burden.

That being said, it appears that auto-configuration in Linux is getting better and better every year, I think in the next couple of years especially Linux accessibility is going to explode if not yet already.


I agree, Linux has certainly come a long way towards becoming a Windows alternative, but this one last hurdle would make all the difference in the world, literally. Please excuse what I'm about to say; Linux needs to be de-geekified before it steals the hearts of all those Windows users out there. CLI is just not an option for the average user. Think about it.... what has attracted so many people to Mint? Things work! There is very little if any tweaking required to have Mint do most common tasks, and that's the beauty of it. The developers of Mint know what people are looking for, and they are delivering it quite nicely.
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Re: Parental control

Postby Fred on Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:38 pm

JAK,

I guess my point is that simple does not necessarily equate to better. Simple equates to... well... simple. :-)

Simple, as implied by GUIs, should not be an over riding consideration in an operating system. It is necessarily inefficient and increases the size and complexity of the code base with all the attendant problems that implies, and limits it's power and flexibility.

Enjoy life. :-)

Fred
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Re: Parental control

Postby JAK on Thu Mar 13, 2008 4:50 pm

Fred wrote:JAK,

I guess my point is that simple does not necessarily equate to better. Simple equates to... well... simple. :-)

Simple, as implied by GUIs, should not be an over riding consideration in an operating system. It is necessarily inefficient and increases the size and complexity of the code base with all the attendant problems that implies, and limits it's power and flexibility.


I can easily agree with that. Certainly a GUI program has more overhead than a text-based one which equates to running faster and quite possibly better. But, I think most average computer users are looking for ease of use these days, and would gladly sacrifice a little performance for that.
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