Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

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Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby lexon on Sun Jul 12, 2009 7:52 pm

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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby DrHu on Sun Jul 12, 2009 9:10 pm

It is mostly about the potential of Google OS to move people out of their comfort zone, based on social networking site phenomena, that is perhaps changing people minds about what computer to use
--seeing the computer more as a tool/appliance than a PC (personal device)

Something about the importance of being earnest...
It's also like a lot of marketing hype; just so much hot air
There is a quote from Bruno (Sasha Baron Cohen) new film, in which he is interviewing and complains about fashionistas not getting the same respect as doctors, scientist, and the respondent says "We have that problem too"
--the respondent is of course a fashionista
http://www.worldwidewords.org/turnsofphrase/tp-fas1.htm
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby Fred on Sun Jul 12, 2009 10:10 pm

lexon,

Nice article. I feel sure there is a lot of truth to the author's theory. I think there are other things that come into play as well. In fact I am guessing that each user has one or more over riding reasons for staying where they are. Here are a few observable reasons I have seen:

1) Brand name loyalty - This is a subjective thing almost entirely generated by marketing efforts over time. I think this is what motivates most, but not all, Windows fan boys. What else could motivate such emotion about a big, impersonal monopoly corp. that has the kind of reputation for dirty business practices that Microsoft has?

2) Fear of the unknown - The devil you know is always less threatening than the devil you don't.

3) Ego - People that are respected and considered very knowledgeable by their peers in the Windows world seem to have a hard time starting over as beginners in Linux. It is indeed a blow to the ego to discover that much/most of your Windows knowledge doesn't transfer easily to Linux.

4) Laziness - Many in the Windows world have picked up a working knowledge of Windows over a period of years through shear osmosis. At least to the point they can accomplish their chosen tasks most of the time with Windows. They are absolutely not going to change to an OS that isn't a drop-in replacement for what they already know. That would require time and effort to learn something new. And that just isn't going to happen without strong motivation. A horse whip comes to mind. :-)

5) Inertia, follower - If one sees no reason to change, why should they put forth the effort to do so. In the busy world we live in, time is at a premium. Why waste it changing/learning a new OS if you see no worthwhile reason for doing so. Most people are followers and not leaders. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It takes both to make a functioning community, town, city, state, country, world. If most people around them use Windows then that is what they will wish to use also. That is the way they feel like they fit in.

These are just a few that come to mind off the top of my head. I honestly think that most people move to Linux because of the pain of using Windows. As the pain level rises to the user's limit, they will begin to seriously look for an alternative. It is only then that they will decide that it is easier to learn to use Linux than it is to continue to suffer the pain of the Windows world. Different people have different tolerances for pain so the migration is slow but constant. Of course there is a bump every time Linux gets a little more Windows user friendly or Microsoft turns the screws a bit more. :-)

The bottom line is that nobody is going to change until they are motivated and ready to do so. That is why I think that to lie to people about Linux and basically trick them into changing, with the expectation that it is a Windows drop-in replacement and no learning effort will be required, is wrong. It does the Windows user an injustice and will end in failure for the would be new user. They will return to the Windows world bitter and be bad PR for Linux. Linux is not harder than Windows, but it is different. Windows users should not be led to believe otherwise.

Rant off. :-)

Fred
Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and each time expecting a different result.

Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on the menu. Liberty is an armed lamb protesting the electoral outcome. A Republic negates the need for an armed protest.
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby ZekeMenuar on Sun Jul 12, 2009 10:37 pm

What the author didn't mention is Google's timing. If anyone was to try to knock the Evil Empire down a few pegs, they should have done it when Vista came out.
Microsoft has a hit with Windows 7 and rightly so. It's an excellent operating system. Add in Microsoft's 90+ percent market share and it will be a daunting task for any competitor to get a foot in the door.
By the time the Chrome OS comes out, Windows 7 will be very entrenched in the marketplace. Google's operating system will be lucky to get any more market share than Linux has now.
My view from the bottom is that the Chrome OS will probably get lost in the sea of Linux desktops already available.
For a people who are free, and who mean to remain so, a well-organized and armed militia is their best security.
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby LinuxN00b1985 on Mon Jul 13, 2009 12:08 am

I think it's interesting how people still think you need a high level of "Tech Knowledge" to run Linux. I was pretty die hard Windows guy until recently. Mint Linux has been an awesome experience and i'm impressed with the amount of support that the community offers. I just now got my ventrilo client (A VOIP program that is only available in windows) to run on Mint 7 using Wine. I had no idea how to do it, other than Wine helps you run windows apps in linux. The Wine website was very helpful and I was able to get it running within a few moments.

It seems that pretty much all the Linux programs and distro's are similar in nature. You can find anything you need online and honestly I didn't need to go searching for much. Linux Mint ran just amazingly great out of the box. I've even played around with Ubuntu and Fedora and can't say any of them require a large amount of knowledge to run. If Linux continues down the path of Desktop Optmization like Ubuntu and Mint I think it could begin to take over a bigger portion of the market. I can say for certain that you can't find this level of support from Microsoft.....

I for one and truning into a big Linux user and have already removed Vista from my HP laptop and installed Mint. Plus in todays economy who wants to fork over 100 - 200 dollars for Windows 7 when you can get something that works on almost any hardware for free....

Just my thoughts. :D
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby mike2039 on Tue Jul 28, 2009 6:45 am

It will be interesting to see what happens when Microsoft ends support for windows 2000 and xp. Most of the computers that came from the factory with windows 2k or xp installed will not run vista or 7 very well if at all. Will those people just go out and buy a new computer or try a different operating system?
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby Alpha-Geek on Tue Jul 28, 2009 7:50 am

@ Mike2039... Those people will most likely buy new computers with Windows 7 pre-installed for 4 of the 5 reasons Fred listed.
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby AK Dave on Thu Jul 30, 2009 3:25 pm

I finally decided to get my wife to wean off of her binky: Windows XP.

Here computer dualboots to XP and Gloria. In theory. In reality, it boots to XP and Gloria is wasted hard drive space. Yeah, don't tell me about XP and wasted space because I already know.

What happened is that thanks to the largess of of one of my LUG friends, I became the proud owner of a couple Compaq slim desktop computers (P4 2.4ghz 512mb). Freebies. To one I added a dirt cheap keyboard & mouse. I got a donated 19" LCD. I picked up a cheap-but-awesome wifi card from Amazon. Total investment: $40. I have a second one of these machines that lacks all the external parts to make it a functional desktop computer, but thats a project for another day.

Installed Gloria. I decided from the start that these two twin computers, named by my kids as "Luke" and "Leia", would not dual-boot. They'll boot Mint, and thats it. They'll be linux appliances. Once I had the first one up and running, a very quick task, the kids decided that it is only fitting that "Luke" be born first. Thus, luke was added to the local domain.

The computer was promised to my son. Come fall and the new school year, the plan is to have it on his homework desk. But in the meantime, the worktable downstairs next to my wife's computer has vacant space. So I plopped it there, duelling computers, right next to my wife's "XP" box. Head to head, two old clunkers, a P4-2.4 (w/ 512mb) running Gloria vs a Athlon-2800 (w/ 1gb) running XP. Not just stock XP either, no, I've tweaked this install to make the best of it that I can.

After 4 weeks, I now find my wife using the Gloria box about 3:1 over the XP box. The kids could hardly care one way or the other, as 99% of their computer interest is browser-based (google apps or browser games), but they jostle over using the Gloria box or their Ubuntu-running Dell Mini-9 netbook as in both cases they have their own individual personalized login accounts and desktop environments.

I'm still hoping to scrounge more used parts to bring "Leia" to full function.

None of these people have any level of "tech knowledge". They just use what is put in front of them.
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby Fred on Thu Jul 30, 2009 3:55 pm

AK Dave wrote:
After 4 weeks, I now find my wife using the Gloria box about 3:1 over the XP box. The kids could hardly care one way or the other, as 99% of their computer interest is browser-based (google apps or browser games), but they jostle over using the Gloria box or their Ubuntu-running Dell Mini-9 netbook as in both cases they have their own individual personalized login accounts and desktop environments.
...
None of these people have any level of "tech knowledge". They just use what is put in front of them.

I think it is very telling what happens when people like this are given a real choice. In a nursing home setting, about the only people that use the Windows boxes are the staff, that have a preexisting Windows addiction. The residents, almost 100% of them, go for the Linux machines.

In a school setting, the Linux boxes are almost always picked first by the students unless they are doing something that requires Windows, like working on a power point project. Almost all the instructors require Microsoft, but that is another issue.

The common belief that Windows is easier to use than Linux just isn't born out by my real life experiences. Not if you take the Windows addiction effects out of the equation.

Fred
Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and each time expecting a different result.

Democracy is 2 wolves and a lamb voting on the menu. Liberty is an armed lamb protesting the electoral outcome. A Republic negates the need for an armed protest.
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Re: Comfort zones: Windows vs. Linux

Postby lilmagnus on Fri Jul 31, 2009 11:11 pm

Fred wrote:The bottom line is that nobody is going to change until they are motivated and ready to do so. That is why I think that to lie to people about Linux and basically trick them into changing, with the expectation that it is a Windows drop-in replacement and no learning effort will be required, is wrong. It does the Windows user an injustice and will end in failure for the would be new user. They will return to the Windows world bitter and be bad PR for Linux. Linux is not harder than Windows, but it is different. Windows users should not be led to believe otherwise.

Well said Fred! This describes me to a tee. I"ve been trying to move off Windows at home on two machines and everytime I reason my way back to Windows. I'm a Windows admin and just need to have things "work" like they do at work. That's what I keep telling myself.

I have a new appreciation for what I'm up against re the switch and maybe this time I can do it for real.

Tony
à tous mes amis, je dois partir
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