Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Chat about Linux in general

Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Yes. Hundreds of Distros, each with multiple DE's, and some flooded app categories is too overwhelming for the general public.
54
40%
No. The insane amount of choice Linux offers is not limiting its popularity.
82
60%
 
Total votes: 136

User avatar
MALsPa
Level 8
Level 8
Posts: 2040
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2007 10:17 pm
Location: albuquerque

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by MALsPa »

linuxviolin wrote:please, don't misunderstand the posts! Say there are too many distros does NOT mean we must have ONLY one distro! I guess nobody say that! LESS choice is NOT equal to NO choice.|
That's true, linuxviolin. We are not really saying that less choice is equal to no choice. But limiting choice in Linux is simply not gonna happen.

I am not even convinced, as some are, that having all of those distros out there is a bad thing for Linux. I believe it is a good thing.

I don't know if it can be proven that it hurts Linux popularity. Heck, we can't even figure out how many people actually use Linux, how are we supposed to know if something like the number of distros is hurting its popularity?

Maybe some people are turned off from Linux because of the number of distros (why didn't it turn me off, though?). But maybe some people who wouldn't have come over to Linux happened to find some obscure distro and that's what got them hooked on Linux. How many people fit into either one of those scenarios? We have no idea. We have no way or finding out. So I don't believe that anyone really knows if the number of distros hurts Linux popularity. It's all a guessing game.

And, so what? Is the goal to increase Linux popularity? That has never been a concern of mine to begin with. I'm not sure to what extent it should be anyone's goal, but if it's important to you, fine. I don't have a problem with Linux' popularity as it stands right now.

Bottom line, the whole debate about the number of distros or DEs or WMs or similar apps in Linux is pointless. IMHO.
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

FedoraRefugee wrote:I have to ask all parties, even though this conversation is getting exasperating for everyone involved, can we keep it civil?
Agreed.
How about netbooks? They are becoming more popular and light DE/WMs run much better on them then the heavy Gnome and KDE DEs.
I still think you are missing the crux of the issue. It's not like I'm arguing against lightweight distros/DEs, I'm just asking how many lightweights do we need?
Peppermint... It is a nice distro!
I'm sure it is, but this is how I argue Minters should look at it. Mint already has 3 lightweight flavors. Do we need another? I'd argue no. Does that mean don't bring Peppermint in, or any other lightweight distro/DE for that matter? Not necessarily. If most Minters believe Peppermint is better than one of the existing lightweight Mint flavors, than it would be better to replace it with Peppermint, or which ever other one Minters feel is better. That way Mint arguably keeps getting better without having too much choice to confuse people which arguably will make Mint more popular.
Your poll simply asks if Linux would be more popular with less choice! I actually tend to agree with that myself though I did not answer your poll! Yes, with less choice of distros, DEs, and apps Linux might attract more users! Do I consider it a problem though? Nope!
But, even at that, I do not care if 90% of the people responding to your poll claim that it is a problem! They are wrong! :D Just because a majority feels a certain way does not mean they are correct!
Well I guess you guys will have to define what you mean by "problem" as related to this issue. One one hand I didn't ask if too much choice is causing "problems." On the other, you can say that those of us who think too much choice in Linux is a "problem" for increasing Linux' popularity. But "problem" sounds like we are arguing if more of less choice will make Linux distros/DEs/apps/etc better products, or not. So I think using the word "problem" in this debate is itself a problem. :lol:
But that is beside the point. For the last time, it does not matter! Tell me why it does!
I'd argue that if Linux was more popular, that would bring in more programmers which will result in better distros/DEs/apps/etc.
Chakra Linux
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

linuxviolin wrote:[Saying] there are too many distros does NOT mean we must have ONLY one distro! I guess nobody say that! LESS choice is NOT equal to NO choice.
This was the point I've been stressing. I'm not promoting no choice, just not this insane amount of choice that we have.
Chakra Linux
FedoraRefugee
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1274
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 11:25 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by FedoraRefugee »

mintnoob wrote:
Peppermint... It is a nice distro!
I'm sure it is, but this is how I argue Minters should look at it. Mint already has 3 lightweight flavors. Do we need another? I'd argue no. Does that mean don't bring Peppermint in, or any other lightweight distro/DE for that matter? Not necessarily. If most Minters believe Peppermint is better than one of the existing lightweight Mint flavors, than it would be better to replace it with Peppermint, or which ever other one Minters feel is better. That way Mint arguably keeps getting better without having too much choice to confuse people which arguably will make Mint more popular.
Who suggested this? But again, I would argue that if Clem did decide ti incorporate Peppermint then there is a great chance that this distro would attract many more new netbook users! As it stands though, I imagine they are quite happy with the existing stable. They are now doing the DVD thing on top of the rest. I personally think it is a great operation. I use the Xfce version myself and Merlwiz does all the work that I would have to do to the main version himself! That is the main reason I use this distro, if I had to build it myself I would just throw Arch on everything once and just keep it updated.

But that is beside the point. For the last time, it does not matter! Tell me why it does!
I'd argue that if Linux was more popular, that would bring in more programmers which will result in better distros/DEs/apps/etc.
Not really. You need to understand that these guys are not generally paid for their work. I would suggest that those people who have the skills to program ALREADY know what Linux is and probably have used it at least in school. The lucky ones get hired on at one of the major projects like RedHat and Novel but the rest go to work for other professional organizations and write code for Linux in their free time. I don't think attracting the types of people who are daunted by the choice offered in Linux is going to help bring in the programmers, who I agree ARE the types of people Linux needs.

But Linux cruises right along, actually evolving at an astronomical pace compared to any other OS due to its very nature. In fact, if you want to find a fault that keeps Linux off of the unwashed masses' desktops then THIS is it! It develops way too fast and bugs slip into even the more stable distros! That is just the nature of the beast though, it is unfortunate that the most stable distros are also the ones that assume at least a basic skill level.

You want to change the world? Make debian Lenny as easy to install as Mint! :wink:
CDS
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2010 11:22 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by CDS »

I don't think number of Distro affects the popularity of Linux. It is all free, freedom of choices but many business, offices, companies stick to Windows. Compatibility of softwares,functionality, stability of the Operating system will play major role in popularity in my opinion. I use (probably (99%) of my computing work with Linux variant. But for serious and important work I intend to do with windows. Linux is fun, enjoyable, and I can learn all about it from Internet, but also unpredictable what next.
bootdoc
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 35
Joined: Mon Apr 12, 2010 10:22 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by bootdoc »

:|[/quote]
... If he wants to try and assemble a "streamline Linux" coalition, then I wish him luck!

[/quote]

I think this is a great idea. Start a "streamline linux coalition and release a new distro!! :D
FedoraRefugee
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1274
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 11:25 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by FedoraRefugee »

bootdoc wrote::|
... If he wants to try and assemble a "streamline Linux" coalition, then I wish him luck!
I think this is a great idea. Start a "streamline linux coalition and release a new distro!! :D
As I said, concentrate on one of the uber-stable distros such as debian lenny or centos. Make it easy enough for the braindead to install and use.
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

Stumbled across this:
Posted May 13, 2009 at 1:06:55 AM
Subject: Just Overwhelmed at all the Distro Options

Astronomically devastated with sooooo many choices of distros. Don't know which one to choose. I find so many to be a disadvantage to installing Linux. It is a drawback for me. Also , it is very complicated to install the OS. Not simple at all. I would love to try it , but cannot because of the above stated factors. I wish there was not so many distro options and I do wish it was simple to install. Then I would try it.

http://www.linux.com/archive/forums/topic/5360
The installation woos don't really apply anymore, but this is what I think prevents a lot of newbies to take the Linux plunge.
Chakra Linux
User avatar
Fred
Level 10
Level 10
Posts: 3337
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2008 11:59 am
Location: NC USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by Fred »

mintnoob wrote:
The installation woos don't really apply anymore, but this is what I think prevents a lot of newbies to take the Linux plunge.
They do to the poster just as much as the choice thing does. You can't value one part of the post and poo-poo the other part as incorrect.

It does make my point admirably however. Why on earth would you want to do anything to attract this moron to Linux. Based on his statements he is unwilling or unable to learn how to install or make informed distro/software selections. If it is beyond his current knowledge base it is not for him. You actually think he will ever be a contributing member of the Linux community? If not, why should the community bother catering to his needs?

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.
FedoraRefugee
Level 6
Level 6
Posts: 1274
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2008 11:25 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by FedoraRefugee »

mintnoob wrote:Stumbled across this:
Posted May 13, 2009 at 1:06:55 AM
Subject: Just Overwhelmed at all the Distro Options

Astronomically devastated with sooooo many choices of distros. Don't know which one to choose. I find so many to be a disadvantage to installing Linux. It is a drawback for me. Also , it is very complicated to install the OS. Not simple at all. I would love to try it , but cannot because of the above stated factors. I wish there was not so many distro options and I do wish it was simple to install. Then I would try it.

http://www.linux.com/archive/forums/topic/5360

He is braindead! It does not take much research to find out that Ubuntu is the most popular, that is where I would start if i knew nothing about Linux. Then, as I got my feet wet and started paying attention I am sure that Mint thing would come up. "Ubuntu without the problems? The heck you say?"

I am with Fred. We do not need braindead people using Linux! I am sorry if that makes me elitist or whatever, but I really couldn't care less about helping those too stupid to help themselves.
JayKay3000
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 11:58 am
Contact:

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by JayKay3000 »

I did not vote but saw this topic as I had the same question on me today. Here's my view as a Windows user. (It took way longer to post than expected)

I did not vote YES because I think the amount of programs is good. Some, such as the video editing ones cater for different user levels and my webcam will only record with a certain webcam application.

Although it has taken me months and some trial and error to find the 'best' of the crop.

However I also did not vote NO.

So here's my answer, wrapped up in a rambling tale.

I've been a linux user for about a year and a half and would never have gotten into linux had a friend suggested a distro (it was ubuntu), I know, i'm another nub in the linux world. Woooo... ...But there are so many! Yet I am getting bored of Ubuntu after being in the loop for 2 releases.

I've recently started to venture out of my Ubuntu box and look around properly this time. Armed with Virtualbox, a collection of isos and some free time, I went about going on a mini Linux exploration.

I've come to the conclusion that the best thing about linux (the amount of distros) is also the worst. I like to try new things but going through the list is time consuming (I follow youtube channels of people who do the leg work for me). Even now Chackra is in the works trying to be that one that everyone wants. The choice is fantastic but only because I like computers. There are times when you just want to hit a few icons to get everything to work. Something like ubuntu is great for that. I've found I really like debian, got sucked in by glittery kde interfaces but ended up back at a gnome based distro. The chackra beta hated virtualbox so i'm hoping I can try it sometime.

I've not been that impressed by fedora (once you've seen one gnome interface...) and Mandriva is kde so yuck. I also went the complete polar opposite to ubuntu and got arch running with gnome which was fun to play with my inner geek (i had to read a manual for a change). I've tried others but these are the ones on my virtualbox playlist with Ubuntu being properly installed on a partition on my windows based laptop & PC.

I'd love there to be a linux for noobs, something like ubuntu perhaps, debian feels in between and then something like arch lets you get your geek on.

Oh wait... something like ubuntu?. That feels like a bit like mint! I've had it sitting on my PC and that menu is fantastic even in virtual box, full screen on my little 19 inch it looks really nice. It's gnome, but with a slight twist which is enough to make it feel a bit unique. There are so many kde/gnome clones.

However, it almost makes you think what Linux would be without all these options. It might even be, dare I say... boring!

Would people try to advance linux as fast? What would be the point in hurrying if there was just one? Competition breads innovation

Each distro is a result of what those people wanted because they were not happy with what was on offer or thought they could do better.

To a user looking in the amount of choice is bad because you might not know where do you start. But once you've got grounded for a while, got the basics, and can get around the distro you chose, then your in a position to look around and potentially switch.

On reflection, Linux, like everything you get needs to be evaluated so you can decide what you want. You can buy a camera 'which is the best' but it might not be right for you.

Ask yourself a question:

>What is my skill level?

With that information you have already narrowed the list down. Ubuntu is a great place to start and sure, over time if it interests you then you may go looking for something different. After all, there are so many guides. Youtube has lots of distro reviews and guides to help a novice install linux. Like your mother or father said 'DO YOUR HOMEWORK' and you will be prepared.
randomizer
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 864
Joined: Mon May 03, 2010 7:15 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by randomizer »

FYI, Mandriva has a GNOME version as well (along with other DEs/WMs).
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

FedoraRefugee wrote:

I am with Fred. We do not need braindead people using Linux! I am sorry if that makes me elitist or whatever, but I really couldn't care less about helping those too stupid to help themselves.
That comes across as very elitist. I'm actually surprised you use Mint. I see you were using Fedora though. Your personality seems more fitting for that distro, or one geared more towards the "pros."
Last edited by mintnoob on Sat Jun 05, 2010 2:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
Chakra Linux
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

JayKay3000 wrote: Like your mother or father said 'DO YOUR HOMEWORK' and you will be prepared.
That's a big part of the problem. Most computer users don't want to have to do homework. They want a computer with an OS to get up and running so they can do the things they want to do on it without thinking about it. It seems like only lately that few distros have been able to work out of the box like Mint. That's why I choose it after a Linux pro recommended it for me.

As for your recent distrohopping adventure, how many distros have you hopped through so far? And how many of those single distros did you hop through the multiple DEs they offer?
Chakra Linux
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

Just saw this. Supports my previous mention that Linux shares are a puny 1%.
Linux makes gains as Windows and Mac OS slip

By Adrian Kingsley-Hughes | June 1, 2010, 11:16am PDT

Data by web metrics firm Net Applications shows that while both Windows and Mac OS lost usage share in May, Linux made a small gain.

Here’s the data for May:

* Windows: 91.28% (down 0.18%)
* Mac: 5.27% (down 0.05%)
* Linux: 1.13% (0.08%)

While the gain made by Linux is a small one, it is a gain nonetheless, and it’s interesting to note that while commercial operating systems are losing usage share, the free open source OS is gaining share.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/hardware/linu ... -slip/8471
Here's how I see it:

* Windows: 91.28% (# of choices: 5)
* Mac: 5.27% (# of choices: 7)
* Linux: 1.13% (# of choices: 2,500+)

Seems to support my point.


This guy seems to agree with me (although rather harshly):
1.13% after what18 years now??

AHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHHA

Let us know when it makes substancial numbers on the desktop.1.13% is a total utter failure after all this time

Stan57 06/01/2010 11:49 AM
Chakra Linux
randomizer
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 864
Joined: Mon May 03, 2010 7:15 am

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by randomizer »

mintnoob wrote:That comes across as very elitist.
It is not elitist to expect people to help themselves instead of being on life support just to get through the day.
mintnoob wrote:That's a big part of the problem. Most computer users don't want to have to do homework. They want a computer with an OS to get up and running so they can do the things they want to do on it without thinking about it.
If they want to do anything apart from surfing the web and checking emails, they will have to do their homework. There is no OS known to man that is so heavily abstracted as to be usable by someone who hasn't got a clue what they're doing. If someone doesn't want to do their homework that's their bad luck. I'm surprised people with such little initiative can hold a job.
mintnoob wrote:Just saw this. Supports my previous mention that Linux shares are a puny 1%.
Oh look, more meaningless web statistics. This one says OSX is 5%, the last one I saw was 10%. Very accurate indeed.
mintnoob wrote: Here's how I see it:

* Windows: 91.28% (# of choices: 5)
* Mac: 5.27% (# of choices: 7)
* Linux: 1.13% (# of choices: 2,500+)
I'm not sure I understand your point. Why do you expect that market share should be higher if there are more versions of a particular OS (especially when most are essentially the same and many are dead)? There's no connection between the two...
mintnoob wrote:This guy seems to agree with me
Oh, I apologise for not quoting random commenters to support my arguments too. I'll make sure to do that next time. :wink:
Progressor
Level 1
Level 1
Posts: 20
Joined: Sat May 29, 2010 3:45 pm
Location: Netherlands
Contact:

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by Progressor »

I think the amount of choice contributes to a more popular Ubuntu within the Linux comunity, not to a less popular Linux in general. Ubuntu is like a 'default choice', a choice for people who can't choose so to say. Everyone around me who I tolled that I was gonna switch to Linux automatically assumed Ubuntu.

I believe the choice to switch to Linux is separate of the choice of distro at that point. Time passing (very roughly ;-)):
-Hmm, let's switch too Linux -> wait, there are more Linuxes? -> popular choice feels like safe choice.
User avatar
Zwopper
Level 10
Level 10
Posts: 3078
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2007 12:20 pm
Location: Deep in the Swedish woods
Contact:

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by Zwopper »

Image
My artwork at deviantART | My Band - Electric Alchemea
CREA DIEM!

Lenovo U330P | i5 | 16GB | 128GB - SSD | Elemantary OS 0.4
User avatar
mintnoob
Level 5
Level 5
Posts: 631
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2009 11:46 pm
Location: USA

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by mintnoob »

Zwopper wrote:DNFTT
If you are going to throw insults at me for trying to find out why Linux' popularity is only at a dismall and embarrasing 1% of the desktop market, at least have the guts to explain why you think I'm trolling. Let's hear your explanation(s) why Linux is still just a blip on the radar in the desktop market.
Chakra Linux
User avatar
markfiend
Level 4
Level 4
Posts: 310
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2009 2:56 pm
Location: Leeds, UK

Re: Would Linux be more popular with LESS choice?

Post by markfiend »

mintnoob wrote:Let's hear your explanation(s) why Linux is still just a blip on the radar in the desktop market.
I know you weren't asking me but IMO the explanations are largely as follows:
  • Advertising budget. MS is advertising Windows 7 on the TV quite heavily at the moment here in the UK. This costs money, and a lot of it. Linux has an advertising budget (effectively) of zero. It's all done by word-of-mouth and (let's face it) by open-source evangelists.
  • Most computer users stick with whatever the computer came installed with. They just aren't interested in installing a new OS.
Image
I still don't really understand why the "market share" of Linux is important to you.
Omnia mutantur, nihil interit.
Post Reply

Return to “Chat about Linux”