Sunday, January 23, 2005

Linux is like communism.

I saw this great comment today on Tim Blairs' site:
"I run Linux, which was built by a world-wide group of individuals in their spare time for the good of humanity. "
Classic stuff eh?
I was only thinking about Linux myself the other day, and how much it was like communism.
  • Most of the people who recommend it don't actually use it, but they think that you should be.
  • It seems to work much better in theory than reality.
  • If it doesn't work, it's because you weren't using it properly.
  • It is advertised as free but it takes twice as much of your time to accomplish half the result. Apparently your time isn't counted as a cost.
  • It is for "the good of humanity".
  • It is another example of the "educated 2%" knowing what is best for the rest of us.
  • It is all about reducing the needs of the user to the level the system can deliver as opposed to providing a system which the user can expand and customise to its' own needs.

Before one of you says "Hey Gibbo, most of the internet runs on Linux", the Linux they use certainly isn't free and neither are the armies of highly paid techs who keep it all running. Not free mate! Not even cheap... in reality!!!

The real cost of free systems is very often far too high.


Anonymous said...

Yeah, I always loved Linux until I tried to install the damn thing.

Once I got it working, I started with confusion at my inability to install, then progressed to annoyance that it was so hard to do the stuff I wanted.

I then had a Zen-like moment when I realised why all the anti-Microsoft screeds are so ridiculous: they assume it's more important to have a piece of software that isn't from Redmond than to have a piece of software that actually works.

Gimme a break!

Splat Guy

Anonymous said...

Linux has improved a lot for desktop users but I agree with the ridiculous anti-Microsoft crap that goes on and the hole 'community' thing is a little creepy.


Dilletante said...

Hey Gibbo,

Both you and the wide-eyed evangelicals have the wrong end of the stick. Linux is free as in "speech" not free as in "beer".

In the real world we use TCO calculations that have setup and support as costing more for Linux. This is mostly due to market forces though as the demand for Linux skills is higher than for MCSEs. Linux obviously has lower licencing costs.

As for your last complaint, that applies to every OS on the market but the customization and expansion is a lot easier in an open system than a proprietry one.

An amusing analogy and they never really bear close scrutiny.