[mythtv-users] OT: 13 reasons why Linux won't make it to a desktop near you

David Meixner dmeixner at uiuc.edu
Fri Nov 9 20:04:26 UTC 2007

I think some of you may enjoy this.  I copied some highlights below.  The
full article can be found here

You're a marketer who finds an exciting new product developed by some really
smart people. A great product few people have heard of is the Holy Grail of
marketing -- all you have to do is tell everyone about it, and the world
will beat a path to your door.

Isn't that the theory?

When you look more closely, you find it's not that simple. In fact, you find
a set of insurmountable obstacles. Here's a short list:

   1. The people who make the product have no money for marketing.

   2. The reason they have no money is that they give the product away.

   3. Since they give the product away, people never see it in shops.

   4. Because people never see the product in shops or adverstised, they
don't know it exists.

   5. The makers of the product rely on word of mouth to attract more
customers, but their customers only talk to each other.

   6. On closer inspection, you find that there are 500 versions of the
product. When you try to understand the subtle differences between them, you
become confused. Your enthusiasm starts to flag.

   7. When you install the product and try to use it, you strike unexpected
problems. You also find some nice surprises, which boosts your flagging
enthusiasm a little.

   8. When you ask the product's maker for help, he suggests you talk to
other users. They welcome you with open arms but answer your questions in a
strange language.

   9. When you admit that you have trouble understanding their language,
you're told you'd better learn it, or you won't appreciate the product.

  10. When you tell the designers that their product isn't marketable in its
present form, they say that's okay, since they only wrote it to share with
their friends.

  11. As you wonder what to make of it all, you watch the designers and
their supporters squabble among themselves over all kinds of trivia. As you
realize that their collective focus isn't on fighting their real
competitors, what's left of your enthusiasm ebbs further away.

  12. When you ask the people in charge why they don't show more leadership,
they say they have no power to unite the squabbling communities. They add
that disagreement and vigorous debate were the very fires that forged the
great product in the first place.

  13. When you discover that some of the designers have made deals with
their biggest competitor, the last drop of your enthusiasm drains away.

The catch

There's an old joke that begins like this: What if operating systems were

    * Windows Airlines -- The terminal is pretty and colorful, with friendly
stewards, easy baggage check and boarding, and a smooth take-off. After
about 10 minutes in the air, the plane explodes with no warning whatsoever.

    * Mac Airlines -- All the stewards, stewardesses, captains, baggage
handlers and ticket agents look the same, act the same, and talk the same.
Every time you ask questions about details, you are told you don't need to
know, don't want to know, and would you please return to your seat and watch
the movie.

    * Linux Airlines -- Disgruntled employees of all the other OS airlines
decide to start their own airline. They build the planes, ticket counters,
and pave the runways themselves. They charge a small fee to cover the cost
of printing the ticket, but you can also download and print the ticket
yourself. When you board the plane, you are given a seat, four bolts, a
wrench and a copy of the seat-HOWTO.html. Once settled, the fully adjustable
seat is very comfortable, the plane leaves and arrives on time without a
single problem, the in-flight meal is wonderful. You try to tell customers
of the other airlines about the great trip, but all they can say is, 'You
had to do what with the seat?'

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