Monday, June 14, 2010

Lazy Computer Users??

I was reading the Blog of Helios the other day and found an article about the use of the word restricted in Linux.  What he seemed to be talking about, was the fact that the use of the word bothered new Linux users to the point that they might not install the restricted drivers or codecs.  The article seemed to be saying  that it was a little daunting to new users that when the word restricted was used it conveyed a meaning of illegal.  

It was an interesting article, but what really caught my attention were the comments about the post.  It seemed that a lot of the comments were from Linux users saying that Linux was only for people willing to learn the operating system so that they could make repairs and learn how to get different things working such as hardware.  Some went so far as to call Microsoft users lazy.  And that lazy users don't  deserve or shouldn't use Linux.

I remember when I first started building systems back in the days of DOS.  Back then very few people that I knew even wanted a computer.  The main reason was that the computer didn't do anything that they wanted it to unless they bought programs that were fully functional or learn DOS.  After Apple and Microsoft came out with a point and click desktop, people started buying computers even though they were expensive.

When I first started using Linux I used to read in the forums that more people would try Linux if only hardware manufactures would make Linux drivers so that the hardware would be more functional.

Most people use Windows, in my opinion, because it just works.  You get an install CD every time you buy a new piece of hardware and load the drivers and the hardware works great.  People don't buy computers because they can't learn how to build there own, they do it because they can't be bothered they just want to buy a computer bring it home and start using it.   That is where Windows OS excels over Linux.  Even though Linux is a much better OS it will never be mainstream until all the Linux geeks out there stop trying to keep it so secretive and geeky.  They will counter by saying that they want an OS where they have complete freedom to do whatever they want with it.  If that is the case then why argue with people who are trying to make Linux more user friendly?  All the people who say that Windows users are to lazy to be allowed to use Linux might just be to lazy to build there own Linux from scratch.  Instead they download a version like Debian or Ubuntu.

If Linux is ever going to go mainstream it needs to be useful to the average user, not just the enthusiasts.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Back to Mint 7

 Well I have reinstalled Mint 7 64bit and am happy once again.  I am able to go into the audio section and adjust the sliders for speakers, microphone and line in.  Skype again has choices as to which type of speaker or mike to use, such as USB, or the normal line in Mic.  I really believe that Mint 9, Isadora is a better OS, but I think I will just wait awhile before I try it again.

I was reading about the new audio Codec that Ubuntu is going to use for there Music Store.  I think that is great-so that we wont have to use the MP3 Codec.  What I am wondering though, is the new codec going to be available on any Linux?  Or is this just a new type of lock in that will only be available for Ubuntu distributions.  When it comes to the use of codecs I am pretty fuzzy about which ones are legal and which ones are not.  For instance, I own a copy of Windows 7.  So did buying the Microsoft OS give me the legal right to use their codecs in Linux?  I have no idea.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Trouble with Ubuntu 10.04?

Is anyone having trouble with the newest version of Ubuntu?  I am having all sorts of trouble.  Sound and flash issues mostly.  Also my Compiz settings keep going back to simple.  In order to get Compiz to keep my settings I had to take out the program "compiz-check" which says that it checks your system to make sure you can use compiz settings.

Of course I use Linux Mint, but did have Ubuntu Lucid 10.04 installed for a short while.  The same problems seem to show up in Ubuntu.  The sound may work better than I think it does, but there are just so many choices for sound servers that I honestly cannot figure out which one to use with my system.  I understand that I could get someone in the forums to help me out--and surely I will try--It is just that as of Mint 7 everything seemed to be working just fine on my machine.  Starting with the next release things seem to quit working as well as they did.

I am seriously considering going back to Mint 7 even though it is no longer supported.  Is anyone else having the same problems I am?  I would surely like your input here.  I even had to switch from the 64bit version to the 32bit OS so that I could get flash to work well.  Now I can get pop outs to work while streaming video on Hulu while using Firefox although I still have to use the Chrome browser if I want to read news articles that have a lot of youtube videos embedded in them.

While many things may be much better in these newer releases, it seems to me that they are getting less and less ready to go after the install process.  I thought the idea behind Ubuntu was to get an OS that was more like Windows in as much that it was ready to go after the initial install.  I thought Mint 7 did this very well. Now it seems that in making the OS better they are leaving so much to do after installing that it is more difficult for the average person to finish setting up his or her system.  For instance,  the sound server that is automatically configured on install no longer works well on my system.  When I looked at the preferences there were so many different choices in servers for sound that I honestly had no idea which one to choose.

Is Ubuntu leaving too much up to the end-user?

If they want more people to switch from Microsoft it would seem to me that initial configuration would be better.  In my opinion, the people that want to choose there own settings will use a different OS such as Debian or possibly Gentoo.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sharing Ideas

This blog is about using Linux for the average person. Hopefully, you like me enjoy Linux. I do not profess to being a Linux guru or anything of the sort. I would like to share my experience with you and maybe you will also share your ideas with myself and others.

Currently I am using Linux Mint 9 RC 32 bit. I have been using Mint since Mint 5 and sometimes switch to Ubuntu. Normally I dual boot with Windows 7. I just find some things I can do in Windows that I still have not learned how to do in Linux.

I prefer Linux over Microsoft because of viruses and it doesn't "phone home" unless you want it to. I just feel like I am getting a better experience and do not have to worry about intrusion so much.