[linux-elitists] MSFT Survey -- Fwd: [frankwilliams291@hotmail.com: Survey]

Geoff Lane zzassgl@buffy.sighup.org.uk
Sun Dec 21 01:28:18 PST 2003

On Sat, Dec 20, 2003 at 06:02:46PM -0800, Karsten M. Self wrote:
> On-line survey about Linux in the home:
> http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=17174325370&c=2210
> On-line survey about Linux at work:
> http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=2550325411&c=2210

Well, I completed the home survey but the work survey was impossible to
complete with any honesty.  The questions were so confused and often
irrelevant to the real world at work.  Some of the questions were impossible
to answer correctly - for example "how many nodes?" when asking about Linux
"cluster".  What on earth does that mean?  We have multiple Beowulfs, some
with hundreds of CPUs.  Limiting the answer to a maximum of 8 means no
interpretation can be made of the question that fits the facts.

Thinking about it, the real question MS is asking is, "What do we have to do
to Windows that would convince you to use it rather than an alternative?"

Which is, of course, a pointless question.  There isn't a checklist of
missing features in Windows, which if provided, would convince me to use the
Windows paradigm.

I'm typing this on a fairly new Toshiba Satellite Pro 6100 laptop which was
bought with WindowsXP pre-installed.  After using XP for a couple of months,
I converted it to a duel boot Redhat 8 system (it spends 95% of it's time
running RH and this is increasing as I find suitable alternatives to
Windows-only applications.) I bought a boxed RH8 so I spent about as much on
installing Linux as I would have if I'd bought WindowsXP for a bare machine.

Why did I do that?  Because I want to be be master of the machine, not the
other way around. I know, or can find out, why each item of Linux software
on my computer is there.  If it goes wrong I have a pretty good idea of
where and why and what I have to do to fix it because I have a MENTAL MODEL
of the operation of the system that's pretty accurate.  I have no such
reliable understanding of the operation of Windows.

Windows isn't an answer to a question I'm asking; but then neither are Gnome
or KDE.  Current desktops are still little different from the orginal Xerox
ideas. Surely there are better schemes to be discovered?

Geoff Lane
"Bother", said Pooh, as he started up Norton Utilities

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