[linux-elitists] PengPod engineers for a new project

Jason White jason at jasonjgw.net
Thu Aug 8 02:01:29 PDT 2013


Teh Entar-Nick  <nick at teh.entar.net> wrote:

>When the rights-abridging consumer mainstream is Android on Linux, all
>that's left are GNU Elitists.

Agreed.
>
>    Google is our Symbolics.

If you mean that it's shifting people away from open development and toward
proprietary development, as Symbolics apparently did in the Lisp community,
then it's a plausible position to hold, but at best it's a hypothesis in need
of testing.

I suspect that most of the people who are writing proprietary Android
applications, in its absence, would be doing the same work under a different
operating system rather than writing free software in the FSF sense.

I've read claims (again plausible) that OS X has significantly attracted users
and developers away from GNU/Linux. Some might argue that the wave of publicly
expressed dissatisfaction, first in response to KDE 4 and later in response to
GNOME 3, would send users fleeing toward other operating systems. This, too,
is entirely plausible, although it should be noted that other operating
systems (including Microsoft's, according to what I've read) are reshaping
their GUIs at the moment to accommodate the rise of mobile devices. GNOME and
KDE are not alone (and there are always XFCE, LXCE etc., available to the
dissatisfied).

As to predicting the long term, I suppose it depends on whether you think what
we today call phones and tablets, and the operating systems running on them,
will ultimately displace desktop machines as traditionally understood. We
could be heading into an era of Linux in the server room, Linux (Android,
Firefox OS, Ubuntu Touch, KDE Plasma or whatever) in the end-user-facing
devices, and nothing in between as the PC legacy slowly disappears. There
would
be both new challenges and opportunities for software freedom in that
environment.




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