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Old 27. May 2009, 03:39 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 216

Thanks for your well-written response Mike.
But, to continue playing the "devil's advocate", I must say that I (like many other windows users) am still not enticed. Furthermore, I am relatively tech-savy, not afraid of a command prompt (I started on a TRS-80), and have had a couple (unenjoyable) run-ins with the MBR. So, I think there's something more that's keeping even techies from trying linux. Here I have paraphrased your points and added my responses which are probably similar to other windows users' responses:
1) it's free
-That's a good point for non-techies and most moral techies, but I'm not so moral and, therefore, can get lots of things for free
2) it's easy to install
-Certainly a plus if one is convinced to install it
3) updates automatically
-As can windows
4) many software packages are identical to windows and can do "practically anything" windows can
-OK, that's what most windows folks want to know! In fact, a list of compatibility with common programs would be useful. If it, indeed, can run everything I'm using now then I could be easily convinced to give it a try.
5) it's safer
-That's useful for non-techies, but the tech-savy have few problems (and may even enjoy) keeping the bad guys out
6) it runs well on older machines
-Ok, maybe that's a plus for some folks out there
7) relatively easy to use
-But not easier than the status quo
8) people like it once they try it
-That's good to know
9) it's not part of the big-business-marketing-wasteland
-I definitely think that's a selling point, but maybe only for a rebellious subgroup of users (most of who are probably techies)

In summary, I'm not persuaded yet. Nor are other users, maybe for the same reasons. I agree that the technically-naive are scared of linux for all the reasons you mention. My impression, like yours, is that most linux users are technically savy. However, I would argue that out of all the techies, there is still only a minority of them that use linux. For it to really catch on, there has to be something that linux can do, that windows can't do. Firefox, for example, won people over because all the extensions made it do things that IE couldn't.
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