Time to address the failings of Linux on the desktop?

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by Peter, Jul 28, 2007.

  1. Peter

    Peter Guest

    Mickey Mouse wrote:
    > Some serious comments and consideration is now being given to points
    > raised by leading Linux kernel developer
    >

    http://www.nuxified.org/article/fork_a_kernel_kill_an_os_and_revolutionize_the_desktop

    From further down on the same page ...

    "However, if you reread the article you would see that I in no way argued
    that GNU/Linux is not better and that it is not ready for the desktop.
    Saying that it sucks less than anything else does mean that it is the best
    thing around. My point was simply that things can be even better. We can be
    even better than merely better than anyone else. We can leave them trailing
    us hopelessly and obviously. Why else would I call this a "revolution" in
    computing? Because it is not just about beating other platforms, it is
    about beating ourselves. Why does merely "being better" have to be enough?"
    Peter, Jul 28, 2007
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Peter

    Mickey Mouse Guest

    Some serious comments and consideration is now being given to points raised
    by leading Linux kernel developer who quit after seeing numerous
    desktop-related issues not receiving the attention they deserved.

    One commentator believes that it is time to fork the Linux kernel and get
    serious about desktop issues. Danijel Orsolic's overview includes;

    º Linux kernel is too bloated
    It was made for servers because that's where its initial success was
    possible and where most of the money came.

    º Lack of communication with desktop users
    In a Free Software world we have the freedom, but we also have social and
    cultural norms which are often enough of an obstacle to healthy
    communication and cooperation. Some of those norms are beneficial, and some
    are quite hurtful.

    º Lack of innovation
    Why do we still need a specially optimized Linux kernel just to properly
    enable music production? Shouldn't real time audio processing just work
    absolutely flawlessly on computers containing dual core CPUs? Even Windows
    XP doesn't have this requirement.
    But, so far, GNU/Linux is becoming just another bloated OS which is
    incapable of making the most out of the most powerful hardware we have ever
    had.

    º Solutions?
    One of the solutions being pondered is forking a Linux kernel into a kernel
    which would specifically be aimed at desktop users and their needs. It could
    be ran in a way which would allow for a seamless two way communication
    between desktop users and kernel developers, because they would share much
    of the same interests in this project. This means that an ordinary user
    would be able to leave a bug report or a suggestion without being flamed as
    a newbie who doesn't know anything, but rather awarded with contribution
    points.

    http://www.nuxified.org/article/fork_a_kernel_kill_an_os_and_revolutionize_the_desktop
    Mickey Mouse, Jul 28, 2007
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Peter

    peterwn Guest

    Mickey Mouse wrote:
    > Some serious comments and consideration is now being given to points
    > raised by leading Linux kernel developer who quit after seeing numerous
    > desktop-related issues not receiving the attention they deserved.
    >


    Just one guy's opinion in a large and dynamic community. He is entitled
    to make these comments including community priorities the way he sees
    them.

    Differences of opinion are inevitable in any kind of bazaar operation.

    That person's key concern relates to a feature that Linus and Andrew
    have for whatever reason chosen not to include in the core kernel.
    However they do have a formidable track record of sound decision making
    when it comes to kernel design, so it is likely that their judgment is
    sound in this matter.

    There may well be concern that the Linux kernel is optimised more for
    servers than for the desktop. However this is obviously not considered
    a significant mainstream problem by most of those involved, otherwise
    the dynamics of the community would tend towards addressing it. Anyone
    is free to 'fork' the kernel at any time, and / or develop an
    alternative *NIX OS which will run the current vast base of applications
    software. No doubt there are people with visions of proceeding in that
    direction, but nothing has come to fruition yes, maybe it will one day.

    Having said that, there is nothing to stop anyone from 'tailoring' the
    kernel to meet specific needs, just as long as they publish the
    'tailoring' code as required by the GPL.


    A swallow does not make Spring, so the odd outspoken comment or
    difference of opinion does not indicate the immediate implosion of the
    whole open source community.
    peterwn, Jul 28, 2007
    #3
  4. Peter

    RL Guest

    Mickey Mouse wrote:
    > Some serious comments and consideration is now being given to points
    > raised by leading Linux kernel developer who quit after seeing numerous
    > desktop-related issues not receiving the attention they deserved.
    >


    It is a load of hot air.

    The desktop and kernel should be entirely seprarate. Even in Windows,
    the desktop and kernel are distinctly separate entities. If you wish,
    you can run Windows without Explorer.

    It is absolutely true that Linux kernel is bloated, and support for
    multimedia and other devices is lacking. This is the fault of decisions
    made regarding binary compatibility, or more specifically, lack thereof.
    These decisions were deliberately made to ensure people were forced to
    contribute back to the main source tree. The attitude that closed-source
    drivers are evil, and nothing is to be fully supported unless it is also
    GPL'd and in the main source tree is the problem. If companies could
    produce binary-only drivers, that worked reliably from one kernel
    release to the next, then support would be greatly improved IMO.

    The attitude that "Linux just sucks less" also shows the way these
    people think. Unless they realise that people do not want to stuff
    around with file system permissions, 'su', compile drivers and
    applications manually, and spend ten minutes waiting for the computer to
    boot and shutdown, then they are never going to produce an OS that the
    masses actually want to use. Windows has a lot of appeal BECAUSE it is
    inherently less secure than Linux. People can actually use it, without
    having to jump through hoops to do so.

    What this person is proposing is to move to a *BSD-like development
    methodology, bringing userland and kernel devlopment under one unified
    release. I very much doubt the BSD or Linux kernels require that much
    work to make them function well on the desktop. The problem is largely
    the desktop itself. X Windows is fine for what it was designed for, but
    it is not a high performance environment, nor is there anything remotely
    uniform from one desktop environment to the next. Why can't I past with
    Shift+Insert in all applications? I can under Windows, I'm not forced to
    use Ctrl+P for some applications, and the middle mouse button for
    others. Usability is the key to resolve for getting either platform on
    the desktop. Make them work the same, make them easy to use, and people
    will start to use them.

    - RL
    RL, Jul 28, 2007
    #4
  5. Peter

    Gordon Guest

    On Sat, 28 Jul 2007 16:31:12 +1200, RL wrote:

    > Windows has a lot of appeal BECAUSE it is inherently less secure than
    > Linux. People can actually use it, without having to jump through hoops
    > to do so.


    How about, too much trouble learning why running as root is a bad idea.

    Still, same goes for many other things in life. Hence the success of
    scams and frauds.
    Gordon, Jul 28, 2007
    #5
  6. Peter

    RL Guest

    Gordon wrote:
    > On Sat, 28 Jul 2007 16:31:12 +1200, RL wrote:
    >
    >> Windows has a lot of appeal BECAUSE it is inherently less secure than
    >> Linux. People can actually use it, without having to jump through hoops
    >> to do so.

    >
    > How about, too much trouble learning why running as root is a bad idea.


    The average Windows user wouldn't even know why the root user exists.
    Many of them are automatically logged in as an administrator when they
    turn their PC on, I'm sure a fair number of those people wouldn't even
    know it was possible to have multiple accounts.

    I do think it is fair enough for most people to just treat a computer as
    a device that does something, without being at all concenerd with how it
    does it. Don't get me started on IT training either, a lot of those
    so-called experts, particularly those MCSE people, wouldn't know the
    slightest thing about how a computer actually does what it does either.

    - RL
    RL, Jul 28, 2007
    #6
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Tech

    Isn't Now the Time to Try a Linux Desktop?

    Tech, Jul 12, 2004, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    9
    Views:
    395
    Perce P. Cassidy
    Jul 12, 2004
  2. Photo Moron

    10d high school football failings

    Photo Moron, Feb 7, 2004, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    6
    Views:
    393
    David J. Littleboy
    Feb 8, 2004
  3. Replies:
    6
    Views:
    1,294
    Ramon F Herrera
    Oct 21, 2007
  4. Have a nice cup of pee

    Linux... yeah linux.. Linux

    Have a nice cup of pee, Apr 12, 2006, in forum: NZ Computing
    Replies:
    19
    Views:
    642
    Bette Noir
    Apr 17, 2006
  5. Rich
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    288
Loading...

Share This Page