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SubjectRe: Good point of Linux over Windows NT
> 4. More brainlessness and user-friendliness, both in use of the OS (a nicely
> pre-configured window manager would do) and of installation and use of
> applications. That is largely why people like MS Windows and why people
> write applications for it. This may sound heretical, but, point of fact,
> what do we really want? We want to be able use UN*X (preferably Linux) at
> work. Jobs! That's what the people want! This will only happen if we let
> less advanced users in on the game. Either way, we'll end up fixing
> neophytes' systems. Would you rather it be Windows or Linux? This is
> largely why Mac has managed to hold such a large percentage of market with a
> closed, propriety system over DOS.

With standard redhat installation, RPM and the redhat control panel make a lot
of this possible (as well as other configuration / package management tools
i.e. linuxconf)

> 5. Applications!! Applications!! That's also partly why Windows won out
> over OS/2 (despite the fact that OS/2 could run 16-bit Windows apps faster
> than Windows). This is partly also why NeXT never took off, nor did the
> eariler movement to market UN*X flavors for 80x86 (the price didn't help that
> either). Ultimately, if the OS has no applications (and ones that look
> good--unlike many of the stock X apps), then few will use it. We already
> have several big applications: Netscape, Mathematica, WordPerfect, etc.
> Adobe makes several products for Sun and SGI. How difficult would a port be?
> Another idea is support for cross-development, perhaps supporting (or
> translating) code from IDEs like Visual C++, Visual Basic, Borland stuff,
> etc. Perhaps a free implementation of the Microsoft Foundation Classes,
> for X/UN*X, that could be compiled with g++?

There is already a lot of really good free software available for linux.
But something that I think what would particularly be useful is a
commercial c/c++ compiler. (NOTE: This is not a mark against gcc, however
to the best of my knowledge the disassembling of any code compiled with gcc
and use thereof is perfectly legal, please correct me if I am wrong)

> I have been following up on the NeXT buy-out, reading with some interest in
> the attempt to merge the OSes. Sounds like a bad idea. Nevertheless, one of
> the commentators mentioned that an improved Mac shell would incorporate
> features of the NeXT OS, but drop the UN*X shell and commands. It
> occurred to me what a splendid thing it would be if someone developed an
> OS which had both a nice, user-friendly GUI, for the graphic designers
> and secretaries, and a good command-line interface, like a UN*X shell and
> commands, that's fully tweakable. Imagine--a real choice!

Actually, if you put a good window manager over X (i.e. AfterStep) and built
some GUI configuration interface to it (which is something I have been
debating doing to AfterStep's .steprc) that included a way to add new
software to your popup menu or wharf or whatever menuing system you use
without having to edit a text file (something I have noticed about the way
my bosses work is that they love to go through and click to configure stuff
but as soon as they have to do it with a text editor they're lost) then
you've got it made. Sure, you can leave advanced stuff to the advanced users,
but you can't forget the users of the system.

Geoff Harrison - System Administrator, IntelliMedia Commerce
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