March 09, 2005

Sigh... the pitiful fact about... Well... people...

     Brian (not D, he seems to have some sort of head on his shoulders) seems to have pointed out the view that most Americans take: "Well I don't see the problem with it, and there doesn't seem to be anything better out there, so I'll stick with this until someone rams the answer up my ass like I'm some prison inmate's bitch." People in America seem to have the same answer for everything: "I'll stick with what's easiest until something else becomes easier." This may not seem true, but when you think about it, it is. Most people proclaim that the cheapest will always prevail, but that's disproven right here. Linux is FREE (Doesn't get much cheaper than that), and yet people still avoid it. Why? Because it's not easy. What has happened is that Microsoft has such an extreme grip on the market that OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers (the people who make pre-built computers like Dell and Gateway)) are forced to sell computers with windows pre-installed. Microsoft has basically set the ground rules that if an OEM sells a computer with any other system on it (or with any software that Microsoft is trying to kill), that they will either lose their Windows license (the right to install Windows on the computers they sell), or will be forced to buy the license at significantly higher prices. Yes OEMs are bullied out of providing you with better options. The main reason Linux remains so user-unfriendly is because they can't get feedback from anyone who tries Linus except for those who don't care about user-unfriendly environments.
     But hey! What about those great guys at Mac? Don't they get any credit? Of course they are the second most popular system next to windows, but the truth is that it wasn't made for you either Brian. Don't act like you're some expert in the field of OSs because you've tried the two largest companies. Mac is made for those who need art applications and art applications alone. Any, and I mean ANY other use is purely for those who are arty but do other things as well. Indeed Mac is a superior system to windows, but it is NOT designed for the average consumer, and it never will be because it is a niche market product. Mac has found a huge audience who is willing to buy and they're going to build their product towards that market: END OF STORY. Therefore comparing Windows to Mac is a moot point. They are each two completely different systems each designed for a specific audience. Now I do want to point out that Windows is indeed for a targeted audience, not everyone.
     Windows is targeted towards three kinds of people: The businessmen, the young, and the lazy/stupid. The business man because his employees are more then likely already used to windows and because Microsoft will more then likely pressure you into it anyway, the young to get them hooked (yes, just like the tobacco industry), and the lazy/stupid because they understand that the computer market has its balls in Microsoft's vice so all they have to do is make sure that's all you can buy without putting some effort and thought into it.
     Now, this has all gotten kind of off track from the IE vs FireFox issue, so I'll get back to that. Now FireFox is free. No if ands or buts. There is no "hideen charge," no spyware, no credit card number needed. Now ask yourselves: "Is Internet Explorer free?" Why of course it is! You can download it straight from! There's no strings attached to that one either! ...or is there?
     When you buy a copy of windows, what ALWAYS comes bundled with it? Internet Explorer, right? Well then what's the catch? Before Microsoft "integrated" internet explorer into computers, IE was sold separately for $35. So why does windows cost so much? It's estimated that a quarter of the cost of Windows is IE. So why offer IE for free? To make people BELIEVE that it's free. Basically since it is impossible to get a $35 discount on windows by getting a version of windows that doesn't include IE, you pay for it. Regardless of weather or not you got it for free off the net, simply by buying ANY copy of windows you BUY Internet Explorer. Don't believe me? Then ask yourselves this: Why did Microsoft's stock quadruple after adding this supposedly free product to their operating system? Shouldn't giving away a product for free do nothing for your company? (Note: yes I know that free inscentives attract new customers but they already control this market completely so any new customers would be a moot point to their profit)
     Besides all of that, the main reason you should switch over from IE to firefox is because of the things you can't see. I'm sure that (unless you're a complete putz) you've downloaded a "security update" for windows before (from windowsupdate, you know! that little earth with a microsoft logo platered on it that says "New updates are ready to install" on occasion?). Well if you haven't already noticed, it didn't seem to do much for your computer. You probably noticed, in fact, that NOTHING CHANGED after you installed it. And yet some fundemental feature in Windows was fixed that once allowed hackers to get near your personal information. When you compare FireFox to IE they seem very similar, but FireFox still remains a superior product to IE. It's because of all the things you don't see that make it better, and even some of the things you do see. For example a built in pop-up blocker and a plugin to elminate banner ads. The main reason though is because IE allows the silent installation of spyware, a leading cause of computer crashes. Certainly FireFox requires more matinence in some ways (you have to get the newer clients from their website when they come out and they won't have any real way of telling you something new is out), but the pros outweigh the cons. I'm glad to hear that you don't run your computer like a moron and experience few crashes, but unfortunately 86% of the country is less capable then you and experience frequent crashes. People can't maintain their computers with the software microsoft provides because it was designed to allow too much. They tried to think of every single way that a website might use their product and make exceptions and allowences that degrade security to such a point that there pratically is none. FireFox on the other hand allows about the same amount of leeway as far as websites are concerned except they provide pop-up alerts when a website tries to do something suspicious. Sigh, I hate this. I'm going to be stuck for at least a week fighting Brian about this aren't I? Sigh... This is why I don't like writing about Microsoft.

Oh, and as a side note, Linux has become almost as simple as Windows to install (with certain distributions), so try checking out some of the REALLY user friendly ones!

Mandrake Linux - One of my personal favorites. Has some really great and interesting desktop environments. If you feel like completely dumping the microsoft look download this, get a mouse with a mouse wheel, and use "Enlightenment" as your choice of desktop. A little disorienting at first, but once you get it down it's insanely fast. (Note: You can get Enlightenment on any Linux system, but Mandrake has the easiest installer)

Redhat Linux - Felipe says his favorite desktop is on the Fedora subsection of Redhat, but redhat overall normally tried to stay mildly user-friendly, but I haven't kept up with their recent installs.

Suse Linux - Getting into the user-unfrindly section of Linux. This one is what Mitch seems to prefer (or at least what he gets for free from his workplace), but others *cough* *cfeoulgihpe* seem to think that it's too "workstation-oriented" (that's business oriented for the non-computer lingo users out there). But also has great server software, especially network-boot software.

Debain Linux - The ultimate in user-unfriendly. But, on the other hand, by far the fastest and most portable system out there. It will take a while to configure, but once you get it set up your machine will be BEAST. This is also where 99% of linux spin-off projects come from. They'll modify the hell out of Debain and have a whole new OS to show for it.

Knoppix Live-Linux-On-CD - How could I resist adding my favorite version of linux up here? This is an operating which fits entirely on a single CD and you can simply pop this CD in and have linux on the current computer without installing a single thing. If you ever just want to see what linux is like without actually installing anything onto your computer you can try knoppix. The only thing that you need to know about it is that you will need quite a tad bit of RAM to run this on your computer. A minimum of 128megs is needed, but you will not be able to open any of the larger applications running on that amount.

--Side Note:
     For those of you who are looking for something that is pretty much windows without the suck you should be using KDE or GNOME desktop environments (KDE more so then GNOME). Sorry David, I didn't really think about those looking for something similar to windows, I thought you'd want to distance yourself. But the way you choose that is when you install make sure you select the packages labled KDE and GNOME and then set one of them as your default. Normally when you login though it will allow you to choose your desktop environment each time.

Posted by Kickmyassman at March 9, 2005 10:21 PM

I see no reason to fight over it. I am going to be pissed, and this is my response. Dont care what you say.

The reason I dont get these things is because there is no point. Being practical isnt being lazy. I dint purchase windows. I got it with my computer. I dont know about that, nor do I really care. I was thinking about Linux, but I ahvent gotten enough information yet. Firefox is no better than IE, just newer. When it gains a bigger market share, it will suffer the same fate. Hackers beat coders, always. Why downlaod something for no reason. I dont wait for it to be shoved up my ass, nor am I lazy. There is no point. Why switch. They are the same thing. I dont spend time downloading movies, therefore it really doesnt matter that much. I have a built-in popup blocker, so what do I care?

I never said that I was an expert. I said I knew about Microsoft/Mac. I have been geared towards Eric lately, so I assumed that was what I would have to say. I was wrong. you are deluding yourself that Firefox is better. You will be ahead for a month, but it will collapse. Microsoft is a shitty company, I know that. I know just as much about the monoploy as you do, if not more. If you hate it so much, why do you have it? Why dont you refuse to buy an upgrade, ever. Because you are too lazy to boycott. Stay with XP(or wahtever you have) buy a Mac, but If you hate it so much, shut up. I am not getting hooked, it is simpler. Why fiddle with annoying controls when there are ones that are easier. You think you aer superior to me in some way. You think that by this Firefox thing you are different, therefore cool. It doesnt matter. I am tired about how good Firefox is, rattling off things that I dont need, nor want. Tabbing? Why do I need that? All these stupid things, it is the same thing. I am frustrated with this elitist attitude people with Firefox take. When people begin to get it Mozilla will be swamped with viruses. At least Microsoft Can(maybe they dont, but they can) deal with multiple problems. The stability doesnt really matter to me. Windows is the best for my purposes, so stop shoving pointless crap up my ass. I dont need it. Dont pretend that you dont know that Firefox is doomed. You know more than me, why cant you see it? It has more precautions, but it will be cracked, easily in fact. Instead of wasting your time downloading it, learn to not "shoot the robber and stamp the roach"

And you brought this argument up, with this topic. So dont bitch. And I dont bother with most updates, just once a month. I have noticed that there are no differences.

Posted by: Brian at March 9, 2005 10:45 PM

I will now take apart each piece of your argument and tell you why you're wrong:

     1) The fact is that firefox is made by hackers, not coders. Therefore any issue found in forefox will be resolved almost as soon as it is found. The benefit to open-source applcations is that when there is a problem anyone (and by anyone I mean people extremely knowledgable about programming) can simply fix it themselves, and submit it.
     2) And what built-in pop-up blocker? Either you A) got a toolbar like google toolbar and are stopping pop-ups through another free media or B) You wasted your money buying another product to fix Microsoft's piece of shit browser.
     3) I do boycott Micrsoft products. I still use Windows 98se because it reatins all the functionality of WinXP while not being a load of shit, and then for anything that Win98 can't handle I use Linux.
     4) "...nor am I lazy." "Why fiddle with annoying controls when there are ones that are easier." Well hey! This seems to have been the subject of HALF OF THIS ENTRY DUMBASS. IT IS A BETTER PRODUCT BECAUSE IT IS MORE FUCTIONAL, AND THE REASON YOU FIDDLE WITH MORE ANNOYING CONTROLS IS TO GET THAT FUNCTIONALITY. DID YOU NOT READ THE ARTICLE?! FUCKING MAKE SOME SENCE (and please note that you did miss the question mark and therefore didn't ask a question)
     5) I never, EVER said FireFox was cool. Never will I ever say firefox is cool. FireFox is NERDY. FireFox will probably be nerdy for quite a few years. The point I'm making is that it is a more fuctionally superior product. Not cooler.
     6) Microsoft does not have the ability to deal with multiple problems, even when it tries it has to release hasty patch jobs several times before they actually figure out what's wrong and fix it.
     7) Stability matters to everyone. Don't kid yourself. Comparatively, you have a very stable windows system. Most people do not.
     8) FireFox cannot be "cracked." It is open source. You can go look at the code yourself. If there is someone who spots a loophole in said code, then either A) they will submit a repair to Mozilla or B) they will make code to exploit said hole, and the millions of people who read source code will almost instantaneously spot and repair it. Don't kid yourself. The people who make firefox have bigger brains then you or I.
     9) "And I dont bother with most updates, just once a month. I have noticed that there are no differences." So, that was my point. Did you read this? I actually said: "Well if you haven't already noticed, it didn't seem to do much for your computer. You probably noticed, in fact, that NOTHING CHANGED after you installed it. And yet some fundemental feature in Windows was fixed that once allowed hackers to get near your personal information." So what the hell was your point?

     I know you've been a loyal reader and a commenter, but jesus christ Brian. You stopped trying here. Not olny did you fit the sterotypes for the lazy/stupid person, but you actually used MY ARGUMENTS VERBATIM. You're stepping into my territory and proving yourself wrong. Sorry if this make you angry but you fucking deserve it. You've pissed me off and quite honestly I hope you drop this. Give in because I literally dismantled your argument at the fundemental level.

Posted by: kit at March 9, 2005 11:15 PM

...You know it's really sad that an outsider who doesn't even know this "Brian" kid can point and laugh at his flawed logic? But that wasn't my reason for posting.

Re: Mandrake Linux. I tried installing this on our computer, and for whatever reason, there was a bug in the installation .ISO. I burned the CDs, but everytime I tried to install them, I would get an error; something about the system being unable to unpack some vital files. I googled the system error that came up; it appeared that this was a rare, but not entirely unheard-of error, caused by downloading corrupted .ISO files.

Well, I had downloaded directly from one of the Mandrake Linux official mirrors listed on the site, but I tried another one and burned a new CD. Same error. By this time, I had wasted about 6 non-rewritable CDs (plus a couple of floppys that I mistakenly thought I needed to boot via CD-ROM drive), so I figured, "screw Mandrake: as attractive as it looks on the website, if I can't install it then what's the use. I'll try Fedora Core Linux." That installed perfectly (though I, the Linux-n00b, mangled the installation settings a couple of times). However, I was expecting that Linux would work like Windows, except without the suck. Fedora Core was VERY different, to the point that it was practically unusable, and since there are a lot of other people in my house besides me, I decided it would be better to remove Linux and re-install XP. *shrug* I tried!

Also, incendetially, I noticed on the Mandrake site that they also have a Linux-on-CD thing, called Mandrake Move. I know NOTHING WHATEVER about it, I just figured you'd be interested.


Posted by: David B at March 9, 2005 11:18 PM

While I do agree with some of your points, Kit, I think you are being a little too unfair and one sided towards this Brian kid. I do agree that Microsoft is a bad company in terms of their tactics, but Windows XP really isn't THAT bad. It rarely freezes on me (only when I'm doing crazy stuff in Half-Life 2). It does a pretty good job of being user friendly, it looks nice, it has some nice features, and although it tends to try and do stuff for you that you may want to do on your own, if you dig down you can modify that. I agree, Firefox is a better browser than Internet Explorer, but it IS an inconvenience to download every update. Although it is a great deal more stable than Internet Explorer, it doesn't offer any novel features, so thats why people aren't immediately making the switch. Most of the time people won't even know if IE has breached their security, so they will see no obvious benifit to Firefox. The only thing I see that makes firefox better right now is that it is more secure and less crashy. However, I probably go to more sites that would be likely to do bad stuff to your computer than the average person. There is no reason for someone who just simply browses to check the weather, email, or shop to get Firefox.

The reason people don't boycott Microsoft and turn to linux and firefox isn't because they are just too lazy. Most people wouldn't know how to begin doing this, and lots of people just don't have the time.

I'm not trying to take sides or start another arguement here, but I think you are blaming the people who use Windows too much. While flawed, it isn't a terrible OS, and someone buys a computer that comes with it, why not just keep it? It is compatible with just about all of the software they need. Sure, maybe its not as stable as would be desired, but it IS functional for most people's purposes.

(on a side note, IE now does provide a popup killer and a bar everytime a website wants to do something objectionable, which they clearly copied straight from firefox. Thats annoying, because microsoft is obviously stealing their ideas, but it really doesn't make a difference for me, since i've never been a huge fan of that bar in either browser.)

I'd really rather not start an arguement, just giving my two cents. I completely understand why you keep a computer with microsoft around, because there will always be software that can only run on windows, and I don't agree with Brian for critisizing you for that. I highly doubt firefox will be gone in a month, and if it takes over the broswer market thats all the better. Hackers don't always beat coders (aren't hackers just malicious coders anyway?), they just get more noticed when they do. However, some of your points towards Brian seem to harbor more hostility than logic (mainly referring to #4).

Posted by: Andrew at March 10, 2005 12:39 AM

God, it seems to me that you just HATE microsoft

Posted by: Ben at March 10, 2005 06:35 AM

Kit, Fedora is my *server* choice.... I like Gentoo, Debian and Mandrake (other ends of the spectrum) for my desktop. Go Linux!!!

Posted by: Cavalkaf at March 10, 2005 05:21 PM

     Yes, I do, but this is more intended to respond to Andrew's comment then yours Ben.
     1) You said: "[Windows is] compatible with just about all of the software they need." Yes, it is. But the sad part is that there is little to no incentive to make software for other operating systems because of this. The fact that Microsoft dominates the OS market effectively kills any want or need to make software for other OSs. The only companies who do make applications for other OSs either want the arty customers of Mac, or the high functioning/sever using Linux people (note: Linux is what 93% of servers on the internet currently run, an increase since Microsoft's last server release).
     2) You said: "IE now does provide ... a bar everytime a website wants to do something objectionable" No, it doesn't. It may feel that way, but it doesn't. It's gotten a little bit better, but it doesn't actually provide that service except for in its Beta v7 release.
     3) The only reason I was so hostile in that bullet was because Brian basically contradicted himself and said "I'm not lazy! I just want what's easiest!" Which, to me, seems like a crappy contradiction to make.

     I don't really want people to boycott windows. I just want people to acknowledge that Microsoft it a monopoly that needs to be toppled. As well as that, I'd like for people to demand that OEMs allow them to purchase OTHER OPERATING SYSTEMS on them. I know people don't really know what to do about getting rid of Microsoft which is part of why I posted this segment down here.

Posted by: kit at March 10, 2005 05:33 PM

I dont feel like protracting this, but you insulted me quite a lot, so screw it.

1. I apologize. I dont rough draft this, I wirte as I think, as a result you will notice my arguments are non linear

2. You might not think you think you are cool with Firefox, but you do. I can tell by the way you write. "hehehehehehehe, he has a creappy browser LOL OMFGZ!!!1111 Look at my awesome Firefox!!!111" You wont admit that you were ripped off the two hours it took to download it. You say I dont do it and am lazy, why? Because I dont let every upgrade get shoved up my ass and pay for the action later? It might be open source, but that doesnt help. Anyone could hack it, and while fixes could come out, they would be cracked again. It is rather pointless, really. I'll download it, but I will have to constantly get upgrades, if I dont the system will collapse easier than IE. It is a waste of time. Just because it is newer, doesnt mean it's better. Firefox is basically the same thing.

3. I said that about Mac because I thought that's what you menat. That and I was only qualified to speak about those two. You are barely even qualified to speak about XP apparently so I would shut up. And on a side note, I believe it has been scientiffically proven that Windows '98 was the worst system ever. Worse than NT or 95. Hell, those computers from the fifties are better than 98. Maybe that is your problem. I know that that system crahses hourly. XP is far more stable.

4. I thought I made it clear that IE was better for my purposes and that I didnt give a shit about yours. I dont downlaoad anime, nor do I want to. I dont click on random links, so its rather pointless. I have a popup blocker, so I dont need that. You say that it was hastily done after FF, well so what? They have it dont they? I simply want to use the internet. I dont want to develop codes to fix Firefox. I only download updates sparingly. So I wouldnt get thosse daily things from Firefox. There is no reason for me to upgrade. It's not being lazy, its being practical. Why do it when it is not and never will be neccesary? There is little point. Not when I could wait, perfectly satisfied for IE 7. You dont get this. I have no reason to get it because I like IE.

6. How ironic would it be if I downloaded Firefox now? I would be letting some random person "shove things up my ass like a prison inmate" I HAVE NO REASON TO UPDATE. I LIKE IE. WHY CANT YOU UNDERSTAND THIS? If I didnt like it I would change, but there is nothing wrong with IE. Downloading Firefox would be a waste of time. I would simply swithc back when IE 7 comes out. I have no issue with connection, I am fine with IE. What is so inherently wrong about that? Why do you insult me for being content for a system just as good, but older than the one you have?

Posted by: Brian at March 10, 2005 08:30 PM

Oh and thanks for the information on Linux, I think I will tryKnoppix.

Posted by: Brian at March 10, 2005 09:30 PM

Ok kit, you wont want to hear me right now, but my voice must be vocalized. Hp for a while was shiping PCs with some distribution of linux on it, that failed due to the fact that they would ask the end user what they wanted and if they even wanted dual boot. And second, your right I do use suse because it is what i have readily available from my workplace, also because it is currently the only Distribution that can handle a novell groupwise server, and console one. Hence my choice.

Posted by: Mitch at March 10, 2005 09:43 PM

     I'm going to let this issue die. Quite honestly I've written an exhaustively large amount on the subject in the last two days and quite frankly I'm tired of it. Just so that you know Brian, I honestly don't care what browser you've been using or what one you continue to use. I think you have a gross misconception of what will happen with FireFox, but you never know, you could be right.
     I also want to make it perfectly clear to you Brian that I never judge people based purely on something as retarted as browser preference. And at all costs I avoid talking about people behind their backs. I respect people who take the time to download and use FireFox as their default browser, but it will never be something I try and force upon you. What I've been trying to do over the past two days is convince you that you that I believe that FireFox will go down differently then you've predicted, but I'm willing to let you believe what you want to believe.
     Everything here, as always, may or may not be correct. I'm not going to try and tell you that I know all the answers, or even any of the answers, I'm just trying to give you my perspective. Please never take anything here as being "truth" (unless I specifically say that it is fact) and get angry about it. Realize that this is something that I am passionate about my beliefs in the matter, and therefore have taken it very seriously. BUT I WILL NOT EVER PROPOSE MY OWN OPINION AS TRUTH.
     And just so that you know, my computer rarely crashes (except for some issues with Windows Media Player) and I normally leave my computer on without fail for 3-6 weeks. Windows 98ME was probably the worst system ever created, but Windows 98SE is basically a repaired and refined version of Windows 95 with most of the functionality of later windows versions. I do know quite a lot about Windows XP being as to the fact that my business deals with practically only windows XP machines. So please don't be quite so presumptuous (especially about my personality, you've obviously never met me in person (well maybe you have, but not recently)). So please, if you enjoy IE keep it, I'm not one to judge.

Posted by: kit at March 10, 2005 10:13 PM

I assumed you did, but as you didnt own it, I assumed that you didnt use it much. That is what I said. And I see you every day, by the way. Thanks for seeing it like that. I was pissed, I had recently read how I am a lazy-ass bastard who like to get things shoved up his ass like a prison inmate, And I wasnt in a concillatory mood.

So I dont mind letting it die.

Posted by: Brian at March 10, 2005 10:28 PM
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