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Re: Xandros -- case-in-point ... the 3 things to know ...
On Wed, 2004-03-10 at 01:00, Bryan J. Smith wrote:
> Not some "ideals" of people who cannot collect their facts, much let
> understand the business concepts surrounding why products are adopted
> and for what reasons.
If you haven't figured out by now, these are 3 things Linux can do
1. Tier-1 PC OEMs: No Standard Linux Option
As shown with Dell a few years ago, even if Linux has Intel's full
backing, Microsoft will do anything to keep Linux from being a standard
OS option with tier-1 PC OEMs.
At most we're going to see IBM introduce Linux as a standard option
across their desktop product line (but not laptop) in the next 12-18
months. But that's about it. I'm not sure this will happen, as IBM has
kept Linux as an "enterprise support offering" (major
integraton/consulting projects) instead of a "standard/consumer
offering" (such as PCs, SmartSuite for Linux, etc...).
2. Consumers Who Buy Retail: Impulse Buys, Poor Assumptions
Consumers who buy retail do not understand. You're not going to educate
them overnight. They are "all about the free" (as my wife puts it), and
not "freedom" (this is why I like to refer to Linux and OpenOffice as
"Freedomware" not "free software" or the newer term "FOSS" -- Free and
Open Source Software).
They have poor assumptions. One is the fact that they believe they have
to buy a new computer with each OS upgrade, and that _also_ means new
applications _and_ new hardware (e.g., printers) as well. The retailers
and, even more so, vendors recognize this.
3. Hardware and Software Vendor Lock-in
Which brings me to #3, hardware and software vendor lock-in. Even the
"more enlightened" consumers expect Linux to save them from softwaer
vendor lock-in, instead of saving themselves. At the same time, far too
many just "upgrade" not realizing that it takes _years_ to reverse
engineer Hostageware formats. We can't save these folk from themselves.
More on the hardware side is the "cheap" hardware where vendors tell
expensive consumables and newer models almost yearly, hording
specifications and only releasing drivers for 1 version of Windows, 2 if
the consumer is so lucky. Linux drivers also take time to reverse
engineer these specs. And by then, the "consumables" for these older
pieces of hardware are barely available, and the consumer has already
upgraded, not caring that it cost them more money.
That's why the retail market caters to such products. And those
consumers who buy there will _always_ "be lost" -- _regardless_ of
whether or not we are talking Linux, MacOSX or some other, non-Windows,
Microsoft-centric platform or oriented-product.
Bryan J. Smith, E.I. -- Engineer, Technologist, School Teacher
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