> LQ Radio > Podcast – 05.18.06 Podcast – 05.18.06

The latest Podcast. Topics include, contributing content to LQ, Freespire and the proprietary software debate, can the ordinary computer user ditch Windows for Linux, Sun promises to open source Java and the Novell Partner Linux driver process.



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Comment by McTeagle
2006-05-19 08:54:38

I think this is a terrific topic and one that should be discussed at great lengths within the desktop Linux community. If there’s a compromise between the two groups that you described (1. Freedom Fighters and 2. Mass Adoption Advocates), I think it comes in the form of marketing a message to consumers on the benefits of adopting open standards.

I think you’re absolutely right that companies like Adobe/Macromedia, Microsoft and Apple have very few financial incentives to release Linux versions of their software. Additionally, Microsoft doesn’t gain anything by ensuring that an Office .doc file and an .doc file are 100% compatible. In fact, in the case of Microsoft and Apple, they have much to gain by restricting the functionality of their applications. Therefore, the push has to come from consumers. We need to continue to spread the word about why formats are often created so that they WON’T work with some systems. We need to encourage users to say, “I’m not buying MS Office, because it doesn’t support OpenDocument” or for web animators to say, “I’m not going to build this for Flash 8 (or in Flash at all) because not all systems have support for it.” I realize that this may be a long way off, but the truth is, closed source software isn’t going away. I’d rather see time and energy spent evangelizing to computer users about the benefits of using products that support open standards than using that time to negotiate distribution deals with proprietary and closed source software companies that might never come to fruition.

The problem that I had with the Mark Golden article was that he squarely put the blame for his problems on Linux. To be fair, he should also be questioning the tools that he feels he needs (iTunes and MS Word) and ask himself why they weren’t built to work with his system. This is the mindset that has to change. Judging Linux based on the number of proprietary standards and closed source applications that won’t work with it is completely nonsensical.

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Comment by Jim Millard
2006-05-19 14:03:15

First I would like to say, Thank You. Your podcasts are informative and interesting. While I am not particularly offended by shock words, I do appreciate your use of English.
Now on to my comment. We definitely have two main groups promoting Linux. I think we should
start looking for people in a third group. The marketers who can bridge the gap between the
tech user and every day user. Some people who can see both sides of the benefit of Linux and
promote a common interesting point of view. While I like the price of Linux, I am not opposed to
purchasing and installing an application I really want and need. So far I find I can do anything
in Linux I want to do. Some times it does take some programming on my part to make things work.
Luckily through LQ and other sources I have always found the solution. This is not available to
people who do not understand programming nor do they want to. They just need to use the computer.
I think that a third group of advocates that can present a balanced position between the tech user and the every day user could go a long way toward promoting Linux adoption in the community and in

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Comment by Russ
2006-05-24 10:51:26

With reference to the Novell driver announcement, the Novell Open Audio podcast covered it, and explained how it works pretty well:

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Comment by jeremy
2006-05-25 14:57:00

Thanks Russ – that did indeed have a bit more information.


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