Thursday, August 13, 2009

Why Nobody Uses Linux


I use Ubuntu Linux, just like the pretty girl in the picture apparently does. And if I didn't, I'd at least try it out, because, hey, look at the pretty girl. Anyways, I remember reading a tech news article somewhere that claimed netbooks with Linux pre-installed were being returned at a rate of 4% more than others. Now, there were no real numbers in the article proving this, and the guy admitted that he didn't know the return rates for M$ products, but still, there really are a lot of people who try Linux and soon switch back to Windows.

Why? Well, there is the lazy factor, of course. Though many Linux distros are very similar in appearance and functionality to Windows, they are not built to be windows clones. They are different for a reason- because they are better. But many people who just want a computer to surf the net, take an online class, and send a few emails, do not wish to be bothered with learning something new. Another issue is the fact that many of their favorite apps will not run on Linux, or they will but the user does not know how to install them, or does not realize that there are good alternatives to Windows programs.

But in my experience, one of the main obstacles to the spread of Linux popularity is the Linux users themselves. Now, I'm patient, and I despise Microsoft enough that I am willing to put forth substantial effort in avoiding their software. So to me, it's not a huge deal. But I remember plenty of times over the last three years since switching to Ubuntu, when I had to hit the forums or Launchpad and seek help with a problem. And I have found that the majority of users who offer 'help' on these forums, are not really being helpful at all. Sure, they give the correct answer, but in the wrong way. Most of them fancy themselves to be 1337 h@XX0rz, and insist on trying to force people to use the command line as a panacea for all their technical issues.

Look, people today- especially Windows users- don't want to bother with a command line. Remember the saying, 'just point and click'? Well, that's what people want. Hell, I'm quite knowledgable when it comes to computers and Linux, and I'd rather not use the command line unless I absolutely have to. Ubuntu, along with many other Linux distros, has a pleasing, intuitive GUI that nobody EVER recommends on the forums. If a user wants to know how to browse their hard drive, you will hear the 'helpful' Linux geek tell them, "Oh it's simple. Just open your terminal, type 'sudo nautilus', and the file browser will open!" Umm, no, that's not the simple way to do it. These noobs should be told, "Oh it's simple. Just click 'Places' on the top panel, then click 'Computer', and your file browser will open!" See the difference? See how easy two clicks are compared with a click and the typing of two words? People don't want to type unless they are chatting, emailing, or writing a novel. I certainly don't want to have to type to open the equivalent of 'My Computer'.

Now, I personally could care less whether more people use Linux. I actually enjoy the fact that not many do. It ensures the OS will remain watertight secure, since there is little profit in finding ways to hack and virus an OS that nobody uses. Also, I feel that a massive popularity gain would open the OS up to the corporate whores who would descend like vultures to try and find a way to profit off of the open source OS. But I still feel that those who are wanting to use Linux, whether to escape the clutches of Microsoft- which charges huge sums of money for every upgrade and application, accesses and uses your personal information without your permission in ways that and for reasons which are still not fully known, and deliberately leaves big, gaping holes in their system so that third parties can install adware- or simply because they want to try something new, should be able to get the help they actually need without some punk trying to make things more difficult for them.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I'm Glad I Have a Brain


If I weren't so intelligent, I might be crying like a little bitch Beck, too. You've all heard the idiocy. Obama wants to send our families to socialist death squads who will decide whether they live or die! Some bureaucrat is going to decide whether I get health care after I finally get into the hospital after waiting for three months! We're all going to die like everyone in France, Canada, England, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Germany, etc.! I'm just so scared of Obama!!

First of all, save your fake outrage and "spontaneous" outbursts for the other people who only watch Fox news. We who get our information from a variety of reliable sources aren't buying it. And stop acting like people are trying to silence you. Hey, we could always do it the Republican way and give you your own fenced-in "free speech zone" ten blocks away from the meeting, you jackasses. Yeah, you people have some real short memories, don't you?

I, however, being the thinking man that I am, believe that socialized medicine and other forms of communal welfare are not only the most Christian (or any religion that espouses love for others), but the most natural form of health provision that can exist. Put it this way. My mother just died of cancer. Now, she had insurance, due to the fact that she worked for a hospital. Never mind the fact that after five years there she was still only earning about $10 an hour- at least she had health insurance. But before that, while she was working her ass off to support her children and try to provide a decent life for herself and us, she never had health insurance. Sure, there were a few jobs that offered insurance, but she could have barely even afforded the copay if she'd needed to use it.

And that's just the thing- most insurance is OK if you have an emergency or are sick, but what about preventive care? If she'd had access to more care options, such as the one proposed by our President, then she could have had a regular checkup, and they might have discovered the cancer soon enough to save her life. But that didn't happen. She had regular insurance (you know, with a corporate entity standing between you and your doctor) and only discovered the cancer through a freak accident- she broke a rib and they saw it on her x-ray.

So the fact is that my mother, and maybe someone in your family, and I can almost guarantee someone you know, could have had their lives saved but for the fact that good Christian Republicans don't want some "lazy welfare cheat" costing them a few extra dollars in taxes each year. I mean, those few extra dollars could have bought a new yellow ribbon sticker for their SUV, or a cool new doormat with a funny phrase on it, or a new gift for their spoiled children which will be broken and thrown away within a week. Basically my point is that my mother, and thousands others, might still be alive today if "conservatives" weren't such greedy, hateful, scared-of-their-own-shadows idiots.

I for one am tired of these people. I really hope there is a way to make them see the light, but I honestly don't know if there is. They are conditioned to sit in front of the TV and listen to fanatics like Limbaugh, Hannity, O'Reilly and Beck tell them how to think, what to think, and why to think. They have been conditioned by corporate entities to believe and be comfortable with the fact that they are merely "consumers" who only exist to buy things in order to prop up the bloated CEOs that run our economy, in the hopes that they might "trickle down" on us regular Joes. But I still have hope that true change will come. After all, their lies, fear, and hate couldn't turn Americans' eyes away from the corruption and hypocrisy we saw from the republicans for eight years. I think even many conservatives are starting to realize they've been had. And I know many of them are good, faithful people who really want to do what is right, but are afraid of the ostracism or worse that they might suffer for not toeing the party/church line. Perhaps they will man up and do what is right for this country for once in their lives.

Friday, August 7, 2009

TR2N!


I am totally psyched about the new tron movie. I was a huge fan of the original, which came out in that most awesome decade, the eighties. I was young, computers were young, and science was the coolest thing in the world to many people.

Jeff Bridges is playing Flynn again, which is awesome. John Hurt has a part, as well. According to Wikipedia, the storyline for the film is: "Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund), the tech-savvy 27-year-old son of Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges), looks into his father’s disappearance and finds himself pulled into the same world of fierce programs and gladiatorial games where his father has been living for 25 years. Along with Kevin’s loyal confidant (Olivia Wilde), father and son embark on a life-and-death journey across a visually-stunning cyber universe that has become far more advanced and exceedingly dangerous."

I, having been cooped up inside for the last year or so, didn't hear about it til last night when I caught a trailer on Hulu. Anyways, it looks totally awesome, and it will be in 3D, no less. Finally I have something else to look forward to. I've already seen the newest Star Trek about a dozen times, so this will be my chance to see another reload of a favorite from my youth.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Miss My Momma

My mom died of cancer a couple of weeks ago. It really sucks and I miss her tremendously. But I know she's not in pain anymore, and who can say what happens to the soul after death? Maybe she is in a better place. Plus, she was alot like me- didn't really care about or fear death, and had no reason to hang on to life for too long.

Agh I wish the break between semesters wasn't so long. There's a whole month til classes start again. Guess I should get a job since I've got some unexpected expenses now. I hate working, though. Meh.