Friday, August 24, 2007

Linux fanboys are annoying

You know, as a long-time Linux advocate, I find Linux fanboys to be very annoying. The thing that is most annoying about them is that they are loud-mouthed, deluded, and have an irrational hatred of Microsoft. Linux Weekly News has been somewhat immune from the invasion of the Linux fanboys until fairly recently, probably because you have to pay or (like myself) wait a week before reading their news. However, this is changing; Here is an example of the fanboys being annoying on LWN. Here, the fanboys go on with their anti-Microsoft shills in an article about the Python programming language, of all things, simply because the linked article had a Microsoft ad in it.


They also spread nonsense like OpenOffice being just as full-featured as Microsoft Office. It isn't. Let me give you just one example: Microsoft Office, since at least Office 2000, has an easy way for you to assign special symbols to keypress combinations. OpenOffice doesn't. This is a known bug. The reason why MS Office can have this feature and OO doesn't is because OO doesn't have the manpower to add features like this. This is because you didn't pay for the software, so their isn't enough money to pay developers to make the software as feature-full as MS Office is.

Another example: I have installed Firefox on countless Windows machines. It was clean; in particular, since I am bilingual, I like to have its built-in spellchecker switch between English and Spanish easily, depending on which language I'm writing in. All I had to do in Windows is add Spanish, and the list can be quickly used, since it only has English and Spanish. In Ubuntu, Firefox had dozens of languages in it. There was no way, in the package management system (Synaptic), to remove these languages. I finally had to go in to /usr/lib/firefox/dictionaries and remove the dictionaries by hand.

Ugh again.

Now, Linux does have advantages over Windows. The price is better. The development and *NIX environment is a very productive environment for someone who knows UNIX's arcane commands. I really like the FVWM1 window manager, which was a fast and light window manager in 1995, and is today lightning-fast. But Linux isn't ready to be a end-user desktop. Not yet.

- Sam