Thoughts on ZW Open source
I actually posted this to our ubuntu-zw mailing list, as that seems to be our main form of communication in our little ubuntu community. I wanted to post it here as well, for people ideas and thoughts on this.
just some thoughts.... i had a huge discussion with the one guy here at the office about why ubuntu
cannot be compared to windows.. and of why ubuntu wins hands down even before the discussion has started.
purely because ubuntu is free, and the developers working on it, do it as an open source project, rather than
as a marketing tool...
90% of the other persons argument came down to the availability of windows and its
programs and of how easy it is to use in general. And of how much better it looks...
so,,, i asked the same dude, how much he paid for windows, he said he got it for free...and that he downloaded it
off the internet.
piracy!!!! WTF!!!!!!!??? how can you argue of how windows is better than ubuntu, if you pirated it!!!!
hahaha! im sorry but i just find it very ridiculous....that someone can argue so "passionately" over something that
he legally could be jailed for!! hahaha..i completely freaked out...i just cant stand to talk to such people....
Seriously though, windows guys will never win this argument.. over which is better.
considering you can run an ubuntu machine at nearly 100% of windows type average usability....
and never have to pay for software.... ..as far as im concerned, there is no argument.
the second argument, and i can call it an ARGUMENT (yes, some swear words did show themselves), is of how he shot down the
freedom toaster idea...as being a waste of time.
see, this is where i lost it......
i gave him three problems, and wanted him to answer them, being a microsoft stooge...
this is a scenario of around 80% of our fellow zimbabweans, a situation which is real on the ground in our present time.
1 - the average user will never afford to buy a computer.
2 - the average user will have to rely on other parties to provide them with the "IT education" they will need for a job.
3 - the average user will never afford to buy broadband or even a dialup connection, in any case dial up is limited for software
so....what were his answers?????? unsurprisingly, a dumb *** look on his face.....
okes, the sad reality is that we are in this open source fight by ourselves in this country... our OSS visions are held by only us.
and as such, we will have to uphold this vision as a "loco team" as well as an "open source community". Its very clear
after the chat with this fool, that no one really cares about the fellow on the street. Guys like this are very oblivious to anything
else out there, because they can get everything for free, whether its legal or not. They just dont care....its time like this,
that makes me realise just how much BSA could gain from coming to a country like this, and believe me, they will
come. Just a matter of time.. thats all.
He said he had used ubuntu for 2 months, and called it quits thereafter. so i asked him how long he's been using windows,
and he said most of his life.
This is the problem, you cant use ubuntu for 2 months, and then expect to know and understand how it works... unless this dude
used ubuntu for 5 years, and windows for also 5 years, i would value and respect his opinion.
Believe me, i know everything there is to know about windows, i've used it also for a long time in my life, purely, because
i didnt know there was a worthy alternative. BUT, there is an alternative.. and people need to know about it.
unfortunately, this is what we will experience in our quest to bring open source out into this country.
my answers to the above questions, were as follows:
1 - remove the cost of the OS (microsoft) then deal with bare metal hardware prices. it is sad, that the price of a computer
can be driven up to 70% more than the basic hardware cost, because of software licensing. Microsoft are very clever, in that they
have made alliances with brand computers, whereby MS OS's come bundled with the machine, whether you like it or not,
and remember, office suites and antivirus are sold seperately!
2 - If the relevant person can have his own computer, he will be able to invest as much time into learning IT as they want,
without paying anyone or anything (besides zesa of course). Like most of us, they may discover a hidden talent within the
IT underworld, and that could lead them to a job, and an income. With room for individual expansion...
i.e you can be a sadza chef who knows how to setup exim, you will then get a hungry customer walk in, talking about how ******
microsoft exchange can be, you could suggest using exim to him, give him a few pointers on how to implement it,
before you know it, you're an IT manager at that same company, driving a mazda bt50 double cab.
3 - the answer to this???? OUR BELOVED TOASTER!!!!!!!!!!!!! end of story."
Re: Thoughts on ZW Open source
I think saying 'windows is easy to use' is not a valid point - just because it is the OS you were first introduced to does not in any way make it 'easy'. I think the learning curve for Windows and Ubuntu are roughly the same (for a person who hadn't used either before).
Another point which you could have used in your arguement is one of security. I do a lot of 'IT support' for friends and family, and 9 times out of 10, it will be a case of cleaning out a virus. Incidentally, I'm thinking of migrating my cousin's workshop to Ubuntu, I have wasted enough time cleaning one virus or another. I also intend for them to use OpenBravo ERP for the financials (as a replacement to Quickbooks), as that is the only potential show-stopper. I still need to look into it though, as I have never implemented it before.
There aren't many Windows applications that do not have an equivalent on Linux, except for some niche demographics (I'm thinking legacy applications done VB 6). MS Office is the killer-app for Windows, for most people, OpenOfffice is more than an adequate replacement - besides, MS Office runs fine under Wine.
I'm going to play my part: 1 installation at a time.