[Bug 1] Re: Microsoft has a majority market share
translator at duckburg.cjb.net
Sat Jul 12 13:46:52 UTC 2008
Sorry for sounding rude.
My critization of the teacher's reaction was related to lack of support
*for* them. They have a hard time dealing with the children, and since
most of them are from a non-computer generation, they're really having a
hard time: no time, no budget, no support... I'd get grumpy too!
Of course their complaints *are* valid. It's great to see that a lot of
FOSS apps are getting more and more user friendly, but without the users
being willing to work with these "new" (different) applications, it's
hard to get a foot in the door. If someone *wants* to use Free Software,
she/he is also willing to tolerate some effort getting into it (or
working around present bugs) - and it's the exact opposite if someone
feels being forced to use something (e.g. Admins just installing
GNU/Linux in schools - without full consent of their colleagues)
"I don't think education is particularly the issue. Windows is no more ubiquitous in schools and universities than it is in every other area."
(It might not be *the* thing to focus on, but I think it's a valid bottom-up strategy with a positive, long term impact)
Sure, but an argument against any non-mainstream application (or OS) I hear very, very often is: lack of know how.
A lot of companies couldn't run their servers on anything else than Windows, because they simply have noone who knows enough about alternatives (or their existence).
That's where education kicks in: If you've seen/worked/learned how to handle e.g. GNU/Linux, you can continue to do so in a company you'll work for later on. Do trainings, etc...
Parents argument against free software, because they *want* their kids
to be skilled with mainstream apps: "Why are you teaching my kid this
OpenOffice thing? It's not used in "the real world" - please teach them
the "real" office, so they have a valuable skill in their CV"
Same situation on the home-desktop:
No matter what problem you have with e.g. Windows, just go round the corner to find someone who can help you.
I wasn't able to setup my friends' computers on GNU/Linux before I hadn't gained the knowledge to also support them - because there's noone around their or my neighbourhood to help out. Sad, but true.
So that's also a reason why "shipping computers with GNU/Linux" alone
won't make amends - Without someone supporting, teaching and helping
them to use their new, better OS, they could end up turning against
FOSS, because their first experience was: "WTF? Where is...? Why...?
setup.exe won't run! Where's Photoshop? - help! anyone? anyone...?
You know what their local IT salesman/specialist will tell them: "Why aren't you using Windows? I could help you with Windows!"
If the neighbour kid (which is very often the local IT specialist ;-) ), learned about GNU/Linux at school, that situation would look different. If not now, then at least in a few years.
Maybe it's better in England, but here that's the unfortunate status
At university I've also "seen" *nix like OS, but they were never explained to us. Most of my co-students had a hard time dealing with the shell - and they were complaining, why we have to use "this complicated OS". Additionally, when a professor held a class, you saw PowerPoint presentation on Windows. In 5 years at university I saw only *one* lecturer not using PowerPoint. Some professors even *demanded* (!!) that you hand you work in as .doc file - What happens? Students of computer science (!) hand in their diploma thesis as .doc file - because they've never seen Latex.
Microsoft has a majority market share
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