[ubuntu-uk] Who writes this stuff

Paul Tansom paul at aptanet.com
Wed May 23 13:42:33 BST 2007

** James Mansion <james at mansionfamily.plus.com> [2007-05-23 13:10]:
> Chris Rowson wrote:
> >> Who wrote this? I've not read anything as poorly thought out and badly
> >> researched as this in a long time!
> >
> > Actually I found out exactly who writes this pro MS anti Linux stuff...
> >
> > It's the chairman of the FSB IT committee, who coincidentally develops
> > software using - you guessed it - Microsoft based development
> > software...
> >
> > How on earth can that be an impartial article. As it's linked to from
> > the main bloomin' page, thousands of small businesses are seeing
> > pro-microsoft propaganda from a certified Microsoft developer!!!!!!!!
> >
> > Something needs to be done about that!
> >
> > Mr Scargill's personal site is here http://www.scargill.net
> > His business site here
> > http://www.willowdesign.info/data/default.asp?id=3&loc=willow
> The article that you linked to didn't seem particularly 'anti-linux' to 
> me, unless you are going to *require* that all articles hype-up Linux 
> like a rabid fanboi's idiot rantings.
> Is it not acceptable to point out that OOo is not a match for Office - 
> but is probably adequate for the many people who use only a small 
> fraction of Office's capabilities?  It is, after all, true.
> Do you really thinkthat supporting Linux is easy for the non-technical?
> Which bits of the article do you think are 'badly researched'?
> I use MS dev tools.  And I like them.  I use them by choice, because 
> they're 'comfy'.  Does that mean *I* can't have an unbiased view 
> either?  I've been developing professionally on Solaris for nearly 20 
> years and my use of Linux predates Yggdrassil (which I should probably 
> research how to spell, but WTF).  I'm happy to choose which platform I 
> use, for what, and when.  Does my choice of Microsoft products for some 
> tasks make me an idiot?  Does having written Windows 1 programs (hmm, 
> and OS/2 programs) disqualify me?
> I really disliked the tone of your message.  I couldn't see obvious 
> self-propaganda or personal gain - what do you mean, precisely?
> James
** end quote [James Mansion]

For me the niggle, and I take your point that it isn't specifically anti
Linux or pro Microsoft, is the tone and perhaps style of the piece.  I
like to think that I have a pretty balance background to give a
reasonably unbiased view on things having worked with MS Windows since
around 3.0, DOS back to version 1.x as well as OS/2 and others.

When I read it I come away with the impression that Linux isn't all it
is hyped up to be in some of the pro Linux press, and although it may be
OK for a techy enthusiast it is best not bothered with. It comes across
as very dismissive and the last but one paragraph sums up the impression
I get of the authors view of Linux for me. If it can't drop in and
completely replace Windows running all my Windows applications,
connecting to all my Windows resources and be used without me noticing
it isn't Windows then I'm not interested. It is the most dangerous form
of writing about Linux in many ways. It isn't so much anti Linux, it
doesn't quote inaccuracies as facts (although I'd never have thought of
Unix as 'cheap'!), but it does present a very dismissive view that
discourages further investigation.

I could probably write a similar piece that dismisses Windows as
pointless and not worth considering given that the only reason I have
ever chosen it as the tool for the job is because everybody else uses
it, there has always been a better tool for my purposes, oddly even when
administering a Windows NT domain - for which I used Red Hat 6 and VNC,
although NT on the desktop was a must in some cases. But then when I was
working at IBM and the lab I worked in needed a 'fact sheet' (not
brochure, that would cost too much as it would have been forced through
the internal print shop, marketing, etc., etc.) I ended up doing it on
my Amiga using Protext and Deluxe Paint, even before my days with Pro

Paul Tansom | Aptanet Ltd. | http://www.aptanet.com/
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