Apple or Ubuntu

M. Fioretti mfioretti at
Mon Sep 17 04:49:08 UTC 2007

On Mon, Sep 17, 2007 04:21:25 AM +0100, Liam Proven
(lproven at wrote:

> Linux does have advantages.
>  - Getting the source code is purely theoretical for 99.99% of
> computer users; very few have the skills and knowledge to read C
> listings and understand them, let alone tweak them. It's nice but it
> doesn't matter to the *vast* majority.

Absolutely right (see #6 of A very
interesting and important corollary of this fact is that it makes no
sense today to promote Free Software with the "you can study and fix
the source code yourself!" argument. It's counterproductive, actually:
you are telling people they can do (or give the feeling they may _need
to do) something most of them couldn't care less about and would
probably pay to _not_ do.

Another important corollary of this:

> - Vendor independence is important, as is the total lack of vendor
> lock-in.

is that most end users have all the vendor independence and freedom
they need once all their data are in Free as in Freedom
app-independent formats, so they are Free to tell their software
provider "give me a better deal (whatever that means: lower price,
better UI, readable documentation, friendly online support) or I'll
stop using your software". Even if that means going from Linux to
Windows or Mac.

Going back to the original question:

> things that Apple OS cannot currently provide whereas Linux has an
> edge.

it may be useful for the OP to try answering it from the above point
of view, that is end-user data ownership: in other words, after you
have heavily used and customized Apple OS for one year, doing
everything it lets you do... are you Free to move all the files you
produced with that Mac (text, video, anything) and all your
*configuration* data (email provider, bookmarks...) to another
computer and OS without lots of reverse-engineering?

This would be an area where Linux has an edge which is really relevant
to end users.


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