An almost randomly‚Äêchosen, wise quote:
[quote]It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power.
And now that I‚Äôve scared away more than half of the viewers‚Ä¶
I wish that the Linux community‚Äìthe developers and the end users‚Äìwould spend more time asking simple questions, get some interesting discussions going‚Äîand to challenge what is considered to be the hard facts in Linux‚Äêland.
Instead of getting to ‚Äúthe right answer‚Äù or a conclution right now, let‚Äôs rather discuss the pros and cons about for instance having one software package format. Should the Linux Standard Base/The Linux Foundation standardize one?[/quote]
Standardization isn't the answer to everything. it can create obstacles and impede improvement due to everyone trying to not deviate from the standard.
Now, if you think about it, RPM is the enterprise standard when it comes to package management. Red Hat, CentOS, Novell, Mandriva, and Oracle all use RPM. It's really Canonical that has deviated from the RPM standard in the corporate world. Does this mean that Canonical should be forced to change from DEB packages to RPM packages in the name of standardization? Why?
Should a community based distribution like Gentoo give up their Portage system to conform to the corporate RPM standard? If you have ever compiled software on an RPM or DEB based distro, you'll quickly find out that the package managers in these distros are unaware of software that you have compiled; thus to uninstall compiled software, it takes a lot of work and effort to hunt down and remove every single file that has been compiled. Gentoo may not be suitable for the normal user, but for developers, it's the best thing since slice bread.
This [i]might[/i] seem scary, but remember that you‚Äôre already used to having one choice of certain components in Linux. There‚Äôs only one kernel and‚Äìas far as I know, only one X system (I don‚Äôt really consider rare forks, obsolete, outdated versions and such, as alternatives).
You can use BSD instead of Linux and end up with a similar system that is different, so it's not really one choice when it comes to the kernel. Even Debian now gives users the choice to change to a BSD kernel (http://www.debian.org/ports/kfreebsd-gnu/).
As for the X system, we don't have any real alternatives, but no one is being stopped from doing so either. If someone can make something better than the current X system, I'm all for it.
Another question, is the command line mode needed in 2009? Can the powerful grep, pipe, less‚Äêstuff be replaced by a snappy file manager with some filtered views? And why can‚Äôt Linux have a nice and smooth startup screen like Windows and OS X?
I agree that the command line should not be forced on users, but why should it be removed? Even in Windows, you can run "cmd" and run a terminal as primitive as it is.
As for the startup screen, try Sabayon. It has a very nice startup screen. Even in verbose mode, it is very graphical.
Sabayon Startup Screen: http://wiki.sabayonlinux.org/images/thumb/f/f2/Bootk5.png/800px-Bootk5.png
Sabayon Verbose Mode: http://wiki.sabayonlinux.org/images/7/71/Bootk6.png
As you can see, your complaint about the startup screen is a distribution issue, and not a Linux issue.
Why are there folders named [i]usr[/i], [i]dev[/i] and [i]etc[/i] in the file system? usr sounds like user, but it means [i]Unix System Resources[/i]. dev could for a newcomer be mistaken for [i]developer[/i], etc sounds more like [i]et cetera[/i] than settings etc. Aren‚Äôt [i]Users[/i], [i]Settings[/i] and [i]Applications[/i] more descriptive?
They are named that way because that's how UNIX was designed, but there's a special distro that agrees with you and changes it. You should give it a try.
So these are the kind of questions that I wish there would be more discussions about.
I think Linux gains it's strength from its diversity. People can experiment, and distros can use what works and not use what doesn't.