Help make 7 an unlucky number for Microsoft
Just felt the need to make this point, and though I'm focusing this post in the Ubuntu thread, I think it's important to make this a widespread effort from the entire linux-based OS community... GRASSROOTS MOVEMENT, JUST LIKE THE ELECTION LAST YEAR... GET INVOLVED TO MAKE THE CHANGE...
ENCOURAGE ALL PEOPLE YOU CAN TO AT LEAST TRY UBUNTU OR ANOTHER FAVORITE DISTRO THAT WOULD SUIT THEIR NEEDS, BEIT FROM A LIVECD OR LIVEUSB OR FROM A SYSTEM YOU YOURSELF RUN...
* Point out that the majority (something like 80-90%) of the developers who contribute to the linux kernel and other open source programs like openoffice ARE NOT pimply-faced teens but software developers and engineers working for fortune500 companies in corprate environments who RESPECT the open-source software model of taking open-source code and using it, modifying if necessary and giving back the improved code, "paying it forward" in a way, to help the community thrive and to help the next individual or company
* Point out that the only real thing that people really "need" to rely on Windows for right now is gaming and even that has been glossed over and in large part neglected in Windows 7. direct them to this artticle which makes a great point about why gaming has been neglected... http://kotaku.com/5384543/windows-7-what-happened-to-gaming -- Also accentuate that as more people use linux-based systems that use OpenGL that the game manufactures who are programming (and probably get funded in part, with discounts and bonuses, etc...) for DirectX, they will program for the system that is used by the consumers they are trying to sell to.
* Show how Wine can be used to effectively run certain productivity applications but that even then there are programs like OpenOffice, Gimp, and Inkscape that are quite compatible in doing the things that people do.
* Showcase the apps!!! Sell them on it... AND SUPPORT THEM UNTIL THEY GET THE CONCEPTS... It's like someone who switches from windows to a mac... it's different. Even though most of the concepts are the same, many people just need to know 'what button to push'. A lot of us understand that at this point, a distro can be set up really quickly for someone to just use by people who don't download apps and only check email, occasionally skype or im, use facebook, twitter and look at youtube videos... We all know these people, a lot of times they are our parents, aunts and uncles and grandparents.... Suggestion: Show off compiz-fusion and eye--candy like that... The desktop cube switcher... the desklets... cairo-dock... themes... make it look like windows, then like osx then like something they like that's different. get them involved...
* In Ubuntu 9.10 especially, show off the Ubuntu Software Center and show the number of completely free applications.... Point out something like FontForge and compare it to an app like FontLab ( the main difference is the hundreds of dollars), the difference between MS Office and Open Office (again mainly just the hundreds of dollars),
It could be easy to show how unethical M$ is just by sharing a few of the recent news items that just show how many times Microsoft tries to 'get away with' stuff and have repeatedly done the same kind of thing that it has become obvious that it's not just them innocently pushing the envolope and 'not knowing' that they were doing something wrong, but intentionally doing something and hoping to not get caught, relying on their financial backing and legal team to keep them out of trouble...
* share how Microsoft KNOWINGLY STOLE the xml code that was patented by i4i and is now fighting that lawsuit in court
* share how Microsoft's Firefox plugins (point out firefox being a competing browser with IE) were disabled by Mozilla (the maker of Firefox, if they don't know) because of crashing and security holes experienced by the firefox browser. The plugin generated controversy earlier this year because Microsoft surreptitiously injected it into Firefox via a Windows Update, without prompting or notifying users
* share how Microsoft in pretending like it supports open-source talked in July about contributing 20,000 lines of code to the linux kernel ( http://www.tomshardware.com/news/microsoft-linux-windows-driver-code,831... ) but that it was several months before the code was actually released and even then was 'a good 6,000 lines short of what they claimed, and was not at all a "contribution" but a self-serving self-inclusion" ( http://boycottnovell.com/2009/08/04/hyper-v-14010-lines-of-code/ )
I'm sure there's many of you that will know of more examples...
Here's hoping that we all can do our part to stand up as consumers and empower other users to take a stand against the Goliath that is the Microsoft beast and take it down once and for all, that perhaps in a couple years when Microsoft's user base has dwindled to less than half of the computers in the world and they release another half-baked, last ditch effort at an operating system that will be so full of holes a 5 year old can hack it with their robot dog toy.... ;)
Good Luck to All of you