Friday, October 10, 2003

Reverse Migration

NewForge has a really interesting post from someone who migrated from the Linux operating system to Windows. A longtime Linux user tried out Windows XP for a week and writes up the experience.

He makes some good observations, but there's also some of the usual snarky undertones you find with Linux users. Not bad, but it's there. Read the whole thing, as they say, and the correctives in the comments. Not quite eye-opening, but it may make you think.

I'm fascinated with Linux, to be honest, though I haven't made the migration yet. My first computer, from 1997, had Win95 on it and I refused to upgrade. Way too much hassle for a home-using slacker like me. It wasn't until a buddy (Mark at Conservative Zone) bequeathed an eMachine to me that I was finally forced over to Win98, where I remain to this day. After many months of tweaking and pruning and digging through arcana and waiting with bated breath to see if changes would hose the computer, I finally got it stable. It's been a long time since I've had any kind of crash, other than Mozilla's Firebird browser choking things sometimes, and I intend to keep it there.

That's the appeal of Linux to me, the stability and the tinker's attraction (after all, I do hand-code my own HTML rather than go WYSIWYG). I don't mind looking under the hood to solve things I know will stay solved, but I hate Windows constant behind-my-back crap, and its "we know better" attitude. From software?! I think not. You serve me, bucko. Microsoft's ubiquity and "ease of operation" aren't more appealing than the numerous flaws and bugs in its software, as well as the increasing intrusion of the company's financial interests into my computing needs.

The thing keeping me from it is the arcana, and frankly, a lot of the sneering superiority you get from some in the Linux community. Some of it is the acceptable skills-based scrutiny and meritocracy you find in the computer community. That I don't mind. But some of it is the moral snobbery of cliques. Screw that.

I dunno. Maybe I should contact Brock of Signifying Nothing, who is also the President of the Memphis Linux User's Group and just take the plunge. What do y'all think?

No comments: