It's easier to ask people what OS they use imo. Everyone knows what windows is, Apple owners are happy for any opportunity to say (brag) they own a mac and linux users, well, often fix their own issues.
Note : The broad and sweeping generalistation above is 100% accurate as decreed by me, Master of the Universe.
Oh, He-Man, how you vex me! (see http://bit.ly/yCYUO for the full effect)
Seriously, though. At least in my experience, non-geeks don't even know what an operating system is. They don't really have any idea what Linux is and they're further confused by Apple's efforts to restrict MacOS to Apple-branded hardware, so they just don't realize that you can run many different OSs on the same hardware. With regular people, I stick with, "Oh - do you have a Mac or a Windows PC? Something else?"
True story: My wife, who knows a smattering of Latin and finds computers dull as dirt, was looking over my shoulder and said, "What's the big deal about the osses (pronounced like "mosses" without the m)?"
Nice to see you trying something new NYbill. Your first install of Arch linux? 8-) that should keep you out of mischief for a while. My first complete install took me nearly 2 days , but that was mainly down to having a crappy internet connection, these days I can do an install in an evening if I pull cached packages out of another install.
It's not the distro for everyone but if you put a little effort in to start with, maybe you will see why arch linux users rarely install anything else.
Ditto for me - installation and configuration took forever the first time, but now the Arch install seems straightforward. Maybe it's because I only moved to Linux from FreeBSD a few years ago, but Arch and Openbox now seem much easier to tweak and administer than Ubuntu and GNOME/KDE. Then again, maybe I just took the red pill.
Hours to days of frustration later, getting Moblin + OpenSUSE working was a complete fail. I couldn't get the provided ISO image to boot properly (why they'd provide an ISO first rather than a USB image mystifies me), and installing vanilla OpenSUSE and packages from the Moblin repos didn't work either. Looks like I'll be waiting for a more idiot-friendly way to get Moblin working on top of a full distribution.
Might not be long, though - Canonical has announced that Netbook Remix will eventually have a Moblin interface option. http://www.ubuntu.com/news/canoical-com ... ntu-moblin (yes, Canonical did spell its own name wrong in the URL).
I liked the Moblin beta a lot, too - it's the first genuinely different interface I've seen for netbooks. However, the beta is explicitly not designed to be a full distribution, but rather a demonstration of the kernel tweaks, UI and some of the applications. Intel's hoping that this can be a common base for netbook-centered distros to build on. Things like identi.ca integration into the status update page/applet/whatever are (supposedly) coming, and it sounds like integrating them is as simple as adding a plugin package. That said, OpenSUSE has released a technology preview of OpenSUSE 11.1 with the Moblin kernel and UI: http://news.opensuse.org/2009/05/19/mob ... -opensuse/. I've been having some trouble getting it to boot and install, but I'm sure I'll manage it soon enough...you'll hear when I do.
Regarding Moblin 1.0: it never made much of a splash. It was based on .deb packages, but Intel was apparently not impressed by the community's engagement in the project and switched to .rpm for 2.0. Novell and Intel seem to have become quite cozy, though - Novell's building some sort of development facility in Taiwan next to Intel's so they can work more closely together.
Am I the only person who started with FreeBSD? I hopped on the Free Software train in 2002, and loved the centralized documentation that FreeBSD provided. I ended up moving to Debian for more up-to-date packages and hardware support (!!) in 2005, and I've been distro-hopping since.
I love the Economist; for my money, it's the best weekly newspaper available in English. I don't always agree with them, but they're definitely smarter than the average bear. Each week, economist.com hosts an Oxford-style debate in which two experts argue a proposition. A third person acts as moderator, and various other experts and (of course) readers chime in as well.
This week's online debate is on the utility of copyright law - every bearded Linuxer's favorite rant. Not surprisingly, the Economist is against copyright law as it is today, and as I write this 72% of readers agree with the house. Head over to http://www.economist.com/debate/overview/144/ to cast a vote and read some interesting articles.
Yeah, I'm bummed about this...on the other hand, there seem to be some other projects that are moving along nicely. I installed Moblin this week and was impressed - it's currently focused on netbooks, but they are trying to build a telephony framework in. I'm interested to see how their Clutter-based desktop turns out. Maybe with the might of Intel behind them they'll make some headway and eventually get to phones. And there's always Android, but that flamewar doesn't need to invade this thread.
Personally, half my interest in this is enthusiasm for an open-source handset; the other half is finding a phone with wifi, bluetooth, a 3G radio, and a physical keyboard that plays nicely with Linux. I'm so tired of having my contact information repeatedly mangled by synchronization with various online managers - it takes a long time to accumulate physical addresses, email addresses, phone numbers, birthdays, and the like, and it really stinks when lots of that information gets mysteriously clobbered. Syncing other stuff would just be icing on the cake.
Fab, I'm with you on the compositing - slightly transparent terminal windows and title bars add a little joy to any WM. I did, however, notice that you mentioned liking the KDE window manager and xfce's window manager because compositing is "built in." Isn't Compiz a full window manager of its own? I'd always thought that enabling Compiz in GNOME just switched you over to Compiz from Metacity/Sawfish/whatever.
So really, I should be able to run Compiz with the Openbox menu and slit. Hmmm...
Anyone else on the forums interested in getting an insider's perspective on Linux for smartphones? At the moment, I'm much more interested in handheld operating systems than desktop/server options; I'm happy with Linux on my computer, but I'm tired of being dragooned into using freedom-hating bloatware on the computing platform that I use most often. I'd love to have the option of installing an open, free operating system on my smartphone. I want root access. I want a bash shell and command-line programs (so, so badly). I want...everything the processor can handle, dammit. Basically, I want full-on Linux on my smartphone. Projects like Openmoko, Nokia's upcoming Qt-based Symbian update, and Mobilinux (and maybe even Android) look promising, but I'd love to hear Sean talk to a bunch of Linux fanboys about his project and what we can expect over the next year or so.
Dan and Fab - any chance? Even if you can't get Sean for an interview, maybe you could do an episode on handheld Linux?