[kwlug-disc] Linux advocacy, was: Linux Marketshare

Raul Suarez rarsa at yahoo.com
Tue Feb 2 14:19:01 EST 2010

Here has been my approach:

Take advantage of what Linux offers in reconfigurability.

- Check what their main applications (only applications?) are
- Put big icons with very explicit names. and at the main level in the menu.
- Put everything else out of the way, after all, they are not going to be doing things that they don't know what to do.

I did this for my mom (computerphobic) and it worked OK. She gets tired of typing on the keyboard but that is the extent of it.

With my dad who it is a bit of a tinkerer with very bad memory, we are using Tomboy to write down the instructions of things that he does frequently. If he forgets, he opens the step by step reminder. No more written notes in notebooks all over the place.

Raul Suarez

Technology consultant
Software, Hardware and Practices
An eclectic collection of random thoughts

--- On Tue, 2/2/10, Kyle Spaans <3lucid at gmail.com> wrote:

> From: Kyle Spaans <3lucid at gmail.com>
> Subject: Re: [kwlug-disc] Linux advocacy, was: Linux Marketshare
> To: "KWLUG discussion" <kwlug-disc at kwlug.org>
> Received: Tuesday, February 2, 2010, 10:25 AM
> Just to play the devil's advocate. My
> mom would argue this issue with
> me whenever I tried to get her to use Linux (or anyone else
> in my
> family for that matter).
> On Tue, Feb 2, 2010 at 9:32 AM, Insurance Squared Inc.
> <gcooke at insurancesquared.com>
> wrote:
> > 1) friends and family on linux.  Evaluate whether
> they actually have apps
> > that must run on windows.  If not, wipe, and install
> linux on their machine
> > for them.  Sell it as 'I'll make your computer go
> faster and look better'.
> What if the computer's user is very resistant to change.
> And I don't mean
> that new things scare them because change is necessarily
> bad, but rather
> that any change in the UI confuses the user greatly.
> Apparently my
> grandparents are like this: if the name, shape, size, or
> colour of the "Mail"
> icon on the desktop changes at all then they can no longer
> check their
> mail, thinking that the mail program is "gone".
> Supposedly even things as small as changing widgets or
> colours of the
> windowing system can confuse users as well. Admittedly,
> this is yet
> another education issue with Linux vs "that thing that my
> computer
> came with when I bought it", but I would like to hear what
> other people
> think.
> > 2) For those in the computer retail business, here's
> what I'd consider doing
> > now that linux is desktop ready.  Offer a "new
> computer for $150".
> I like this idea. :)
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