I’ve been on Suse 10.3 for a while, since as I get older, dealing with change gets harder and harder so I avoid upgrades for as long as possible.
I started with Linux in 1994, with Slackware. I spent nearly a year studying it before committing to using it. I started with Linux in the first place due to severe psychological trauma caused by a terrible Windows 3.1 data loss event, which thanks to 3-levels of backing up my school work at the time, saved me from loosing 40 hrs of work, vs. only 8 hrs.
I feel that in recent years, with the advent of “Beagle” and other under-the-hood indexing/database, etc. mechanisms turned on by default and which I have no idea what they are good for and no interest in learning since my usage paradigm is good enough for me, that the Linux desktop experience has only turned downhill.
I’ll spend a day or two reading about all the different distributions, and all the trimmed down desktops like XFCE, etc. and the plethora of choices becomes so overwhelming that the idea of going back to Windows starts to sound sensible.
In other words, maybe sometimes too many choices is just as much trouble as no choice at all.
But of course the M$ idiots are running with the same stupid philosophy of completely changing the UI paradigms every new version, so I can no longer even figure out how to print or save my document in M$ Word, should I have to use that abomination at work to edit some corp. doc that doesn’t work in OO.org.
Was it really necessary to through away the age-old concept of “File Edit View…” menus that even a moron can figure out how to accomplish the most basic tasks without needing training or to sit through hours of tutorials before being able to do anything?
Well, all of this might not bother me so much if the smarty-pants “the computer is going to do things for you automatically that you don’t even know about yet” Beagle, virtuoso-t etc. garbage was TURNED OFF BY DEFAULT!
But of course it isn’t that way, so when I consider installing a new Linux now days I have to anticipate not only several weeks down the drain figuring out how everything has changed and what I have to learn new to accomplish the same old basic admin tasks (and resolve all sorts of hardware and other quirks), but also how to turn off the junk that I don’t want that is more likely to just cause the computer to bog down and crash in a few months (like just happened to my wife’s after 2-3 months of Suse 12.1) than to do anything useful.
Basically, I come from the philosophy of: “the computer should do nothing other than what it is explicitly commanded to do by me, the user.” For the smart stuff that UI/OS programmers who think they know best how my usage paradigms should operate (sound’s like the attitude of a certain soft. co. in Redmond) really. It would be fine if they want to make that stuff available to me, as programs to run if I should choose to execute them. But they shouldn’t be running by default.
Well, I don’t expect a great answer. This isn’t that much more solvable than “what is the meaning of life?”
One other thing, I often ***** to my wife that it seems the OS developers have made the (arrogant) mistake of thinking that the purpose of the computer is to run the OS rather than that the purpose of the OS is to allow the user to use the computer to run programs (of the user’s choosing). I think this misconception is the root of much of the problem.
Thanks for comments.