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February 7, 2006

The answer to Microsoft’s Capitalistocracy.

by @ 6:29 pm. Filed under General Linux, SUSE Blog News, Work-Related

Sharing is what we’re all about here at “SUSE Rants”. Jumping right in, what if someone could come up with a way to tear out Microsoft’s domination of the desktop market? Here’s where the sharing comes in; me with you regarding my ideas about how this could be done. What we’re going to have here is not a discussion about whether Linux is better than Windows. To suggest that it isn’t is the product of an uninformed mind. Never suggest that Windows does anything better than Linux.

*Illustration of extreme bias: check*

How did something so poorly written as Windows ever get so popular to begin with? Let’s suppose, for a minute, that Microsoft is really a *MARKETING* company and not a *SOFTWARE* company (this is the truth, I’m telling you). As such, they would know that one of the first rules of marketing is being first to market. Another of the gems of golden wisdom is that you do whatever it takes to get your product in front of the end user.


People like what they become accustomed to.

Perhaps the biggest factor in their success has been that very principle. Whatever it took, Microsoft got their product in front of people. Over the years, Windows became the only thing that many people knew. This principle compounds with non-technical users who have struggled hard to learn what meager knowledge they do have about computers. Comfort zones have been put in place, calculated precisely to keep them using the monstrosity of an operating system.

OK, class. How do we break the iron-clad grip? Little hint for the remedial folks: it has to do with what I’ve been discussing.

Correct answers would include:

  1. We need to get non-OSS folks familiar with Linux.

Ya’ll are brilliant. So, how do we do that if they are already blinded by familiarity?

Allow me to offer another hint:

When learning something new, most people prefer to have another person leading them through it by the hand (believe me on this one, I did some hard time in tech support).

If we could offer ways to give Linux newbies helpful support of any kind, I’d guess that more people would be willing to at least *TRY* Linux.


Help me brainstorm some ways that we could do this.

You in the back with your hand up, go ahead.

“Offer technical support for Linux.”

You know, that is a great idea. However, most Linux distributions do not offer such support. There is one that does, however. SUSE Linux. We could tell people that, if they wanted to get the operating system free, they could purchase technical support from Novell for SUSE Linux.

Why would someone pay for tech support if they already have knowledge and tools on another platform?

Well, if they aren’t dead set on talking with a human being every time they get stuck, they can consult several other forms of help. There are online forums, documentation, and all sorts of communities. Maybe, as their mentors, you can help them learn about these marvelous resources.

We’re on a roll, we can’t stop now. Think of more ways to bring Linux to the forefront, faster.



You, right there, with the seven earrings, nose piercings, red eyes, pointed ears, and fangs.

“As an academically inclined pupil, I would find it most intellectually stimulating if these fine educational facilities would offer foundational disciplines advocating and favoring Open-Source Software.”

So, like, if colleges were to offer courses involving OSS, you’d dig that?


Hmm… the girl does have a point. What if colleges started teaching courses involving Open-Source Software? They’d have less license fees and have all the benefits that make Linux soar above Windows in all aspects.

That would rule.

We should help people accustom themselves to Linux. We should help them realize what other online resources exist for help. Colleges and universities should offer OSS-related courses. This would make Linux spread much faster.

3 Responses to “The answer to Microsoft’s Capitalistocracy.”

  1. SUSE Linux Rants » Blog Archive » Open Source, Linux, and Education - suse linux blog Says:

    […] Binghamton University and STOC Launch Linux Collaboration Center – Now this is what I have been talking about! […]

  2. SUSE Linux Rants » Blog Archive » Educating the Educators about SUSE Linux - suse linux blog Says:

    […] Novell is moving in THE ideal direction for spreading Linux interest. I have long believed that if you want to get Linux out there, you have to get the educational system involved. Imagine that. To get people educated, you have to involve the educators. Novell has decided that they like that approach. They have started a couple of really slick programs involving educating people about SUSE Linux. […]

  3. Bart Says:

    Hey Scott, I got here via StumbleUpon and this article is spot on in laying out the reasons for Microsoft’s dominance. However, I don’t think offering technical support will increase Linux usage much. Sure, it would be a good thing and probably very useful for people not familiar with linux, but I don’t think it will lead to an influx of Windows users.

    Introducing Linux and OSS in the class rooms would make a much, much bigger difference and I am a strong supporter of this solution, but it’s probably kind of hard to pull off (lobbying, lobbying, lobbying).

    I think the biggest problem is marketing. Linux could be marketed well and in a lot of fields too, but it would need companies willing to invest in Linux. Finding big companies that would pump millions into open source code could also prove itself a hard task since it’s still considered a risky business model in most places.

    Linux still heavily relies on mouth-to-mouth marketing, which could also be good. It just takes a lot of time to reach everybody, but I do believe it’s possible for the next generation of Linux flavours to crush Microsoft’s desktop dominance eventually.

    It’s an interesting subject and I could go on, but I have to pack because I’m moving this weekend 😛

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