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Ideas into the future for GetGnuLinux.org

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ariadacapo's picture
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Joined: 2006-07-13

Ideas for the future...

I'd like to start by saying that the initial and primary objective of GetGnuLinux.org is to provide clear and good information for everyday people to switch to Linux. We are already good (IMHO) at that - It is foremost important to keep doing this well, and so these ideas are really secondary. They may or may not turn to reality, depending on how satisfied we are with the website and the way we are organised about it.

  • A pdf booklet to download
    In the About section, we could have a 4-5-page pdf file to download, that would cover all of the topics in the website. Could be useful for people to keep something from the website on their computer, print, send by email, etc.
  • .

  • Page about Mac
    We could have a small page about Mac computers in the Why not Windows section (to explain they're just the same). That's tricky business speaking to Mac users.
  • .

  • Sattelite pages
    We could have "sattelite pages", with different domain names, to handle more aggressive marketing. I am thinking of things like the excellent IownMyDvds.org by Linux Australia, or the Keep the Car and Get Legal campaigns by the OO.o community.
    Specifically, I do not have precise ideas at the moment, but we could target things like unability to uninstall Internet Explorer, or MS Office formats.
    These sattelite pages would point to GetGnuLinux.org with a simple and clear link at the bottom.
  • .

  • Visit cards
    I'd like to have a few GetGnuLinux.org visit cards so as to be able to hand them in easily. Just spelling the name out and never having the right piece of paper + pen makes things difficult.
    If other people are interested, then this might be an interesting idea to pursue. I've even had someone ask me about T-shirts! But for this we would need many more people.
  • .

  • Dumping SUSE Linux
    I'd like to have a careful and well-balanced discussion about keeping or replacing SUSE Linux in the website.
    To be very honest, I am only interested in Ubuntu Linux and not in chasing the ultimate Gnu/Linux distribution. I believe, however, that it's good proposing two different distributions. It's a good way to keep independent (not becoming a getubuntu.org), to not divide the community further (KDE vs. GNOME, etc), as well as to show newcommers some of the choice and variety Gnu/Linux is all about.
    So why keep or dump SUSE ?
    + different from Ubuntu (graphically and technically)
    + popular and well supported
    - not very insisting on freedom (unlike Ubuntu)
    - Novell is unclear about the free-as-beer and free-as-speech status of its various products (confusing discerning and finding openSUSE, SUSE Enterprise, etc)
    please, no flaming discussions about this! I am mentionning this as a way of keeping my ideas for long-term in the open. I promise I will bring up this discusson (in a specific thread), right now there are more urgent things we should work on. thanks! Smiling
  • .

  • Better link buttons
    We could get really serious about our linking buttons. Untill now, except a nice one from Pascal Klein, they are all (good-looking, but) quick amateur attempts. We could build a series of them with some more riguor.
    A good thing would be to find a good gnu drawing (a gnu horn would be more accurate than a penguin paw, for example) and use it throuhgout the buttons, keeping a good level of "branding" or "corporate identity" ? To be discussed.

Feel free to add suggestions, to discuss these, or even to start working on anything you wish!

Olivier.

a thing's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-20
ariadacapo wrote: Page
ariadacapo wrote:

Page about Mac
We could have a small page about Mac computers in the Why not Windows section (to explain they're just the same). That's tricky business speaking to Mac users.

I think Macs should be dealt with side-by-side Windows. Rebuttals for the Mac FAQ:
a) So we educate them about how they made the wrong choice.
b) They think that, but they don't know what it's like to be free.

ariadacapo wrote:

Dumping SUSE Linux
...
Novell is unclear about the free-as-beer and free-as-speech status of its various products (confusing discerning and finding openSUSE, SUSE Enterprise, etc)

I think that's reason enough to dump it.

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04
If you decide to dump SuSE

If you decide to dump SuSE it would be good to find another distribution to take its place. As you well said, having only Ubuntu promoted might end up like you're favoring Ubuntu, GNOME etc..

On the other hand, the other distros could be versions of Ubuntu such as Kubuntu with a KDE desktop and Xubuntu for Xfce. That's an alternative if you'd focus on Ubuntu as the newbies starting platform.

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Joined: 2006-03-28
Well, I've been having a

Well, I've been having a look at the discussion about this page from time to time and it's a pretty nice page.
But hey, do we really need this? I mean do we really need to get down to the flaming-level Microsoft already used all the years against Linux? Aren't we better than that?

When I first read that site completely (a while ago) I found some exaggerations which I think shouldn't be there. It's right that Linux is a great system and Windows mostly really sucks, but it's not right to totally praise Linux and stomp Windows into the ground. A fair view at things might be the better way. I don't know if that has been fixed yet, maybe I'll read the site again later, but if you just keep on saying "this really sucks on windows, and this is much better on Linux" it won't help a bit.

Quote:

Security
. Dump your costly anti-virus licenses. Linux is safe.
It is often difficult for Windows® users to believe that there are no spyware and no viruses under Linux - but it's true. Gnu/Linux is built in such a way that it's incredibly hard for a malicious program to do anything at all.
If you keep your system up to date, unless you are into very serious networking, you won't need an anti-virus or a firewall.

This one is ridiculous. Sure, Linux tends to be safer than Windows, but there ARE! virii for Linux. Yes, it's true. Not many, and not so harmful, but they really exist. And even if you're not too much into networking, you should still have your packet-filter configured properly. Do you want anybody to use your CUPS to print out fat naked guys on your printer?

You name two distros: Suse and Ubuntu. Don't you think that you should either name "all the big ones" or just say something "there's a lot of Linux in Linux" and just link to distrowatch or something like that? Especially featuring Suse is pretty funny when thinking about what a blow-up it is. It's the Windows of Linux.
How about featuring something more "back-to-the-roots", like Slackware? Or something geeky like Gentoo or LFS?

Always have in mind that nobody wants everybody to use Linux: People who even can't use Windows properly better stay where they are and don't even try Linux. It'll just make them frustrated and give us headaches because of just more really stupid questions in forums like this.

I really suggest a MAJOR rewrite of the content. Or even just shutting down the site. It's no good for Linux really.

And what's this?

Quote:

And why do you not display Tux prominently?
Larry Ewing made a nice penguin which is the official Linux mascot! You should use it! I love that penguin!

Well we don't like it. Seriously, with all our respect to Mr Ewing, in our opinion the penguin is ok but just can't make a proper symbol / logo / mascot for a product that competes with Microsoft in the mid 2000s. Let's look around. A big fat plastic penguin that has just been waxed... what image of Linux are we giving to people using things like iPods? As much as we like the story and everything Linux and penguin, we avoided it (except for the page title icon). If you have proposals for alternatives please let us know or discuss them.

What's your problem with Tux? And who the hell NEEDS to compete with Microsoft? Linux doesn't, never did. As I said before, nobody wants everybody to use Linux.

And how about this?

Quote:

What is the meaning of Life?

No idea. We keep looking. (okay, we never get asked this one = )

You've been on drugs writing that site? No? Then what's that doing there?

Really folks. I understand you like to offer a site to give Linux a nice push forward, but the way you do it isn't the right one I think. It's too much like the flaming Microsoft always liked to use again Linux, and we really don't need to get down to that level too.

libervisco's picture
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Reptiler, you may have some

Reptiler, you may have some points there and I suggest they be taken constructively, but I don't agree with some of your opinions..

Quote:

This one is ridiculous. Sure, Linux tends to be safer than Windows, but there ARE! virii for Linux. Yes, it's true. Not many, and not so harmful, but they really exist. And even if you're not too much into networking, you should still have your packet-filter configured properly. Do you want anybody to use your CUPS to print out fat naked guys on your printer?

You're right about the fact that there are some virii for GNU/Linux, but compared to Windows it is really insignificant. Most of us here never heard of someone getting infected by a virus. It's not only some sort of propaganda or general misconception. It is true that it is much much harder to get infected on GNU/Linux than on Windows. So much harder infact that the mention of it as a benefit of running GNU/Linux instead of Windows is a must, I'd say. And I don't even have to mention the fact that GNU/Linux was designed with security and connectivity in mind from the start, just as other unices.

Quote:

Always have in mind that nobody wants everybody to use Linux

How do you know? I for one wouldn't have a problem with GNU/Linux domination because it would never be a real monopoly cutting choices. Choice is the second name for GNU/Linux and Free Software in general. Freedom is what was (and for many still is) the original goal behind it. To want everybody to use software which allows these freedoms can only be a good thing, and I can name quite a few people who do, indeed, want everybody to use Free Software. Ok, maybe it doesn't have to be GNU/Linux (it could be BSD for example), but Free Software, sure!

Quote:

It's too much like the flaming Microsoft always liked to use again Linux, and we really don't need to get down to that level too.

You mean FUD? FUD is about spreading disinformation. If what GetGNULinux.org says is true then it's not FUD and it's absolutely fair to say it.

If there are any untruths said then sure, they should definitely get deleted and replaced with facts, but I don't think this site is FUD like MS funded reports tend to be.

Quote:

You've been on drugs writing that site? No? Then what's that doing there?

Man where's your sense of humor today? Eye

ariadacapo's picture
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re: criticisms

To reply to your rather aggressive message reptiler:

reptiler wrote:

But hey, do we really need this? I mean do we really need to get down to the flaming-level Microsoft already used all the years against Linux?

I'm sorry if you see that as flaming. I'm trying to tell the truth - what I believe is right and wrong. Surely this is not the level of "Linux is a cancer" declarations, or so I believe.

reptiler wrote:

When I first read that site completely (a while ago) I found some exaggerations which I think shouldn't be there. It's right that Linux is a great system and Windows mostly really sucks, but it's not right to totally praise Linux and stomp Windows into the ground. A fair view at things might be the better way. I don't know if that has been fixed yet, maybe I'll read the site again later, but if you just keep on saying "this really sucks on windows, and this is much better on Linux" it won't help a bit.

Sure. I was trying to give first-hand user impressions on what it really is like to use the thing (a "fair view"). I'm not trying to sell anything with pseudo-comparisons.

reptiler wrote:

[about security]
This one is ridiculous. Sure, Linux tends to be safer than Windows, but there ARE! virii for Linux. Yes, it's true. Not many, and not so harmful, but they really exist. And even if you're not too much into networking, you should still have your packet-filter configured properly. Do you want anybody to use your CUPS to print out fat naked guys on your printer?

Sure but I settled my 83-year-old grandma on a slow computer a year ago and it's a great worry avoiding spyware and viruses, when Norton stuff is out of the question. I let her (and myself) surf the web on my Ubuntu machine completely safely just because I click on the "updates" icon.
I don't pretend to know everything about security. It's just my experience on myself and several beginner users around me. If you experienced something different, then please tell us about it.

reptiler wrote:

You name two distros: Suse and Ubuntu. Don't you think that you should either name "all the big ones" or just say something "there's a lot of Linux in Linux" and just link to distrowatch or something like that?

I wanted to choose two distributions for the beginner user. A wide amount of choice is not what Joe User wants to begin with. I think I'm quite clear explaining that there are many distributions around.

reptiler wrote:

Especially featuring Suse is pretty funny when thinking about what a blow-up it is. It's the Windows of Linux.
How about featuring something more "back-to-the-roots", like Slackware? Or something geeky like Gentoo or LFS?

Sure. We're discussing this right now. Feel free to describe the "blow-up". I think we need to focus on easy, simple distributions, and just maybe point to one geeky one.

reptiler wrote:

Always have in mind that nobody wants everybody to use Linux: People who even can't use Windows properly better stay where they are and don't even try Linux.

You are mistaken on the objectives on the website. I'm not worrying about finding a better product for these people. I just want interested people to understand what free software is about and ease their transition to it if they want.

reptiler wrote:

It'll just make them frustrated and give us headaches because of just more really stupid questions in forums like this.

I'm sure if we improve GetGnuLinux.org, we can avoid most "really stupid" questions (your suggestions are most welcome!Smiling), and there are many people ready to answer the other questions.

reptiler wrote:

I really suggest a MAJOR rewrite of the content. Or even just shutting down the site. It's no good for Linux really.

Again you are mistaken on the purpose of the website.
I don't care about Linux or being "good for it". I'm not a Linux fan as people are Nike or Harley-Davinson fans. It's fantastic that Gnu/Linux progresses and I'm very enthusiastic about that; but I am not concerned about improving it directly. I want people to use it if they are willing enough to care about their freedom to communicate.

reptiler wrote:

And what's this?
[Tux FAQ extract]
What's your problem with Tux? And who the hell NEEDS to compete with Microsoft? Linux doesn't, never did. As I said before, nobody wants everybody to use Linux.

In the sense that Microsoft really wants to be between everyone and their intellectual property and culture, yes, Linux competes with it.
I tried to describe my "problem" wit tux in this FAQ. Remember also it's a mascott for Linux, not Gnu/Linux. It's a pity everyone mistakes Torwalds' work for the whole system and the philosophy behind it.

reptiler wrote:

And how about this?
[Meaning of Life quote]
You've been on drugs writing that site? No? Then what's that doing there?

When I wrote this website I expected only about 30 people to read it. It was a lot of work. I had fun writing this joke and it's ok with me if not everyone understands it. I'll remove it. There are nicer ways to criticise content, I believe.

I hope this clears up the intentions of the website and makes it a little more acceptable to you.

Olivier.

edit: libervisco and I were probably writing up at the same time so my message takes no account of his reply =)

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Hey, I'm sorry that my post

Hey, I'm sorry that my post was written a little more aggressive than I really meant it.
It's just my oppinion.
And I think that this website can do a lot of good things in promoting Linux to the normal user in making it really interesting. But still, there's some things I would change. The website is anything else than unacceptable, I just pointed out some things I don't really agree on or don't see doing so much good in terms of promoting Linux, or, as said on the virus-thing, a little "overpromoting" it.
We should keep it real people, although the virus-threat on Linux is more or less 0 it would be better say that there are a couple of virii for Linux, but that by the design of Linux these are not a big threat. First of all, it's much more true than just stating there's no virii for Linux. And it also underlines the secure concept of Linux, which is also a good point again. There are virii, but Linux doesn't give them much of chance. I think that's something a user would like to read. That even if he catches a cold, he won't have a runny nose. Eye
I know you put a lot of work into this, and I really respect that. And with a little more work, and maybe some help/suggestions this can become a really good thing. And that's, as far as I understand it from this thread and the others, what you are here for.

As said, I'm sorry about the tone of my first message. When I have let go some criticism it's usually pretty direct, sometimes a little harsher than necessary, but usually that helps. Eye
So please don't take that too serious, but still serious enough to think about the points I pointed out.

By the way, Macs can also run Linux. Eye

dylunio's picture
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SuSE is a nice distro, but I

SuSE is a nice distro, but I now see it more aimed at the enterprise market. Maybe you should include a distro supported by the FSF and GNU, like Blag which is a one CD distro based on FC.

dylunio

libervisco's picture
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reptiler wrote: We should
reptiler wrote:

We should keep it real people, although the virus-threat on Linux is more or less 0 it would be better say that there are a couple of virii for Linux, but that by the design of Linux these are not a big threat. First of all, it's much more true than just stating there's no virii for Linux. And it also underlines the secure concept of Linux, which is also a good point again. There are virii, but Linux doesn't give them much of chance. I think that's something a user would like to read. That even if he catches a cold, he won't have a runny nose. Eye

With that I can agree. Smiling

tbuitenh's picture
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Joined: 2005-12-21
linux viri and security

GNU/Linux viri do exist, but AFAIK none of them does much damage or is seen in the wild. That definitely doesn't mean the OS is immune, and simply not doing non-root stuff as root doesn't offer immunity either. It definitely IS possible to write a worm that spreads from one normal user on one system to another normal user on another system. But it is quite difficult to write such a worm because to be effective it would have to be able to break many different email programs (or whatever it uses to spread) on many different distributions.

Promoting Ubuntu with talk about security IMHO is a bad idea, because Ubuntu is likely to be the first distribution to suffer from a large virus outbreak. Why?
1 - Not too much attention paid to security. Correct me if I'm wrong, but by default it doesn't have a firewall, it doesn't have selinux or grsecurity or the like, and sudo doesn't always ask for a password (it remembers the password for a while, which scares the **** out of me).
2 - Most Ubuntu users use one of two email programs: evolution and thunderbird.
3 - Popular, and popular with newbies who might not know what they're doing (and so might run a program from an email attachment, thinking "it is GNU/Linux, WHAT COULD POSSIBLY HAPPEN?")

I think it's better to simply look up the number of known viri for GNU/Linux, MacOS and Windows, show these to the reader to draw their own conclusions. Talk about "inherent better security" leads readers to think it is immune by design wheras windows isn't. This is false. NT based versions of windows could be about as secure as GNU/Linux, but they aren't because of the closed source development process and the linspirification, and GNU/Linux is far from immune.

a thing's picture
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proof-of-concepts
tbuitenh wrote:

I think it's better to simply look up the number of known viri for GNU/Linux, MacOS and Windows, show these to the reader to draw their own conclusions. Talk about "inherent better security" leads readers to think it is immune by design wheras windows isn't. This is false. NT based versions of windows could be about as secure as GNU/Linux, but they aren't because of the closed source development process and the linspirification, and GNU/Linux is far from immune.

I think the GNU/Linux and Windows virus-counts are about the same, but GNU/Linux viruses are proof-of-concept, and once the concept has been proven, it gets fixed fast.

ariadacapo's picture
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re: suggestions

reptiler, there was no offense taken:)

There are many good ideas flying around in this thread, so in order for everyone to keep track and participate, I opened several threads to discuss them separately. Especially important is your help to re-write and correct the site! Please don't hesitate to write proposals for paragraphs directly.

I'll add other topics treating individual planned modifications to the website soon.

Olivier.

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Joined: 2006-03-28
a thing wrote: I think the
a thing wrote:

I think the GNU/Linux and Windows virus-counts are about the same, but GNU/Linux viruses are proof-of-concept, and once the concept has been proven, it gets fixed fast.

According to perComp there is a "little" difference in numbers. ;-)
209.418 DOS/Windows
605 Unix/Linux

And these numbers should be pretty recent, since they state they update them every week and the site is no graveyard.
But still, this is no absolute proof that these numbers are 100% correct. :-)

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