Fourday Rant

I was awakened this morning by thunder bumping. Given the week thus far I am unsirprised. In fact, yesterday afternoon was a bit of a visit to Tartarus inasmuch as this box suffered four involuntary reboots courtesy of the shoddy infrastructure (to say nothing an better of their management) of Greater Metropolitan Arab Electron Uncooperative.

At gym, I listened to an episode of “Linux for the Rest of Us.”[Link] I should mention that this is a “filler” podcast for times like now when the “Ubuntu” podcast is on holiday. Like most Linux podcasts it is a turbulent mixture of egalitarianism and elitism, of humility and arrogance. The elitism and arrogance shine most brightly in the bragging refusal on the part of such to explain nothing, the idea being if you are smart enough to listen to the podcast you are smart enough to know how to do anything in Linux. So mostly it’s a matter of occasionally banal nattering and less occasional obliviousness.

The pod reader was rather like a hen with tail feather on fire. He had found some article of the ten best (new?) Linux clients of the year and spent some time disparaging them all as banal and trite. Then he warbled a maudlin dialog about the absence of the fabled “Year of the Linux Desktop.” I came home feeling rather a bit abused by the vacuity of it all.

I was also struck by the meh of the list and in that I am in agreement. What I am not in agreement is the idea that Linux is collapsing. That isn’t necessarily so. The problem with pioneers is that they have difficult recognizing maturity and that is increasingly what characterizes the Linux community. I would ask, what significant new hand tools have you seen in recent years. I can recall none since the electric screwdriver. I would also suggest the pod reader go learn up on “S” curves and that they represent.

Incidentally, there is still new software that is better. IMHO the best new client last year was “Google Clean Calendar,” which is an absolute necessity now that Mozilla is congenitally unable to keep ThunderBird talking to Google Calendar, hence making TB as worthless as a politician’s promise.

I won;t get on the dis-reputability and venality of journalists these days. That topic is already pounded into the bog.

As far as the “Year of the Linux Desktop” is concerned, recognize that it is a grail quest. If you don’t know what that is, go ask you HS “English” teacher. The reason there won’t be such is that the founding fathers of Linux can’t understand the mind sets of slaves and serfs. (And the differences.) A simpler approach is mathematical: Sturgeon’s Rule states that 90% of everything is crap. The addenda to that are worse and (slightly) better cases. 

Sturgeon’s Rule applies to humanity. Ninety percent of humans are Bogs; nine percent are Geeks (and semi-Nerds) and one percent are Nerds. So at best, the only people that will voluntarily adopt Linux are about ten percent of humanity. The rest want a different freedom or exchange any hope of freedom for the pseudo-reality of society.