Steve Smith talks about why Linux has yet to be as popular and as universal as Windows and Mac.
Episode #6-41 released on June 26, 2016
Why are the Windows and Mac operating systems so popular? The answer will seem off pudding to a few, but needless to say, it will be hard to contest. Windows and Mac come with computers preinstalled, or asked for by preference. Having worked for over a year in a computer store, it had never happened that someone asked for Linux to be installed. Not even once. Why?
Well, for the most part, the majority of Linux users are advanced in some respect, compared to the majority of users, and you'd have to be. The requirement to understand how to use a command prompt and be able to compile some programs, depending on the version of Linux you chose, means that some users would have hard time using Linux to begin with. And, while this is not always true depending on which Linux distribution you choose, it is not particularly an issue with Windows and Mac, which work, without any long winded explanation.
But, does this make Windows and Mac, better than Linux?
Yes, and No. If we are talking about connecting the world together into a global village, allowing everyone easy access to the Internet, in a way that allows everyone the ease of having something that just works, then of course it is better, but at what cost. Linux, for the most part is free, but the learning curve to this date, is one that some users cannot successfully scale, not because it is impossible, but because Linux has so many distributions, that it lacks coherence which would enable it to have better support for drivers, instructions, and ultimately allow users the ability to more easily access that part of the world.
In a world where choice is a positive, it is, also, a negative. Linux distributions aren't just skins like the similar Android environment; it can have completely different underlying operating parameters that are merely echoes of a simpler time. This makes designing drivers a serious issue. Which is why driver support for hardware is so severely lacking in Linux, especially for new hardware. Companies are not going to invest into a series of operating systems, when it is easier to develop for operating systems with a larger user base.
Which leads us into productivity and gaming. While, many other tasks can be easily achieved given sufficient support for hardware drivers a user requires for their computer to function properly. And, despite having a selection of free, and open source applications to choose from. Users of specific kinds of applications will only use operating systems that support their applications of choice. I can personally use any operating system I want, but given the choice, I use Windows. Why? Adobe products, gaming, music, etc. things that are better suited on Windows to this day. It isn't because I can't adapt, but the closest set of applications I can use in Linux do not have the same workflow, which is definitely an issue. It, also, makes it harder for less experienced users to access this world.
Essentially speaking, if we want more people to adopt Linux, we need more companies to adopt Linux, as well. People will continue to use the applications they love. If we want companies to adopt Linux, we need far more uniformity in the world of Linux. This will make it easier for people to adopt and explain how the operating system works, and more uniformity will make application development, driver development, etc. easier. The easier it is made the more adoption will occur.
So, why is Windows and Mac so popular? Because the experience is far more uniform and easier to explain than Linux is, end of story.
Host : Steve Smith | Music : Jonny Lee Hart | Editor : Steve Smith | Producer : Zed Axis Productions