Re: A brief introduction and some questions. Follow up.

From: Edward Cherlin <edward_dot_cherlin_at_etssg_dot_com>
Date: Fri May 07 2004 - 12:43:14 CDT

On Wednesday 05 May 2004 10:32, Edmund R. Kennedy wrote:
> Hello Mr. Cherlin:
>
> In addition to what our ever impressive Mr. Jones
> says, I would suggest that while the OVC project will
> likely be a wonderful demonstration of Linux, I don't
> see it as one of the goals of the project.

I raised the issue of Linux computers because of cost, in
contrast with proposals to use random trailing-edge hardware, or
to rent computers or buy Windows computers in each election
cycle.

The lowest priced desktop computer on the market is the ThizLinux
system, at $200 or less with everything required for operation
except a monitor. I know of no Windows computer at anything
close to that price.

> I know
> that many companies and some governments are embracing
> Linux, but there is the problem of NIH (Not Invented
> here)

Since companies and governments do not invent operating systems,
I believe you mean something else. Perhaps you meant the old
saw, "Nobody ever got fired for buying from IBM."--replaced in
the current software market by Microsoft.

> and also 'better the devil we know and have
> already paid for than one that we haven't'.

They can have Linux on their current hardware at no extra cost.
Linux User Groups would be happy to set up Install Fests in any
school system, at no charge, and to teach students, faculty, and
administration how to use Linux. I know people who are
interested in having a national Linux install day.

> Don't get
> me wrong, I'm impressed with Linux, but security and
> reliability wise it is an unknown operating system as
> far as most company and governmental IT groups are
> concerned.

This turns out not to be correct. Security and reliability of
Linux are well known in business, government, and homes to be
much better than Windows. These are not the reasons for
reluctance to make the switch.

Microsoft is slow to respond to security issues, sometimes taking
months to release a patch, while Linux security patches appear
in a few days. Coding standards and architecture of Linux are
clearly superior to Microsoft practice. There is nothing in
Linux comparable to the multitude of attacks carried out through
hooks to Visual Basic in e-mail on Windows. (Not relevant to our
application, but extremely important for general Linux use.)

> How about you give us a link or two to the
> Linux advocacy effort your involved in,

You can find discussions of related issues on my Ryze page (link
below in signature) and in files and Web pages that I link to
from there, including my Weblog http://cherlin.blogspot.com. You
can easily Google Linux security or
Linux reliability and find a multitude of articles, analyses,
and personal opinions on these and other matters.

> reply briefly
> to this message (or even write me privately because
> I'm very interested in relationship to another project
> I'm involved in) and then move on? Don't mean to be
> rude but some folks say I can't help it.

Yeah, me, too.

> Thanks, Ed Kennedy
>
> --- "Douglas W. Jones" <jones@cs.uiowa.edu> wrote:
> > On May 5, 2004, at 11:30 AM, Edward Cherlin wrote:
> > > Let's talk about using Linux computers rather than
> > > Windows. I'm working separately from this project on
> > > convincing governments to switch to Free Software, for
> > > financial, security, and other reasons.
> >
> > The change to Linux has no effect on this particular
> > argument.
> > The subject was what everyone thought was an
> > insignificant
> > GUI enhancement to the radio-button widget that
> > ended up
> > destroying ballot secrecy. The same misadventure
> > could have
> > happened with an upgrade to one of the X libraries
> > that are
> > distributed with Linux.

I wasn't referring to that issue.

> > Doug Jones
> > jones@cs.uiowa.edu
>
> =====
> 10777 Bendigo Cove
> San Diego, CA 92126-2510
>
> Amendment 1 to the US Constitution
>
> "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of
> religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or
> abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right
> of people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the
> government for the redress of grievances."

-- 
Edward Cherlin, Simputer Evangelist
Encore Technologies (S) Pte. Ltd.
New voices in the global conversation
http://www.ryze.com/go/Cherlin
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Received on Mon May 31 23:17:22 2004

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