Year of the Linux Desktop

It is 2008, time for predictions/wishes/etc. Every year people predict “This will be the year of Linux on the Desktop” and later people make jokes about it. The thing is, people assume that declaring it the year for Linux on the Desktop means Linux will dominate the desktop. I see it differently, it is more about accelerating the move to Linux as the choice Desktop. And what do you know… last several years we have been growing like crazy, each year demonstrating more growth than the last.

I am going to put it out there, (drum roll) this year will be the year of the Linux Desktop :)

I will predict that we will experience even more growth than last year, and 2008 will be a banner year. Linux isn’t perfect as a desktop yet, but none of the alternatives are either.

The areas I really want to see improvement:

  • Printer detection/configuration/driver selection
  • Better Open Source video drivers

Short list huh? We are close… I am just not thrilled with any of the Linux printer detection/configuration tools. I want it to be dead simple, and imho not even Mac OS X can get that right. I struggled getting an HP printer to work on 10.3.9, so painful!

And don’t get me started on video drivers, it isn’t so much about the quality of the drivers (which needs improvement too), but hardware support. If someone buys a new laptop with the most current ATI video card, it needs to be well supported by a free/open driver at the time it was purchased. Not told “download the closed driver” or use the vesa driver for ~6 months until we get initial support for your device. Or even worse… just stuck not knowing what to do and give up on Linux. I don’t know how to solve it, but it needs to happen.

I have converted most of my family over to Foresight Linux with great results. First impression has really been GNOME related, things really just work how they should and they all say they would never go back to windows.

So lets ride this wave M$ has given us with Vista… the best thing to happen to Linux on the Desktop yet :)

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4 Responses to Year of the Linux Desktop

  1. calum says:

    A wee bit harsh judging the merits of any feature of OS X 10.3.9, that’s ancient these days! In 10.5, a large number of HP drivers are installed by default, so most HP printers just work out of the box.

  2. ken says:

    True… but my old mac can’t run that :)

  3. reinouts says:

    I can’t think of much better idiot-proof printer detection then Mandriva already offers. Can you? :-)

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