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November 2007
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Give Up On Unfree software

Using a Mac (with OS X) may be marginally “cooler” than using a PC with Vista, but in either case who will really control your computer? Will it really be you?


Comment from Sunni
Time November 23, 2007 at 8:37 am

I brought this subject up on a forum after someone posted a Mac question in the “Open Source IT” area. I was told that Macs are good because they do run a lot of open source software … apparently it’s mostly just the stuff that interfaces with the hardware that’s proprietary. And I guess that makes it okay for some users.

I gotta say (as I come at you from a machine that’s still running Edgy Eft because trying to upgrade online is going to go over our “fair use” limit) that right now there’s really no optimal OS solution for me. Linux comes closest, but there are significant bugs still, not to mention lack of basic functionality in some tools.

Comment from Tom Ender
Time November 23, 2007 at 8:29 pm

Macs do seem to have a very good development environment these days, and do run many FLOSS systems (Unix roots, etc.). However, the way I read it, OS X itself does not qualify as open or “free” (in any sense of free: “libre” or cost).

As for imperfections in “Edgy”, I’ve no doubt you’ve found some, perhaps many. “Gutsy” doesn’t merit a perfect ranking either. But I haven’t found perfection in much of anything (even the mirror 😉 ).

If I had to pick between having dinner with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, I’d probably pick Jobs; just as I would probably pick OS X over Windows if buying new hardware. However, that also brings up the entire proprietary hardware issue.

Apple seems far less open on the hardware front. Plus, I have a bunch of existing PCs that I have no reason, or plan, for junking just yet. As far as I know, I can’t put OS X on them. Seems like Mr. Jobs might be missing a trick (and $s too) there.

As for upgrading “Edgy,” I’m not the best adviser since I was able to do just what you cannot, so I didn’t look any further into other options. Seems like there ought to be some.

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