Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 14th Mar 2006 23:59 UTC
Apple "In twenty odd years of working with computers, I never owned an Apple computer. Frankly, until OSX, I was never interested. But the BSD underpinnings of OSX got my attention. The Mac finally got a "real" operating system. It was interesting enough that several years after it debuted, I purchased my first Apple computer on eBay, a Mac Mini, to dig a little deeper into the OS. Not only did Apple do something right with OSX, but it was smart marketing to introduce a cheap Mac that worked with PC hardware. It is squarely aimed at Windows switchers and the mildly curious like myself. I would never have considered springing for a full-blown iMac or iBook as a learning exercise, but a used Mini fit the budget."
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Nice article
by ceekay on Wed 15th Mar 2006 00:29 UTC
ceekay
Member since:
2006-02-09

I like the epiphany about realizing that he spent most of his time using a shell and a web browser. That's exactly why I bought a PowerBook to replace my trusty old IBM Thinkpad 600x that had been running Gentoo. It's nice to be able to not care what OS you're using.

Reply Score: 4

Linux Printing
by dswain on Wed 15th Mar 2006 01:36 UTC
dswain
Member since:
2005-07-03

I agree with his statement about Linux printing. I'm not really a big fan of it myself, but this is by far not the place to get invovled with it at this point. It could very well be my own fault at any rate, so it's not worth the fight.

At any rate, enjoyable piece. Short and sweet and makes good strong points. And yeah, I also agree with the above. I use a few other programs along with the things I do, but for the most part the browser is pretty much one of the primary pieces to any modern-day computer user I'd imagine, including myself.

Interesting about the wireless problems, though. I wouldn't know, but I never heard of any real problems with it.

Reply Score: 1

v RE: Linux Printing
by stephanem on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:01 UTC in reply to "Linux Printing"
RE[2]: Linux Printing
by rm6990 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux Printing"
rm6990 Member since:
2005-07-04

Don't even get me started on Linux printing. I got a Lexmark USB one and because of Linux developers pig headedness of not allowing any binary drivers, there's no binary usb driver - Lexmark put out a bunch of hooey specs and to this date, none of the open source people have been able to figure out the printer.

Ummm, correct me if I'm wrong, but don't printer drivers on Linux plug into CUPS, and not into the actual kernel itself, thus making this "problem" with binary drivers and Linux moot with regards to printers? That's always been my understanding.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Linux Printing
by phoenix on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:39 UTC in reply to "Linux Printing"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

MacOS X uses CUPS for printing.
Linux uses CUPS for printing.

Printer drives in CUPS are just text files in PPD format.

Any PPD file can be used on any system that uses CUPS.

"Installing" a printer driver in CUPS is as simple as downloading a text file, putting it in the model/ directory for CUPS, and reloading CUPS. Works the same in MacOS X, any BSD, and any Linux distro.

I've installed drivers for big Toshiba eStudio photocopiers, Lexmark and HP laser printers, and even some inkjets. The Linux printing website even gives you a centralised, searchable directory with pre-made PPD files for download.

Printing in Unix is only as hard as you make it.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Linux Printing
by CrimsonScythe on Wed 15th Mar 2006 11:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux Printing"
CrimsonScythe Member since:
2005-07-10

Well, that was what I thought too. It turned out that the PPDs can be just as "open" and "text files" as the Microsoft Office XML files. The PPDs actually call OS X functions, which renders them virtually useless in Linux unless you do some serious rewriting. I just gave up my hacking attempt, since I didn't know the PPD format well enough, but I guess you can hack it if you really know what you're doing. Here's an example of a line in an OS X PPD:

*APDialogExtension: "/Library/Printers/Lexmark/PDEs/Lexmark Paper Handling.plugin"

What I ended up doing was to download the pro version of Cups at easysw.com and copy the proper PPD file. That worked great for my printer, at least.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Linux Printing
by korpenkraxar on Wed 15th Mar 2006 23:18 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux Printing"
korpenkraxar Member since:
2005-09-10

>I've installed drivers for big Toshiba eStudio photocopiers

Ahh, the legendary Toshiba eStudio photocopier. Now that beast has more than anything else united all employees at our office, be they Windows/Mac/Linux users. It really is evil.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Linux Printing
by dswain on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:47 UTC in reply to "Linux Printing"
dswain Member since:
2005-07-03

I understand that. Trust me, I spent some time trying to get it to work too. I went and made sure I was buying a 100% compatible printer for Linux and to make sure I got the correct drivers for it. I ran into the problem of pretty much getting all the drivers loaded and such, and simply just having no output. The printer even claimed it was printing, but failed. The set up is a little annoying though. The printer is running through a Windows computer so it's done via SMB which may be my problem. I run it through Windows simply because I need to allow my other members of the family get to it easily.

At any rate, I didn't mean to start a controversy. As I said, this was the wrong place, I just happened to agree was all.

Reply Score: 1

Why?
by Arkus on Wed 15th Mar 2006 01:39 UTC
Arkus
Member since:
2005-07-06

One thing I still can't quite get is the reason why a lot of these articles mention having to enable the Root user. With OSX there's no reason to enable the root user. If you need to do anything with superuser privileges you can just use sudo... Oh well.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Why?
by AdamR01 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 05:30 UTC in reply to "Why?"
AdamR01 Member since:
2005-09-14

Actually I had a problem where I was trying to edit a plist file and I had to be root. No matter what I did when I ran "sudo open Property List Editor.app" it wouldnt work. I had to login as root to edit the file.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Why?
by Arkus on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:55 UTC in reply to "RE: Why?"
Arkus Member since:
2005-07-06

To launch an app with sudo you have to actually use the file in the package, not the open utility.
e.g. sudo /Developer/Applications/Utilities/Property List Editor.app/Contents/MacOS/Property List Editor
Or, you can use something like Pseudo to launch apps with root privaleges. Or just use Quicksilver (There's a plugin for more actions, you just have to enable the Launch As Root action and away you go).

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Why?
by growchie on Wed 15th Mar 2006 09:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Why?"
growchie Member since:
2005-07-07

Have you tried "sudo bash" ;)

Reply Score: 3

Linux Printing is Fine
by ma_d on Wed 15th Mar 2006 01:51 UTC
ma_d
Member since:
2005-06-29

Your printer simply isn't a postscript printer. Do yourself, and everyone else, a favor and stop buying cheap printers ;) .

Seriously though, print setup in *nix could be nicer (RedHat's is pretty stinkin' nice) but it works just fine if you have a printer worth printing documents (a postscript one).

If you honestly expect people to reverse engineer Lexmark's non-standard print system you're crazy.

Buy compatible hardware. I dare you to run a Windows gfx card on a Mac without flashing the card ;) .

Reply Score: 3

RE: Linux Printing is Fine
by flav2000 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:05 UTC in reply to "Linux Printing is Fine"
flav2000 Member since:
2006-02-08

The problem is, not everyone is rich.

While Linux works fine on 5-6 years old hardware a person who uses Linux needs an expensive postscript printer so he/she can print?

That part was off topic. I have a chance to work with G5 with plasma monitors in a presentating setting. If there's something that Mac is done right is that, for whatever Apple say it supports, it works.

That's one plus that Apple (or even Microsoft for 90% of hardware out there) leads against Linux, hands down.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Linux Printing is Fine
by ma_d on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:45 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux Printing is Fine"
ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

A quality printer is far cheaper than the 12 cheap ones you will buy in the same time. And yes, I'm including replacement ink/toner for the quality printer.

Your argument is much like saying people should buy cheap furniture if they're not wealthy: This is silly. If you're going to put it to any real use you should buy quality, you will always save money in the long run.

Or, buying cheap clothes. The $50 pair of name brand jeans will probably last far longer than twice as long as the $20 Wranglers you buy at Wal-mart, unless of course you're using them while you work on your car ;) .

Buying cheap, in most things (printers included), is for suckers. You just buy more, and more, and more. You might as well bite the bullet and spend now to save later.

Of course, if you hardly ever print, a cheap printer might make sense for you. Although a 15 year old network printer would still work today (technologically speaking) ;) . Also, if you can't afford a lot, you can always look for a nice used laser. They can often be had for even less than a Lexmark!

Reply Score: 1

RE: Linux Printing is Fine
by cmd184 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 14:08 UTC in reply to "Linux Printing is Fine"
cmd184 Member since:
2006-03-15

Good luck finding a postscript printer.. it's not something you can find at your neighborhood staples ... I've asked. *warning cheap plug ahead* Although there are several cheap HP printers that do have real linux drivers. I bought a networkable ink jet printer for less than $160 (USD). The HP driver (available on sourceforge, I believe) works like a champ. And it didn't break the budget. Too bad HP doesn't include the driver on the driver CD and say "Linux supported" on the box. That would be nice.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Linux Printing is Fine
by ma_d on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Linux Printing is Fine"
ma_d Member since:
2005-06-29

That's because consumers are buying cheap printers. If consumers demanded postscript, consumers would get postscript.

It's a bit of a chicken-egg thing. But you can always tell your friends: Don't settle for a cheap printer ;) . And then define for them what cheap means.

Network printers are postscript. I don't think I've ever seen a true network printer that wasn't... Or was it one that depended on a router with usb support?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Linux Printing is Fine
by cmd184 on Thu 16th Mar 2006 14:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Linux Printing is Fine"
cmd184 Member since:
2006-03-15

The printer I speak of actually has a print server built into it, with web interface. I had to use Windows to set it up.. but the HP linux drivers were able to talk to it. Once up and running, the web interface works great with linux/firefox.

In my case, I rarely print. Why buy a laser (new or old) printer that costs more $$ in toner and power when all I need to is to print a few sheets per week, if that?

I'm not the old-hardware collection type.. I like my hardware somewhat new and somewhat supported. ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Linux Printing is Fine
by phoenix on Fri 17th Mar 2006 07:07 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Linux Printing is Fine"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

A lot of our networked Lexmark Optra printers are PCL printers. They emulate (sometimes badly) postscript, and don't always work as "generic postscript" printers from Linux/FreeBSD stations. It takes a few ghostscript filtering steps to convert the postscript to PCL to get things working correctly. Printing from Windows works fine, as the drivers output PCL natively.

Our networked HP printers are all Postscript printers with PCL emulation, and work perfectly from Windows, Linux, FreeBSD.

(Or is it the other way around? One of the two uses PCL with Postscript emulation, and the other Postscript with PCL emulation. One works great, the other sucks.)

Reply Score: 1

My experience was different
by gnobuddy on Wed 15th Mar 2006 01:53 UTC
gnobuddy
Member since:
2006-01-21

My wife uses a Mac with OSX (10.3.something, IIRC) on it, while I made the switch from Windows to Linux several years ago.

Curiously enough, my wife's Mac refused to print to either of the two printers on our home network - a Samsung ML-1710 laser printer, and an HP Deskjet 932C. The printer configuration tool would simply die silently somewhere during the config process, and nothing ever made it to the printer. Meantime just about every Linux distro I've used in the last two years (and I've used quite a few, including eight of the top ten on Distrowatch at the moment) had absolutely no problem talking to either printer, though I did have issues with an older version of Gentoo a few years ago.

The interesting thing is that I find Mac's far LESS useable than Windows, and far less useable than a Linux box with KDE on it. I have found, though, that Gnome has become about as unusable as OSX of late. Weird, the harder they try to make it usable, the less usable I find it to be - a few years ago, before the big Gnome usability push, I used to go back and forth between Gnome and KDE. Nowdays I can't stand to use Gnome at all.

Interestingly enough, I've done an informal survey of several friends and colleagues, and what I keep finding is that the folks who are extremely right-brain dominant - folks who think visually, and who don't understand things like hierarchical file system trees - like Mac OSX and Gnome. Meantime people who are comfortable using the left side of their brain - more analytic types - and peope who have a better handle on what is going on underneath the GUI of their computer - seem to strongly prefer KDE and Windows.

It seems to me that "usability" means very different things to different people.

-Flieslikeabeagle

Reply Score: 5

RE: My experience was different
by Rugmonster on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:19 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
Rugmonster Member since:
2005-11-18

Interestingly enough, I've done an informal survey of several friends and colleagues, and what I keep finding is that the folks who are extremely right-brain dominant - folks who think visually, and who don't understand things like hierarchical file system trees - like Mac OSX and Gnome. Meantime people who are comfortable using the left side of their brain - more analytic types - and peope who have a better handle on what is going on underneath the GUI of their computer - seem to strongly prefer KDE and Windows.

I am a very analytical person and I prefer Gnome. Most of the folks in the local LUG who are admins/devs tend to prefer Gnome and the light weight window managers to KDE. I don't want to start a flamewar, but I think you're analysis is off from what I've seen.

Also, usability to me is that I can do the stuff I want to do with as little muss or fuss as possible. Do I have to go through numerous menus and point-and-click menus and wizards or do I get something that works with the defaults very well? For me, that's Gnome. For you, that's KDE or Windows. While I've had very little exposure to OS X, from what I've seen, things just seem to work for the most part with the default settings. That seems to be the goal of OS X and definitely the goal of Gnome. Don't overwhelm the user with 50 rarely used options. Give them what they'll most likely need and if they need that whiz-bang option, they can dig a little deeper.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: My experience was different
by Jake on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:09 UTC in reply to "RE: My experience was different"
Jake Member since:
2006-01-08

I am a very analytical person and I prefer Gnome. Most of the folks in the local LUG who are admins/devs tend to prefer Gnome and the light weight window managers to KDE. I don't want to start a flamewar, but I think you're analysis is off from what I've seen.

...Don't overwhelm the user with 50 rarely used options. Give them what they'll most likely need and if they need that whiz-bang option, they can dig a little deeper.


Digging deeper is fine if the option exists at all. I switched from GNOME to KDE because I had a few KDE apps I wanted to run anyway (k3b for burning anything other than pre-prepared images, konqueror mostly for khtml testing, and amaroK which is infinitely better than XMMS/BMP), and I got frustrated with GNOME hiding configuration options. The one that bugs me the most is focus behavior. Every time I built metacity, I would edit src/display.c, look for "debate" in a comment, and change the auto-raise behavior. Ubuntu includes a patch to create a gconf option, but I don't use Ubuntu. Then one day I couldn't figure out how to edit the menu. I swear I must have looked for about half an hour. I wasn't going to Google it. I figured if I couldn't find it, I'd switch. And I did. Now in addition to the previously mentioned KDE apps, I also run Filelight (space management), Tellico (for my DVD collection), and probably a few others. I still keep some GNOME stuff for GAIM and Evolution, and of course I still need GTK+ for the GIMP, Firefox, Dia, and a few other apps, but overall I'm quite happy with QT/KDE. It's not bloated, doesn't hog my memory any more than GNOME, and it doesn't look like Windows or OSX. Actually, I have it looking pretty much just like my previous GNOME desktop. The most significant difference is that KDE doesn't insult me by forcing me do things a certain way.

The whole reason I think power users got started with GNOME rather than KDE was the Trolltech QT license problem. Many of us who picked desktops "back in the day" (not sure exactly when) picked GNOME because KDE was based on the non-free QT.

Back on topic, I don't expect to switch to OSX any time soon because I can do everything I want in Linux, and Macs are too expensive. I want to continue upgrading piece-by-piece rather than buying new systems. Yes, I know Macs are upgradable, but not to the extent of getting a new mobo (easily anyway). I was curious enough to have tried running OSX on my Compaq laptop, but Apple doesn't have anything worth paying more for a less flexible platform (both hardware and software).

Reply Score: 4

joekiser Member since:
2005-06-30

The one that bugs me the most is focus behavior. Every time I built metacity, I would edit src/display.c, look for "debate" in a comment, and change the auto-raise behavior.

Focus behavior can be changed in gconf. /apps/metacity/general, and it's trivial from there to set up auto raise or sloppy focus. I agree on GNOME hiding options though. Having a well-designed interface does not imply hiding options from the user.

As for KDE, the main reason I don't switch is ironically, a missing option. There's nothing more beautiful than my anti-aliased fonts under Gnome running at 109 dpi; KDE lacks the option to set font DPI. Fonts come out tiny on my large display and you can barely tell that there's any smoothing at all.

Reply Score: 1

bytecoder Member since:
2005-11-27


Focus behavior can be changed in gconf. /apps/metacity/general, and it's trivial from there to set up auto raise or sloppy focus. I agree on GNOME hiding options though. Having a well-designed interface does not imply hiding options from the user.

raise_on_click, what I believe he is talking about, wasn't implemented in 2.12 and below outside of distro-specific patches.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: My experience was different
by renox on Wed 15th Mar 2006 10:34 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: My experience was different"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

>set font DPI

Font DPI? What's that?

DPI is a property of the display device, not of the fonts, so it's configurable by changing X configuration.

Reply Score: 2

joekiser Member since:
2005-06-30
RE[6]: My experience was different
by renox on Wed 15th Mar 2006 16:56 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: My experience was different"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

I understand the problem, all I'm saying is that the DPI is a screen property not a font property: I can easily imagine a SVG renderer choosing the level of detail to use to render an icon depending on the DPI.

Reply Score: 2

bytecoder Member since:
2005-11-27


The one that bugs me the most is focus behavior. Every time I built metacity, I would edit src/display.c, look for "debate" in a comment, and change the auto-raise behavior. Ubuntu includes a patch to create a gconf option, but I don't use Ubuntu. Then one day I couldn't figure out how to edit the menu. I swear I must have looked for about half an hour. I wasn't going to Google it. I figured if I couldn't find it, I'd switch. And I did.

Ironically, raise_on_click is now part of gnome when 2.14 comes out. It's still only in the registry for some reason, as the devs apparently are against it or something (yuck). I almost switched out metacity for my window manager because of it, but I found it easier to just compile the beta version of metacity and replace the old one with it.

Reply Score: 1

chemical_scum Member since:
2005-11-02

Ironically, raise_on_click is now part of gnome when 2.14 comes out. It's still only in the registry for some reason, as the devs apparently are against it or something (yuck). I almost switched out metacity for my window manager because of it

I did. I use GNOME with Openbox and I am very happy with it.

Edited 2006-03-15 05:29

Reply Score: 1

subterrific Member since:
2005-07-10

I use GNOME with ion3 and it works great. I can't imagine going back to a traditional window manager or even Mac OS X or Linux.

Reply Score: 1

RE: My experience was different
by Shane on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:20 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
Shane Member since:
2005-07-06

Usability means mostly what you are used to. Linux desktop environments like Gnome and KDE use the same taskbar metaphor as Windows and you will find these more useable for you.

In OS X, trying to use the dock as a taskbar to manage windows and to switch between them will only lead to frustration.

Joel Spolsky has a nice writeup on the subject: http://www.joelonsoftware.com/design/1stDraft/03.html

Reply Score: 3

ValiSystem Member since:
2006-02-28

In OS X, trying to use the dock as a taskbar to manage windows and to switch between them will only lead to frustration.

Thanks to point this. It drives me crazy, especialy when i need more than 8 terminals. The big joke is that Mac users i know never noticed that the Dock does not fit for multiple windows apps. And no, exposť is not a usable solution, it's a solution when you're completely lost.

Reply Score: 1

Quoth_the_Raven Member since:
2005-11-15

"And no, exposť is not a usable solution, it's a solution when you're completely lost."

I'm still trying to figure out what this is supposed to mean. If it works, then it's a solution.

I guess it all depends on what your definition of "solution" is.

Reply Score: 2

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

An alternative solution would be Command + ` (To the left of 1), which will allow you to cycle through every application window.

However, in most cases, Exposť F9/F10 works better, especially if you have it mapped to the squeeze button on a Might Mouse.

Reply Score: 1

tsuraan Member since:
2006-01-16

You should check out Desktop Manager. It gives you multiple desktops, like a proper unix system has. In my default setup, I have six desktops; one for email, one for browsing, three or four for terminals (9 or 12 terminals generally in use), and maybe one for iTunes. It's really nice to be able to lay out ones desktops geometrically and not have to constantly rearrange windows.

Reply Score: 1

tryphcycle Member since:
2006-02-16

"In OS X, trying to use the dock as a taskbar to manage windows and to switch between them will only lead to frustration"

i totally agree with you! every windows user i know does exactly that! and yea...the get frustrated...a blert out... "windows still have a better task bar!" and of couse.... i agree... but then again OSX does NOT have a task bar. it has a dock...which is not supposed to be used as a like that wondows task bar! thats when i aquaint them with expose using "active screen corners...." task bar-smashk bar!!!!

Reply Score: 1

RE: My experience was different
by PowerMacX on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:23 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
PowerMacX Member since:
2005-11-06

Curiously enough, my wife's Mac refused to print to either of the two printers on our home network - a Samsung ML-1710 laser printer, and an HP Deskjet 932C. [...]. Meantime just about every Linux distro I've used in the last two years (and I've used quite a few, including eight of the top ten on Distrowatch at the moment) had absolutely no problem talking to either printer[...]

Mac OS X has CUPS too, if your bundled native drivers failed for whatever reason and CUPS worked fine in your Linux distros you should have used that on OS X.

peope who have a better handle on what is going on underneath the GUI of their computer - seem to strongly prefer KDE and Windows.

KDE sure, but Windows? Are you putting Windows users and KDE users on the same level of average "technical" knowledge about what is going on under the surface???

Also, open the Terminal in OS X and you have all your *NIX tools to dig in as deep as you want. Perl, Python, gcc, Apache, PHP, etc. preinstalled an lots just a ./configure make make install away. (Or if you use Fink, just an apt-get away)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: My experience was different
by someone on Wed 15th Mar 2006 08:46 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
someone Member since:
2006-01-12

a Samsung ML-1710 laser printer, and an HP Deskjet 932C
You need to install driver for Samsung ML-1710, here is the website: http://tinyurl.com/ewle7

As for the HP printer, you can visit this site: http://tinyurl.com/h9atn
to download the OS X driver.

Now, Apple includes 1GB of printer driver with the Panther installation disc and it probably includes a driver for Deskjet 932C. Installing that package will *probably* allow OS X to automatically configure the printer for you, but I tend to think it's a waste of HD space.

Edited 2006-03-15 08:48

Reply Score: 1

ML-1710 work on OSX
by tryphcycle on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:47 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
tryphcycle Member since:
2006-02-16

well... regarding your ML-1710.... go try it again! my ML-1710 work wonderfully (although, i do need to order some toner) make sure you are using up to date drivers...

and was far as the whole usability of OSX verses every thing else. every one is different! but in my experience... once somthing like expose is actually used (and gotten used too!) windows users start seriously considering an OSX box.

now...as far as your generalizations regarding right brain/left brain. its all just eliteist piffel! to say that generally windows users are more analytical..... what ever! but your windows jock in from of BASH on osx and see how analytical they are, as they sweet!

Reply Score: 1

RE: My experience was different
by altair on Wed 15th Mar 2006 23:21 UTC in reply to "My experience was different"
altair Member since:
2005-07-06

Curiously enough, my wife's Mac refused to print to either of the two printers on our home network - a Samsung ML-1710 laser printer, and an HP Deskjet 932C.

My old HP 930 C printed just fine 3 years ago when I got my powerbook. Did you ever reinstall OSX and not install any of the printer drivers? The 932C is not that different from the 930C.

Reply Score: 1

speaking of linux printing
by halfmanhalfamazing on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:15 UTC
halfmanhalfamazing
Member since:
2005-07-23

I've always wondered about how linux fares in the big time printing scene. Such as if one is using equipment like fiery or sparc rips and or real take-up-an-entire-room presses. Like a Sakurai or Karat.

Anybody seen a printhouse running linux?(or tried to be one)

Reply Score: 1

RE: speaking of linux printing
by Rugmonster on Wed 15th Mar 2006 02:33 UTC in reply to "speaking of linux printing"
Rugmonster Member since:
2005-11-18

The Karat you mention supports PostScript, so yep, Linux supports it. The Sakurai website is a Frontpage wonder, templates and all. I would be hesitant to throw any money, especially the kind of money that goes into high volume publishing printers, to a company that has that little concern for their image. Afterall, isn't it their business to make things that produce good looking products?

The only printing house I've been in would take in work done on all different platforms. They did automated billing statements that were generated on an HP-UX platform and graphics work done with Photoshop on Macs.

You will notice that most of the more expensive business printers (and higher end server components for that matter) are providing official Linux support more and more these days. They are seeing it's a viable platform that is very in tune with industry standards, often implementing new standards before the proprietary platforms.

Reply Score: 1

halfmanhalfamazing Member since:
2005-07-23

That's why I brought it up, most printhouses AFAIK are generally biased towards macs.

-------------I would be hesitant to throw any money, especially the kind of money that goes into high volume publishing printers, to a company that has that little concern for their image.---------------

There's nothing that says that a linux based computer wouldn't produce a quality picture the same way a mac or windows machine could/would.

------------You will notice that most of the more expensive business printers (and higher end server components for that matter) are providing official Linux support more and more these days.------------

Yeah, I'd noticed that. Being as Linux's main market is more in the server arena, the market is moving to support it.

Reply Score: 1

Macs
by Tom K on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:07 UTC
Tom K
Member since:
2005-07-06

I think someone up top said it best: When you use a Mac, you simply don't care what OS is underneath it. OS X gets *out of your way*, and that's basically it. I don't worry about maintenance, I don't worry about driver updates, I don't worry about an installer trashing up my system ... it just works, and it stays off my damned back.

I can't say the same for Windows, Linux, BeOS, or anything else I've ever used. With those, you are constantly made aware of the thing underneath your programs powering everything, and you constantly have to dodge their quirks. It's basically gotten to the point where my iBook is like an appliance more than a computer. It just works.

Being the tweaking and poking type, I'm getting pretty bored of a computer that behaves like a flawless appliance -- but at the same time, I'm happy.

Reply Score: 4

I like this article...
by Tuishimi on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:12 UTC
Tuishimi
Member since:
2005-07-06

...very simple. A lot of people do overlook the underpinnings of Mac OS X. I use the terminal regularly to ssh and/or telnet into our redhat servers at work to futz with our oracle application servers.

But beside that, wars constantly break out about which OS is more useful... for what I do, I need a decent (preferably syntax aware) editor, a browser, mail, terminal, ftp and not much more.

I can do that with Windows, with Linux and with Mac OS X. I "prefer" my mac just because I like it. I like how it looks and feels. I like the applications I use on it.

But switching from one OS to another does not cripple me and I have also used Linux (Ubuntu) and FreeBSD (PC-BSD) regularly.

Reply Score: 1

GNOME vs KDE
by Nathan on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:21 UTC
Nathan
Member since:
2006-01-10

"Digging deeper is fine if the option exists at all."

I'm much like the original poster - I want my DE to just give me a reasonable configuration and ask the questions that matter. I don't care to configure various things I dont know how to choose between - for that reason, I use GNOME.

That's not for everybody: once upon a time I would enjoy mucking around with all the options an OS gave me. So I can completely understand why KDE's extensive configurability appeals to people.

What's true for the DE is not true of everything on my PC of course. I'll tweak the hell out of vim to suit exactly how I want to use it and some other things I use for work.

The whole "lets group apps by toolkit" tends to unnecessarily blur the picture IMO - I use k3b for CD burning because I need the functionality it provides, and I use amarok because I prefer its interface. I don't care that they're QT.

To me at least, these aren't "KDE" apps any more than Evolution and GAIM are "GNOME" apps - they're just applications. I'll use the simple ones for simple tasks, and get a more featureful app if I feel I need it. Yay for choice!

Reply Score: 1

im stumped by mac ui
by cintyram on Wed 15th Mar 2006 03:42 UTC
cintyram
Member since:
2005-07-08

well not stumped.. but while it was damn easy to get my DV tapes to dvd with some simple effects and editing.
i could not install yahoo messenger. a *.bin file was provided for osx it downloaded to the desktop;
the isntructions on the page says, it has to be double clicked. but on double clicking no default program is set to open that file. im not complaining.. im just saying its not all that intuitive as it is generaly assumed to be.

for me, the treal bugger is no alt+left click + drag to move a window.

Reply Score: 2

RE: im stumped by mac ui
by nighty5 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:35 UTC in reply to "im stumped by mac ui"
nighty5 Member since:
2005-12-18

if you can't open the bin file with a double click, then the file is simply corrupted.

Reply Score: 1

RE: im stumped by mac ui
by CrimsonScythe on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:54 UTC in reply to "im stumped by mac ui"
CrimsonScythe Member since:
2005-07-10

Luckily the *.bin files are very rare, and is pretty much only used by really outdated software. (In my experience, that is.)

I must say I also miss the alt+left click for moving windows. I've needed it sorely on several occasions, especially with programs which for some weird reason place the top of the window under the menu bar, so that moving it is impossible. An example is Kdiff3. This is the best diff program that I've found to date, but in OS X you just have to launch it from cli. If you launch it from Finder or Quicksilver, the window will be stuck under the menu bar.

Another thing that's not very intuitive, is that you can't scroll a window unless it has focus. So if I have an email I'm writing on and I need to read something in a window behind the Mail.app window, I usually have to scroll at some point. In order to do that I have to switch to that program, scroll the text, switch back, and most likely have to rearrange the windows again so that they don't cover up what I'm reading. If you've used a Mac you probably know what I mean. This problem is, IMHO, much more pressing than the alt+left click feature, but I'd love to have them both.

Come to think of it, a proper virtual desktop app would be very nice to have. Desktop Manager (http://desktopmanager.berlios.de), while very nice, isn't all it could be. The creator started a rewrite (IIRC) which was very promising, but the development unfortuntaly halted. Anyone know of a good alternative?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: im stumped by mac ui
by Kool on Wed 15th Mar 2006 09:46 UTC in reply to "RE: im stumped by mac ui"
Kool Member since:
2005-07-08

> Another thing that's not very intuitive, is that you can't scroll a window unless it has focus.

Yes, you can actually do that. Keep the command key pressed to use the mouse in inactive windows. This includes using a scrollbar in a window behind the Mail.app window.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: im stumped by mac ui
by CrimsonScythe on Wed 15th Mar 2006 10:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: im stumped by mac ui"
CrimsonScythe Member since:
2005-07-10

I just tried, and nothing happened. I'm running 10.4.4 here.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: im stumped by mac ui
by pb-a on Wed 15th Mar 2006 10:58 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: im stumped by mac ui"
pb-a Member since:
2006-03-15

CrimsonScythe: Ive been using this for years, it works. If it doesnt work for you then your install is broken or you're doing it wrong? The command key is the Apple key not the Control key...

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: im stumped by mac ui
by shawnifoley on Thu 16th Mar 2006 03:11 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: im stumped by mac ui"
shawnifoley Member since:
2006-03-16

Mine must be broken too.

I have Safari open in the background with Terminal focused on top. I move the mouse pointer over to Safari, hold the Apple key, use the two finger scroll and nada. option key, nada. ctrl key, nada.

If anyone has any usefull information regarding getting this working I would appreciate it. This is on a new macbook pro. Without this working i will be trading it in for a Dell/gentoo laptop.

--
Shawn

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: im stumped by mac ui
by CrimsonScythe on Thu 16th Mar 2006 07:26 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: im stumped by mac ui"
CrimsonScythe Member since:
2005-07-10

I just upgraded to 10.4.5, but that didn't make any difference at all. I have tried any conceivable combination of Finder, Opera, Mail, Preview, Terminal, etc. It only works when the two windows are both Finder windows. So have we found a bug here, or is it just a very lousy feature?

By the way, in case someone aren't aware of this, but if you hold down command, you can move background windows around without giving them focus.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: im stumped by mac ui
by gasparis on Thu 16th Mar 2006 10:53 UTC in reply to "RE: im stumped by mac ui"
gasparis Member since:
2006-03-16

> Anyone know of a good alternative?

you may want to try some commercial s/w, like "you control:desktops" (http://www.yousoftware.com/desktops/) or "CodeTek VirtualDesktop Pro" (http://www.codetek.com/ctvd/). Both have a evaluation 15-days period... The VirtualDesktop Pro has some other functionallity, like focus-follows-mouse. They cost about 30-40$, that's the bad news.

I am testing the Desktop Manager from berlios now, seems similar to you control:desktops.

Reply Score: 1

RE: im stumped by mac ui
by PCheese on Wed 15th Mar 2006 06:52 UTC
PCheese
Member since:
2005-07-24

You'll need to use Stuffit Expander for that .bin file.

Practically no developers nowadays share files in this older format. Strange.

Reply Score: 1

Great article, and
by zer0 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 07:46 UTC
zer0
Member since:
2006-03-15

This is precisely the reason I continue to use OSX; I don't have t baby-sit the OS.

I can simply get to work, and continue to work with minimal to no interruptions from the computer itself.

Reply Score: 1

I'd buy a mac
by dimosd on Wed 15th Mar 2006 11:17 UTC
dimosd
Member since:
2006-02-10

but here in Greece they are very, very rare. Eventhough the market is MS+piracy dominated, linux is almost mainstream in comparison. I would get little support at very expensive prices.

P.S. That's why MacOSX for stock PC hardware would benefit both Apple the company and me, the consumer. I would gladly pay for that.

Edited 2006-03-15 11:24

Reply Score: 1

Give me a break!
by mini-me on Wed 15th Mar 2006 14:10 UTC
mini-me
Member since:
2005-07-06

"The Mac finally got a "real" operating system."

Jeez...

Reply Score: 1

Tim in VA
Member since:
2006-03-15

I'm really fascinated by the responses to this piece, mostly because of what they DON'T say. Recently, our CEO asked me to evaluate a Mac. I purchased a G4 laptop and set it up for all our techs to play with. Of course, I took the first shot. I've been a Linux freak since 1995, and I'm a fan of KDE and CentOS, but I am not a Windows basher. Pick the right tool for the job, I say. Windows desktops still work best in our financial services environment. There's plenty of LAMP in the server room. Anyway, I found the Mac OS X gui maddening. I realize it's just a different paradigm and that any change can feel uncomfortable, but after perhaps 10 hours with the bizarre Mac desktop, I was ready to throw the unit out the window. But I wondered how my colleagues would feel, so I kept my thoughts to myself and watched from afar. My people despised the Mac, especially my lead developer who spends roughly equal amounts of time in Unix and Windows. I won't take the space here to list all the grievances, but it was a shocking experience after hearing all these years about how intuitive the Mac interface is. My Web developer had the single best word to describe OS X, I thought: cumbersome. To each his own, certainly, but I can't imagine an enterprise environment built around Mac. I asked whether anyone wanted to take the G4 home for a few days for more evaluation, but there were no takers. I think that says it all.

Reply Score: 2

Anim8me2 Member since:
2006-02-10

Tim in VA said:
"I think that says it all."

I say this not as a troll or as a fanboi, but...

Yes I think it shows how closed minded you all are.

Even given it's differences to Windows, OSX is similiar enough that anyone should be able to grasp it in 10 hours.

How would you describe it as "cumbersome"? In what way does OSX hinder your ability to accomplish tasks? Did you investigate customizing the worklfow or did you just look at the Finder window and swear for a few hours?

Also, in your experiment did you discuss your impressions with anyone before or after using the Mac? If so, in most IT departments I think you would find that any opinion expressed vociferously enough is going to be parroted by everyone else.

Given the large number of IT people I know personally who have adopted Macs for their personal as well as IT admin systems I just find your position rather liimited.

Reply Score: 4

Tim in VA
Member since:
2006-03-15

"I say this not as a troll or as a fanboi, but..."

No offense taken. I'm too old to care that much about it, but rational replies are always interesting to read.

"Yes I think it shows how closed minded you all are."

I don't know that we're all that closed-minded. After all, we do run our corporate Internet and intranet sites on Linux, our core processing from VMS, our ATM controller on AIX, etc., etc. I'd say we're fairly open minded. We do everything in-house, by the way.

"Even given it's differences to Windows, OSX is similiar enough that anyone should be able to grasp it in 10 hours."

Depends on how advanced you are with your desktop environment/s of choice, I'd say. The Win95 desktop philosopy is, admittedly, deeply ingrained in me and in my staff members. But many of us keep a terminal open all day. Unlearning takes time, and unlearning is often not a profitable way of using one's time in a business environment.

"How would you describe it as "cumbersome"? "

I could write a book.

"In what way does OSX hinder your ability to accomplish tasks?"

Weak right-click menus would be one thing. Window focus is truly strange. Installed applications seemed to disappear for no clear reason. Internals of the system seemed well hidden, which might be a plus to some, but not to people who are used to working close to the kernel, registry, file system, etc.


"Did you investigate customizing the worklfow or did you just look at the Finder window and swear for a few hours?"

I have no idea what "workflow" refers to in this context. But, again, we were looking at how intuitive the interface was. After all, we were being asked whether a rollout or migration to Mac might be a good thing for out company. Meaning my department would have to provide support to a bunch of people weaned on Windows.

"Also, in your experiment did you discuss your impressions with anyone before or after using the Mac? If so, in most IT departments I think you would find that any opinion expressed vociferously enough is going to be parroted by everyone else."

Agreed. I mentioned earlier that I kept my feelings pretty much to myself. Although I'm sure it was evident that I wasn't impressed.


"Given the large number of IT people I know personally who have adopted Macs for their personal as well as IT admin systems I just find your position rather liimited."

I'd again point to the breadth of experience I and my staff have with various operating systems and graphical environments. But limits are sometimes good things. For instance, it's not good to let everyone in the company choose whatever software they like to use. It's not efficient.

Reply Score: 1

For me, Mac OS X was a breath of fresh air.
by Sabon on Wed 15th Mar 2006 17:02 UTC
Sabon
Member since:
2005-07-06

I've been using computers since the late '70s using IBM and HP mainframes and in the early '80s I started using "PCs" like the Atari 400. Later I used DOS, Windows 3.0 through WP, OS/2 1.3 through Warp 4.0, BeOS, several distros of Unix including RedHat, Mandrix, Lindows/LinSpire, Mac OS 7-9.2. On several of those my support profile got bumped up so that when I called they redirected me straight to the engineers since they knew I was an advanced user. So I know operating systems and programming and ...

Actually i've left out quite a few OSs. Having noted all that. I found Mac OS X to be a lot more intuitive than Windows. Thanks make a WHOLE LOT more sense to me.

Applications don't disappear. They are in the applications directory. To install them you download the .dmg file, double click on it, drag the app to the applications directory. Or if the program uses an installer it places the programs in the applications folder for you. How much easier can it be than that? And for deleting apps? Just drag the app to the trash can and it's gone. No stupid corrupted registry.

The Dock makes WAY more sense. Imagine actually being able to count on the icons being in the same place every time you boot up without having to dig through menus to find them or them stupidly being left on the desktop behind your applications. The Taskbar has got to be the STUPIDEST way of managing running applications than anyone has every found. Imagine your document files being in whatever order your OS wants them to be in instead of a logical order. That's the taskbar. Not being able to rearrange their order is just plain stupid.

Don't get me started on Windows Swiss cheese security. Yes I know how to secure Windows. What is stupid is buying a house without locking Windows or doors. That's what Windows is like. I like OSs that work and that are secure from the get go. Mac OS X, OS/2, BeOS, Linux (security wise) all meet these. Windows is by far the weakest of all the OSs that I've used.

Just because you know Windows and don't know anything doens't mean everything else doesn't work correctly. It is Windows that is broken.

Reply Score: 1

Sabon
Member since:
2005-07-06

or ... Just because you only know English doesn't mean that any other language is broken. Different languages use different sentence structures. People have less trouble communicating with languages other then English. If any verbal language is broken it would be English.

Reply Score: 1

It takes a Week.
by MikeekiM on Wed 15th Mar 2006 17:44 UTC
MikeekiM
Member since:
2005-11-16

I've found that it takes a WEEK to work on Any Os, to really find out how you like it. It takes at least a week to find the "Mac OS" way of doing things, and stop looking for the "Windows" way.

Then, you should notice, that you're working twice as fast on a mac as Windows. Apple as a great set of default application keys that work well, and you can context switch very rapidly.

- Apple's shortcut keys work well, you need to learn these.
- Window positioning philosophy, not everything needs Full Screen.
- No screwing around in a registry, there isn't one.
- No worries about virus scan's and disk defrag....

But, there's no way in H*LL you can make a valid judgement in just one day. You simply don't know enough.

Reply Score: 2

It's no surprise...
by MikeekiM on Wed 15th Mar 2006 17:59 UTC
MikeekiM
Member since:
2005-11-16

It's no surprise to me your most experienced Linux programmer, would after 1 day, still prefer Linux.

Let's see, I'm an Expert on Linux, so I try a Mac, and SUDDENLY I'm a lousy BEGINNER. An Expert might have to give a Mac a MONTH for a real evaluation.

Reply Score: 1

RE: It's no surprise...
by Tim in VA on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:10 UTC in reply to "It's no surprise..."
Tim in VA Member since:
2006-03-15

I agree with you that anyone needs more than one day in which to give an OS and its GUI a fair shake. On the other hand, though, intuitive is intuitive. By that, I'm suggesting that if one needs a month to become well versed in an OS interface, then the cost of a rollout in terms of lost worker productivity is no small issue. Anyone who has worked on the company helpdesk knows how pathetic the average computing skill set out on the front lines really is. From the point of view of a Windows worker bee, OS X is apparently anything BUT intuitive. Interestingly, my web developer tells me he was pretty fast in OS 9, but he strongly dislikes the GUI in OS X.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: It's no surprise...
by Anim8me2 on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:32 UTC in reply to "RE: It's no surprise..."
Anim8me2 Member since:
2006-02-10

Ultimately what you seem to be saying is that the upfront cost (time) in re-training people for OSX outweighs any benefits that might be seen on the back-end in terms of support/training.

Again not meaning a dig, but this seems to be the prevailing short-sighted view of many IT departments.

Sure you tried OSX for 10 hours and got frustrated. But if youare trying to determine cost effectiveness in the long run shouldn't you do more than just poke around for a day?

There are numerous resources available for IT/power-users to dig in to the meat of OSX. Just one example you gave... the lean right-click menus. Are you aware how easy it is to construct custom actions/scripts/right-click menu items? That is what I meant in the sense of workflow. It would be a simple matter to cinstruct an environment that was very friendly to staff and would make the transition a failry simple process. Other issues aside (window focus, etc) I think given a more reasonable amount of time... say a week in off hours, you might find there is a lot that you would like "under the hood".

And thanks for the reasoned, non attack-dog response. I was afraid I came off to harsh.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: It's no surprise...
by MikeekiM on Wed 15th Mar 2006 22:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: It's no surprise..."
MikeekiM Member since:
2005-11-16

Ultimately what you seem to be saying is that the upfront cost (time) in re-training people for OSX outweighs any benefits that might be seen on the back-end in terms of support/training.

No, I'm not saying that at all.

I'm saying that someone with Years experience in linux can't use OS X for 1 day, and make ANY meaningful comparison. If you give a Mac one week of effort, you should see the performance advantage. But, being a Master User of Linux or OS X takes a similar amount of time. Except for those area's where OS X is virtually the same: UnixBash commands and scripting for example.

A Master race car driver would need time to become a master motorcyclist. But, he'd get the advantage of greater acceleration and manuverability soon.

Reply Score: 1

re:It's no surprise...
by netpython on Wed 15th Mar 2006 19:27 UTC
netpython
Member since:
2005-07-06

It isn't?

It takes moreoften not more than a few minutes to see if something has real potential or not.

Is perl,python,C,whatever exept asm suddenly different on another platform you're not familiar with?

I don't have any experience with OSX (unfortunately) but knowing *BSD i'm sure OSX has a decent cli,what do you need more?

Reply Score: 1

"Damage" files
by situation on Thu 16th Mar 2006 05:09 UTC
situation
Member since:
2006-01-10

I found his reference to calling .dmg files "damage" files quite funny, as I do the exact same thing.
Was an interesting read, but I don't think Mac would ever be for me for a variety of reasons.

Reply Score: 1