Linked by Kroc Camen on Thu 20th Aug 2009 09:43 UTC
Podcasts What else would we talk about other than the massively [popular|controversial] article about X.org last week. We try and address a number of concerns about the article and common lines of reasoning / misunderstanding. Lastly, we move onto something completely different with topics on Google Chrome on Linux, IE6 and the two details we know about RockMelt: Rock. Melt.
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RE[7]: X and Thom
by wfreund on Sat 22nd Aug 2009 19:52 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: X and Thom"
wfreund
Member since:
2009-08-17

How can you call the behavior of 10% "the rule" and the behavior of 90% "the exception"?

I consider it important to properly define the group being generalized. When this is done, I don't agree that the 10/90 split you describe will be in force.

In the case being discussed, the group that I would define as described by Thom is "Open Source Advocates on the Internet" rather then "Open Source Contributers." And I believe that the generalization stands. The fact that some do not fit the bill makes this no less so. Nor does the fact that those that fit into the second category may be getting a bad name from the most visible segement of those that fit into the first.

I must reiterate that the willingness ascend from an initial generalization when the case of a specific person is at issue is what make this all OK. But it is foolish to suggest that I cannot form expectations based on generalizations and then whittle down to the facts of the individual case. In my experience, the initial generalizations usually hold water after the final examination about 75% of the time.

But again, the grouping is important. To use your example, I would consider homosexuals that are discreet to be in a different group entirely from flamboyant homosexuals, and I do not hold the former responsible for the actions of the latter, nor do I lump them in together in my mind. Yet I can still make generalizations about both groups that tend to hold true. FYI I view heterosexuals through the same filter, and can't abide people that insist on reporting to me on their sexual activities and proclivities, a subject in which I have no interest. That does not mean that I lump all heterosexuals into one group defined by the loudest members.

If you really stop to think about the subject, I think that you will find that human beings would be more or less immobile if we weren't able to make generalizations and even indulge in assumptions. These are what allow us to move through life without getting bogged down with every single detail of every single problem or situation. For me, the metric of a reasonable man is not the absence of these cognitive filters, but rather the ability and willingness to apply attention to detail where and when it is warranted.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[8]: X and Thom
by sbergman27 on Sat 22nd Aug 2009 20:32 in reply to "RE[7]: X and Thom"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

In the case being discussed, the group that I would define as described by Thom is "Open Source Advocates on the Internet" rather then "Open Source Contributers." And I believe that the generalization stands. The fact that some do not fit the bill makes this no less so.

Let's look at OSNews, where people are more enthusiastic about OS advocacy than in most places on the Internet.

From http://www.osnews.com/statistics , it is easy enough to derive that OSNews has 29988 registered users. Let's say that just 10% of them are Linux advocates. I'd like to see your list of more than 1500 OSNews posters who make these claims. Because That is what you would need to support the assertion that those who make these claims are in the majority. So please post your list. I've very interested to see who the 1500+ advocates making these claims actually are.

BTW, if you would like to restrict the scope to only those OSNews registered users who actually post, your target number is 1220. If you only want to support your assertion that my 10% guestimate is too low, you'll need at least 244.

Now do you see what I mean about the silent majority? And do you see how far your own stereotype has led you astray?

Edited 2009-08-22 20:44 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[9]: X and Thom
by wfreund on Sun 23rd Aug 2009 02:58 in reply to "RE[8]: X and Thom"
wfreund Member since:
2009-08-17

I don't have the time to do such a detailed analysis. So I will do the honorable thing and withdraw my support of the claim on the basis of lack of evidence.
That cuts both ways, however. I consider the claim untested unless you provide the same measure of evidence to the refute the claim.

I will replace it, however, with the assertion that the vocal minority, majority or whatever you wish to call it, is creating this impression in the minds of at least some readers. As someone that wishes all of the success in the world to both Open Source software and Free Software, I detest the deplorable impression that these sophists are making.

Reply Parent Score: 1