Linked by David Adams on Mon 24th Aug 2009 09:21 UTC
Linux A reader asks: Why is Linux still not as user friendly as the two other main OSes with all the people developing for Linux? Is it because it is mainly developed by geeks? My initial feeling when reading this question was that it was kind of a throwaway, kind of a slam in disguise as a genuine question. But the more I thought about it, the more intrigued I felt. There truly are a large amount of resources being dedicated to the development of Linux and its operating system halo (DEs, drivers, apps, etc). Some of these resources are from large companies (IBM, Red Hat, Novell). Why isn't Linux more user-friendly? Is this an inherent limitation with open source software?
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On repositories and app stores
by Mark Williamson on Mon 24th Aug 2009 16:03 UTC
Mark Williamson
Member since:

I think an editor or commentor on this site once mentioned the similarities between app stores and repositories. And it's true...

The model of "you can get anything within our repository but stuff from outside is hard" has been the subject of critical comments for years that say "But what if you want something else?". That's true, it is a disadvantage to some users but to others it's convenient to have a one stop shop for pretty much everything. Mobile computers, such as the iTouch / iPhone have done very well out of what seems to be an incredibly similar model. Sure, I imagine Apple have done it very slickly but really "There's an app for that" could have been a Debian (for instance) slogan a decade before Apple used it.

Distros repositories typically have *better* functionality than the app store as you can quite easily add another repository (i.e. multiple app stores). It would be very nice to have friendlier, more intuitive GUIs for repositories presented to users by default on more distros. But the fact remains that we're seeing in the commercial marketplace that the concept of a centrally-controlled app repository can be successful, even if not everybody likes the particular approach Apple has taken.

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