Linked by Howard Fosdick on Mon 13th Dec 2010 23:11 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless It's hard to predict the future because we humans prefer to think in terms of familiar paradigms. Even the most brilliant of our species are subject to this flaw. Now, Microsoft faces its turn. The owner of the operating system that likely runs your personal computer, the company that achieved monopoly with Windows and ducked the Department of Justice's scythe to keep it, faces a midlife crisis as the world goes gaga over portable consumer devices. This is the story of what's happening to Microsoft in the handheld operating system markets -- and how it parallels the earlier, similar journeys of IBM Corporation and Digital Equipment Corporation. Can Microsoft achieve dominance on mobile devices?
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RE[3]: Comment by Neolander
by lemur2 on Tue 14th Dec 2010 09:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Neolander"
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

But I don't think that things like Office or Windows are threatened yet.


It will take some time before people generally come to realise that they don't need to run Office or Windows these days in order to be perfectly compatible with those who do.

At the moment, some government contracts are still being let which stipulate that Microsoft software must be offered as the solution. In most cases, this is actually against the governments own rules, and this practice is being challenged now. As soon as freedom software is allowed to compete for contracts on a level playing field, which is most likely to begin with government departments, it should start displacing Office and Windows in large deployments.

This is already policy in some countries.
http://www.opensource.org/node/551
http://www.opensource.org/node/528
http://www.computerworlduk.com/in-depth/open-source/1676/open-sourc...

OpenOffice installed base is currently between 10% and 20% depending on geographic location.

Edited 2010-12-14 09:29 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by Neolander
by Neolander on Tue 14th Dec 2010 09:55 in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Neolander"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

OpenOffice has the best compatibility with Office which the open-source world has to offer, but it's not perfect. Complex documents may or may not work. For a home user or a student like me it's okay, but on a larger scale it's really not okay.

Apart from that, there's also a problem of intrinsic software qualities. Oo's UI is obscure in places, they cloned office 2000 and it was not the best UI microsoft has ever done to say the least. Impress is okay for light use, but Writer makes some simple things very complicated (ex : OO formulas vs MathType, paragraph numbering...), and let's not even talk about Calc vs Excel.

Finally, there's plug-in compatibility. Office has some very interesting add-ons like XLSTAT, which are obviously not compatible with OpenOffice.

Windows is yet another issue. There are two problems here : hardware and software.

Since there are no standard interfaces to hardware anymore, modern hardware requires drivers. Drivers are made by the manufacturer and OS-specific, which means that Linux is often doomed to using either crappy proprietary drivers (as they don't matter in terms of market share, the HW manufacturer does not pay attention to what it codes) or second-class community drivers made from reverse engineering, which are often coming late at the party, unstable, or poor in some areas (3D acceleration, power management).

And then, there's software. Where are AutoCAD, Photoshop, After Effect for Linux ? There are sometimes (not always) equivalents, but they don't have the same UI, and often do not offer exactly the same functionality - which results in a productivity loss.

Edited 2010-12-14 09:58 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[5]: Comment by Neolander
by oiaohm on Tue 14th Dec 2010 10:55 in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by Neolander"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

OpenOffice has the best compatibility with Office which the open-source world has to offer, but it's not perfect. Complex documents may or may not work. For a home user or a student like me it's okay, but on a larger scale it's really not okay.

Always been wrong Go-oo fork off openoffice has always been higher in compatibility. These days libreoffice has taken over that location. This is basically someone trolling because they don't really know what is out there.

Apart from that, there's also a problem of intrinsic software qualities. Oo's UI is obscure in places, they cloned office 2000 and it was not the best UI microsoft has ever done to say the least. Impress is okay for light use, but Writer makes some simple things very complicated (ex : OO formulas vs MathType, paragraph numbering...), and let's not even talk about Calc vs Excel.[\q]

Again wrong. OpenOffice UI design predated MS Office. Even predates Windows 3.11 goes back before MS even made there first Office or Works programs. If anyone cloned anyone it was the other way over. Big problem is it should have been revamped in a lot of places in the year 2000 when it was released open source.

Paragraph numbering is more stable in OpenOffice than MS Office. Once set right it stays right.

Major performance issues have been repaired in Calc with libreoffice as well as Excel formula importing. Again this is a legacy code issue. Internal of Calc being single threaded in many places causing major bottle necks.

[q] Finally, there's plug-in compatibility. Office has some very interesting add-ons like XLSTAT, which are obviously not compatible with OpenOffice.


Again it comes down to what you are doing with XLSTAT. There are a lot of cases same result as XLSTAT can be got with alfresco extensions and other solutions. Most of the extensions for Excel are not unique there are other ways of getting the same result.

Windows is yet another issue. There are two problems here : hardware and software.

Since there are no standard interfaces to hardware anymore, modern hardware requires drivers. Drivers are made by the manufacturer and OS-specific, which means that Linux is often doomed to using either crappy proprietary drivers (as they don't matter in terms of market share, the HW manufacturer does not pay attention to what it codes) or second-class community drivers made from reverse engineering, which are often coming late at the party, unstable, or poor in some areas (3D acceleration, power management).


Play the hardware card. Funny Linux has drivers for ATI cards that are not even released yet. No way those drivers could have come from reversing.

This is not uncommon these days. To see specs being released to Linux first. Some of the arm hardware out there only has Linux drivers that is the end of it. Hardware card only applies if you are playing x86 and even then it reducing.

And then, there's software. Where are AutoCAD, Photoshop, After Effect for Linux ? There are sometimes (not always) equivalents, but they don't have the same UI, and often do not offer exactly the same functionality - which results in a productivity loss.

Reverse is also true. Linux has access to some software that is either not provide for windows or fails to run at speed under windows.

This is nothing more than a OS change issue. This is basically a nil issue. After Effects is really not the best tool out there.

Best tool in After Effects class out there is called Lightworks. That is currently being ported to Linux as well as becoming open source. Sorry Lightworks out features After Effects in everyway.

Autocad also has its equal and better replacements for Linux. Photoshop is really the only tricky one you listed without a replacement that can kick it but in every way. Big thing here is how many of your desktop users really would need Photoshop,

Basically get your information upto date before keeping on talking.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[5]: Comment by Neolander
by lemur2 on Tue 14th Dec 2010 11:56 in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by Neolander"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

OpenOffice has the best compatibility with Office which the open-source world has to offer, but it's not perfect. Complex documents may or may not work. For a home user or a student like me it's okay, but on a larger scale it's really not okay.


MS Office has very poor compatibility with other Office suites. In that aspect it is way worse than OpenOffice in every way.

Where two parties are interchanging documents and they use different Office suites, in general it will be the party which uses Microsoft Office which has the most problem. Using Microsoft Office is even a problem with your own organisation's older archived documents.

The need to exchange exceedingly complex MS Office documents (that may not work) is very small. Even when the other party has a different version of Office, such an exchange may not work. Choose any format OTHER THAN MS Office formats in order to have a more successful document interchange.

Apart from that, there's also a problem of intrinsic software qualities. Oo's UI is obscure in places, they cloned office 2000 and it was not the best UI microsoft has ever done to say the least. Impress is okay for light use, but Writer makes some simple things very complicated (ex : OO formulas vs MathType, paragraph numbering...), and let's not even talk about Calc vs Excel.


Yet OpenOffice still has 10% to 20% installed base, and growing. It is by far and away the best solution for document interchange and archival purposes. It amply meets the needs of well over 90% of uses cases for an Office suite ... perhaps more.

Finally, there's plug-in compatibility. Office has some very interesting add-ons like XLSTAT, which are obviously not compatible with OpenOffice.


Then XLSTAT is clearly not a technology that one should be using for information interchange or archival. This remark probably applies even better to MS Office itself.

Windows is yet another issue. There are two problems here : hardware and software.

Since there are no standard interfaces to hardware anymore, modern hardware requires drivers. Drivers are made by the manufacturer and OS-specific, which means that Linux is often doomed to using either crappy proprietary drivers (as they don't matter in terms of market share, the HW manufacturer does not pay attention to what it codes) or second-class community drivers made from reverse engineering, which are often coming late at the party, unstable, or poor in some areas (3D acceleration, power management).


There are alternative sources of open source drivers which you ignore.

The first source is where open source developers are given the programming specifications, from which they can write a good open source driver without reverse engineering.

http://www.x.org/docs/AMD/

Another source is when the OEM targets Linux first and Windows is a latecomer afterthought:
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=ODc5Mw
http://www.linuxfoundation.org/node/4641
http://meego.com/developers/hardware-enabling-process

The mobile and handheld space is, after all, more about ARM than it is about x86.

And then, there's software. Where are AutoCAD, Photoshop, After Effect for Linux ? There are sometimes (not always) equivalents, but they don't have the same UI, and often do not offer exactly the same functionality - which results in a productivity loss.


http://www.bricsys.com/en_INTL/bricscad/index.jsp

http://arstechnica.com/open-source/reviews/2010/02/hands-on-new-sin...
http://darktable.sourceforge.net/features.shtml

After Effect: well, not every use case is covered by Linux. Where is a decent-performing Blender for Windows?

Why would you assume that the productivity had to be higher on a Windows desktop? There are a number of features of a Linux desktop, such as clipboard history and virtual desktops, that could well mean better productivity.

Edited 2010-12-14 12:11 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3