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Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement (Sagar Acharya : 2)

From: Miles Fidelman
Subject: Re: Practicality of GNU project and libre movement (Sagar Acharya : 2)
Date: Fri, 7 Aug 2020 18:38:01 -0400
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On 8/7/20 3:00 PM, Matt Ivie wrote:

On Tue, 2020-07-28 at 02:24 -0400, Miles Fidelman wrote:
On 7/25/20 3:12 PM, Matt Ivie wrote:

     "And, yes, I rely on a Mac, and MS Office for lots of things -
     Hi Miles, this is not an attack bit a practical question. What
     functions does the Mac do for you that you're unable to do in a
     system? Same question on MS office.
     I have been an IT professional for some years now and I have
been able
     to run my workstations using debian and I use LibreOffice
without much
     of an issue.
     Do we need to start a new thread or discuss this privately
since it is
     a little bit of a side topic.
Not sure how much of a side topic it is - seems like it's right up
with "practicality of .. "

To answer your question:

- It's not about being "able" to do something, it's about being able
get real work done with the least amount of hassles.  I'm a systems
architect - computer hardware & software are just tools for getting
work done, and components in the end products delivered to customers.

- When I'm trying to get work done, I like my tools to just work.
Mac is a nice piece of hardware, the GUI is polished, Apple Care is
pretty good deal for keeping stuff working, and Office is what
in business uses.  Sure, one CAN do it all with Debian & LibreOffice
(until you start sharing complex spreadsheets), but again, ease of
use &
support count for a lot.  (Now, with Apple about to change the
underlying chipset, and moving toward a more and more closed
environment, there's a good chance that my next machine will be an
Surface - but that's another matter entirely.)

- On the server side, Linux & FOSS are the things that "just work."
I've been running Debian, Apache, Postfix, Sympa, and MySQL for
But what with systemd mucking things up, and MySQL now owned by
there's pretty good chance that my next upgrade is going to be to
BSD or SmartOS, or Erlang on bare iron.  Now if someone would just
up with a good, FOSS, distributed file system...

- And, of course, when it comes to delivering stuff to customers -
often than not it has to run on an MS platform.  And, if not MS,
Red Hat (precisely because customers like to purchase service



I see your points and don't agree with ease of use over freedom. The
usability and functionality of Free Software can and does improve over
time but the freedom aspect of Apple and Microsoft software is not
likely to improve much over time.

Thanks for taking the time to explain your perspective on the issue and
sharing your experiences.

You're welcome.

I guess I should add one thing:  I'm a very big fan of open protocols & open representations (I've spent 50 years in the networking business, working on things like the ARPANET & Internet).  I figure that if I can read a document in multiple applications, and exchange information via open protocols - which tools I use are close to irrelevant.  (I.e., if I use Thunderbird to read mail on one machine, and MS Outlook on another - that's free enough.  On the other hand, Google has become evil for not supporting serious calendar interoperability, while Microsoft Exchange is on the side of goodness & light.



In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice.
In practice, there is.  .... Yogi Berra

Theory is when you know everything but nothing works.
Practice is when everything works but no one knows why.
In our lab, theory and practice are combined:
nothing works and no one knows why.  ... unknown

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