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Re: Why to choose Linux
Permit me to add some fuel to the fire (Random thoughts on getting people
to switch to Linux) -
I think it would be an easier sell for folks if they could be shown that
most of the apps that they need are already available. In my case, my
research uses geographical information systems (GIS) - based analyses of
lakes, watersheds and their couplings.
I have come to understand that a high-quality GIS is already available on
the web, known as GRASS (http://www.grass.org), which has (apparently) much
of the same functionality as ArcInfo without the exhorbitant price tag
(CDN$10K for educational licence, CDN$50K for commercial licence).
Perhaps the two largest stumbling blocks in recruiting new users are (a)
uncertainty over available apps, and (b) how-to / configuration /
troubleshooting support for the 'average' user, and the resulting lack of
institutional support (that is, tech support folks in your faculty /
department / university).
Perhaps both issues be dealt with by setting up a site which would act as
a repository of such information (akin to the *gulp* MS Knowledge base in
the latter case, and a central registration / info base for the former),
but this would require someone to organize the (probably substantial) info.
Just a thought.
A potential third issue would involve information enabling the average lab
to 'leverage' (eek!) it's existing computer resources, so that a Linux box
would co-exist with a Dos, Mac, WinDoze 95 or NT box ("at least until they
realize that they only resonable thing to do is to install Linux
Anyhow, my 1-point-something cents' worth.
Pete St. Onge - McGill U. Limnology - Fun with Ropes, Buckets and Computers
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