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Re: [seul-sci] Introduction

>Great, somebody wanting to go to Linux!!!! How did you guys get to that

 	$$$ is a great reason...
>Sorry for being so negative, believe me, I would love that all your Lab
>changes to Linux, but from my experience, unless they fully admit they
>NEED to change and they are ready for some problems and a learning curve
>(not necessarily steep) do not change to Linux.
>Or at least get the things straighten out first.
>Maybe the best thing is that you look for whatever programs
>you find for Linux (one for drawing and another one
>for document typing) and show them how it will be and
>maybe put everybody on a test before you decide to change.

	As a developing country, we have many pirate software. And, as a developing country, money has a great power here. The short history is that Sun Microsystems and Lotus are trying to almost "give away" their software to our Educational Ministry, while M$ is offering legalizing their software(with many drawbacks, like no manual or CD-ROMs) in a half-cost way(R$ 250, or so). US$2,50 versus more than US$120,00! And the government is acquiring more and more M$ stuff.
	Last year, M$ and other software companies made an almos-terrorist fight against pirate software. Then, we made our choice.
	The long story is very long and I think It´s not subject to this list. The major consequence of this choice is that we:
	-Started to look for science/analisis apps for linux
	-Started to use cross-platforms, current standards apps.
	So, we do use StarOffice and  GIMP for windows. I found this list, and some projects for evaluation, like Guppi, R-Project, Grace, KOrigin, LyX, Pybliographer, the Open Science Project, SAL, etc. We do believe Linux is The Way, and we do know we can´t keep using pirate. 
	So, we´re doing this slow motion to linux for almost a year now. My chiefs know this is necessary, and know the dificulties we´ll find. 
	On the next months(one year after the begining of the transition), we´ll be changing our first machine to linux. Everybody knows it´s necessary, and (almost) everybody knows it´s good for them.

>There are many graphical analysis programs for Unix, many which blow
>the socks off anything made for a Microsoft platform, but these are
>industrial tools and quite expensive.  Of course, they may be open
>to donating a copy to your lab (so your graduates will know that
>software when they move on into industry).

	This is a solution, but perhaps not that good. We´re thinking in runing Origin with Wine or freeMWare, for a while. But we just can't put much money in software. Research resources here are too rare to be wasted(new year, new version! no improvements, but, if you don't buy it, you won't see docs from others...)  The best solution (IMHO) is just the way we´re doing it. This list is, effectively, a great way to speed up our ´journey'.
>I know this is VERY negative, but I hope this helps you!!!!

	It helped, thanks. However, we're going to do that, anyway. Money is not the only concern; all those nice features linux have(no_BSOD, for example) are also top. We believe many people are going to do it in near future, we wanto to be ready, also.

	That's my feeling: Pete's proposed GAM is essencial to Linux in Science. If you have a good infra-structure(common scripting language(s), modularity, standardized file formats, etc), and good basic software(data archiving and cataloging, R-like analisis...) with a nice user interface, 'more specialized people' will write 'more specialized software' to fulfill their needs, with many advantages, in this platform.
	What do you think should be basic software to scientific purposes? Do you think a inteface to other programs is enough, or perhaps rewriting/merging/borrowing is better? 


Universidade Federal de São Carlos
Bacharelado em Ciência da Computação