[Ilugc] foss hardware workshop at Ooty
lawgon at thenilgiris.com
Sat Aug 30 10:50:54 IST 2008
On 30-Aug-08, at 7:46 AM, Kapil Hari Paranjape wrote:
> Finally, if you keep on insisting that the "general customer's
> needs" can only be met by installing Windows, then (according to
> you) those who are putting in a lot of effort to replace Windows by
> GNU/Linux on the desktop should probably pack up their bags and go
> somewhere else!
that is precisely what he is suggesting. What he forgets is that
*we* did not go and ask the cybercafe guys to switch to linux -
*they* asked us to tell them how and why. They did this because the
amount of maintainence needed for windows is a huge burden, there is
the ever present fear of raids and legal software is too expensive
for the smaller people. Their main concern was on the server end -
most of them would like to use linux on the server end, even if they
have windows desktops.
Another thing he has forgotten is that 98% of windows users have
never heard of linux and have never had a chance to see it in action.
So why he is objecting to cyber cafe owners giving their customers a
taste of linux I cannot understand. All of us once used windows, but
when we got a taste of linux we switched.
I have been keenly watching the tea shop that has sprung up just
outside the gate at MIT. He started selling only tea and coffee. I
switched my business to him because his USP was that he opened at 5
am whereas the guy opposite used to open at 6. Strangely enough,
every customer who came to his shop *only* asked for either tea or
coffee. No one asked for pakoda or bun or vadai. One day I found a
pile of pakoda available. If he had followed the logic of the OP, he
would have said: 'all my customers are only asking for tea and
coffee, if I sell pakoda, no one will buy and I will lose customers'.
But he did not do that. Now he has vadai, bun, cigarettes, beedi,
sweets, pan ... and is flourishing.
This is how businesses grow - avoid monoculture, diversify. Offer
more products. This is the logic behind supermarkets too. Offer
variety and you will grow. I do not think that any cybercafe will rip
out all the windows machines and replace them with linux. They will
probably try out linux on a few and see what happens. I remember back
in 2005 I went to a cybercafe in Adyar who had 4 machines - two of
them linux. His server was also linux.
So a cybercafe with linux servers are much more secure as they are
safe from raids. And if they are raided they have an alternative
ready to continue their business without paying the M$ tax.
More information about the ilugc