Operating systems and Us
I read another blog this morning where the poor soul was lamenting the latest crash of his operating system. It struck me that it’s absolutely absurd that we really only have two apparent choices in how to run our computers.
First, Windows. That should really be all that I need to say, right? Windows versions are like old school Star Trek films; one good one, one bad one. (The old phrase was the even numbered Trek films didn’t suck. I even liked Nemesis, but I digress…) Seems like Microsoft produces a decent OS, rides the wave for a few years, then realizes that they need to con all those old customers who aren’t paying for Windows any more into thinking that they need to upgrade. They scrabble, put in a bunch of gimmicky crap and BLAMMO- Windows Vista. This cycle has been repeated for years: Win 95 to Millennium and 2000, XP to Vista, Win 7 to Win 8. I have Vista and while I have great hardware in the box, the damn thing is getting glitchier and glitchier. I’ve been pricing out Win 7, and Win 8 is actually cheaper. Pay more for a worse, less stable and clutter-filled OS? It’s an absolutely ludicrous industry in which we buy a crappy operating system from a vendor, and then a couple years later pay THE SAME vendor again to get a better product which really should have been the solution all along. And then, they’ll introduce another clunker and the horrible cycle of despair will start all over again…
Second, there’s Mac OS/X, Lion, whatever it’s called. I hate it because it’s cartoonish, gimmicky, and I feel like I have absolutely zero control over what’s going on with my computer. Really, where the hell did that file I just downloaded go? I want to move it to another folder, but how does that work? Argh!
Linux is of course the hidden gem here. It’s stable, businesses run their servers on it because it doesn’t crash, and it’s open source so it’s always getting better. It’s just not quite user friendly enough to appeal to the masses, and part of me thinks that’s intentional. It’s like a badge of tech nerd honor to be able to describe the latest Linux distro on your box at home.
Whatever happened to the Chromebook? Here’s about 1/3 of an operating system. It boots, manages files, but isn’t the whole package. Frankly, I’d love it of Google made their own full-blown operating system. I’d even pay for it!