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Re: Why does Ubuntu have all the ideas?

I cannot 100% agree with You, althought Your point is for sure partially valid.

I really don't believe that Debian can equal itself with Ubuntu in terms of user friendliness. There is so much to say about that, that I hardly can remember the very concrete cases, so please don't attack me on that basis. I use Debian for 4 years now and my impression about it is valid, because is based on facing and (if lucky) fixing problems. Many of them I have happily forgotten right after fixing, but the allround impression about Debian's user friendliness remains.

1, Ubuntu places the care about the average-Joe-user at first place at worst. Debian dosen't.

1a, Often it seems that ideological problems put anything else aside. I don't tell the ideology is not valid; I just tell that often this is in the state "Users, wait until we solve this ideologically, it may take some years". Well, user dosen't have the years and need things working, so he either does it himself (if he is sortof admin) by downloading, compiling etc, or says "Things don't work in Debian and it's too difficult to solve it. I'll better stick with XYZ".

Others care about ideology too, but by the time MAKE THE THINGS WORK SOMEHOW as painless as possible for the end user, until the ideologists say their last word.

Simple examples: Mplayer, codecs, M$ True Type fonts, Java, flash.

1b, If things don't work, it's sometimes hard to get them working either. Example: Bug 372719. The OOo 2.0 keeps crashing for 2 months thank to KNOWN bug in security upgrade. Now tell somebody, that Debian is as good _for_average_Joe_user_ as Ubuntu. Or that Debian cares about average_Joe_user at least as much as Ubuntu does.

Of course that there always will be bugs. It's normal in evoluting project; We are mankind and always do mistakes. However, facing them and solving (or not solving) makes a picture about our priorities and goals. In case of Debian, average-Joe-user for sure is not a priority; jokes aside.

1c, Other cases are when something CAN be done in Debian, and even documentation exists, but it is quite complicated and time consuming, and truly should be much easier. Mostly the installer's playground to make life easier and set up things. For example, to automatically install national fonts and translation packages if the user already entered his location and national data. I use K3B and has been ready to contribute the Slovak translation. Only on K3B's site I realised that translation exists. Then I have found the k3b-l18n package, and whoila, K3B is localised.
And so on.

2, The current software gets into main distribution too slowly, too too slowly. Yes, of course, stability, security..

Think about, say, Mozilla Firefox. We keep in repository some 1.0.3 version? (I don't really know, I prefer using current stable release, this time

I doubt that mozilla.org supports either way that ancient version. Is it even possible to keep track with _all_ security and stability updates and backport them to that version? I really doubt.

I can imagine, that the Debian's 1.0.3 version is no way more secure nor stable than standard

We should, for certain kinds of software, shorten the release cycle to, say, 6 months. Debian can afford the luxury of keeping the basic system infrastructure for 18 months, however the desktop software grows very fast, user's often depend on its functionality (OpenOffice.org import capabilities to mention some), and it's nearly impossible to maintain that old software in meaningful way. And who will ever use that ancient versions at the end.. Especially painful in the end time of release's lifecycle.

3, Desktop functionality

Just try to compare, what do we offer with standard Debian desktop and how much of that really works at the end, and how much does Ubuntu offer. Try to do some real-world testing; ask the average-Joe-user. Just put him in front of standard Debian 3.1 Sarge desktop after installation, and Ubuntu 6.06 desktop right after installation, without any admin's actions. Let him perform his routine tasks: setting up the mailbox, Internet, printer, browse, play a flash game, write a document and print it, play a video or music. Try it Yourself and try to avoid any non-straightforward actions. Avoid "cheating" by using administrator's skills. Try to use only "what the desktop offers", don't even open the console. You will be surprised.

Debian lacks in the means of propagation, yes.
Debian much more lacks the focus on average desktop user.

Maybe, Etch will bring some fresh air in here. However, we cannot compare the testing versions: First, many things can change until it becomes stable. Remember the Vista and advertised features in the past :o) Second, Etch is hardly installable for average-Joe-user and I doubt it is useful enough in its current state. To be more polite, let's say, that Joe should have been very lucky if he was able to just download iso's, install the system, and it worked out of box. (I tryed to, will try again, but wasn't successfull enough, so I can doubt that Joe will perform better) Third, average-Joe-user will not reach for "testing" version. He wants to use his computer, not "do some testing". He will choose the "stable" version.


Rudy Godoy  wrote / napísal(a):
> tell that we can't? nothing. All what they advertise we do offer. But we
> are not good on advertise our OS.
> We need to tell people: Debian is fine for you because it allows you to
> get your work done and be productive, whether you are an artist,
> corporate employee, student, doctor, etc.
> No, I still believe we need more people and relations with press, and
> not only the technical ones, we should advertise more our work and
> good experiences like donzka, LinEx, and the others. Not only tell
> ourselves: we know we are doing things better. We should tell it to
> others too!

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