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The W - Random - Lynx?
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BigDaddyLoco
Scrapple








Since: 2.1.02

Since last post: 17 hours
Last activity: 7 hours
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.91
Lynx, I sure see a ton of these IBM commercials in between my beloved Patriots games. What does this little boy that looks like Eminem have to do with the future of information? How will he affect the way I, you, we do business? What does this little Slim Shady that nobody loves yet everybody seems to have adopted know that I don't? There's a hell of a lot promotion going into this thing that I know nothing about and when it comes out I'll probably never use.
Promote this thread!
David Adams
Boerewors








Since: 2.1.02
From: NJ

Since last post: 78 days
Last activity: 16 hours
AIM:  
#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.00
It's Linux, not Lynx they are advertising. Just think of it as an alternative to Windows Operating Systems.

And LYNX RULZ! :)
Jaguar
Knackwurst








Since: 23.1.02
From: Phoenix, AZ

Since last post: 143 days
Last activity: 143 days
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.56
And it's been out for YEARS. I still don't understand where IBM is going with this. Linux is an open-source operating system. It was built by programmers to give an alternative to Windows, and it's free~!

-Jag



"I'm going to go now and demand beer money from my representative. We simply must deal with the problem of my sobriety." - PalpatineW
AJ_Levy
Mettwurst








Since: 31.3.02

Since last post: 3815 days
Last activity: 3812 days
#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.43
Like David Adams, I'll assume you meant Linux instead of Lynx (for the record, "Lynx" is a basic, text-only web-browser, and a pocket video game system that Atari released in the early '90s).

I'll give you a quick-and-dirty rundown of what Linux is, and what it does (though you can probably Google yourself a better explanation).

Almost all computers run a program called an "Operating System" (or an OS). For example, you're probably reading this, right now, on a computer which has Windows as its OS, as most desktop computers do. While Microsoft's Windows almost has a monopoly over the desktop computer market, but there are other alternatives out there - Apple's computers use an OS called "MacOS-X Panther" ( http://www.apple.com/macosx/ ). Old Atari computers used TOS. In the early '90s, IBM used OS/2. BeOS is another example. So is AmigaOS.

Most of these other OSes basically do the same job as Windows, though there are differences between them. Some (Mac OS-X, AmigaOS, TOS) won't run on PC's. Some, like DOS (if you can remember it) make you enter commands to manage your hard disk or run programs instead of having icons to point-and-click. Some are more advanced than Windows, and some less, or are better at doing different things, or have different programs written for it.

For example, a lot of people in the graphics and media industry use Apple's Mac OS-X, because it's (arguably) better at running graphics and media programs.

An important thing to understand about Windows is that Microsoft owns the copyright for it, and when you 'buy' a copy of windows, what you really pay for is a license to use it. You don't get to see or change the "source code" it was made from, you don't get the right to give it out or sell it. If you do, it's a breach of the licence agreement you have with Microsoft, and therefore a breach of copyright. Most Windows programs are the same.

* * * * *

So what about Linux?

About a decade ago, a guy named Linus Trovalds wrote his own OS, called Linux. He let people download it under a license - called the GPL - that was a lot more open.

Basically, the GPL says that:
1) Anyone is free to use, sell, download, or give away a copy of this program.
2) You are free to make any changes you like to it - if you don't sell it or give it away (i.e. you keep it to yourself), you don't have to open up the source code.
3) If you sell, or give away this program, you have to open up the source code (including your changes), for free, to anyone who wants to download it.
4) When you sell, or give away this program and the changes you make to it, the program and its changes are covered under GPL.

A lot of Linux programs are also covered by the GPL.

What this means is (if you know how to program in C) you can make any changes you like to your copy of Linux, or most of your other GPL programs. If you want to, you can give it out to other people, who can make their own changes.

So far, Linux has been the most popular with businesses; especially on servers. If there's a bug in Windows, the only people who have any right to look at the source code or make changes to fix it are Microsoft. With Linux, businesses can go through all its socurce code - and the source code of most of its programs - and fix any bugs themselves; even before they run it. If they like, they can sell and share those changes with others.

* * * * *

So what about IBM?

(Edit for Jaguar) IBM makes money a number of ways from Linux.

1) IBM has partnered with Red Hat on a business "Linux distribution" (it's called something along the lines of "Red Hat Enterprise Linux" or something like that). It's basically a set of CD-ROMs with Linux, GPL programs for business, and their own (non-open source) programs for installing, downloading updates and patches, etc. Same deal eith SuSE, MandrakeSoft, etc.
2) They sell servers, desktops, laptops, and workstations that come with Linux.
3) They do consulting for companies wanting to set up Linux.
4) They sell tech support for Linux to business.

Which is what their adds are on about.

* * * * *

You can use Linux and GPL programs on your PC (or even a version that got ported onto Playstation 2 and XBOX) if you want (if you see Lindows computers in WalMart, they're running a version of Linux instead of Windows). Linux is also more powerful, in a lot of ways, than Windows, though it's not as user friendly yet. But, yeah, you could use it instead of Windows if you wanted to.

If you want more info on Linux, check out:
http://slashdot.org/ <- A Linux / GPL website
http://sourceforge.net/ <- A lot of GPL downloads
http://lindows.com/ <- Lindows, a desktop version of Linux
http://www-1.ibm.com/linux/va_4010.shtml <- IBM / Red Hat
http://www-1.ibm.com/linux/ <- IBM's Linux site


(edited by AJ_Levy on 21.1.04 0752)
tarnish
Frankfurter








Since: 13.2.02
From: Back in the Heart of Hali

Since last post: 446 days
Last activity: 5 days
AIM:  
Y!:
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.03

That excellent post by AJ_Levy said it all very well, but I've got a couple of things to add:

Linux is, indeed, a viable server operating system as evidenced by the fact that this very board has been running linux from day one (the Debian distribution, I believe).

Linux is also a viable desktop operating system (I've used it as such for almost 5 years now). But your average Joe doesn't use it that way because it's much easier to keep paying Microsoft to provide frustration that it is to accept responsibility for one's computer's operation oneself.

And because GuruZim would say it if I didn't:

If you'd like to TRY linux at no risk to yourself or your existing computer setup, you can get the Knoppix distribution. It comes on a CD; you put it in your CD-ROM drive, set your computer to boot from CD-ROM, reboot, and you're sitting at an up-and-running Linux system that doesn't risk gumming up your already working Windows system.

Knoppix is available as a free ISO CD image download from one of the mirrors listed at http://www.knoppix.com.




/tarnish...

[the GPL is] not just a crazy idea that some lefty Commie hippie dreamed up in a drug-induced stupor.
-- Linus Torvalds
EddieBurkett
Boudin blanc








Since: 3.1.02
From: GA in person, NJ in heart

Since last post: 12 days
Last activity: 6 hours
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.11
    Originally posted by tarnish
    But your average Joe doesn't use it that way because it's much easier to keep paying Microsoft to provide frustration that it is to accept responsibility for one's computer's operation oneself.


I would think the Average Joe doesn't know enough about Linux to know what it truly does or that they could run it themselves.

I myself would be more willing to migrate if not for the gaming issue. I still haven't heard enough good things about WiNE to make me think its more viable than dual-booting, and I'm not ready to make a dual-boot machine since I either need another hard drive or to reformat my current one, which I don't feel like doing.

    Originally posted by AJ_Levy
    (or even a version that got ported onto Playstation 2 and XBOX)


Hey! They just brought it to the Gamecube (gc-linux.org)!



Time to go kick more dark side ass, KotOR style!
Big G
Potato korv








Since: 21.8.03
From: the people who brought you Steel Magnolias....

Since last post: 12 days
Last activity: 3 hours
#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.73
    Originally posted by tarnish

    And because GuruZim would say it if I didn't:

    If you'd like to TRY linux at no risk to yourself or your existing computer setup, you can get the Knoppix distribution. It comes on a CD; you put it in your CD-ROM drive, set your computer to boot from CD-ROM, reboot, and you're sitting at an up-and-running Linux system that doesn't risk gumming up your already working Windows system.

    Knoppix is available as a free ISO CD image download from one of the mirrors listed at http://www.knoppix.com.



There is also the partitionless install you can try for the "risk free" Linux. Essentially the Linux install is contained in two files on your FAT32 or NTFS drives. You boot into Linux by using a boot floppy created during the install process. When you want to "uninstall" you just delete the two files and you're done.

All of the big distributions have mude huge inroads into user friendliness in the last few years. You only need to look at say Red Hat v6.0 compared to the current one. These days your average intermediate user can get a good Linux installation running, and the power users can still recompile an optimised kernel for their machine if they want - just stock up on excidrin before you start.



Warrior Quote: "Presuming initial consensualness, where exactly do we draw the lines of our judgment pinning down the responsibility and accountability inextricably attached to each human life? "

Umm Indeed!

WOTD 16 Dec 2003
emma
Cherries > Peaches








Since: 1.8.02
From: Phoenix-ish

Since last post: 156 days
Last activity: 7 hours
#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.47
Excellent overview, AJ_Levy!

And I learned something new, too! I thought/assumed (silly me) that linux was basically another BSD-derivitave-offshoot, rather than a "from scratch" follower. I'm loving the BSD vs Linux (over-yonder.net) article referenced from slashdot.org.
Merc
Potato korv








Since: 3.1.02
From: Brisbane, Australia

Since last post: 1234 days
Last activity: 1212 days
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.60
    Originally posted by Big G
    All of the big distributions have mude huge inroads into user friendliness in the last few years. You only need to look at say Red Hat v6.0 compared to the current one.


As someone who has been struggling through a RH9 install/configuration for the last week, there's still a ways to go.
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