28 Nov 2002 moshez   » (Master)

Gagh, I feel like I'm abusing my "Master" status (wtf is up with that?) by posting this, but whatever.

MichaelCrawford: I've seen you plugging (supposedly "subtly", but you're unsubtle even for a geek) your "skills" for a few years now, under the guise of writing "useful" and "informative" comments. Yet, for all that, I have yet to see one significant contribution from you to anything free software. I suppose I should make a technical exception to the "LinuxQuality" project, which is a contribution, perhaps, in the sense that like many other projects, it sits there gathering dust after you have finished your initial zest for contribution. The difference is that LinuxQuality rots on somewhere else than SourceForge. Yay.

So, let me recap, before I spout some more vitriol: you have achieved your Master status under somewhat false pretenses, you have made no worthwhile contributions to free software, you continuously whine about free software lacking quality (and your solution is to "lets all test the 2.4 linux kernel) and you confuse between usability flaws (where the software works fine and passes any conceivable test, but is hard to use) and crashes. You continuously whine about the supposedly high-quality of MacOS and BeOS, but you also try to tell them how to run their business (other people reading this: Michael has links to where he explains to MacOS and BeOS how to run their business on his site, if you care).

Now, your wife is in tears because IE has holes and Mozilla crashes. I am sure your wife is a perfectly intelligent person, and since she doesn't whine on public forums, I'll also assume she is nice and will conduct no personal assault on her person. However, perhaps in the interest of honesty, you might want to tell your wife to go ahead and use IE on Windows, if the only reason she's avoiding it is the security hole. Windows is inherently so unsafe, she shouldn't really count on avoiding using IE to save her from any malicious crackers. In fact, IE is relatively safe, as you'd need to own a malicious site (dangerous) or crack a benign site (and if you can do that, you can probably crack into your wife computer directly).

Alternatively, you can convert your wife wholly to Linux, with either Konqueror or Mozilla as her desktop. I'm sure (well, more like fervently hope, God knows I have no evidence) that you are competent enough to set it up for her and I'm certain you care about her enough to spend the two hours it takes to install Debian. Now, Debian is not imprevious to security problems. Hell, I get mail every two days about a security vulnerability. However, the Debian organization is careful and responsive to security threats, so your wife will probably be as protected as she can be with a computer which actually does something and connected to the internet.

As an added bonus, whenever your wife gets tired of bloatware like Moz or Konq, she can use what I use daily to browse the web -- lynx. Lynx, how do I love thee, let me count the ways. Since most web designers are totally incompetent idiots (well, this is the top 10% really, the rest are totally incompetent untrained monkeys), lynx just ignores their "design decisions" and displays their content. Since your wife designs web sites, I'm sure she would be interested to check that even without all the glitzy features, her site is still usable. So it's, basically, a win-win situation.

If your wife really really needs IE occasionally, to check the web site still loads OK, you can always just use VMWare to bring up Windows inside the Linux box.

As an alternative, you can put your money where your mouth is. Rewrite Mozilla on top of ZooLib. Surely, with ZooLib's wonderful abstractions, soon there'll be no more bugs in Mozilla, right?

But I am sorry for that last quip. Making fun of C++ is just not nice.

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