Being Subversive

From: Mike Harrison 
------------------------------------------------------

It's been a while since I dealt a lot with non-linux savvy people...
and the Microsoft crowd is just not an easy command line server 
conversion.

But give a sharp young kid (20's?) that has been admining AS400/DB2
boxes an Ubuntu Server CD.. and tell him he can turn junk systems into 
useful servers.. and a day later he has DNS running just by reading man 
pages... a mail server almost working.... and like stone soup... that 
machine with 1gb of ram  and an 80gb drive is collecting a stack of 
spare/scrounged parts for future upgrades.

Most importantly and enjoyable is the smile on his face.

We live in aworld where the $20 for an application, or $5000 for a real 
application is not such a big deal. The true freedom in the Linux world is 
the freedom to play, tinker and make things work in a resource limited 
world. Without that $20 or $2 app. Or need for admin approval or a 
purchase order or a capital expense committee..

We forget -that- freedom is as important, as important as other FOSS 
goals.

The IBM AS400 VAR will hate my guts in a few weeks.. ;)



=============================================================== From: Aaron Welch ------------------------------------------------------ Speaking of which we need to talk about the utilities in the Philippines. T= here is an entire utility that was shut off for being 80 million pesos in th= e hole to the hydro producer here. I think prepaid meters would solve the c= ash flow problem for the government as it tries to get the services restored= . Totally random, but applicable to the topic. -AW . ful servers.. and a day later he has DNS running just by reading man pages..= . a mail server almost working.... and like stone soup... that machine with 1= gb of ram and an 80gb drive is collecting a stack of spare/scrounged parts f= or future upgrades. plication is not such a big deal. The true freedom in the Linux world is the= freedom to play, tinker and make things work in a resource limited world. W= ithout that $20 or $2 app. Or need for admin approval or a purchase order or= a capital expense committee.. .

=============================================================== From: William Wade ------------------------------------------------------ This is what drew me to Linux back when I was in high school. I was at the end of what I could do with the Windows machine that we had. All the trial versions and demos and whatnot were done. I found Linux and open source and I know that if I had not, I would not be the person I was today. P.S. Mike, When I was in Manila in 2006, the large problem is the massive number of illegal taps. I assume that is also a large issue in the other countries where you have worked, but if your stuff helps with decreasing that, then I think they would be quite interested.

=============================================================== From: Tom Wilson ------------------------------------------------------ Freeing a young man from a AS400 is a worthy accomplishment on its' own. That said, I would dearly love to have one to play with. Both for old time's sake and for the resulting "You are NOT bringing that thing into the house are you?" conversation with Mrs Wilson.

=============================================================== From: Rod-Lists ------------------------------------------------------ Explain that again? Why are Philippines buying power from here? ----- Aaron Welch wrote:

=============================================================== From: Rod-Lists ------------------------------------------------------ And in a world of turnkey phones & tablets which we get apps from the company store, we are losing that. ----- Mike Harrison wrote:

=============================================================== From: Ed King ------------------------------------------------------ speaking of apps if a system is web-based, and every modern phones/tablet has a web browser, can someone throw me a clue as to why anyone would spend time to program an "app" to hit that web page?? If the goal is to reformat the web site to look good on a small screen, wouldn't that best be done server-side (eg: mobile version of the website)? talk to me like I'm stupid... I don't mind ----- Original Message ---- From: Rod-Lists And in a world of turnkey phones & tablets which we get apps from the company store, we are losing that. ----- Mike Harrison wrote:

=============================================================== From: Jason Brown ------------------------------------------------------ Opinion: In many cases it is to get rid of the navigation and key presses from the built in browser. No search, bookmarks, tabs, etc. On the iPhone for example, a web page can't be full screen and always has the menu. Unless you pin the bookmark to your home screen and even then it can sometimes pop back up. Also, the "app stores" are a way for people to find your product / webpage. People look there for an "app". I find it funny that in the days of the smartphone that serves multiple functions, people still want a single use icon on the screen for an application. I've been guilty of it myself. My personal vehicle maintenance log is just a web form, but I have it as an icon on my phone for easy access. --Jason

=============================================================== From: Rod-Lists ------------------------------------------------------ Ed the subject is being subversive. Your subversive by your very nature. ;) ----- Ed King wrote:

=============================================================== From: Mike Harrison ------------------------------------------------------ Maybe weird.. MAybe like a Chevy Nova lover... But never stupid.. Apps work better if you don'thave conectiviyty, Or have much more UI needs than a browseer interface works well with.

=============================================================== From: Chad Smith ------------------------------------------------------ Honestly - I struggled with this question for a long time myself. And I think in the beginning there really wasn't much of a reason to, but now... Adding to what's already been said (find-ability through app stores / giving the consumer what they want or expect / the limitations of mobile browsers / offline access) there's also the idea of touch interface. You can build a mobile version of your website if you want to - but unless HTML-5 has added a lot of things I'm not aware of, things like multitouch gestures and swiping aren't something you can tell a webpage to understand. You can use right-click and mouse-hover functions, but there is no hover or right-click on a touch-device. Sure the web-browser itself can read things like pinch-and-zoom or the rotation of the device to/from portrait to landscape - but your webpage doesn't benefit from that input directly. So an app is able to recognize all of those inputs and therefore can be a more productive and more satisfying experience for the user. On the app/webpage owner side - there's the obvious benefit of being able to charge for the app and/or put ads in the app, (and charging users to turn them off). You could potentially (and I've never written an app, so I'm not exactly sure what I'm talking about here) get more data from an app than a webpage. (Again, I don't know that for sure, but I suspect that is true.) And less web-traffic means less bandwidth usage. So there are benefits. Of course the development and maintenance and customer service of an app; the sharing of profits with whoever owns the app store; the likelihood of now having to maintain and work with 2 (or 3) very different user-facing-experiences - are the obvious downsides. *- Chad W. Smith*

=============================================================== From: James Nylen ------------------------------------------------------ Multitouch gestures and drag-to-scroll are supported on the major mobile browsers. Try going to maps.google.com on your smartphone/tablet. HTML5 is making progress towards enabling more native features, but the user experience is still fairly bad. I think these will get better over time though. Another major advantage of an app is that you can use native features like background services, the camera, etc.

=============================================================== From: Chad Smith ------------------------------------------------------ What's happening there is the browser is interpreting the drag-to-scroll / pinch-to-zoom touch gestures and sending them to the webpage as if it was a scroll-wheel mouse. It's not close to the same thing as the app being able to use whatever gestures it wants. I do agree with the having access to camera, et. al. stuff though. *- Chad W. Smith*

=============================================================== From: James Nylen ------------------------------------------------------ No, that's not what's happening. HTML5 has events specific to touch devices, including multiple touches. Documentation: http://www.html5rocks.com/en/mobile/touch/ Demo: http://paulirish.com/demo/multi

=============================================================== From: Chad Smith ------------------------------------------------------ One of those very rare instances where I am happy to be proven wrong. I had no idea this stuff was happening. Thanks for the links and the knowledge! *- Chad W. Smith*