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Would you like GNOME or KDE with that?

Feb 15, 1999, 21:06 (13 Talkback[s])

The following is a work of satire by Tim Dion (tim_dion@yahoo.com).
1999 Copyright GNU Open Content License.

Fall 2000, Office of Bob Benderle:

Bob Benderle of Gigga Bucks Strategic Consulting is sitting in his office waiting on hold with Dwell Computers (a huge computer seller) . He watches the snow fall over the Cambridge evening city scape and reviews his calendar of upcoming standards meetings.

Finally, after a few minutes of listening to a bland instrumental version of the Door's "Light My Fire" the female voice of a young perky sales person jumps over the line, "Dwell Computer phone purchasing. How can I help you today?"

"Her ah," Benderle starts in a little startled. "Hi this is Bob Benderle of Gigga Bucks Strategic Consulting." He pauses to let the importance of this name sink in. "And, I've found its time to update my laptop system to something a little more powerful. You see Windows 2000 just is too slow for my PentiunIII 500 megahertz system and I think I need more memory as well."

"I see," says the sales girl. "I've heard of that Windows2000 thing."

"Er ah, whatever," Benderle replies, a little confused. "Look just send me a new 600 megahertz system with an Intel IA64 CPU."

"Yes sir." The girl replies, a little concerned that maybe she went over some line or something. "Would you like your system to use KDE or GNOME?"

"What!" Benderle shouts, getting irate. "Look, just give me Windows 2000."

There is a long uncomfortable pause. "You mean you want to buy an operating system? like with money?" the girls asks obviously confused.

"Of course I do! What the hell kind of operation this? Is there someone else there I can speak to?" he states slowly, trying to remain calm.

"I'm sorry sir, its my first week here. As far as I know, we don't sell operating systems, we only install Linux. If you want Windows 2000, you will have to buy it yourself. Sir, please hold wild I get my supervisor, he's an old timer, so he knows about stuff from the nineties." The line goes back to more musac, this time its an instrumental version of a Smashing Pumpkins song. Benderle steams.

"Hello?" an older male voice comes on the line. Probably one of those bearded techie types Benderle thinks to himself.

"Yes," Benderle starts, "The sales girl was just telling me that you don't sell Windows 2000 for an IA64 system. Just what the hell is going on there?"

"Well sir," The techie explains in fatherly tones, "it turns out that once Linux got big, none of our customers would pay for an operating system anymore. We had no reason to stock Microsoft products. And, with the hit we took on EULA refunds, doing business with Microsoft just didn't seem like such a good idea?"

"Look, I sit on every important standards board in North America and we never talk about Linux! Linux is a fad, a trend, it doesn't even have a GUI! They're just a bunch of hackers for Christ sake. Don't you read RipRavus?" Benderle stammers.

"Er ah whatever? But people sure seem to like those fancy desktop themes." the techie replies, resigned to the obvious. "You know, the sad thing is, even if we did sell Windows 2000, its not available for the Intel IA64 because Microsoft has not finished porting it yet?" The phone goes dead.

Benderle looks out over the rush hour traffic from his twentieth story office window. "What's the world coming to?" He implores to no one in particular.