"As Linux slowly moves into the mainstream, several distinct
classes of Linux users are emerging. At the top of the spectrum, we
have the "die hard" users, those who have been using some Unix
variant for years. At the low end, we have those who have picked up
a copy of Linux at the local CompUSA, and probably plan on
dual-booting between it and Windows. There is a vast gap between
these two ends of the spectrum, and when they meet, there's sure to
be a 'culture clash.'"
"I think that the community is of two minds when it comes to
the future of Linux. Some of the 'die hard' users would prefer that
it remain a hacker's OS, to be used only by those with the time and
inclination to poke about in the guts of their system. On the other
side of the fence, many people are hoping that Linux will soon
become a viable desktop alternative for 'Joe User.' This is
what companies such as Corel are betting on, with offerings
specifically tailored for new users."
"Personally, I hope they're right. I believe everyone deserves a
free, stable OS, not just hard-core hackers. However, the truth is
that Linux is not yet to the point where all necessary
configuration can be done via point-and-click. Sooner or later, a
new user is going to have to edit some configuration files, and
that means venturing into the world of HOWTOs, man pages, and so
on. These sort of documents are geared towards more skilled users.
New users may venture onto IRC in search of assistance, only to be
pointed to a HOWTO or man page. Why? Because that's part of the
existing Linux culture."
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