Linux offers real diversity on the desktop

Posted by jimlynch on Aug 20, 2013 6:37 AM EDT
ITworld; By Jim Lynch
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Today in Open Source: Diversity and the Linux desktop. Plus: Linux IT popularity, and Linux hobbyist developers

I know that some have lamented the "fragmentation" of the Linux desktop, but I disagree with this completely. Fragmentation can be considered another word for real diversity and choice, and that's what makes Linux so incredibly useful and powerful.

There are simply so many different options for desktop users. Nobody is locked in and forced to use a particular distro or desktop environment. Desktop Linux users can float from distro to distro, depending on their needs. Or they can simply use whatever desktop environment they prefer within their distro of choice.

Now compare the range of choice offered by Linux with that of Windows or OS X. There's no comparison whatsoever, Linux wins hands down. Sure, in some cases, a particular distro may not be as "slick" as Windows or OS X, or it may even require some work on the users part to make things work in the preferred way. But the real choice is there, and the user makes the final decision about how his or her desktop computer works.

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