How to give Linux Away
As a community we would like to see a large computer manufacturer sell PC's with Linux already on them. Is this the only option?
I work as a sales rep. for one of the large PC manufacturers. I work at many different technology retail stores. Three years ago, I heard about Open Source and Linux. My first exposure came in the form of the Firefox browser. When I speak with customers I will talk about my experiences using Linux. I ask them if their computer is running slow, and the answer is always “Yes”. They tell me how it is running really slow no matter what they do or they can't seem to create any free room on their hard drive.
People ask if MS-Office comes with the computer and I say “No, but have you ever heard of OpenOffice.org?”, I tell them how it can read and save the MS formats and how I have been using it in College even though MS-Office dominates on campus. I tell them what it can do and that it doesn't cost a dime. That usually gets their attention.
Then I will hear the customer say, “As soon as I get home I am going to throw the old computer anyway”. I say, and this is what I think we should all be saying, “You know that old computer that can't run windows the way you need it too anymore? Give it to me, and I'll fix it up and give it to someone or a family that does not have a computer.”
I have had several conversations with customers that have led to them giving me them their computers when buying a new one. I have fixed one up and given it to a friend of mine who lives on a ranch in Colorado, he has been able to stay in contact with friends and family here in Phoenix because of it. What if we all did that? All of us? What if every one who used Linux fixed up an old computer , put it together and gave it to someone or family who did not have one? Think about it.
We would not only double the number of people who use Linux, but have a very positive effect on Society. We all know that having a computer in the home makes everyone who uses it read better. It is my belief that that the ability to read, well, does as much or more for someone as going to school. Someone who knows how to read can find what they need to learn the skills and teach themselves anything they want. If a child can be positively impacted by having a computer, so can an entire family.
I am not trying to proclaim some kind of “call to arms” to join me in some crusade, not at all. I just want to share with you some of the things I say and questions I ask that have led to the introduction of Open Source Software to new people in a positive way. As the saying goes, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression”. I hope that what I have said helps you make that first impression a good one. Over the last two years, I have gone from not knowing how to pronounce “Linux” correctly to..well, still not knowing how to pronounce SuSE correctly.
You gotta admit, fixing up and giving away computers is at least good Karma, I hope.
If someone has already made up their mind not to give something new a try, then there is no sense in wasting your time trying make them re-think there decision.
Among those who give such excuses there are those who are just repeating what they have heard or read and really do not a have any of their own information or experience to draw from. They are easy to pick out once you have heard hundreds of different people say almost the exact same thing like I have. It is not that hard, all you have to do ask a few questions and you can easily determine if they are just repeating what they have heard or actually have their own reasons for not wanting to give Linux a try.
|Subject||Topic Starter||Replies||Views||Last Post|
|Step 5...||cubrewer||3||1,818||Mar 14, 2006 2:33 PM|
|Have you noticed what those MS employees are doing!?||Herschel_Cohen||1||1,683||Mar 14, 2006 11:57 AM|
|Excellent read needs extra linespace removed||grouch||0||1,492||Mar 14, 2006 11:30 AM|
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