In order for Linux to finally break through and become an
alternative to Windows, it needs to meet the needs of the
average desktop user. That is, you have to include a GUI that
is easy to use and applications designed to run under that
Within that user space, Linux needs the types of
applications that many people have become used to and
dependent on. The basics include Web access, word processing,
multimedia (video/audio), and infrastructure tools such as
drivers for printers, scanners, keyboards, mice, etc.
In order to find out which applications people are
currently interested in seeing run on Linux, the folks over
Novell are hosting a survey
. The list currently shows the following:
Applications (last 31 days)
Rank Application 1. Photoshop 2. Autocad 3. Dreamweaver 4. iTunes 5. Macromedia Studio 6. Flash 7. Quicken 8. Visio 9. Quickbooks 10. Lotus Notes
Of the 10, I could use Photoshop, iTunes, and Lotus Notes.
Personally, I could really use something like Paint Shop Pro
rather something more complicated like Photoshop. But either
would do. Yes, there is Gimp. But no, it is not as easy to
use nor, in the case of Photoshop, as powerful.
For iTunes users, there are efforts to get something
working, but it seems like that every time they get close,
Apple releases a new version that breaks all the work done to
that point. One might get the feeling that Apple was doing
this on purpose.
For Lotus Notes, yes, you can sort of run it using
CrossOver Office. But it’s not very stable and not all the
features work. Although it is better than nothing, I can’t
wait for Lotus to release a real Linux client (Real Soon
A Linux desktop that meets the current needs of Windows
users is not there yet and this survey shows some of the gaps
that still exist. Maybe some day, but not yet.
Oh, before someone asks, yes, I’m using a distribution
called Xandros Deluxe 3.01 on a full-time basis. Although
this may be close to as good as it gets, in my opinion, as
good as it gets isn’t (yet) good enough.