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Choosing your perfect Operating System

© March 2009 Anthony Lawrence

Whatever your personality, whatever your social standing, there is a computer operating system that is just right for you.

For example, are you extremely good looking and almost unbelievably cool? Good, I am also. People like us should use Macs, and I don't mean iMacs or iBooks. A Macbook is the minimum computer anyone of our status should consider, and really we deserve a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air.

Nothing else carries the same cachet , nothing else speaks to our superior genetics in quite the same way, and anything less would only detract from our well chilled uber-coolness. By the way, the important thing here is ownership: you don't need to USE it; carrying it around is quite sufficient.

Perhaps instead you are frighteningly intelligent? Excellent, as that happens to describe me also. People like us need to run Linux, and I do not mean simply having some Ubuntu desktop available to log in to. Our Linux should be a server OS, locked down so securely that even we have trouble logging in and are prevented from changing anything if we do manage to gain access.

Our Linux usage should be painful and difficult: nothing worth doing is easy. Can you sneer at less committed Linux users? If not, practice in the mirror until you get the proper amount of disdain. Remember, you must express an appropriate amount: extreme disdain for Windows users, pity for Mac users, and light disdain for desktop Linux folk (after all, they ARE trying!).

Are you good looking AND intelligent? Oh, we have so much in common! If you want, you can buy a MacBook, MacBook Pro or Air and install Linux on it! Alternately, keep OS X and have the Linux on a server. Remember, your Linux has to make Bastille Linux look insecure by comparison. Being good looking doesn't absolve you of all responsibility!

Do you like to march to the beat of a different drum? Do you like the music to stay recognizably consistent? My friend, you are made for BSD. Your reaction to all other users should be a half smile and a softly whispered "It's all about security.." . Practice letting your voice trail off at the end and then raise your eyebrows slightly.

Are you insane? Fortunately for you, SCO Unix and SCO Unixware are still available for purchase starting at only a relatively non-nominal amount of hard-earned money. SCO Unix may also be right for you if you are deeply sentimental and long for the early 90's - things were so much simpler then, right? Practice this in the mirror: "Some things never change!"

Do you like antiques? You can find hardware that will run CP/M, TRSDOS and AmigaOS. You can buy Radio Shack Color Computers still and play games that were almost state of the art when first sold!

Are you argumentative? Do you like shelling out a lot of money for hardware and software and then defending your over-spending as justified? You are well suited for Windows Vista or Windows 7. You need to practice your sneers also. Remember to mix in utter puzzlement for Mac owners and a deep suspicion of stupidity and/or socialist leanings for the Linux folk. I know that's hard to convey in a sneer - that's why you need to practice!

If you happen to be good looking, argumentative AND insane, you can install Vista or Windows 7 on a MacBook of your choice. If you are really crazy, try installing SCO 5.0.7 and post your complaints to a Linux newsgroup.

Perhaps you are none of these things? Do you apologize for your computer ineptitude? Does every question you ask concerning your computer begin with "This is probably a stupid question.."? You'll be quite happy with Windows XP or even Windows ME. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO USE VISTA! By the way, you don't get to sneer at anyone, sorry.

Whatever your choice, remember to defend it proudly.

Got something to add? Send me email.

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Inexpensive and informative Apple related e-books:

Photos for Mac: A Take Control Crash Course

Take Control of High Sierra

Sierra: A Take Control Crash Course

Take Control of the Mac Command Line with Terminal, Second Edition

Take Control of Upgrading to El Capitan

More Articles by © Anthony Lawrence

Tue Mar 10 23:26:35 2009: 5644   BrettLegree

Well then, I must be extremely good looking, unbelievably cool, and frighteningly intelligent...

I think I'll point the IT guys at my workplace to this post. I'm not sure if they'll read it though, as they tend to apologize for their computer ineptitude and start every question with "This is probably a stupid question..."

Tue Mar 10 23:34:03 2009: 5645   CorkyAgain

Über-cool and following a different drummer, that's me.

But it's not so much about the security as it is about the elegance...

Wed Mar 11 02:38:56 2009: 5646   jtimberman

Heh - Windows isn't necessarily expensive for those who are frighteningly intelligent. Total hardware cost for my home theater PC + HDTV is less than an equivalent Mac desktop *without* a display. Software cost was $120 for OEM Vista Home Premium (included in total). I primarily use free programs, with a preference to open source. I find Media Center is actually quite good, despite DRM, "it just works".

My one exception for software spending is Turbo Tax. Its deduction maximizer pays for itself, so it's almost free.

Of course, I'm a gamer too, so I do pay for games, but I'd end up spending a lot more money on console games, since they're generally $10-30 more than the same game for PC.

That said, the home theater system is my only Windows computer. My work system is a MacbookPro. I use various Linux servers for work too, and I have a Linux server at home. Windows has its place: in the living room running games and media. Linux/Unix for real work.

Wed Mar 11 10:07:04 2009: 5650   TonyLawrence

But I HAVE to pick on Windows. It would suck the joy right out of my life if I didn't say something cruel about Windows regularly.

Wed Mar 11 11:04:33 2009: 5652   NickBarron

If I could read about people picking on Windows my morning would be less appealing ....

Wed Mar 11 12:17:18 2009: 5656   BrettLegree

Most days I don't even have to pick on Windows, it does such a good job of embarrassing itself I can just sit back and laugh.

Windows is like the bumbling friend on most sitcoms...

Wed Mar 11 21:01:24 2009: 5670   BigDumbDinosaur

Obviously I don't fit any of the above profiles -- my username says it all!

That said, I'm not sure how I'd fit into this equation. In my office is my trusty SCO box, running 5.0.7 and in service since August 2000, another box running SuSE Linux, a third box running Window$ -- and a Commodore 128D simulator (I don't have the actual hardware) for when I'm feeling nostalgic. I've never owned a Trash-80 or Apple 8 bitter, but did "own" a system whose principal human interface device (to borrow a term from Micro$oft) was a model ASR-33 Teletype. Dunno whether all this makes me as intelligent as A. Einstein or dumber than the most recent denizen of the White House.

Thu Mar 12 18:20:51 2009: 5673   TonyLawrence

Surely you can't mean Obama? I understand that your political leanings don't match my delight at his presidency, but he's certainly one of the brightest people we've had in a long time.

I find it refreshing to listen to someone who actually is intelligent - so unlike that dope who preceded him.

Thu Mar 12 19:35:51 2009: 5674   BigDumbDinosaur

...dumber than the most recent denizen of the White House.

That should have said "the most recent past denizen." Damn keyboard isn't typing what I think! <Grin>

Thu Mar 12 19:44:29 2009: 5675   TonyLawrence

That makes more sense :-)

Sat Jul 6 10:29:02 2013: 12210   TonyLawrence


Want to learn something new for no good reason? Windows Eight!

Sat Jul 6 15:26:17 2013: 12211   Briandenks


Oh you as cold as ice !

Sat Jul 6 15:33:25 2013: 12212   TonyLawrence


Indeed. And ginchy, also, although I have forgotten exactly what that means..

Sun Jul 7 19:49:38 2013: 12213   BigDumbDinosaur


Want to learn something new for no good reason? Windows Eight!

Unfortunately, I've already had to deal with this mess. It almost makes Windows 7 look palatable, which is like saying dog poop tastes better than pig poop. Ugh!


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Computers have been taught to distrust each other and will reject attempted connections most of the time. Nowadays, most computers and firewalls are utterly rude about it: it would be like asking someone to dance and having them ignore you as though you were invisible and inaudible. (Tony Lawrence)

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