• I’m pretty happy with the linux installation process these days. Unless you’re a distro-hopper it isn’t something that you have to deal with on a regular basis. Even before developers put in a lot of hours to make the process easier, it was something that I only had to get right once per device.

      • It’s not hard for tech savvy people. It is for people who aren’t tech savvy.

        I hear the argument you’re making all the time and it’s like a multilingual person telling a uniligual adult that learning a new language isn’t that hard, and that unilingual people just don’t care enough to learn.

        It’s clearly a way for tech savvy people to inflate their ego and look down on most users, and I say this as a fairly tech savvy person. I’m in good shape but for me to say overweight people just don’t care enough to get healthy is a gross oversimplification. This is no different.

        edit: I gotta ask, did anyone in this thread who is arguing that Linux is easy to install actually watch this guy’s full video? Because he makes a number of great points that just go completely unaddressed by the Linux stans here.

        • It really isn’t. Any Ubuntu installer is 90% clicking next.

          You can hold a users hand but it will end up biting you or them in the ass when you’re not there to help them. People need to learn how to learn again. There’s infinite number of guides, tutorials, and if you can’t read theres YouTube videos.

          If you can pass grade school you can figure out how to install your own operating system.

          • So, I used to help an older man with computer stuff. He thought that there were ‘wire ladies’ plugging in wires when you moved the mouse cursor, and he didn’t know what it meant to “scroll.” I work with people now who don’t know how to select multiple items at once with a mouse. Neither of these things are intuitive because all interfaces are contrived.

            There is no real-world analog to a scroll-bar, or a click+drag/ctrl+click operation. This means that not a single human has any instinct with relation to computer interfaces. Not only is this the case, but over the course of a single session on a computer, a user might face dozens of different interfaces. A user might go from the login screen to an app launcher, to a web browser window, to a web-app, to the lock-screen, et cetera, and each of these interfaces will in turn have many small components: scroll bars, buttons, text areas, check-boxes, radio buttons, et cetera, that the user may or may not be familiar with.

            We have several generations alive now who never received any formal education on these interfaces or computers in general, and those that did attend school late enough to receive some education were taught step-by-step. Recognizing design patterns in such a way that you can pick up and use a new interface is a skill that requires a tremendous amount of existing knowledge, and either a tremendous amount of practice, personal interest, or education.

            There is no debate that most of the population have little to no computer skills. Now you can take that 70% of the population with few to no computer skills, go the misanthropic route and just decide that they are somehow lazy, stupid, or inferior, or you can exercise your critical thinking skills to try and work out why only a small minority of the population have more than a modicum of skill on computers.

            For someone without a mountain of prerequisite knowledge, a task like removing whitespace characters from a spreadsheet could take days. I’ve personally walked into an interns office and seen that they’ve been working on a similar project all week, only to solve it for them in five minutes by explaining a formula. When your time is dominated in this way by mundane tasks, not only do you not have time to ‘learn how to learn,’ but computers become associated with drudgery, boredom, and fear, as a single mistake might set you back hours or worse.

            When we ask “is X a difficult task,” it’s a profound act of willful ignorance to ignore 70% of the population when we answer. The fact that we have not fixed this usability issue as designers and developers is a large part of users are increasingly hawked walled-gardens, SAAS, and why features we used to expect slowly disappear from our interfaces, making them less powerful, while usability doesn’t increase at all. This problem stands in the way of widespread adoption of FLOSS, it cannot be solved by devs alone, and it’s going to take some serious introspection to solve, particularly when we’re so quick to ascribe a lack of computer knowledge to some kind of moral failing.

              • I’m not sure; I’m a designer, so probably just experience and living through interface design trends. IMO skeuomorphism was a large part of the original iPhone’s success; ever since we decided it wasn’t cool anymore with flat and then material interface design, we’ve just been trying to get back to it without admitting that we were wrong; Neuomorphism *shudders* and Claymorphism are both just rebranded Skeumorphism. Turns out buttons worked in computer user interfaces because they looked like buttons. But now we have another problem - some of the visual metaphors that worked back in the 90s just don’t work any more. Physical buttons, dials, et cetera, are disappearing in favor of digital interfaces. When our interfaces no longer even remotely resemble our physical world, children’s toys with buttons, spinners, et cetera will no longer prepare humans for the interfaces with which all of their digital tools will be operated, like it did for many of us. I think we’re going to have to be very intentional with children’s education, toys and activities starting now if we want them to have any natural aptitude, and unless we want them learning computer interfaces like an entirely foreign technical subject.

            • I get what you’re trying to say, but would you ever expect that old man to attempt to install ANY operating system whether its linux or windows or temple os?

              I think maybe you should be advocating for more OEM systems to come preinstalled with linux rather than windows. It obviously doesn’t make a difference if they’re using windows or Ubuntu, the general principles are the same as far as using a mouse, finding a minimized window, etc. People like that are never going to consider doing their own installs and should probably have some support structure that assists them like you were doing.

              As far as people in offices being computer illiterate, companies need to do better training of their own or just give a basic proficiency test when they’re hiring new people.

          • People need to learn how to learn again.

            People do know how to learn, they just have different priorities than you and are focused on learning other things that could very well fall outside of what you believe is worth learning. Again, this is the kind of ego inflation I’m talking about-- this idea that "wow people just need to learn how to learn", it’s just condescending nonsense.

            Out of curiosity, how many languages do you speak fluently?

            • People do know how to learn, they just have different priorities

              Then that’s their fault, and not the installers. Tools require at least some knowledge to use them. If someone doesn’t acquire this knowledge they will at best break their tools (which is pretty difficult with computers) or at worst hurt others. The comparison isn’t with “would you learn useless language x” but “would you learn language x if you plan to move to a country where it is the official language”.

              • Then that’s their fault, and not the installers.

                Some tools are easier to learn than others, because of the nature of their design. If a tool was over-engineered and its alternative was perceived as more straightforward by the average user, the fault of why the former tool didn’t sell well lies with the creators of said tool.

                I didn’t say the comparison was about useless languages-- why are you putting words in my mouth? An English speaking American could very well enrich their life by learning Spanish but if they chose not to for various reasons, this arrogant notion that they need to “learn how to learn” is just nonsense. I find it very weird that you assumed I was referring to “useless languages”.

                Most countries have more than one official language. For a country with say, two official (or unofficial but widely recognized) languages like the USA, the point here is that monolingual people don’t need to “learn how to learn” simply because they’re not bilingual.

                It’s funny, your response is exactly what I was talking about in another post about open source software developers’ attitude when it comes to open source software that doesn’t take off. That old Principal Skinner meme…

                “Am I so out of touch??”

                “No, it’s the users who are wrong.”

                When you said

                Then that’s their fault, and not the installers.

                I couldn’t help but laugh because that’s exactly the attitude I’m talking about.

                Now if you’ll excuse me… I have to put my white running shoes on, along with my cargo pants, fanny pack, graphic t-shirt and transition glasses before I go out to meet my date. Surely she will appreciate how functionally superior my clothing/accessory choices are compared to the "stylish" and "cool" clothes that only shallow people appreciate. Right?

                • Some tools are easier to learn than others, because of the nature of their design.

                  Yep, and modern computers are incredibly hard to understand tools, by nature of their design. By trying to hide this complexity from users you are creating more (unnessecary) complexity and through that make it even harder for users to understand how the system works all the while potentially limiting its usefulness. Free software is about enabling users to fully utilize their hardware, not about making them slaves to a software. Linux is the most practical FOSS OS we have and it works on 40 year old principles, like all other major operating systems. We should focus on making the most of it, not on hiding its age.

                  If you feel something could be solved in a better way you are free to do so or at least find someone to do so. If you are unable to find or comprehend existing documentation, for whatever reason, I’m certain you will find someone willing to help you in no time and free of charge. But don’t complain if your only problem is that you want to stay ignorant.

                  If a tool was over-engineered and its alternative was perceived as more straightforward by the average user

                  The problem was that Linux installers are less over-engineered than some people feel they should be.

                  An English speaking American could very well enrich their life by learning Spanish

                  The point was, that if they don’t want to learn spanish, then they have no business complaining about being unable to communicate when in spain.

            •  krolden   ( @krolden@lemmy.ml ) 
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              Only one, but you’re equating critical thinking with knowing another language and I dont know why. Its not like the docs are written in another language you can’t understand.

              The Ubuntu install guide literally walks you through every step of the process. I think even tells you how to figure out the steps you need to change the boot device.

              Maybe I’m just being an asshole gatekeeper, I should probably tone it back a bit. I guess we should all want more linux users since that means better driver support (maybe) as adoption increases.

              I think the problems I am angry about has more to do with a broadband connection in everyone’s pockets making it easy for idiots’ opinions to spread like wildfire into the real world.

              Edit: yes I typed this on my phone the irony is not lost on me.

              • Only one, but you’re equating critical thinking with knowing another language and I dont know why

                I’m not equating critical thinking with knowing another language. I’m using monolingual people as an example of people perfectly capable of critical thinking and learning, no different than people who are only familiar with Windows.

                There’s infinite number of guides, tutorials, and if you can’t read theres YouTube videos for learning a new language-- just because you haven’t learned a 2nd language, I don’t believe that means you don’t know how to learn.

                There’s little kids who are bilingual and multilingual, but I wouldn’t point to them and ask a monolingual adult if they’re less willing to learn than little kid.

                And for what it’s worth, my question to you about how many languages do you speak wasn’t meant to be a jab-- I too, am monolingual.

        •  krolden   ( @krolden@lemmy.ml ) 
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          Honestly I dont care. If they can’t be bothered to RTFM then its their loss.

          I’m definitely not against giving people advice or even more sometimes but more often than not when I’m doing that its like they’re not even trying to think critially, or even just google it themselves.

            • I never advocated against asking for help, I’m just saying the majority of people who have asked for my help in the past completely ignored the documentation.

              I dont know how you brought learning disabilities into this. Its not like they would have an easier time following directions if someone is telling them what to do vs a prewritten guide with the exact same steps.

              • Thank you for the clarification, it was hard to understand when all I had to go on was ‘most people dont do it because they dont care’.

                Depends on the learning disability, really. For your example, some people may learn or understand knowledge much better when it is visual instead of auditory or vice versa. I brought it up learning disabilities because some people struggle with written material but can learn in other ways and I thought you were making statements about ‘most people’ in the world.

  • As a former computer illiterate, I certainly was stressed throughout the process of making a bootable USB drive and installing Linux Mint for the first time. Selecting whether to include multi-media codecs or not also tripped me up a bit, as I didn’t know what that meant at the time. There are good points raised here, and some deserved praise for the streamlined installers.

    As pointed out, it seems easy and straightforward after one has done it a few times. Now, the only thing that gives me grief is configuring GRUB to recognize GhostBSD, and that’s mostly because I have yet to RTFM.

  • I can bang out a Linux install in ten minutes on a VM, with the mainstream workstation/server distros. In fact, that what I do if I need a throwaway Linux instance for testing anything, no premade VM images, direct installation from a local ISO. Windows installation is and has always been supremely annoying to do in comparison, especially now that Cortana talks at you during setup.

  • To the point of “Our installers are just better”, I would put a “depend of what installer you are talking about and your desired setup”.

    I was going to try Manjaro and install it on my gaming PC (which was using NixOS previously). The problem is that on Calamares, I was not able to find a way to mount my other encrypted drives besides root. This was disappointing, because I know I could do that on the Fedora installation (which uses Anaconda), for example.

    But coming back to the topic, the fear of installing a distro comes to the fact of not knowing what you are doing and screwing up your data. This is why you need to be focused on what you are doing at that moment. And also, some guided help would be great (I used to do that with friends at the Uni).

  • I’ve installed more than 15 different OSes more than 100 times. The OS which I typically recommend, Trisquel KDE, is incredibly easy to install. It’s somewhat difficult to use however. If you want something extremely simple even for use, go for Kubuntu.