May 08, 2008

Hello, I'm a Mac. I'm a PC. And I'm Linux.

Writing about web page

Writing about web page

"Windows, or Mac?", a question that can split a room... as long as the room contains the right people. Of course, the correct answer is "Linux"...

So, if you can hold off on the "holy war" for a second, please fill in the form, and enjoy the pretty graph (and, before you ask: no, it is not just your imagination; they really is no consistency in the configuration of the graphs...):

Operating System Preference poll

UPDATE: I've just done a couple of graphs comparing the preferences.

The first one is the number of people who said they prefer a particular operating system, given as a percentage of the total number of responses. These three figures will, of course, add up to 100%, and so can accurately be represented as a pie chart (that's one reason I wanted to add them: more pie charts...):

Percentage of respondents that prefer the Operating System

This second one shows what Operating System people prefer against which one they use:

Percentage of users that prefer the Operating System

- 12 comments by 3 or more people Not publicly viewable

[Skip to the latest comment]
  1. Voted Windows, purely because it does what I need it to do (eventually). I would far rather use Linux, if only for the security aspect, but it doesn’t accommodate my needs at the moment. At least, not yet…

    08 May 2008, 13:52

  2. Mathew Mannion

    08 May 2008, 13:53

  3. I’ve just added a couple more charts. I find it quite interesting that (at the time of writing) a greater number of people prefer Windows than prefer Mac OS X, but more Mac OS X users prefer it than Windows users prefer Windows. This is presumably down to the relatively few Mac OS X users that have taken the poll…

    09 May 2008, 01:47

  4. Sue

    What I find surprising is how good those three colours look together although I would never have thought of combining them I can’t think of a better combination. I like both but particularly the pie chart.

    10 May 2008, 10:02

  5. Lamby

    Technically, “Linux” isn’t an operating system.

    16 May 2008, 14:16

  6. You know what I mean. Anyway, “Mac OS X, Windows, or one of the many operating systems based on the Linux kernel” is a bit of a mouthful…

    16 May 2008, 18:26

  7. Lamby

    “GNU” is probably the word you are looking for.

    18 May 2008, 13:34

  8. I don’t believe so. My understanding is that GNU tends to use the Linux kernel rather than GNU Hurd, but an OS doesn’t have to have any links to GNU to use the Linux kernel…

    18 May 2008, 14:00

  9. Lamby

    Indeed, but the user-visible parts of distributions such as Debian and openSUSE is GNU rather than Linux, which is what your poll was trying to get at.

    (Yes, everybody is calling it the wrong thing, and I do not see the validity in quasi-ontological arguments along the lines “well, everyone calls it that”)

    19 May 2008, 01:50

  10. Quite possibly, but setting aside arguments for whether Linux or GNU/Linux should be the proper name I still feel that, since it’s the most widespread, people are more likely to know what I’m talking about if I use “Linux”...

    19 May 2008, 02:27

  11. James Taylor

    MacOS X for me thanks!

    22 May 2008, 16:51

  12. Mac OS X is generally OK to use but has some of the same problems as Linux in that if you want more than internet access, widgets and hassle playing HD-Movies you’ll take Windows every time.


    I love Vista, currently using Vista 64-Bit and have been using it since a few months after launch. Love it, never had any substantial problems with it (unlike Linux :@). Everything’s running fine and the only problems I’ve had of late have been involving hardware: My Raptor C (or D woooo) drive decided to die after three years in service the bastard, and I forgot to refil my system’s coolant which led to the CPU overheating and turning off.

    Compatability issues: I’ve accepted I’ll probably never get Monkey Island III to play on this rig, but MS Office works perfectly and quickly, all my other utilties and games are going well, although I do wish Developers using steam would sort themselves out and make sure titles work on launch (hello Bioshock? COD4?). And, naturally, because Windows is the most popular OS, everyone’s always making sure everything is compatible with it.

    Mac OS X – I like Mac OS X, I like Adium and I hate Microsoft for being crap with X product development. MS Office 2008 is rubbish and slow and Messenger for Mac has and always will be crap until they can sort out video conversations. Adium doesn’t cut it in this regard and I nor anyone I know has bloody used AOL (AIM) since the mid-1990s. They’ve been fiddling about with Video in Adium for quite some time, but frankly Apple should be easing the situaion.

    Safari’s OK. The new Mac Firefox is awesome (better than on Windows). It’s reasonably stable. Leopard’s a slight improvement over Tiger. Where Mac OS excels is in the specific applications. I don’t use it for anything special but my GF has been getting much use of it with Final Cut and oher photography, film and sound editing progs.

    Linux – Is now OK. Still not really fond of the GUI. It is not easy to pick up no matter what Linux geeks say. To be able to get any reasonable function out of the OS, you really have to know what you are doing and you have to be patient, and I really haven’t had that sort of patience since I was practically a baby fiddling about with BBC Basic on old Micros in the school lab and trying to bypass crappy Win ‘95 in MS DOS. I’m loving the progress made since the nineties with Windows (and Mac OS) and so Linux for me still feels like a massive step backward to the heyday of nerds in their basement coding games. Nice if you’re a programmer, not so nice if you have a life (no offence to you all).

    24 May 2008, 18:45

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