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Re: CSS is doomed (10 years per version ?!?)

From: Orion Adrian <orion.adrian@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 30 Jun 2005 22:15:42 -0400
Message-ID: <abd6c8010506301915f9b046d@mail.gmail.com>
To: www-style@w3.org

> I understand that sentiment Orion.  I really do.  I can see how my
> propagation of open source could be seen as an end instead of a means.
> However I use the software I speak of every day.  I have to deal with MS
> products on a regular basis as well, so I'm exposed there as well.  I pick
> open source products because they perform.  They do what my
> customers/co-workers need and I continue to implement them.  You can sit
> around and tell me that you've not used the products but that they can't be
> as good as MS products.  But that's just an opinion... it's a value based
> on half an equation.  PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, go give them a try before you
> tell me that MS's products are inherently better.  That's really all I have
> to say.

I'm going to stop the general argument here since this could rapidly
get into a religious war. If you want to continue the discussion, we
can take it off topic, but I feel this last bit deserved some
explanation.

Microsoft products aren't superior because they are better
technically. At least that wasn't my argument and it would be a hard
argument to quantify since you would have to add value to each
competing point. All I was trying to say is that a user will often
evaluate the Microsoft product as better because

1) The Microsoft brand name carries with it trust to the general
community, especially the community that doesn't read CNet. People who
visit MTV for instance. Microsoft is doing a better and better job of
hiding updates so the risk factor isn't so much in people's faces.

2) Microsoft products work well with other Microsoft products. Since
few other companies, if any, offer a cohesive, complete solution, I
believe people will flock to the seemless solution.

3) Microsoft products have a history. I have found that people when
evaluation new purchases outside their normal company are apt more to
buy from a company they have heard a lot about. Most users still
haven't heard of Linux. Red Hat maybe, but even then it's rare. This
also factors into trust.

4) Microsoft products come in nice looking boxes. Users can tell that
somebody paid someone to come up with a professional looking box.
Companies that look professional, make peopel trust them. Again, trust
is the primary issue.

5) Microsoft can spoon-feed solutions to clients. "Here you like this
product, come look at our other products, all from a company you
trust."

Given that you're a bright person, I'm going to assume now that you
know I'm talking about trust. Whether or not Microsoft deserves that
trust isn't at issue here. I'm talking about the reality of the
average user. They don't know Linux and they certainly don't know all
the little software groups that created all the little pieces of
software out there that they are expected to use.

When I work in Linux, which I have from time to time, I don't trust
anything. I have no idea about the quality of the software that I just
downloaded. Why? Because of the two forms of communications that form
trust, Linux hasn't accomplished either one.

Linux doesn't really advertise and Linux's word-of-mouth campaign is
limited to locations that only Linux people go to.

Your word-of-mouth is why people you know are converting. They trust
you; trust is transitive that way. However, that isn't mainstream by
any stretch of the imagination.

Fix the trust issue (by branding and word-of-mouth) and open source
might have a shot.

Orion Adrian
Received on Friday, 1 July 2005 02:15:46 GMT

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