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Saturday, November 8th, 2008, 10:59 am

A Case for Unbundling

A computer needs to be as simple to use as an appliance. Whenever you switch it on, it enters a mode of full operation.

When you install software on it, everything should be set up completely, without a hitch.

Failing to achieve a simple installation, it’s clear that something is amiss.

PCs should be sold separately from software. If the software is trivial to install, then it can be offered as an option alongside hardware. It only takes minutes to install from a CD-ROM.

A good set of software can also include customised images and plenty of software of interest, such as an office suite.

Why can’t PCs be sold without an operating system? Because, as Microsoft wishfully argues, customers would struggle to install the operating system.

So make it easier.

Windows will continue to be a hard-to-install mess as long as it provides this argument that Joe Sixpack can’t have it installed.

In other words, as long as Windows is bad, it’s more likely to be bundled, without the offering of choice.

Apple and its separate universe of ‘xenophobic’ hardware and software is another matter altogether.

Should houses also be built with furniture bolted in? Or restaurant serve just one meal because choice is bad and cooking is too complicated?

Being a norm does not make anything right or acceptable.

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4 Responses to “A Case for Unbundling”

  1. wispygalaxy Says:

    Ubuntu is easy to install, contrary to what the naysayers believe. It was fast and simple. I didn’t go hunting all over the place for drivers. It was a blast to use, too. I do not like it when an operating system comes bundled with apps I don’t want.

    Speaking of hardware, I promise not to buy a computer just because it looks “pretty”. Before I used Linux, I got a laptop and didn’t do my research. I didn’t know much about specs, but I liked the shiny gray keyboard! After using Linux, I learned so much about computers that I now make smart choices when it comes to hardware. As a result, I won’t choose Linux-unfriendly hardware. Software will be easier to install. :)

  2. Roy Schestowitz Says:

    Choice of hardware in migration can be a one-time pain. Then hardware is chosen to fit the new software set.

  3. wispygalaxy Says:

    Cool, Roy! I almost got an HP laptop; I wish I did. I tested out the Ubuntu Live CD on it, and everything went smoothly.

  4. Roy Schestowitz Says:

    Vista is loathed even by Microsoft employees, so there are interesting times ahead for unbundling laws.

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