30 March 2010

Breath, think, wait, DFD

This morning when going to work I meet this neighbour (we meet once in a few months, today he was on foot, probably his wife seized the car) who works as a programmer in the police. He politely asked, for conversation sake, about my doings, which was all I needed and got fired and telling about a cool action for Document Freedom Day that will happen tomorrow.

Much to my surprise (the police, as the rest of the public administration in Romania is totally owned by Microsoft from a software use point of view), he easily understood the problem but, this time not much to my surprise, for him open document specs is RTF and OOXML is "that XML thing in the new Microsoft Office" (that's speaking of MS Office 2007 in 2010).

Speaking of documents formats, we go to PDFs (about he was not aware the specs are public) and his current intention to write a library for creating PDF files. Used with the FLOSS way of thinking my reaction was: why write a library when there are tons of them available under a Free license? and gave a few examples (OK, I don't know and don't want to know about libraries for .NET, that he is using - remember, total Microserfs). The reaction was a classic one from the Windows world: the free apps have limited functionality, you have to pay for more features. Duh!

OK, I am in the right mood for celebrating the DFD!


  1. Right now I'm in Cluj-Napoca for some months, and so far I have made mixed experiences regarding the focus on Microsoft products. One of my lectures is about computer networks, i.e. the OSI reference model etc., and in the laboratory works we only focus on the specific implementations on Microsoft Windows. But on the other hand in another lecture we were instructed on using Linux (and guess what: Fedora!) and now have to implement a PBX using Linux.

  2. hendi, I think Linux with Asterisk is a very good solution for a PBX.
    As for Cluj-Napoca, a couple of years ago me and a few other guys from the community had the opportunity to go on a trip here and keep a presentation about Fedora. At the time they used to have a cool LUG there.

  3. Don't worry about this kind of people. North America is full of them. People like the ease of use and they think Windows is the ONLY operating system that can be used on desktops. Most of them never heard of anything else and they hate black screens because they don't have the knowledge. And what's even worst is that the DO pay for everything and they think that paying is giving them a better product.

    This is driving the current IT world and there's nothing you can do about it. Just use Linux and promote it! This will help on the long run...

  4. @Bogdan: for me this was a positive experience, it helped me get in the right state of mind for today.