[CS-FSLUG] Macs and Linux use in CD Vol 80 - Issue 11

EnzoAeneas enzoaeneas at gmail.com
Mon Nov 1 11:27:04 CDT 2010

Thank you for the reference to Kardia - I had never heard of this project.
Our trustees would have to manage their work in separate systems that could
not talk to each other.

On Sun, Oct 31, 2010 at 8:16 PM, Josiah Ritchie <josiah at ritchietribe.net>wrote:

> For one I am deeply saddened every time I see not-for-profit groups, and
>> churches in particular, flushing donations down the tube to Redmond and
>> Cupertino. Why or why do not seminaries not lead the way out of the
>> "Windows wilderness"?
> I entirely agree. As you reference, the simple fact is the software
> most desirable in running a mission agency is not available under linux.
> Decent tools to help manage donations and finances start in the $10,000
> range for small offices. There are groups who are working on this; see
> Centrallix and Kardia on sourceforge. These require more resources
> (especially human) to assist in getting that to a point that it can be more
> broadly used. If you have the ability, please help them.
> Rather than shipping costly Apple hardware to assorted mission fields
>> would it not be better to develop software that could freely be shared
>> and run on whatever hardware is available in the local country. As for
>> North America, could not non-profit dollars be put to better use than
>> buying shiny Apple devices?
> I entirely agree again, but what we have is another case of the software
> not being up to par. My last foray into the world of video editing under
> Linux was well behind the strengths that iMovie brings. That part of FOSS
> has grown a lot over the last few years and is becoming better, but it still
> isn't great like iMovie. Missionaries are using video to communicate far
> more frequently because our culture appreciates that. They are also looking
> for the ability to quickly make things look good. They have limited time and
> the Mac focuses on putting tools in your hands with very well styled
> templates that are attractive and updated with each new release of the
> software. The FOSS world typically ignores that. Design takes either a lot
> of money or a lot of time (or for people like me, just money because it
> doesn't matter how long I try). In the end, you save a lot of either money
> or time on design when you choose Mac as a missionary. If the FOSS world
> (Scribus, Open Office, Gimp, PiTiVi and all the rest) focused on design the
> way Apple does (including usability) and were able to provide that level of
> value, or if someone just provided well integrated templates for $$ to go
> alongside these tools, I'd be able to more regularly recommend them, but the
> reality is a missionary's communication is fighting for eyeballs and if you
> design looks old and tired, it's hard to get people to pay attention to what
> they've written.
> In short, the failure of FOSS to meet the needs of missionaries (and
> business professionals) over what Apple offers is offering is the fault of
> the individual projects and an unfortunate financial reality that the
> missionaries must deal with. I'd encourage you not to look down upon those
> who are left having to make daily decisions about how to use their time and
> money to accomplish the call God has put on their lives. I could not in
> good conscience, despite my desire to do so, recommend Linux in the majority
> of situations simply because the time expended in putting these tools
> together in a workable and beautiful fashion is huge and ends up taking away
> from the missionaries time to spend on what God has called them to do.
> So I think the challenge then turns back on us as Christians with abilities
> in IT. I know that Centrallix is looking to get a deb package built for
> their software. I've spent many hours trying to make it work, but it is
> beyond my skill. Someone who can handle a more complicated deb build could
> be very useful. They also have plenty of other opportunities for people to
> get involved in making this tools more flexible to meet the needs. I've
> heard a lot in relation to JavaScript lately. I think they're making a move
> to jquery. Join the mailing list and you'll see opportunities. If your
> skills are in design, jump in and help put together easily usable templates.
> If you have skills in usability, see if you can't encourage projects of
> interest for missionaries in that direction. If you are a good teacher, jump
> in with screencasts and tutorials that help someone go from no Linux skills
> to being able to make use of these tools in ways that allow them to
> communicate with support teams in a way that makes them "look" good. Don't
> think lowly of the screencast's strength. The reality is many churches and
> missionaries are far from the skills needed and must get these somehow.
> Everything else can be in place, but if some form of support isn't available
> then it's all pointless.
> Until we can decisively solve these issues, Windows is going to rule the
> mission agency office and Apple will continue to take over the missionary
> laptop market. The expenses associated with these decisions will continue to
> drain money from other areas. Meanwhile, Linux will remain a curiosity in
> the server closet, relegated to the responsibility of file serving and web
> site delivery.
> If you want to shoot me some thoughts on what skills you have to offer, I'd
> be glad to use my knowledge of the field to try to match you with someone
> who could use whatever excess of time you have to offer these skills.
> JSR/
> --
> Our Mission
> Technology and Hospitality for God's Workmen
> http://missions.ritchietribe.net
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