7days recently published an article about Valerie Singleton who created a PC for the elderly.
It was a well written, objective article until statements were made which wasn’t researched enough:
The computer runs on Linux – an operating system of such bewildering complexity to anyone outside its inner circle that trained IT experts have been known to weep in frustration at the process of installing a simple programme.
The reason? Linux has so many incarnations that software often has to be manually modified at the time of installation. That means coding. Yep, amateur programming. Scary, huh? Especially if you’re 82 and you’ve never used a computer before.
“Software” to be manually modified during installation is usually done when you set up services, such as dhcpd, sendmail and bind Let’s assume that a 82 year old will not install their own mailserver, or domain. From a Windows point of view, I doubt that many elderly will install a Windows Active Directory at home also. I would recommend Paddy Smith (the article author) not to mix up Interface and internal workings.
It’s like running a car, driving a car (the interface) is relatively easy, especially if it’s an automatic transmission. Start the car, put the transmission in “D” and push the right pedal. A car’s inner workings is a combination of electronics, air/fuel mixes, precise timed ignitions, and a lot more.
You don’t need a wrench to drive a car.
You don’t need to do coding to run an operating system.
I wish that topics highlighted in 7 Days’ articles were well researched before making statements.
In my eyes, Linux interfaces could be very easy for the young, or the elderly. On the EEE PC, Asus could get their Linux interface pretty right, I’m sure the “inner workings” were done by their IT geeks.
Leave a Reply