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Linux Creator Loves MacBook Air
Low end mac ^ | April 27th, 2012 | Charles Moore and Dan Knight

Posted on 06/16/2012 4:35:28 AM PDT by Halfmanhalfamazing

In a lengthy email interview with TechCrunch's Scott Merrill, Linux creator Linus Torvalds allows that he's a bit baffled at how nobody else seems to have done what Apple did with the MacBook Air - even several years after the Air's first release.

Torvalds pronounces the Air "special" and "ahead of its time", elaborating that he wants his office to be quiet, with the loudest thing in the room the occasional purring of the cat, and that when he travels, he wants to travel light, contending that a notebook weighing more than a kilo (2.2 lb.) is less than ideal, but at least his 11.6" MacBook Air comes very close to the magical 1 kg limit.

Torvalds attributes Apple's hardware success to focus, noting that Apple has rather few SKUs compared to most big computer manufacturers, and this allows the limited variety of machines Apple does build to be better than average - a kind of focus that takes guts. He says he's not an Apple fan, because he thinks they've done some really bad things, but that he has to give them credit for not just having good designers, but the guts to go with it, adding that Steve Jobs clearly had a lot to do with that.

The Linuxmeister expects the MacBook Air form factor will be taken for granted in a few years. His love for thin-and-light notebooks long predates the MacBook Air, and it's not like Apple made up the concept, Apple just executed it well. We could say the same of the iPod, the smartphone, and the iPad.


TOPICS: Computers/Internet
KEYWORDS: air; linux; macbook; macbookair; torvalds
http://techcrunch.com/2012/04/19/an-interview-with-millenium-technology-prize-finalist-linus-torvalds/
1 posted on 06/16/2012 4:35:46 AM PDT by Halfmanhalfamazing
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To: Swordmaker; ShadowAce

pings


2 posted on 06/16/2012 4:37:45 AM PDT by Halfmanhalfamazing ( Media doesn't report, It advertises. So that last advertisement you just read, what was it worth?)
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing

Expensive, and underpowered. It’s like asking why doesn’t everyone drive a Vespa.


3 posted on 06/16/2012 4:46:17 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing

Has he never seen an Android tablet?


4 posted on 06/16/2012 5:24:46 AM PDT by bigbob
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing
Another gushing review from the Mac fanbois.

PC users can have their pick from a wide range of models in the Ultrabook category including the UX21 from Asus and they are very competitive with the Air.

5 posted on 06/16/2012 5:50:28 AM PDT by johncatl (...governs least, governs best.)
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To: johncatl

There is NO QUESTION that Apple hardware is absolutely first class. If you’ve repaired laptops (I have, and both of us lived to tell the tale - those screws and connectors are mighty small and delicate), there is simply no comparison between the quality of an HP and Apple laptop.

My only problem with Apple hardware is that it is WAY overpriced, and some of the smaller Apple products are not really built to be easily repaired.

If money wasn’t an issue, Windows users would buy Apple laptops and reformat the disks.


6 posted on 06/16/2012 6:04:03 AM PDT by The Antiyuppie ("When small men cast long shadows, then it is very late in the day.")
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To: johncatl

My, my. Linus Torvalds is now a Mac fanboi, according to you, lol?

Apple designs and builds very well executed, beautiful hardware, and have made very few missteps along the way.

Same with the OS that comes with the hardware, imho, but you can certainly install Linux on a Mac and enjoy just the superior hardware if you want.


7 posted on 06/16/2012 6:13:50 AM PDT by RegulatorCountry
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To: The Antiyuppie

> and reformat the disks.

Thereby immediately voiding their warranty and perhaps some other arcane Apple usage restrictions.


8 posted on 06/16/2012 6:17:23 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: JCBreckenridge
Expensive, and underpowered

Linus has money, and he probably has a server-class machine at home that his MacBook can connect to. He probably treats his MacBook as a large-screen Kindle.

9 posted on 06/16/2012 6:52:07 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (If I can't be persuasive, I at least hope to be fun.)
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To: Westbrook
Thereby immediately voiding their warranty and perhaps some other arcane Apple usage restrictions.
I think you're confusing Apple with Newegg, with a Lenovo laptop running Windows. LINK
10 posted on 06/16/2012 6:57:21 AM PDT by Johnny B.
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To: Johnny B.
FYI, not only does Apple allow people to install alternative operating systems on their Macs, they even provide the tool, called BootCamp, specifically to install Windows.

I use a MacBook Air as my primary machine. It's more than fast enough for everything I do (mainly software development), it's very portable, very solid (no worries about it warping if I pick it up by one edge), and it allows me to "legally" run every operating system I might need to use.

Sure, it's more expensive (but not so much when compared to other laptops with the same features/specs), but so are Snap-On tools compared to Chinese junk they sell at Harbor Freight.

11 posted on 06/16/2012 7:04:16 AM PDT by Johnny B.
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing

Linus is right. I have one, and there is nothing else on the market to compare.

Until you’ve owned a Mac laptop, you don’t really appreciate the quality difference in the hardware. It’s night and day.


12 posted on 06/16/2012 7:08:52 AM PDT by B Knotts (Just another Tenther)
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To: B Knotts

I have the 11 inch Air. Enjoy it thoroughly. No complaints. Except of course, $$.


13 posted on 06/16/2012 7:53:45 AM PDT by donozark (Rainbow Herbicides: Better living through modern chemistry...)
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing

I have an Acer netbook dual-booting Windows 7 Pro and Linux Mint 12 that pretty much has all the advantages that Linus is talking about. I bought a nine-cell battery for it that gives me over 8 hours of uptime.


14 posted on 06/16/2012 8:24:14 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Government is the religion of the sociopath.)
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To: The Antiyuppie
My only problem with Apple hardware is that it is WAY overpriced

It's a product made for the "5 percenters", and most people don't have the kind of dough that Apple products cost.

Quality might be there, but, that same quality can be found with other makes, for less money, especially when the components inside, aren't really superior to what the other OEMs use, especially the CPUs, which all come from Intel for Macs.
15 posted on 06/16/2012 8:25:27 AM PDT by adorno
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To: donozark

Me, too. The 11-inch is a great tool for me, as I haul it around all day at client sites.


16 posted on 06/16/2012 8:28:45 AM PDT by B Knotts (Just another Tenther)
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To: Johnny B.

Update: Newegg tells us that, oops, this was all a terrible mistake.

http://consumerist.com/2012/06/newegg-no-well-totally-take-returns-after-you-install-linux.html

Apple will not take returns unless the system is returned in its original condition with its original OS.

If your Apple is fast enough, you can run Linux as a VM guest in Apple’s Boot Camp.

Fair enough.


17 posted on 06/16/2012 9:53:53 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: Westbrook

Just to be clear: Boot Camp is not used for virtualization. It is used for dual-booting. So, you can make part or all of your hard drive a Windows partition and boot in to Windows natively.

There are also several virtualization systems for the Mac. I happen to use VMware (mainly because I’ve been using it almost 10 years and am comfortable with it) to run Windows 7 and Linux VMs. It works great,


18 posted on 06/16/2012 10:24:52 AM PDT by Johnny B.
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To: johncatl
PC users can have their pick from a wide range of models in the Ultrabook category
Of course, there wouldn't be a "ultrabook" category of Windows-based PCs if there hadn't been the MacBook Air 4 years ago. It's nice to see the Windows world finally catching up.
19 posted on 06/16/2012 10:36:59 AM PDT by Johnny B.
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To: Johnny B.

> Boot Camp is not used for virtualization. It is used for
> dual-booting.

Ah. I was ignorant of this fact. Thanks for the clarification.

> I happen to use VMware

I use KVM on my Linux native boxes, but I use VirtualBox on my laptop. VBox has a “seamless mode” where the guest and host desktops are integrated. Very, very nice.


20 posted on 06/16/2012 11:41:16 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: Halfmanhalfamazing

For those concerned with the form factor, size, and weight, and that’s a perfectly legitimate concern, my Apple sources inform me that Apple is about to come out with smaller and yet very powerful computers that will exclude the keyboard and have something like a virtual keyboard on the touch sensitive screen itself. Like, WOW! man.


21 posted on 06/16/2012 11:49:14 AM PDT by Revolting cat! (Subvert the dominant paradise!)
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To: The Antiyuppie
I too have repaired laptops and lived to tell the tale. Making a blanket statement about HP laptops in general seems to be overly simplistic, especially in light of the range of models. The Envy and Elitebook models are very different from the low end consumer models in parts and quality.

With the built-in Mac ROM it would be better to install VMware and create a virtual machine to run Windows on the Mac. I've done it for many customers and you can have the best of both worlds on one machine.

I agree that the Macs have high build quality and very good parts selection as well as a lot of attention to design. That same design can make them difficult to repair and causes some issues like the swelling batteries disabling the trackpad and keyboard that happened a couple of years ago

Asus, Sager (made by Compal) and others are easily the equal of the Mac in parts and performance and have a broader selection as well.

The Air was a unique and innovative design and Apple gets high marks for it. It took Intel to create a reference design for the Ultrabooks to get the PC market moving in this category.

I merely pointed out the options available and, as usual, the Mac fanbois responded as expected.

22 posted on 06/16/2012 5:01:50 PM PDT by johncatl (...governs least, governs best.)
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To: The Antiyuppie

http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9227976/Apple_s_MacBook_Air_price_cuts_make_it_tougher_on_Windows_ultrabook_makers?taxonomyId=12

This would bring the air down to 999 dollars. My current laptop cost me 199 dollars, has 2 gigs of memory, 120 gigs storage, has access to a DVD and a CD/DVD burner, etc.

Is the alleged ‘quality’ worth paying 5x for a more robust laptop? If this laptop lasts 3 years, the macbook would have to last 15... That’s not happening.


23 posted on 06/17/2012 2:21:14 AM PDT by JCBreckenridge (Texas, Texas, Whisky)
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To: rdb3; Calvinist_Dark_Lord; Salo; JosephW; Only1choice____Freedom; amigatec; stylin_geek; ...

24 posted on 06/18/2012 4:51:44 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: rdb3; Calvinist_Dark_Lord; Salo; JosephW; Only1choice____Freedom; amigatec; stylin_geek; ...

25 posted on 06/18/2012 4:52:45 AM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: johncatl
Another gushing review from the Mac fanbois.

Congratulations! Only five posts before the first insult of people who use Apple products! With just a little a little more effort, you might manage to make it to the coveted top three spot.

26 posted on 06/18/2012 8:18:40 AM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: Johnny B.; Westbrook
>> Boot Camp is not used for virtualization. It is used for dual-booting.

> Ah. I was ignorant of this fact. Thanks for the clarification.

Strictly speaking, recent releases of VMware Fusion (the virtualization software for the Mac) do support use of the Bootcamp partition as a VM while running OS-X out of the other partition. However, in my experience, it is unwise to switch back and forth a lot between a) truly booting from the Bootcamp'ed Windows partition, and b) using it as a VM. Something about the driver mode switching seemed to give me trouble (occasional BSODs during boot). These days I have a separate Windows VM for use under OS-X, and reserve the on-the-metal Bootcamp copy for when I need the full memory of the MacBook for a Windows task.

I've used VMware extensively at work and home since around 2005 (hosting on ESX, OS-X, Windows, Linux) and I don't think I was doing something wrong. But my last adventure doing that was a few years ago and it may be that they've fixed the issues in more recent releases since the last time I tried.

>> I happen to use VMware

> I use KVM on my Linux native boxes, but I use VirtualBox on my laptop. VBox has a “seamless mode” where the guest and host desktops are integrated. Very, very nice.

That sounds like it might be similar to VMware's "Unity" mode where VM'ed applications appear individually as-needed on the OS-X desktop, can be minimized to the Dock, etc.

Johnny B.: Your description of how you use your MacBook sounds identical to how I use mine. It's a rockin' good platform if you want to be able to run everything, and if you have enough memory, to run it concurrently as well.

27 posted on 06/18/2012 8:21:44 AM PDT by dayglored (Listen, strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government!)
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To: zeugma
"Another gushing review from the Mac fanbois."

Congratulations! Only five posts before the first insult of people who use Apple products! With just a little a little more effort, you might manage to make it to the coveted top three spot.

seattle-rex-vs-apple-the-verdict-is-in

"As far as I can tell," says Seattle Rex, "Apple spent all of this time and money, solely to be a bully," asserting that "Apple has become the Orwellian nightmare that it warned us about some 30 years ago. A huge vehicle of sameness backed by legions of newthink practitioners, gleefully cheering as Big Bully annihilates one thoughtcriminal after another."

Does this move me up?

28 posted on 06/21/2012 4:04:21 AM PDT by johncatl (...governs least, governs best.)
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To: B Knotts

You are correct. Never understood Mac until I owned one. It is a better machine.


29 posted on 06/21/2012 4:20:46 AM PDT by gortklattu (God knows who is best, everybody else is making guesses - Tony Snow)
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To: johncatl
"As far as I can tell," says Seattle Rex, "Apple spent all of this time and money, solely to be a bully," asserting that "Apple has become the Orwellian nightmare that it warned us about some 30 years ago. A huge vehicle of sameness backed by legions of newthink practitioners, gleefully cheering as Big Bully annihilates one thoughtcriminal after another."

Does this move me up?

No. You need to try harder and react faster. The above is a slam on the company (fair game), not the users (against FR policy regarding personal insults). The personal attacks on these threads aren't nearly as bad as they once were, but I'm trying to do my bit to see that they don't come to that.

i.e., saying "product Z is gay", is lot different than saying that "people who use product Z are gay".

Nice try though. HAND!

30 posted on 06/21/2012 1:06:09 PM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: dayglored
Strictly speaking, recent releases of VMware Fusion (the virtualization software for the Mac) do support use of the Bootcamp partition as a VM while running OS-X out of the other partition.

Hand not seen that you could do that. (Probably since I don't have or use a Mac) That's a cool feature. I would imagine you could invoke "unity' as well?

31 posted on 06/21/2012 1:10:15 PM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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To: zeugma
> Hand not seen that you could do that. (Probably since I don't have or use a Mac) That's a cool feature. I would imagine you could invoke "unity' as well?

I would imagine the same, yeah. BTW, the "unity" feature has one curious characteristic, which you get used to but is a little odd at first.

The (Windows) VM is running, and has a desktop and all that, but the desktop is by default not rendered. Only the unity application windows that that would be displayed on the Windows desktop are rendered onto the Mac desktop. All well... until you pick up one of the Windows unity windows and move it around on the Mac desktop. It works, but the rendering algorithm timing on the Mac is necessarily not identical to the timing on the Windows VM. As a result you sometimes can glimpse a little of the Windows desktop background trailing behind the moving unity window. It's subtle, and strictly transient, but it's there.

For those who partook of certain mind-altering substances in long-distant decades, it's faintly reminiscent of the after-image "trails" that would follow one's waving hand or a moving vehicle. Trippy, man.... :)

32 posted on 06/21/2012 7:01:43 PM PDT by dayglored (Listen, strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government!)
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To: dayglored
For those who partook of certain mind-altering substances in long-distant decades, it's faintly reminiscent of the after-image "trails" that would follow one's waving hand or a moving vehicle. Trippy, man.... :)

LOL. Like, wow man.

33 posted on 06/21/2012 9:19:04 PM PDT by zeugma (Those of us who work for a living are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.)
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