Marnen Laibow-Koser (marnen) wrote,
Marnen Laibow-Koser

Can I get rid of proprietary software yet?

I've long since stopped using virtually all commercial software on my computer; there's so much good open-source stuff out there that I don't really feel like I need to spend money for software anymore (if anyone wants a list of what I use, let me know and I'll put one together). What isn't open-source is at least free as in beer (e.g. SublimeText and Chrome). But I still use Mac OS X. Why? Well, because it's very good. It gives me a full BSD Unix environment, with a GUI on top that was designed by people who actually care about making usable GUIs. I've never that much liked any of the Linux GUIs I've tried.

But I don't like some of the changes Apple is making in Mavericks, notably the fact that I understand contacts will only sync from my iPhone if I use iCloud (please correct me if I'm wrong about this). I already use and love Google Drive; I don't need an iCloud account too, do I?

So in looking around to see about current open-source GUIs, I came across Pear OS, which looks like a wonderful Mac-like desktop environment for Linux. Unfortunately, it was taken away recently (how can an open-source project be taken away, anyway?!?), but there's also Elementary OS Luna, which looks great.

In order to test this out, my plan is to install Elementary OS in a guest VM on my Mac. Then I'll see how much I can do without switching out of the VM, and how much I like the user experience. If I like it, I'll probably reformat my Mac hard drive to boot Elementary OS, with Mac OS X in a VM.

I'll try to work with Elementary OS for a month or so at least, and I'll attempt to blog about my experiences here (though I'm notoriously bad at keeping blogs up to date…). Watch this space!

Tags: elementary os, linux

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