I attended a meeting yesterday where data and presenting it were discussed. I mentioned that one could do a better job with a spreadsheet application than paper and pencil… A question arose about which application to use and M$’s office suite was mentioned. I mentioned GNUmeric, which does a fine job and is Free and $Free.
As the meeting was winding up a lady sitting across the table asked for some advice about what to do with her PC that came with Vista. She said she didn’t like it (slowing down and gathering malware mostly) and had learned that other versions of that other OS that were available had similar handicaps. 😉 She is a completely non-geek who mostly used her machine for browsing the web. I suggested she visit http://www.debian.org/ and http://goodbye-microsoft.com after backing up any files she wished to save. She does not have a teenager around who can help her through the crunchy steps but she can bring her notebook to our next meeting… Stay tuned… I will attempt to bring a distro of Debian GNU/Linux on a thumb drive.
I think this demonstrates a real shift in mindshare in the public, that acceptance of M$’s offering is now questioned rather than accepted as the default. It can’t be long before GNU/Linux is offered on retail shelves everywhere. I think Vista opened many minds to bigger thoughts.