Linux will beat Microsoft, because Microsoft builds software for techies

No, I haven't gone insane ... it was in an opinion piece by a software consultant I read (somewhat worth reading) - his main point was that Microsoft was alienating customers with their new UI's, and that if people have to change user interfaces, why not change OS's (OpenOffice.org spends a lot of effort emulating Microsoft Office's UI, and the default Linux desktop on a lot of distros looks awfully similar to Windows (on a surface level, at least). Here's a quote from the article:

When the time comes that Windows XP can no longer be pre-installed on new computers, Macs and Linux will both benefit, of course. How much? I can't wait to see. If someone has to learn a new operating system, they may as well do it on a system that's immune to most malicious software. I hear that the tech support from Apple is terrific, certainly the price on Linux can't be beat. And they can both run Open Office.

As techies, Microsoft builds software for techies. It's only natural. But, they may become irrelevant as normal people look elsewhere.

The Obama Inauguration

So, like half the other politicians, political pundits, and armchair statecraft enthusiasts on the planet (likely), I'm putting a post up about the Obama Inauguration (I haven't checked yet - why waste an opportunity to talk about something I'm completely unqualified for by doing research :-) ). A few of the people at work had CNN on at lunch, so I joined them and watched President Obama's swearing in and speech. He was obviously nervous (he fumbled twice during the swearing in, though I think the first time was the other guy's fault), though it didn't show on his face. His speech, IMHO, was good, but not great. It was eloquent, well delivered, and seemed to balance realism with inspiration fairly well, but nothing really stood out. (Well, besides the parts where my Canadian background snickered at the American-ness of parts of it - this inbuilt assumption that America is naturally a world leader, and needs to return to that state.) I think it set a good tone for his presidency, and he does look like he'll do, at the very least, a competant job, especially given the conditions he's been dealt. However, I think those who are expecting Obama to save America, and singlehandedly fix everything will be sorely disappointed. He's only human. His speech, though very applicable now, will likely not be remembered in 10 years - schoolchildren will not be memorizing it for decades to come, and, if I can measure a President by his inaugural speech (why not, this is the blogosphere), I think that while he may be what America needs now, he won't be very much noted a generation from now.