Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
In the last couple of years, I've spent much of my time observing the Linux desktop and its growing fragmentation. However, accurate figures are hard to come by, and often I can only give my impressions. That's why LinuxQuestion's Members Choice Awards for 2011 interest me so much -- they're the first confirmation that what I'm observing is actually happening.
Of course, the awards can be criticized on a number of grounds. Voters are self-selected, and, considering LinuxQuestion's role and age, probably represent reasonably experienced users; my impression is that new users may visit the site, but are less likely to hang around long enough to participate in the survey.
Still, with 627 voters, the sample is a fair size, although its unnamed margin of error must be several percent. Fortunately, you don't have to argue from a decimal or two's worth of difference to see the obvious trends in the survey.