Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Introducing Ubuntu: Desktop Linux book review

Filed under
Reviews

Ah, yet another book about Ubuntu Linux. Is there no reprieve from the bombardment of Ubuntu and beginner Linux books (and Ubuntu for beginners books)? For Introducing Ubuntu: Desktop Linux to impress me, it had to offer something new and unique, and it had to successfully address the reality of introducing a new operating system to a computer user. I'm impressed with the scope of the book's coverage on frequently encountered Linux problems, but I don't think this book was as good as it could have been.

Introducing Ubuntu: Desktop Linux's language is irritatingly long-winded (I really hate the "the author is your best pal" colloquial narrative -- it makes me feel like I'm being talked down to), and the subject matter is mired in too-deep explanations of trivial details, such as a breakdown of what every button on the OpenOffice.org Writer button bar does. Any information that can be obtained by mousing over an item and reading its tooltip is unnecessary in a book like this. Essentially, over-explanation of obvious functions implies either that the software is not user-friendly enough to be self-explanatory, in which case it is not suitable for non-technical people (which appears to be the book's target market); or that readers are too stupid to read tooltips and figure out obvious functions of desktop software that should already be familiar to them as Windows or Mac users, which is insulting. So the fact of this book's confused focus and target market is evident not only in the subject matter, but also in the style of the writing.

Editing-wise, Introducing Ubuntu: Desktop Linux seems to be quite sound. I did not discover any of the stupid mistakes that reduce the authority and effectiveness of so many other technology books these days. In terms of layout and construction, this book is in the top tier.

Putting the book to the test




More in Tux Machines

Top 4 CDN services for hosting open source libraries

A CDN, or content delivery network, is a network of strategically placed servers located around the world used for the purpose of delivering files faster to users. A traditional CDN will allow you to accelerate your website's images, CSS files, JS files, and any other piece of static content. This allows website owners to accelerate all of their own content as well as provide them with additional features and configuration options. These premium services typically require payment based on the amount of bandwidth a project uses. Read more

Bash Bunny: Big hacks come in tiny packages

Bash Bunny is a Debian Linux computer with a USB interface designed specifically to execute payloads when plugged into a target computer. It can be used against Windows, MacOS, Linux, Unix, and Android computing devices. It features a multicolor RGB LED that indicates various statuses and a three-position selector switch: Two of the positions are used to launch payloads, while the third makes Bash Bunny appear to be a regular USB storage device for copying and modifying files. Read more

openSUSE Leap's New Versioning Scheme Finally Syncs with SUSE Linux Enterprise

openSUSE Board Chairman Richard Brown informed the community about a major version number change for upcoming releases of the openSUSE Leap operating system. As some of you might know already, openSUSE Leap 42.2 is the current stable release of the GNU/Linux distribution based on the sources of the commercial SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLE) operating system designed for enterprises, and the next scheduled release is openSUSE Leap 42.3, which is currently in development. Read more

Leftovers: OSS

  • Top 4 CDN services for hosting open source libraries
    A CDN, or content delivery network, is a network of strategically placed servers located around the world used for the purpose of delivering files faster to users. A traditional CDN will allow you to accelerate your website's images, CSS files, JS files, and any other piece of static content. This allows website owners to accelerate all of their own content as well as provide them with additional features and configuration options. These premium services typically require payment based on the amount of bandwidth a project uses. However, if your project doesn't justify the cost of implementing a traditional CDN, the use of an open source CDN may be more suitable. Typically, these types of CDNs allow you to link to popular web-based libraries (CSS/JS frameworks, for example), which are then delivered to your web visitors from the free CDN's servers. Although CDN services for open source libraries do not allow you to upload your own content to their servers, they can help you accelerate libraries globally and improve your website's redundancy.
  • Users stand up, speak out, and deliver data on OpenStack growth
    Last week, the OpenStack Foundation announced the results of its ninth user survey. OpenStack users responded in record-breaking numbers to participate, and their voices as revealed in the data tell the real story of OpenStack. The OpenStack community is growing, thriving with new users, deployments, code contributions, and collaborations, all on the rise. User diversity is expanding across geographies and organizational sizes. And OpenStack's ability to integrate with innovative technologies is paving the way for advancements not even dreamed of just five years ago.
  • How to get started learning to program