Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
Ark Linux is a distribution developed primarily for new Linux users, although its developers say experienced users should find it powerful enough to use as well. I've tested it before and found the later claim a bit overstated. Would version 2008.1, released this month, be a change for the better? Although it was stable and included some handy software, hardware support in the latest release is lacking, and the distro's security philosophy a contradiction in terms.
Ark developers call it their "security system," but lack-of-security system would be more accurate. When you install the operating system, no password is set for the default user "arklinux" or root. The idea is to allow the user to execute some common administrative tasks, such as installing or removing software and configuring the network, through graphical tools without having root privileges or even at least providing a user password. This doesn't seem too bad unless you further discover that although the default arklinux user cannot use su to become root through a console emulator, it can su to root at the terminal. In addition, a root console emulator that doesn't require a password is available in the menu, which gives anyone with access to your computer free rein.
Of course, users could make a new user with a password or set a password for the default arklinux user. You can also set one for root, but that doesn't disable the passwordless terminal or menu terminal emulator. Ark's security system might make things easier for new users, but it does them a great disservice. One of the fundamental principles of Linux is the built-in file permission access rights, and this open system circumvents it completely. Mind you, Ark has a different opinion.