[b-hebrew] Hebrew keyboard & font size
dwashbur at nyx.net
Thu Jan 19 17:16:33 EST 2006
On Thursday 19 January 2006 13:22, Peter Kirk wrote:
> On 19/01/2006 19:13, Dave Washburn wrote:
> > ...
> >The one real caveat about Linux: it will force you to know something about
> > how your computer works. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.
> This was the main point I was trying to make. If you run Linux you can't
> just rely on the experts to come and fix a problem for you, you have to
> fix it yourself, even if you can find online help from others. In some
> ways I wish everyone was a computer expert, but many people just don't
> have the time or ability for this, and at the moment Linux cannot be
> recommended for them - at least if they are working with cutting edge
> technology like display of Hebrew.
Actually, major advances have been made in getting Linux more user-friendly
over the past several years. One need not be a "computer expert," just have
an idea what a file is, what a folder is, and some basic stuff like that: how
to make changes to your display and what happens when you do, what steps to
take to install a font and why, all stuff that the average end user can
benefit from knowing. Back in the DOS days, your basic computer user knew
some of these things, but since the advent of Windows, Microsoft has been
continuously "dumbing down" the end user, putting more and more layers
between the user and the machine, which of course makes the user more and
more dependent on the "experts." Even though I made my living for a long
time being one of these, I don't consider this a good thing. It's the
equivalent of owning a car, but having to go to a mechanic every time you
need to check the oil. The more a user knows about the basic operation of
that machine, the more empowered s/he is to get the most out of it without
some corporate clown dictating how. I do consider that a good thing, and
right now Linux is a reasonable and user-enabling vehicle toward that end.
And unless one is either creating fonts or reinventing the wheel, I hardly
think display of Hebrew is "cutting edge technology." It's been around for a
while; the major new factor is how it's done, i.e. Unicode vs. replacement
fonts. But if a user has even a very basic understanding of how such things
are done, it's going to make the learning curve for the new method much
easier to deal with.
"Maybe I'll trade it for a new hat."
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