I have been a Mac user since 1990 and, I really want to try Linux. The free software philosphy is appealing to me. I just can't get Linux out of the gate.
1. I have a PowerBook with very little space left on it. No problem - just install on my firewire drive. Bzzt. Not without much weeping and gnashing of teeth.
2. Wireless support. I don't blame Linux for not having drivers for my Airport card but I'm not buying some dorky PCMCIA wireless card hanging out of my PB like a tumor just to try Linux either.
3. Sleep. Last time I tried Linux on my PowerBook, it would stay on when I closed the lid. Maybe that's changed (but hey - the author wasn't working with a recent release of OS X either).
4. Multiple monitors. I just want to plug in a 2nd monitor and have it work. Didn't work for me.
5. Software crippled. Couldn't play my media because I had to download everything separately. I think it's reasonable to assume I might want to play music and DVD's out of the box.
Lord knows what other issues there are but if I can't have basic hardware support out of the box what does that say about the software? I honestly don't know since I never gave Linux a chance due to issues 1-5.
If Linux could offer me a user experience like OS X (and even Windows in some cases) then I would use it in a heart beat. In my world, the above shortcomings are deal-breakers though because I would be forced to live without functionality and work around the OS instead of the OS working for me. I have a suspicion I would go back to Mac for innovation because, right now, all I see Linux doing is chasing Windows around and that's too bad. What a lousy target to chase. Hope remains vigilant that things will change.
I respect the author's article. We all have ways of working and certain expectations on how our computers should work. I think that the big 3 OSes are there for that purpose. What works for you may not work for me for different reasons and that's great. Use what works for you. Thank God there isn't only one viable choice.
Here's hoping a free desktop can offer me a great user experience someday soon.