I'll call a spade a spade here.
I've been carrying around this 'tude for a long time, but it's really been bubbling in my brain since yesterday when I read a comment on my post about Ubuntu not really mattering that much now.
Commenters such as that guy, and others, like to hurl back a bunch of initials, acronyms and jargon to describe why their work- and sometimes just benevolent mischief- is so important.
Yes, but to whom?
In that vein, let me expound on my elitist charge.
For starters, let's take cellphone or PDA users.
The vast majority of them simply want to make calls, text, maybe snap and send a picture, maybe email, IM or even Twitter.
When it comes to unsactioned hacks, third party apps, and devices that can- to quote "The Dukes of Hazard," do "a little bit more than the law will allow," most users could give a rip.
Let me ask you a question. Stop 100 cellphone users and ask them, "what's Ubuntu?" Maybe 1 in 100 would know.
Truth is, the other 99 don't need to know, because they carry around their cell to do the basic tasks their carrier and OEM have determined they need, and have taken the time to install on those devices. And busy with everything from saving up for their kid's college to staying ahead of the mortgage crunch, one of the last things they could give a poop about are some cool new hacks for their mobile.
The same general principle exists with notebooks and PCs, especially on the consumer (as opposed to enterprise) side. Ubuntu-powered Dell? Well that's OK, but do you think even 10% of consumers care? In the read world, it is more like give me Microsoft Office, Outlook Express, maybe iTunes, some games. Don't give me hacks or alphabet soup utilities, remedies or solutions.
Back again to my elitist charge.
To many of you rogue open source cultists, hackers and coders will look at the 1 in 100 opine I have constructed and say either or:
The other 99% will love all this new stuff when it is made available to them, or;
The other 99% are idiots, because they haven't heard of, or don't "get" the technologically transformative import of what we digerati are working on.
Well, dude, they don't get it because they have lives, and your alphabet soup of a solution doesn't matter to them.
A final thought. There's a lot in common between the reality distortion field too many rogue technological elitists live in and the reality distortion field of Ron Paul fans.
Just as the rogue coders, hackers and Open Source cultists overlook the daily concerns of the common folk, Ron Paul fans often overlook the fact that his platform professes little if any need to help common folk who are struggling to, say, avoid foreclosure.
Oh, but it is the common person's fault they are about to be foreclosed on.
Oh, but it is the common person's fault they don't realize that we rogue hackers, coders and open source cultists are trying to make their devices- and lives- better.
Common thread: lack of feel for the common person, and lack of respect for their life's priorities.