Grandparents? Linux? Madness!

In the ongoing effort to purge belongings before the big move, I fixed up my spare computer to give to my grandparents. I am running a secret experiment.

I put Kubuntu onto the box, in secret effort to turn my grandparents into geeks. Well not really. See, I have a theory: when all the little grandchildren come over and don’t know how to use the Window-less computer, and my grandparents have to explain it to them, it will give my grandparents confidence!

The other part of my plan is to deter other well-meaning family members from trying to bombard my grandparents, showing them “Oh you just have to do this and this and this and it’s eaaaaaaaasy,” for they will be wary of the unfamiliar and back off.

Shut up, my plan is foolproof! For serious, though, they are a clean slate as far as computers, so giving them a Linux box will make no difference to them. They will likely only use it for the internet and word processing, and games (I plan on regimenting a vigorous solitaire schedule for my grandma so she can learn how to use the mouse).

Either way, they were both startlingly grateful for my gift, as though I’d given them some piece of precious magic. I’ll return to their house when they get the internet set up, and will show them the wilds of the web. My grandmother, in spite of her tentative grasp of the mouse (both physically and metaphorically) specifically requested an Instant Messenger program, so I am confident of her drive and intent to learn how to use computers.

Alas for Linux, else I’d have her on WoW in no-time.

2 thoughts on “Grandparents? Linux? Madness!”

  1. That’s really a great idea. Do you know if they are getting dialup or broadband? How will they deal with drivers when they want to get a digital camera and printer (you know it’s coming). Also, does Adobe make a version of Flash Player for linux?

    Every 18-24 months, I get on a linux kick and try to install it on some old hardware, but then I get bored too quickly and abandon it. This time, it’s different. I cleaned off an old PowerMac G4 from work and installed Debian, and it was like, BAM! GUI IN YO FACE! Good stuff. I hope to replace a few costly Windows server applications (specifically antivirus and backup apps).


    1. Actually, I did show them how to put pictures from their camera onto the computer, and it found the drivers just fine. Adobe does make Flash Player for linux as well. I’ve heard endless good things about ubuntu, and I sort of just picked this distro at random but it looks quite sleek. Plus, the package manager is a dream.

      Honestly, if it weren’t for Flash Professional and World of Warcraft, I’d install it on my puter in a heartbeat.

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