On Wed, 23 Mar 2011, John Kane wrote:
Logic splitting here but I would be coming, well am, from an
SGML,OOo/AmiPro, FullWrite Professional background and there still seem to
be quite a few WordPerfect people still out there.
Agreed that the majority of people are likely to be Word or Latex but not
I'll throw in my opinion, too. It's free and well worth the price. About
15 years ago we had this same discussion about linux: how do we get more
people to defenestrate and adopt linux or the *BSDs. The consensus settled
down to: don't do anything. Those who want to work in a better, more secure
computing environment will do so. Those who want to
point-and-click/drag-and-drool, and not learn how to type at a CLI are not
candidates for the unices. And Microsoft is welcome to support them.
It's the same with LyX/LaTeX. Not everyone cares about typeset output (but
put a page from OO.o Writer next to the same text from TeX and everyone can
see the difference), and not everyone wants to understand what's going on
underneath the hood. To use LyX you need to know LaTeX. For most of us, too,
we accept that we're not expert typographers, page layout gurus, or document
structure experts. So we leave those to the professionals and we just
produce our documents while focusing on content (the substantive) and
ignoring the superficial. Yes, we sometimes need to change appearances, but
we can do this very easily with the KOMA-script and Memoir classes. However,
many in the Microsoft Word world just don't care. And, frankly, I don't want
them to switch unless they're willing to take the time to learn a different
paradigm and understand what is underneath what they do.
On may other open source software mail lists I see the struggles of those
who want to run the applications on Windoze. They don't understand the need
to know the tool since all their experience is in using tools that are
totally opaque to them because they are proprietary.
I had this discussion earlier today with a colleague who does forest
analytics and he was explaining how limiting SAS is compared to R, but folks
still resist change because it means learning something new.
The LyX-using community keeps growing. New users will find it just like
the rest of us did.