When you go to a trade show, demonstration or even just out in public you will be asked a lot of questions! Some of them you'll know off the top of your head, while others may require some research. That is the purpose of this Wiki, is to collect questions and answers so that it will help you answer smoothly (thus professionally) when somebody poses a question like this!
As experience is the best teacher, we encourage you to submit questions and answers you have come across, or have thought of.
Also, if you see an answer that doesn't make sense, is not correct, or has been changed with recent updates or you have a better way to say the same thing in a way people will understand, or with fewer words, please edit the answer.
Remember : Keep the answers clean, concise and understandable, it is easier to remember something concise and it's more convincing if the listener understands.
- What is Linux?
- What does Open Source mean?
- If anybody can look at the code, what keeps the hackers from seeing holes they can exploit?
- Why would I want to use that?
- Why do they offer it for free?
- Who do I call when something goes wrong?
- I'm not computer literate, how easy is it for me?
- How do you install?
- How do I know which Linux to use?
What is Linux?
Linux is an operating system, like Windows, that runs on most PCs. It is very stable, secure (there are no significant virii that effects Linux) and runs on most systems new, and old.
Yes, Linux is a Kernel, but the average Joe doesn't know a kernel from popcorn so unless in the process of the conversation you realize they know a thing or two, avoid using "kernel" to describe Linux
What does Open Source mean?
Why re-invent the wheel? If somebody knows more about a particular function than you do, you can benefit from their knowledge just as somebody else will benefit from yours downstream.
Open source means the source code is available to anybody who wants it. Just about anybody can submit an update or feature for a project, or could use a function of a program in their own code without worrying about being sued.
If anybody can look at the code, what keeps the hackers from seeing holes they can exploit?
Because there are a number of people who run the project and carefully sort through the code looking for malicious "features" as well as a large number of very experienced people all over the world who will look through the code and if they find something they can inform the project and even write a fix for the exploit themselves if they have the knowledge and time.
In a proprietary company, where you have 100s or 1000s programmers working set hours with set duties, a hierarchy to work through and not necessarily anybody in the company using' the program the same way a client may. Open Source leverages the power of people across the world, in different time zones, different focus and interests and different skill sets and usually provides easy access to the actual programmers and project leaders, the people that need to know. That is one of the reasons Open Source has consistently been able to turn-around fixes and patches at a faster rate than proprietary models.
Why would I want to use that?
Why do they offer it for free?
Who do I call when something goes wrong?
I'm not computer literate, how easy is it for me?
How do you install?
How do I know which Linux to use?
That is one of the reasons Open Source has consistently been able to turn-around fixes and patches at a faster rate than proprietary models.