Boxed Communism

Got thinking about iStuff vs things like Android and other [semi-]open initiatives today. I have come to realize that iProducts are representing the poor choice we had during communism times. Look: you come to the store, ask for 200g of sausage, you don’t ask which kind – there is only one, and the closest you can get to a “variety” would be question: which newspaper do you want to wrap it into – yesterday’s or today’s? iPhone differentiation is only superficial – skin-deep if you will. “Look, I’ve got pink skin!” or “Look I’ve got neat wallpaper”. Somehow the rest of the industry managed to at least make it look like there’s a variety. Not to mention that iProducts share an oversight of Mao and Party.

So here’s the dilemma – for an unsuspecting user platforms like Android or Symbian (or even Windows mobile, for that matter) are complex and hard to comprehend – “Hey, Joe! You’ve got to get yourself an Android – awesome apps etc. What do you mean which one? Oh, there’s Galaxy, Nexus, Desire… What do you mean simple? No, Joe, you’ve got to take a look and see what you like.” Whereas with iPhone – “Joe, buy yourself an iPhone”. Done.

We are our own enemies – we kill selection by being lazy and then complain that we’re being duped on every corner by monopolistic corporations that disregard our opinions and tell us what to do.

Ok, so here’s what I think should happen – we stop following somebody else’s orders/visions and start thinking for ourselves. Easy enough, right? No.

Here’s where I get to the real communism (USSR-style). How many parties do we have to choose from? Well, here, in Canada it’s major 4 (in Alberta it’s major 1) and how deep the difference goes? Not very. We cry and we bitch about Copyright reform in Canada pushed through by Conservative, however it’s Liberals who introduced it, and while NDP was oposing it, they are seeking merger with Liberals. Where does that leave us? Exactly where we are.

I’m the opensource guy and I am being labeled as “communist” at times and Ballmer scares people with stories of OSS turning countries into communist state but here’s the problem – it’s people like Steve (heh, got both of them here) who turn state into communist state and not the communist state Marx and Engels are talking about – the one that was implemented in USSR and the one that spread over eastern Europe.

Thankfully there are beacons of reason out there: Fair Vote Canada is trying to spread the knowledge on alternative forms of elections – the ones that would actually represent *all* of the population rather than minority (do you math: only 30-40% of population goes to vote and 40% of those voted elect your government – does that seem right? FSF and EFF are working hard educating governments and users about what “freedom” is in IT and what can be done to preserve it.