World of Goo

I'm back from Holland, and there'll be alot more in this space once i find myself a decent cup of coffee and write about it.

Meanwhile, on a whim, after hearing some friends rave (madly) about it, i decided to try out World of Goo. Let's recap what a normal Wintendo user might have to go through to install a game, and compare it to my experience.

  1. Click on the download link in the browser
  2. Figure out a cryptic warning about running programs out of the browser
  3. Find the file on the file system on some download directory, and double click on it
  4. Answer a bunch of questions about where to install it, and possibly go through several UAC warnings
  5. Run it from the Start menu.

Here's what i had to do to get it to run in Fedora 10.

  1. Click on the download link in the browser
  2. Click yes, that i wanted to just open it with the package installer program
  3. Click yes that i did want to install world of goo via PackageKit.
  4. Get a warning about an unknown GPG key/missing GPG key, so i have to type in the root password
  5. Wait for the installation to finish, and run it.

It really doesn't get easier. I didn't have to fool around with any audio or video settings at all. Dependencies were all taken care of. I didn't have to rifle through the file system or decide where i wanted to install the package. I got only one security warning, and that's because the package was unsigned. It even works in my weird ass window manager.

If easy installation procedures just worked in Wintendo, we would know exactly who was responsible. There would have been a team of UI engineers all working in concert to produce a single interface that might or might not work. Everything would have been highly coordinated, and it would have taken 3 years for the entire process to go through. In contrast, a similar, albeit slightly better experience has been produced by a number of loosley connected developers. One team made PackageKit, another team made Firefox, another team made RPM and Yum, and another team put together World of Goo. I highly doubt the World of Goo developers had to ask key developers at Red Hat how to produce a working one click install for their program. Rather, all they needed to do is make an RPM, use standard components on the Linux Desktop, and produce a working experience.

I think the year of the Linux Desktop is long gone.... maybe we should start predicting the year of Microsoft's death.

7 flames:

Anoniem zei

Wintendo? You mean tell me that you have to install World of Goo not through WiiWare (which is also hopelessly convoluted) but through Windows and then shoehorn it to your Wii?

If that is the case, then wow the fail.

Yankee zei

Wintendo is a piece of crapware that turns your computer into an elaborate gaming system that is produced by the world's biggest software failure, Microsoft.

If you want to do real work, don't use Wintendo.

Anoniem zei

> It really doesn't get easier.

Of course it does. :)

# yum install PACKAGE

Anoniem zei

Sad that the RPM is badly made for 64-bit architectures, it doesn't pull the correct dependencies to install some i386 OpenGL packages.

Yankee zei

64 bit is not a problem here, i'm using it as well.

Sure, i could install it via yum, but that wasn't my point, my point is the ease of which third party developers can build software for Linux

Kevin Kofler zei

We're actually making it too easy to infect your system with proprietary crap like this.

And I'm pretty sure that what the anonymous 3rd comment was intended to say is that if this was actually Free Software, it could just be installed through yum or PackageKit without going through a website and a warning about unsigned packages at all. And without paying $20...

Yankee zei

The game market works on a fundamentally different economy than most other software markets. It's going to take a long time before Open Source becomes common there.

That said, i just wanted to try it out, and while i didn't pay the $20, i was surprised to see that it worked so well. Rather than being a cranky fundamentalist about Open Source, i was glad to see that we make it easier for the end user to do what ever he/she wants with his/her *own* computer.