More on the Chronicle Colloqy

Both MacInTouch and Applelinks picked up my post about the Chronicle of Higher Education colloquy on dealing with worms and Trojan horses. You might want to take a look at the reader comments at Applelinks; I’ve linked directly to the appropriate page above (MacInTouch doesn’t seem to have permalinks). I’m glad to see so much interest and support from the Macintosh community for using Macs in education. That said, there are a few other points I want to make, some in response to comments on my blog, and in email.

  • Even though I vastly prefer working on a Mac, there are other good platforms. I’m not really interested in platform wars. I am interested, very much, in using the best available tool; more often than not, I think that’s a Mac. I also think that knee-jerk reactions from IT departments that result in Microsoft-only solutions which cause extra expenses in terms of patching and a constant war against viruses and hoaxes and support costs are less than ideal. I’d like to see other platforms and solutions, including Linux, Solaris, and Mac OS X, considered.
  • While I’m uninterested in platform wars, I am very much interested in users’ needs. I think whenever possible (and that’s most of the time) end users in academic institutions should be allowed to choose their tools. That means making sure Unix, Linux, and Mac OS X are also considered in platform decisions.
  • I’m a graduate student, paying my own way. I’m also a tax payer. I am less than pleased at seeing my fees and taxes spent in less than appropriate ways. I think over-reliance on any single platform is not good.
  • Finally, I think a fair number of people responding to my blog need practice in close reading. I did not call anyone an idiot, and would not refer to Dr. Jackson that way; he has a long record of academic service. But Dr. Jackson’s response was idiotic. It was inaccurate, and dismissive, though my question was serious, and I would have liked a genuine response.

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