Linux and systemd: A case of the old versus the young?

In today's open source roundup: Is the systemd controversy a battle of the old versus the young? Plus: Which Linux distros do you consider innovative? And a journalist spends a week using Ubuntu's Unity desktop

Systemd has polarized the Linux world into two opposing camps and has generated quite a lot of heat in online discussions. But is the clash over systemd more a generational conflict than anything else? Infoworld thinks that it could all come down to a battle between older people and younger people.

According to InfoWorld:

Fundamentally, I think this exposes a separation of the Linux community: between those who were deep into Unix before Linux came on the scene and those who came later. I can't help but think that a number of younger developers and admins are missing key elements of how Unix-like systems were designed and how they functioned before, say, 1998 -- when Unix was for servers and high-end workstations, not desktop systems or laptops.

The old saying, "Those who don't understand Unix are doomed to re-invent it -- poorly," has been used many times when discussing Windows. It's disturbing to see it now used to describe Linux.

More at InfoWorld
systemd linux old versus young

This is a very interesting take on the whole systemd affair that I hadn't considered before. I'd love to see a poll somewhere that asked people if they support systemd do or not and then also asked them to share their age. It would be fun to see if the poll results matched up with the InfoWorld writer's hypothesis.

Unfortunately, I don't think there's really any way we can judge if he's right or not. I've been looking around and haven't found any significant clues as to whether or not age plays a role in people embracing or rejecting systemd. That's not surprising since this is the first time I've seen anybody link age to the systemd controversy.

So I'll ask you, dear reader, to share your thoughts in the comments below: What is your age and do you support systemd or not? Thanks in advance for all of your responses.

Innovative Linux distributions?

A redditor asks for your thoughts about innovative Linux distributions.

According to Reddit:

And I'm not talking about just distributions that use Ubuntu, slap on a theme and call it a day. I'm talking about distributions like

Alpine Linux,



Even if it's just a bunch of shell scripts doing novel things, give it a mention. Opinions on those in the above list are also welcome.

More at Reddit

I like offbeat discussion threads like this. All too often it's the big distributions like Linux Mint or Ubuntu that tend to get everybody's attention. They dominate media coverage and user discussions about Linux. So It's nice when somebody tries to steer people over to distributions that don't get that kind of attention.

Which Linux distributions do you think are innovative?

A review of Ubuntu's Unity desktop

Network World has a review of Ubuntu's Unity based on a journalist's one week experience using it.

According to Network World:

But, to be fair, I actually didn't find anything in Unity that would prevent me from enjoyably using my Linux-powered PC. It worked, and it has been quite reliable. In fact, if Unity were the only Desktop Environment available for Linux... I would use it quite happily.

Because, the thing is, it's not bad. Not at all. But it could be so much better. There are several Desktop Environments out there with less funding and fewer people working on it that simply are a bit more polished and a bit more... inspiring.

More at Network World

The reviewer sounds like he had mixed feelings about Unity after using it for a week. I can understand that since Unity seems to be an acquired taste for some people but I suspect he might have warmed up to it a little bit more if he'd given it some more time. One week isn't much time to really delve into what any Linux desktop has to offer, but his comments were still interesting.

What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.

The opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of ITworld.

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