When I started this blog it was a “fork of thoughts” from my main blog with a focus on software and linux. So how does a trip to Germany fit it? I decided I would try to take note of the basic differences I observed in computing. Granted Windows is used in far more public places that people realize (i.e. flight status monitors), but people don’t realize that Linux is used in just as many in on different scales.
Curious experience with in flight movie service.
When I flew to India in 2004 the airline carrier I flew provided a service similar to television. There were several “channels” which one could browse through and select, so that everyone viewing that same channel would be watching the same thing. However on this trip, the airline carrier had entertainment on demand service. There were several options: Movies, Music, Information and Games. Using your hand control you could watch any movie (fast forward, pause, stop) or select through hundred of songs or a few games. So the network in place had to provide 250 or more(?) unique feeds to passengers. How was this accomplished? Linux of course.
Sadly, I wish I did not know that. Why? The only reason I was able to determine this, was because the in-seat displays would reboot. Often! For a breif moment you could see the Linux penguin on the kernel boot information and then if you knew what you were seeing, there was a flash of the “X” cursor (which is part of the X-server) before the navigation system launched. Once running it was very nice but stabilty is just as nice. My system as well as the person next to me, infront of me and 2 of the 3 main public screens rebooted at least once.
Of course, this is all really irrelevant. A poorly configured system really has nothing to do with its components, but for a multi-million dollar (possibly global) deployment, the bugs should be out of the system! Glad to see Linux out there, but people might get a bad impression. That is … if they knew.