My spin:I think this MAY be a stretch, but…
With the long-awaited emergence of dirt-cheap new applications, the desktop alternative to Microsoft finally has emerged.
The clerks at Zumiez, a national chain of snowboard and skateboard shops, tend to stick out from the crowd. And it’s not just because they sport black hooded sweatshirts or smack their gum while ringing up your kid’s new $100 “deck.” It’s what lies under the hood of the old Compaq computers they use as cash registers that makes them true deviants.
Not a single computer in Zumiez’s 98 stores from Bellevue, Wash., to Syracuse, N.Y., runs the industry standard — Microsoft’s Windows operating system and accompanying Office applications. Instead, Zumiez has embraced the populist newcomers to the desktop, the open-source Linux OS and a free assemblage of new Linux-based programs.
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