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I was thinking on how to respond to another toot tonight, and it caused me to think about Linux as a competitive desktop option.

And I think that it will never make it to desktop stardom because of business. FOSS developers spend so much time reinventing the wheel because wheel XYZ doesn't it do it for them, but no time on the tools that regular users need. For example: There are so many window managers that there's a top 20 list (https://www.ubuntupit.com/best-linux-window-managers-a-comprehensive-list-for-linux-users/). Yet there is no decent PDF editor.

shahaan reshared this.

might just be be, but I found xournal to be relatively usable as a PDF editor. However, I still get your original point, "PDF editor" is only a small aspect of the problem. And the other thing is also that probably 18 out of 20 window managers are seriously under- or unmaintained…
Neither xournal, not LIbreOffice are really usable replacements for handwritten annotations, fill-in-forms, and digital signatures.
I just used xournal++ yesterday to fill in a form without fillable fields and to also sign my signature. Admittedly I was using a drawing tablet for the signature part, but it was all very easy for me to get a good result.
I have used xournal++ before and like it best for annotations. Unfortunately, its signing feature is just like gluing your signature as image file in, not the cryptographic certificate-based signature that are necessary for signatures that need to be valid from a law perspective.
ironically enough: https://itsfoss.com/pdf-editors-linux/
Out of that list: 5 programs are "just" for shuffling, extracting or joining pdfs, 2 are non-FOSS, 1 is a Desktop-publishing Program (!), 1 is a viewer with basic annotation support but neither real handwriting annotations or digital signatures, and one is a "drawing" application that is able to import/export PDFs. Not exactly replacements for Adobe Reader & co, to be honest.
Okular looks quite decent actually, I have weirdly enough never really closely looked at it.
that's fair. My experience has been that we have the functionality, but you have to do a bit of a scavenger hunt to figure out which tools perform the actions you need.

I think there would be value in someone putting together a "one stop shop" that pulls things together. I am given to wonder if the reason why you can only buy proprietary solutions is because there is some kind of licensing or software patent issue.
I was mostly just using PDF as an example of business software. The format itself is an ISO standard and anyone that cares to read the spec can develop software for it.

I don't doubt that the specs are very complicated.
I understand that is was "just" an example. It just triggered an ugly itch that I need scratched as a user, confirming your theory. :-)
Apple didn't survive the 90s and early 00s because it was anything special. It survived because the design industry was keeping it alive. Steve Jobs early on gave a shit about design tools on Mac so it became a de facto standard for graphic design.

Same goes for Windows and business desktop use. There is a lot to like and not like about it, but it focused on tools and device management in a way that made business happen.

shahaan reshared this.

So existing pdf editors don't do it for you? Reinvent the wheel and write one. Easy!

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