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[liberationtech] Chromebooks for Risky Situations?

Andreas Bader noergelpizza at
Tue Feb 12 12:49:03 PST 2013

On 02/12/2013 06:41 PM, Brian Conley wrote:
> A good alternative for what use cases?
> The problem I find with flat statements such as "something like that
> would be a good alternative to ChromeOS for activists" is that it
> fails to address what uses its providing a good alternative for. IE
> you fail to demonstrate the threat model based on real use cases.
> Which is not to say you are wrong, I simply want to ask for
> clarification as to your intended meaning. eg:
> Would it be a good alternative for activists already using Google Apps
> (as Nathan at the beginning of this thread suggested Chromebooks might
> be?)?
Yes, you can use all Google Apps in the Chrome Browser. And I think that
there are not many activists that use only Google Apps for communication
and information.
> Would it be a good alternative for media activists who need to be able
> to edit video and photo content of actions or documentation of human
> rights violations?
I am sure that I can edit photo and video better on my Ubuntu
Workstation than on a Chromebook.
> Would it be a good alternative for activists who intend to disseminate
> updates, reports, and propaganda via Facebook and other social networks?
In that case chromebooks would be possible, but only if you work only
online. And the telecommunication infrastructure is not everywhere that
great like in Europe and USA.
> I certainly have no idea. These are serious questions, not intended to
> be sarcastic or confrontational.
> I'd really like to know for what real-world uses its deemed this or
> any other "super small OS" would be good solutions for activists.
> Certainly for hacktivists, hackers, and users only engaged in online
> communications I'm sure these are great solutions, but I hope you can
> detail more how a DSL or Liberte Linux provide good solutions to the
> multifaceted needs/use cases of activists.
If you want ONE solution for all these cases I'd prefer something like
Ubuntu, Debian or Open Suse. They have the best (free) support for users
and are pretty stable. Also they are pretty good configurable and
expandable (Design- and Videoediting-Software, easy TOR usage, different
Browsers etc.).
I don't think that lots of those people want to use a Terminal OS with
Lynx to Browse, but I am sure that they also want no "Toy Touch OS" with
quick access to the newest Angry Birds game. Those systems are facebook
and twitter machines, optimized for modern socializing. But not really


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