It seems pretty split after looking at the forums--about half the people want extra desktop features, and half want other more escentric features.

I understand the first group wanting to install to HDD and turn it into a full-fledged distro. I'm in the later group. I think I'd be better to strip out some of the duplicate apps and add some of the cool experimental stuff!

I'd venture to say Knoppix would be the perfect tool to include with your basic O'Riely book! It gets past the installation that kills off so many noobies (myself included) and allows you to play with a installed system you can't break!! I'd like to see more of the standard cool Linux tools installed and ready to go. I know it has apache, MySql, Perl, PHP, etc...what I don't know is are they all compiled to work together properly i.e. apache+mod-perl+mod_php.

I'd also like to see really cool noobie stuff. I may be willing to help write some as I learn more. Now that I have a working system and half-way decent instructions, it's actually fun [did I say that???] to use the command like. I think compiling should stay optional--it only adds confusion.

The two key things to add are consistancy and documentation. Consistancy in that it doesn't try to do it's own thing--of course it's Debian based, so the point is probably moot. Once you have the consistancy [everyone boots to more or less the same thing!], you can start writing real tutorials about Linux! Honestly, the small number of tutorials here have been more helpful getting me going that just about any place else.

At work I use an AS/400. One of the really strong points is that IBM does awsome documentation. That makes it really easy to do even very hard things. Even if the instructions are several years old, the system is still same enough to follow the instructions to the letter, more-or-less. Man pages are neat--if you know what the program does! Most noobies don't have a clue what Linux is supposed to do to know if they're doing it right, or even what to do to make it do anything!

This is too long, so bye.