Science is the empirical study of how things are.
Religion is the normative study of how things should be.
I agree with the first part, but would submit that philosophy is the domain of normative study of how things should be (among other things). I find it interesting how you summarily dismiss "logical positivism" (which, as I understand it, has at its core simply the idea of using observation and empirical evidence as a foundation for philosophical arguments), yet in your first sentence you argue that "Moral teachings that have largely been proven to work in building relatively peaceful and successful societies
I, on the other hand, would say that a prime discriminator between religious interpretation and discussion, versus a more "pure" philosophical approach, would be the acceptance of a basic religion-driven framework (pick one of your choice) without such evidence.
It sounds to me like you want to have your cake and eat it too.
Aside from diehards (I'm currently struggling with getting UNR running stably on a mini 10 for my wife...no thanks to Intel's GMA 500 chipset), what incentive is there for people to switch from what they know, to Linux, when companies like Dell are keeping every cent of the "Linux savings" for themselves, rather than giving the consumer a fair choice?
The folks who do trade studies "get" how to look at company financials, strength, size, etc., to ensure that we aren't going down a bad path with a piece of proprietary software. Yet, in most cases, I see people at a loss of how to do equivalent analysis for FOSS products. It might be surprising to some people around here, but many still don't grasp just how different a developer-and-user community for a product is, compared to a corporation that produces software. And even for those of us who do understand the differences, it's still sometimes tricky to do a fair comparative analysis.
Just as the OSI has tried to formalize what open source means, and helps vet licenses to make it easier for people wanting to use FOSS software, it might be very useful to come up with some standard measures of the health of FOSS projects, and start gathering that data in one place for popular ones.
I might as well have asked "where is my +3 mace?" because we didn't have that either.
I think perhaps you're confusing "DoD" with "DnD". Unless you have need-to-know access to a program I'm unfamiliar with...
I think another instructive analogy is the SACD versus DVD-Audio war. Sure, it's audio, not video, but in other respects it seems more apropo. A next generation format war to replace the CD. Cons: New players required; expensive players; expensive discs. Pros: Slightly better audio quality.
Ironically, the successor to the CD has turned out to be the mp3...slightly (or imperceptibly, depending on who you ask) WORSE quality, but greatly improved convenience.
I've got a pretty substantial DVD collection, a Blu-Ray player (which also can play games, when the occasional good one comes out), and a nice HT setup (Sony 1080p projector, 96" screen, 8 good quality speakers, etc.). Even on this setup, I'm quite happy with DVD quality video and audio.
So, is Blu-Ray perceptibly better? Video, yes, but not to nearly the same degree as DVD to VHS, and only if you've really got a sufficiently large display. Audio...not really, perhaps discernable in ABX testing, but not for real world use.
I typically buy Blu-Ray for big budget, audiovisual-feast-oriented new movies, but I wait and look for good deals, and really haven't found myself buying many. I still buy DVDs for everything else, because the difference in quality just isn't worth a significant premium. And I know far down the snob-spectrum from the typical user.
If Sony wants Blu-Ray to catch on, they're just going to have to view it as a "keeping pace to make piracy harder" play, not a "let's extract MORE money from the consumer" play, and get player prices to the sub-$100 range, and the disc premiums to only a couple dollars or less. Staying in the top 1% to 5% of the market just isn't a good survival plan for format.
Practical people would be more practical if they would take a little more time for dreaming. -- J. P. McEvoy