How simple are newbies anyway? - Linux

This is a discussion on How simple are newbies anyway? - Linux ; There's been a lot of discussion in this group recently about how newbies, or even so-called "average" users, "need" certain aspects of their computing experience to be childishly simple (ref: "cli V gui"). Then in another thread (ref: "Windows sucks...") ...

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 22 1 2 3 11 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 422

Thread: How simple are newbies anyway?

  1. How simple are newbies anyway?

    There's been a lot of discussion in this group recently about how
    newbies, or even so-called "average" users, "need" certain aspects of
    their computing experience to be childishly simple (ref: "cli V gui").

    Then in another thread (ref: "Windows sucks...") I read this:

    Verily I say unto thee, that JEDIDIAH spake thusly:

    > When people aren't paralyzed by fear whole new worlds open up to
    > them. Although feeling free to explore the computer is not just a
    > Linux thing. It's also something that Apple has been good about
    > fostering (certainly better than the Lemming crowd).


    It occurred to me that this notion of being "paralysed by fear" at the
    prospect of discovering something new (complex or otherwise) is wholly
    unnatural.

    I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    remember the cover story in Practical Computing).

    With no GUI, only a limited manual, and no experience of even using a
    computer whatsoever, much less /programming/ one, I sat down at this
    machine and started using it.

    Was I "paralysed with fear"?

    No,

    Did I scream like a little girl because there was no GUI?

    No.

    Heck, this thing didn't even have a /mouse/ (what's a mouse?).

    The sensation I felt was not /fear/, it was /excitement/ and /wonder/.
    I learned, and learned quickly, because I was /enthusiastic/ about doing
    so. I knew absolutely /nothing/ about computers (beyond what I'd read in
    Practical Computing), and yet I joyfully /learned/ about them on this
    little machine. It was utterly compelling.

    So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world, that they
    cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the basics of
    using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    spoon-fed baby food?

    Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you stupid"?

    Is it that today's "average" person has an IQ that is greatly diminished
    compared to people in the 70's (perhaps as an accumulative and
    genetically inherited result of consuming decades of junk food, and
    perhaps only a largely geographical phenomenon)? This may also account
    for claims by those like Barry Schwartz that in certain cultures the
    prospect of having to make /choices/ causes "paralysis and fear".

    Or are these claims of stupidity merely hyperbole, and such people would
    in fact have no difficulty in learning how to use computers /properly/,
    were it not for the incessant propaganda that indoctrinates certain
    expectations?

    Are curiosity; wonder and excitement no longer sufficient motivational
    factors to learn computing ... or anything else for that matter, in
    today's society?

    If that's true, then its a very sad state of affairs indeed.

    --
    K.
    http://slated.org

    ..----
    | "The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining
    | armour to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos
    | neatly ignores the fact that it was he who, by peddling second-rate
    | technology, led them into it in the first place." ~ Douglas Adams
    `----

    Fedora release 8 (Werewolf) on sky, running kernel 2.6.23.8-63.fc8
    03:28:15 up 211 days, 3 min, 4 users, load average: 0.27, 0.28, 0.25

  2. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Homer wrote:
    > There's been a lot of discussion in this group recently about how
    > newbies, or even so-called "average" users, "need" certain aspects of
    > their computing experience to be childishly simple (ref: "cli V gui").
    >
    > Then in another thread (ref: "Windows sucks...") I read this:
    >
    > Verily I say unto thee, that JEDIDIAH spake thusly:
    >
    >> When people aren't paralyzed by fear whole new worlds open up to
    >> them. Although feeling free to explore the computer is not just a
    >> Linux thing. It's also something that Apple has been good about
    >> fostering (certainly better than the Lemming crowd).

    >
    > It occurred to me that this notion of being "paralysed by fear" at the
    > prospect of discovering something new (complex or otherwise) is wholly
    > unnatural.
    >
    > I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    > I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    > home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    > remember the cover story in Practical Computing).
    >
    > With no GUI, only a limited manual, and no experience of even using a
    > computer whatsoever, much less /programming/ one, I sat down at this
    > machine and started using it.
    >
    > Was I "paralysed with fear"?
    >
    > No,
    >
    > Did I scream like a little girl because there was no GUI?
    >
    > No.
    >
    > Heck, this thing didn't even have a /mouse/ (what's a mouse?).
    >
    > The sensation I felt was not /fear/, it was /excitement/ and /wonder/.
    > I learned, and learned quickly, because I was /enthusiastic/ about doing
    > so. I knew absolutely /nothing/ about computers (beyond what I'd read in
    > Practical Computing), and yet I joyfully /learned/ about them on this
    > little machine. It was utterly compelling.
    >
    > So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    > idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world, that they
    > cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the basics of
    > using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    > spoon-fed baby food?
    >
    > Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    > by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you stupid"?
    >
    > Is it that today's "average" person has an IQ that is greatly diminished
    > compared to people in the 70's (perhaps as an accumulative and
    > genetically inherited result of consuming decades of junk food, and
    > perhaps only a largely geographical phenomenon)? This may also account
    > for claims by those like Barry Schwartz that in certain cultures the
    > prospect of having to make /choices/ causes "paralysis and fear".
    >
    > Or are these claims of stupidity merely hyperbole, and such people would
    > in fact have no difficulty in learning how to use computers /properly/,
    > were it not for the incessant propaganda that indoctrinates certain
    > expectations?
    >
    > Are curiosity; wonder and excitement no longer sufficient motivational
    > factors to learn computing ... or anything else for that matter, in
    > today's society?
    >
    > If that's true, then its a very sad state of affairs indeed.
    >


    Computers have changed a lot since then, and what people did with
    computers in that day and age was significantly more primitive than it
    is in this day and age. We take computers for granted, and most kids are
    brought up with Windows on every computer, and often they can't use a
    computer without seeing the Windows logo at least 10 times.

    Yes, some users who switch from Windows to Linux will just be interested
    in running the few applications they use in a GUI and never touch the
    CLI, which is in my opinion, fine.

    It's not always about "excitement" or "motivation" to learn the inner
    depths of your computer, and it's certainly not down everyone's street
    to do such a thing. Some people have excitement and motivation to
    explore very diverse things, but something like computers just doesn't
    run for them, and the best way to get them interested in Linux is "Look,
    you can do everything you can in Windows in Ubuntu, word processing,
    Email, Web browsing, a few games, it even has some nice eye candy like
    Vista and OS X."

    What certainly doesn't appeal to those people is "Come to Linux, but
    remember, the CLI is mandatory if you're going to be able to do what you
    want with the system." It just doesn't rub with those people, period.

  3. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Homer wrote:

    > So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    > idiots that supposedly comprise newbies in today's world, that they
    > cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even learn the basics of
    > using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    > spoon-fed baby food?
    >
    > Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    > by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you stupid"?


    I started with a ZX-81, went to a Sinclair QL for several years, tried out a
    Spectrum (TS-2068 with Spectrum ROM) and CP/M computers (more hobby than
    anything else) than finally went to a Kaypro XT (when Kaypro was about dead
    and just sticking their logo on generic Taiwan PC clones). The "Kaypro XT"
    came with DR-DOS 3.41, and the first thing that impressed me about DR DOS
    was that I didn't have to split my "gigantic" 40 Meg hard drive into two
    partitions -- like I would have had to do with MS-DOS of the era.

    At any rate, to answer your above questions, it's not quite the same deal
    now. Computers were hobbyist machines when we started. You basically had to
    have an interest in -- otherwise you could just ignore them. Nowadays
    computers have almost become a necessity and people expect them to be
    appliances. A lot of people simply don't want to know what goes on "under
    the hood" -- they just want to use their computer for specific purposes.
    That's why, if Linux is going to get a foothold in the Desktop market,
    they're going to have to understand that people just aren't gointhem to buy
    and use themg to go the CLI. I think those who made the EEE PC understand
    that -- and we're starting to see a move in that direction. Unfortunately a
    lot of Linux developers are "hobbyists," and they feel that the "cost" of
    entering into Linux should be to be become a hobbyist.

    I think there is a middle ground -- but I don't think it's a matter of the
    majority of computer users being lazy -- they're just not that interested
    in how their box runs -- except when it crashes.

    --
    RonB
    "There's a story there...somewhere"

  4. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    On 2008-07-19, Ben wrote:
    >
    > It's not always about "excitement" or "motivation" to learn the inner
    > depths of your computer, and it's certainly not down everyone's street
    > to do such a thing. Some people have excitement and motivation to
    > explore very diverse things, but something like computers just doesn't
    > run for them, and the best way to get them interested in Linux is "Look,
    > you can do everything you can in Windows in Ubuntu, word processing,
    > Email, Web browsing, a few games, it even has some nice eye candy like
    > Vista and OS X."


    Yep. There are only certain types of people attracted to computers. Most
    just want to use it to get things done. I'm one of those who loves
    tinkering with computers. That's why I choose Linux. If you aren't
    prepared to either learn, or get someone to maintain the machine for
    you, then GNU/Linux isn't for you. Go generic.

    > What certainly doesn't appeal to those people is "Come to Linux, but
    > remember, the CLI is mandatory if you're going to be able to do what you
    > want with the system." It just doesn't rub with those people, period.


    I agree. People like that should stick with Windows, or perhaps a Mac

    --
    Regards,

    Gregory.
    Gentoo Linux - Penguin Power

  5. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    RonB wrote:
    > Homer wrote:
    >
    >> So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    >> idiots that supposedly comprise newbies in today's world, that they
    >> cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even learn the basics of
    >> using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    >> spoon-fed baby food?
    >>
    >> Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    >> by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you stupid"?

    >
    > I started with a ZX-81, went to a Sinclair QL for several years,


    Still got my QL.


    > tried out a
    > Spectrum


    And my spectrum 128...

    Though these days I only tend to use the speccy in the form of fuse.
    (that's the emulator not the userspace filesystem.. the emulator had the
    name first.)
    --
    | spike1@freenet.co.uk | |
    | Andrew Halliwell BSc | "The day Microsoft makes something that doesn't |
    | in | suck is probably the day they start making |
    | Computer science | vacuum cleaners" - Ernst Jan Plugge |

  6. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Homer wrote:
    > There's been a lot of discussion in this group recently about how
    > newbies, or even so-called "average" users, "need" certain aspects of
    > their computing experience to be childishly simple (ref: "cli V gui").
    >
    > Then in another thread (ref: "Windows sucks...") I read this:
    >
    > Verily I say unto thee, that JEDIDIAH spake thusly:
    >
    >> When people aren't paralyzed by fear whole new worlds open up to
    >> them. Although feeling free to explore the computer is not just a
    >> Linux thing. It's also something that Apple has been good about
    >> fostering (certainly better than the Lemming crowd).

    >
    > It occurred to me that this notion of being "paralysed by fear" at the
    > prospect of discovering something new (complex or otherwise) is wholly
    > unnatural.
    >
    > I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    > I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    > home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    > remember the cover story in Practical Computing).
    >
    > With no GUI, only a limited manual, and no experience of even using a
    > computer whatsoever, much less /programming/ one, I sat down at this
    > machine and started using it.
    >
    > Was I "paralysed with fear"?
    >
    > No,
    >
    > Did I scream like a little girl because there was no GUI?
    >
    > No.
    >
    > Heck, this thing didn't even have a /mouse/ (what's a mouse?).
    >
    > The sensation I felt was not /fear/, it was /excitement/ and /wonder/.
    > I learned, and learned quickly, because I was /enthusiastic/ about doing
    > so. I knew absolutely /nothing/ about computers (beyond what I'd read in
    > Practical Computing), and yet I joyfully /learned/ about them on this
    > little machine. It was utterly compelling.
    >
    > So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    > idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world, that they
    > cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the basics of
    > using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    > spoon-fed baby food?
    >
    > Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    > by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you stupid"?
    >
    > Is it that today's "average" person has an IQ that is greatly diminished
    > compared to people in the 70's (perhaps as an accumulative and
    > genetically inherited result of consuming decades of junk food, and
    > perhaps only a largely geographical phenomenon)? This may also account
    > for claims by those like Barry Schwartz that in certain cultures the
    > prospect of having to make /choices/ causes "paralysis and fear".
    >
    > Or are these claims of stupidity merely hyperbole, and such people would
    > in fact have no difficulty in learning how to use computers /properly/,
    > were it not for the incessant propaganda that indoctrinates certain
    > expectations?
    >
    > Are curiosity; wonder and excitement no longer sufficient motivational
    > factors to learn computing ... or anything else for that matter, in
    > today's society?
    >
    > If that's true, then its a very sad state of affairs indeed.
    >


    Enthusiasts will always be willing to get down into the nuts and bolts
    and take a chance, whether they're just starting out or a 30 year
    veteran but people who just "want a computer" tend to **** themselves
    when they don't know what they're doing for fear of breaking something.

  7. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Ben had de volgende lumineuze gedachte op 19-07-08 05:39:
    > Homer wrote:
    >> There's been a lot of discussion in this group recently about how
    >> newbies, or even so-called "average" users, "need" certain aspects of
    >> their computing experience to be childishly simple (ref: "cli V gui").
    >>
    >> Then in another thread (ref: "Windows sucks...") I read this:
    >>
    >> Verily I say unto thee, that JEDIDIAH spake thusly:
    >>
    >>> When people aren't paralyzed by fear whole new worlds open up to
    >>> them. Although feeling free to explore the computer is not just a
    >>> Linux thing. It's also something that Apple has been good about
    >>> fostering (certainly better than the Lemming crowd).

    >>
    >> It occurred to me that this notion of being "paralysed by fear" at the
    >> prospect of discovering something new (complex or otherwise) is wholly
    >> unnatural.
    >>
    >> I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    >> I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    >> home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    >> remember the cover story in Practical Computing).
    >>
    >> With no GUI, only a limited manual, and no experience of even using a
    >> computer whatsoever, much less /programming/ one, I sat down at this
    >> machine and started using it.
    >>
    >> Was I "paralysed with fear"?
    >>
    >> No,
    >>
    >> Did I scream like a little girl because there was no GUI?
    >>
    >> No.
    >>
    >> Heck, this thing didn't even have a /mouse/ (what's a mouse?).
    >>
    >> The sensation I felt was not /fear/, it was /excitement/ and /wonder/.
    >> I learned, and learned quickly, because I was /enthusiastic/ about doing
    >> so. I knew absolutely /nothing/ about computers (beyond what I'd read in
    >> Practical Computing), and yet I joyfully /learned/ about them on this
    >> little machine. It was utterly compelling.


    It was the same for me. I started with a TI99/4a.

    >> So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    >> idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world, that they
    >> cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the basics of
    >> using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    >> spoon-fed baby food?
    >>
    >> Is it that they are not really newbies at all, but have been dumbed-down
    >> by Windows, lending credence to the axiom that "Windows makes you
    >> stupid"?
    >>


    Some people -- many people -- became afraid of computers because we all
    became more dependent of them, while at the same time they started to
    crash quite easily. My first PC was an Amstrad with MSDOS 3.2 and GEM
    (1986 if I remember correctly). I loved it. About six months ago I had
    to dispense with it, nobody wanted it. The computer still worked and was
    stable like a rock. Compare that to Windows 95 or 98. People started to
    ask my help because their computers crashed easily. And till now I have
    friends who do not dare to experiment with it out of fear to "do
    something wrong" that crashes the computer and causes the loss of their
    data.

    Erik Jan

  8. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Verily I say unto thee, that RonB spake thusly:

    > At any rate, to answer your above questions, it's not quite the same
    > deal now. Computers were hobbyist machines when we started. You
    > basically had to have an interest in -- otherwise you could just
    > ignore them. Nowadays computers have almost become a necessity and
    > people expect them to be appliances. A lot of people simply don't
    > want to know what goes on "under the hood" -- they just want to use
    > their computer for specific purposes. That's why, if Linux is going
    > to get a foothold in the Desktop market, they're going to have to
    > understand that people just aren't gointhem to buy and use themg to
    > go the CLI. I think those who made the EEE PC understand that -- and
    > we're starting to see a move in that direction. Unfortunately a lot
    > of Linux developers are "hobbyists," and they feel that the "cost" of
    > entering into Linux should be to be become a hobbyist.


    But if we continue to encourage this "look but don't touch" attitude
    towards Linux, then I foresee a serious problem in the future. Think
    about how Free Software is developed, and exactly /who/ develops it. The
    paradigm of Free Software only works because "you get, because others
    give". In a future where Linux is potentially "just an appliance", who
    exactly is going to be doing this "giving".

    We're breeding a generation of leeches, when what we /should/ be doing
    is encouraging participation. If we don't then the net result will
    essentially be that Linux becomes proprietary, with a handful of paid
    engineers working behind closed doors, advancing the state of the art
    excruciatingly slowly, producing a "one size fits all" product that
    bears little relation to what individual users want. That's starting to
    look far too much like /Windows/ ... in all the /bad/ ways. We should
    not be emulating Windows, we should be forging our /own/ path.

    And that's what concerns me about distros like Ubuntu ... that plainly
    want to /be/ Windows. But the problem with that is that if I wanted to
    use Windows then I would just go out and buy a copy. I don't want Linux
    to be Windows. Linux is not Windows, and never should be. I use Linux to
    get /away/ from Windows, because I despise that computing paradigm of
    corporate control and a dumbed-down interface. I want ultimate control
    of the software on my computers, and the Freedom to make it into
    whatever I want, but my ability to do that depends on the contribution
    of others as well as my own. If those contributions start to dry up
    because every user out there is a brain-dead sheep that just leeches
    from a handful of paid engineers, then my choices and power becomes
    eroded to the point where I have essentially lost my Freedom.

    > I think there is a middle ground -- but I don't think it's a matter
    > of the majority of computer users being lazy -- they're just not that
    > interested in how their box runs -- except when it crashes.


    Then we need to start encouraging them to /become/ interested, before
    Linux becomes just a "free copy" of Windows.

    --
    K.
    http://slated.org

    ..----
    | "The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining
    | armour to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos
    | neatly ignores the fact that it was he who, by peddling second-rate
    | technology, led them into it in the first place." ~ Douglas Adams
    `----

    Fedora release 8 (Werewolf) on sky, running kernel 2.6.23.8-63.fc8
    15:25:37 up 211 days, 12:01, 3 users, load average: 0.25, 0.23, 0.25

  9. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    * Homer peremptorily fired off this memo:

    > And that's what concerns me about distros like Ubuntu ... that plainly
    > want to /be/ Windows. But the problem with that is that if I wanted to
    > use Windows then I would just go out and buy a copy. I don't want Linux
    > to be Windows. Linux is not Windows, and never should be. I use Linux to
    > get /away/ from Windows, because I despise that computing paradigm of
    > corporate control and a dumbed-down interface. I want ultimate control
    > of the software on my computers, and the Freedom to make it into
    > whatever I want, but my ability to do that depends on the contribution
    > of others as well as my own. If those contributions start to dry up
    > because every user out there is a brain-dead sheep that just leeches
    > from a handful of paid engineers, then my choices and power becomes
    > eroded to the point where I have essentially lost my Freedom.


    This is the thing. Somehow, some way, one should instill a bit of the
    hacker ethos in the ordinary citizen. Show them that they can, and
    should, dig a little deeper into their tools, or at least show them
    where their tools start restricting their fair rights. Even if they
    still stick with Windows, they can be provided with tools.

    --
    Whitehead's Law:
    The obvious answer is always overlooked.

  10. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Andrew Halliwell wrote:

    > Still got my QL.


    Same here. Haven't fired it up in several years, though.

    --
    RonB
    "There's a story there...somewhere"

  11. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Andrew Halliwell wrote:

    > Still got my QL.


    Same here. Haven't fired it up in several years, though.

    --
    RonB
    "There's a story there...somewhere"

  12. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Andrew Halliwell wrote:

    > Still got my QL.


    Same here. Haven't fired it up in several years, though.

    --
    RonB
    "There's a story there...somewhere"

  13. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Roy Schestowitz wrote:

    > Gates Foundation Investments Often Don't Jibe With Philanthropic
    > Priorities
    >
    > ,----[ Quote ]
    >> In the first article, the newspaper notes that the Gates Foundation
    >> has invested in companies like Chevron Corporation, Eni, Exxon Mobil
    >> Corporation, Royal Dutch Shell, and Total-all responsible for gas
    >> flares that pollute the Niger Delta, shooting out chemicals and soot
    >> that may be causing the region's alarmingly high rates of
    >> respiratory diseases, cancer, and blurred vision and also lowering
    >> immunity-while the foundation is making grants to fight disease in
    >> Africa.


    Why isn't Homer's name mentioned? He was doing more than just investing in
    polluting the Niger Delta - he was right there helping them do it in person.




  14. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Homer wrote:

    > So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the whining
    > idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world, that they
    > cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the basics of
    > using a computer, without being guided through it like an infant being
    > spoon-fed baby food?



    You're being silly.

  15. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    On Sat, 19 Jul 2008 12:35:53 -0400, DFS wrote:

    > Roy Schestowitz wrote:
    >
    >> Gates Foundation Investments Often Don't Jibe With Philanthropic
    >> Priorities
    >>
    >> ,----[ Quote ]
    >>> In the first article, the newspaper notes that the Gates Foundation
    >>> has invested in companies like Chevron Corporation, Eni, Exxon Mobil
    >>> Corporation, Royal Dutch Shell, and Total-all responsible for gas
    >>> flares that pollute the Niger Delta, shooting out chemicals and soot
    >>> that may be causing the region's alarmingly high rates of
    >>> respiratory diseases, cancer, and blurred vision and also lowering
    >>> immunity-while the foundation is making grants to fight disease in
    >>> Africa.

    >
    > Why isn't Homer's name mentioned? He was doing more than just investing in
    > polluting the Niger Delta - he was right there helping them do it in person.


    Because [homer] is one of Roy Schestowitz's lap dogs.
    In fact, i believe [Homer] is even more off the rails than Roy Schestowitz
    is.

    --
    Moshe Goldfarb
    Collector of soaps from around the globe.
    Please visit The Hall of Linux Idiots:
    http://linuxidiots.blogspot.com/

  16. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Verily I say unto thee, that Matt spake thusly:
    > Homer wrote:


    >> So I ask quite bluntly, what in God's name is wrong with the
    >> whining idiots that supposedly comprise /newbies/ in today's world,
    >> that they cannot use the CLI, and seemingly cannot even /learn/ the
    >> basics of using a computer, without being guided through it like an
    >> infant being spoon-fed baby food?

    >
    >
    > You're being silly.


    Not at all, it's a serious point with serious implications for the
    future of GNU/Linux, based on my past experience of a time when
    "newbies" were not "paralysed with fear" as they seem to be today.

    --
    K.
    http://slated.org

    ..----
    | "The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining
    | armour to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos
    | neatly ignores the fact that it was he who, by peddling second-rate
    | technology, led them into it in the first place." ~ Douglas Adams
    `----

    Fedora release 8 (Werewolf) on sky, running kernel 2.6.23.8-63.fc8
    18:48:40 up 211 days, 15:24, 3 users, load average: 0.25, 0.36, 0.34

  17. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    In article , Homer
    wrote:
    > And that's what concerns me about distros like Ubuntu ... that plainly
    > want to /be/ Windows. But the problem with that is that if I wanted to
    > use Windows then I would just go out and buy a copy. I don't want Linux
    > to be Windows. Linux is not Windows, and never should be. I use Linux to
    > get /away/ from Windows, because I despise that computing paradigm of
    > corporate control and a dumbed-down interface. I want ultimate control
    > of the software on my computers, and the Freedom to make it into
    > whatever I want, but my ability to do that depends on the contribution
    > of others as well as my own. If those contributions start to dry up
    > because every user out there is a brain-dead sheep that just leeches
    > from a handful of paid engineers, then my choices and power becomes
    > eroded to the point where I have essentially lost my Freedom.


    Some people have real work to do, and so don't want to dick around with
    things that are complex for no good reason. As Linus noted:

    And when it comes to distributions, ease of installation has
    actually been one of my main issues - I'm a technical person, but I
    have a very specific area of interest, and I don't want to fight the
    rest. So the only distributions I have actively avoided are the ones
    that are known to be "overly technical" - like the ones that
    encourage you to compile your own programs etc.

    Yeah, I can do it, but it kind of defeats the whole point of a
    distribution for me. So I like the ones that have a name of being
    easy to use. I've never used plain Debian, for example, but I like
    Ubuntu. And before Debian people attack me - yeah, I know, I know,
    it's supposedly much simpler and easier to install these days. But
    it certainly didn't use to be, so I never had any reason to go for
    it.

    >


    --
    --Tim Smith

  18. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    In article <0408l5-ni7.ln1@sky.matrix>, Homer
    wrote:
    > I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    > I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    > home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    > remember the cover story in Practical Computing).


    One big difference between then an now is that the machines then, and
    the software on them, were very simple, and of very limited
    functionality compared to the corresponding software today.

    --
    --Tim Smith

  19. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    * Tim Smith peremptorily fired off this memo:

    > Yeah, I can do it, but it kind of defeats the whole point of a
    > distribution for me. So I like the ones that have a name of being
    > easy to use. I've never used plain Debian, for example, but I like
    > Ubuntu. And before Debian people attack me - yeah, I know, I know,
    > it's supposedly much simpler and easier to install these days. But
    > it certainly didn't use to be, so I never had any reason to go for
    > it.
    >
    >>


    I went for Debian because I had a problem installing the "easy" distro,
    Red Hat, on a no-name laptop, due to a bug (I found out about it later)
    with the Red Hat installer in AMD K6 machines.

    Turned out great, I learned a /lot/ figuring it out.

    (I still have that laptop, with Ubuntu on it, but I'm going to reinstall
    with Puppy).

    --
    "I am, therefore I am."
    -- Akira

  20. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    * Tim Smith peremptorily fired off this memo:

    > In article <0408l5-ni7.ln1@sky.matrix>, Homer
    > wrote:
    >> I don't know what the average age of the posters is in this group, but
    >> I'm old enough to remember some of the first computers ever used in the
    >> home, such as the Sinclair ZX80 (no I never had an Altair, but I still
    >> remember the cover story in Practical Computing).

    >
    > One big difference between then an now is that the machines then, and
    > the software on them, were very simple, and of very limited
    > functionality compared to the corresponding software today.


    I used my old Commodore VIC-20 to connect to the university mainframe
    (and view newsgroups!)

    Oh how I remember my wife agonizing about the cost of the VIC, a
    cassette-tape drive, and a 300-baud modem cartridge! I also (later)
    bought an assembly-language cartridge.

    --
    What you don't know won't help you much either.
    -- D. Bennett

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 22 1 2 3 11 ... LastLast