Daily Archives: April 19, 2006

Writing

So it’s the end of the semester and papers are soon going to be due. In other words, writing season is upon us again. You’d think that after a while this whole ordeal would get easier. In certain obscure ways, it has. I know I’m definitely not writing like I wrote some three years ago when I returned to school after working for five years. Still, producing a paper is just as much of a gut-spilling experience now as it ever was.

So I have a draft due on Saturday. Earlier this week I was in this eminently familiar mode where I sit down to write, fire up the word processor and then get distracted by email, a passing breeze or an article that I just must read now. Basically, I’d sit down to write and immediately find a reason to not write. Fortunately, I’ve now moved on to the next phase of writing: I write whatever comes up even if it is shit. Experience has shown me that this is better than sitting around hoping for inspiration since it is often while I write shit that find the organizing principle around which I can write my paper. This does not seem to happen if I just wait for inspiration.

Alright, back to the shit…

Linux snobs are not only barriers to entry; they are also repelling old-timers

Walter V. Koenning has an article (Linux Snobs: Real Barriers to Entry) on the condescending reaction prospective and new Linux users sometimes get when they seek help in online forums. I think Walter’s observations are right on.

This kind of snobbery, however, not only erects barriers to the use of Linux but also has the effect of repelling experienced Linux users who are fed up of having to deal with buggy or poorly documented software. Bad documentation in particular is rarely acknowledged as being a manifestation of snobbery (the rationale for bad doc being: “they can just read the code”) but is just as common as condescending comments.

Related post: My next laptop: a Mac?