Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Lets work together.

The Linux community is very fragmented. This does not have to be a bad thing at all. Diversity is important for innovation and choice for users. However, because there are so many different projects, people sometimes get at other Linux users within the community. If you have your own opinion or are doing things differently, other people will get at you. Most of the Linux users already have enough opposition from Windows and Mac OS diehards and they don't need more from their own community of GNU/Linux. We are all in this together and we want to promote Linux to as many people as possible. It does not help when other individuals are bashing you because you are using a different distribution than they are or think in a different way. Tolerance is crucial in a diverse community. We need to respect each other's opinions instead of bashing one another.

It is also sad to see that some people are getting at new users of Linux. We need to be welcoming and helpful instead of arrogant and exclusive. New users need our help to find solutions and figure Linux out. We cannot bring them in, chew them up, and spit them out. People are not going to switch over if we are constantly fighting ourselves and being rude to newcomers.

This internal bickering within the Linux community is not very helpful and often brings projects to a halt. We need to realize that working together is more important than working against each other. We are fragmented but that doesn't mean it has to be a negative thing. Lets make our diversity in the GNU/Linux community a positive point and work together to promote GNU/Linux as a whole. It is an excellent concept that keeps growing and flourishing. Tolerance of each other and acceptance of new users is essential. Peace, love and Linux.

6 comments:

  1. First, I think that bashing and flaming is not considered intolerant. I don't know what you feel, but most people I know in Computer Science and Programming don't really mind these things (like swearing and such), and it is even considered to be a sign of informality for a while (until the whole sexist business went overboard, that is). In other words, when someone bashes/flames at you, I think we should take it as a joke and a sign of care rather than intolerance. Geeks and nerds are well-known for their tolerance, and FOSS is flooded with them (and their tolerance, of course).

    Secondly, I think a better way to look at the matter of arrogance is to see how "new users". Frankly, there is always a difference between asking for help in a forum/IRC channel and demanding for help from Customer Service. Seriously. In the latter case, you can expect the people there to do each and everything to satisfy you, even kissing ass sometimes (well, they are PAID to do that, right?). However, in the former case, some of those people are highly respected, and they are sacrificing their personal time to contribute. I don't think they expect anything less than understanding and appreciation, both of which a "noob" lacks.

    Seriously, no one really calls a person who are ready to try out stuffs, spends time google around, and are willing to listen a noob. No, we usually call people who beg "please don't make me open CLI" noobs, rightly so. With thousands of GUI available in GNU/Linux world (and most of experienced people seem to drift toward something more productive than plain o' KDE/GNOME), demanding a step by step GUI is both impossible and rude. Plus, look at their attitudes. These usually consist of blaming, whining, and refusing (CLI) help. Yeah, right, as if others want to help.

    As a matter of fact, I am quite comfortable with the current way of GNU/Linux, so my opinions may be biased. However, I strongly believe that, by switching people over to GNU/Linux, we should EDUCATE other people. We should help them to be confident, self-motivated, understanding, and freedom-loving. We should NOT emulate proprietary world, and be jerks ourselves. Seriously. What good is yet-another-kissing-ass system?

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  2. Technical people duking it out is normal and healthy. Bloggers on the other hand....

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  3. I agree with the post. Very well said.

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  4. There are two main points which I get from Tuxxie's article.

    1) We should not be rude.

    That's ok, but not so simple. Obviously, consideration for other people's culture is a good thing, so let's not treat strangers with the informality we use at home. OTOH, in Rome like Romans: someone entering *any* group should be forewarned that there are behaviors, jokes and context peculiar to that group. In some places that could even mean a violent initiation...

    And frankly, sorry to be blunt (actually, I'm not sorry!), but this is 2009 and I've been saying Linux is good (and proving it) for _at least_ 7 years (I'm a 10+ year user)... if you're a Windows-only Linux newcomer after all the coverage Linux got, let's face it: however equal people might be, computing certainly is not your forte. So, yes, experts won't give you any respect, because you don't deserve (at least regarding tech matters). Live with that. Next time, when you ponder about learning something new, please consider the drawbacks of not learning: like e.g. being considered dumb.

    2) We're fragmented.

    As Tuxxie says, this is not always bad, but see, there's a difference in having many fragments following a modular approach and harmonically interacting and being fragmented with parts working against each other. In this case, the sum of efforts may yield ZERO. Ever heard of "divide and conquer"? So we stand divided at our peril, and M$ is laughing all the way to the bank, just pondering how can millions of people be so stupid as to allow one single company to rule over IT.

    Because we're idiots arguing about individual choices.

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  5. "No, we usually call people who beg "please don't make me open CLI" noobs, rightly so. With thousands of GUI available in GNU/Linux world (and most of experienced people seem to drift toward something more productive than plain o' KDE/GNOME), demanding a step by step GUI is both impossible and rude. Plus, look at their attitudes. These usually consist of blaming, whining, and refusing (CLI) help. Yeah, right, as if others want to help."


    If giving GUI instructions is impossible, then linux is destined to be in the desktop minority. The whole reason pcs are now mainstream are due to the advent of the GUI/mouse. Very few people want to mess with a text mode interface.

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