What is this Die Hard Linux Elitism ?

Distributions like Ubuntu make a big thing out of a sense of community, as I mentioned in my previous blog.

I keep coming across this Die Hard mentality though. Is it just in Linux world ? Somehow I doubt it. I recently got my fingers burned while writing a How To for a particular distro. I had carefully checked my facts but ended up making one crucial mistake due to an oversite. These things happen !I then had a number of (could they be Geeks ?) jumping down my throat, saying that I should spend a lot of time learning the ropes and generally being paronising and condescending. I’ve been working with linux since the late 90’s ! A single mistake does not make me some kind of dangerous inept idiot, because that’s what these people made me feel like. Actually there were some polite replies on there, but I just thought … “Jeez!”.

I noticed this in another post made by a young Linux user (which I can’t locate at the moment). He was complaining that everytime he asked for help he was instructed to go away and learn this that and the other thing. I thought … “fair enough!”. I also come from the “just get it working”, “a computer is a means to an end” department !

Some (could they be Geeks?) seem to think the computer IS the end !

This post mentioned how some How To’s and articles miss out many stages and generally make life difficult. I hang around in #linux on Freenode. I notice that many of the questions are often highly complex. A lot of simple questions get missed, although there are some brave souls on there trying to “hold hands”.

And that’s it. What is wrong with “hand holding” ? This term just amazes me. Could it be that sooo many people are there just to show off their knowledge and belittle the newcomer ? Maybe they are a dieing breed indeed. There is a buzz around Ubuntu. Products like the Asus Eee PC have linux installed by defualt without oodles of “problems” in it that I could swear some people relish having around.

I mentioned the Eee PC on #linux in answer to a statement that Linux is not “Desktop ready”, or “User ready”. Some seemed surprised or had “forgotten” that these consumer Linux devices exist. Peculiar.

So what did make Linux sucessful ? Wasn’t it the sense of community ? The way newcomers were welcomed ? Maybe that’s still the case. Maybe I need to switch to Ubuntu ! I don’t know.

I love Geeks ! You make cool things ! But not everyone is a Geek, remember that.

DJ Barney


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