Today is Christmas Eve, and I am anxiously awaiting Christmas Day morning. For on Christmas Day my children will finally be able to open their gifts. Once that is done my wife and I will know peace again as our children will release all of their pent up Christmas energy and stop bouncing around the house like little yuletide lunatics. I just need to keep it together for one more day!
I am grateful for my healthy family, wonderful kids, and amazing wife. Their presence in my life has always been a beautiful gift. None of them can parse the contents of a large text file though, and don’t even bother trying to get one of the kids to run the latest open source applications! They just sort of look at you and shrug! What is with that? I love them, but at least spit out an error code or something!
This is why I turn to Linux for many of my computing needs. Kids are just too slow converting ASCII code into human readable text. Linux on the other hand is capable of all of the above and so much more! Linux is the Santa Claus of operating systems except that Linux is real.
I have Windows systems like my Surface Pro, VMware hypervisors, and even a Mac for work. Each of these systems has its pros and cons. My Linux systems are not perfect either. There are some applications and needs that I do not use my Linux systems for as a matter of convenience or because Linux is an unsupported option. Plus I really like dabbling with competing technologies in order to learn of their differences.
There is still one key benefit of Linux that only FreeBSD can match – Linux is free! Not only is Linux free to download and use, but so many of the applications that I run on Linux are also free to download and use. Plus the code for Linux and these applications is free for me to read, study, and even modify! Yay! Linus bless us, everyone!
But wait! There is more!
The best part of being a Linux enthusiast is that you will reap the rewards created by other Linux enthusiasts. Which is why I want to share with those of you who may not use Linux this link to William Shotts’s The Linux Command Line, Second Internet Edition. This is one of my favorite books for Linux that I highly recommend to all new Linux users. It is a wonderful reference if you wish to learn how to use the command line interface (CLI) for many Linux distributions. I also think it is one of the best resources out there for learning about Linux in general. Even people familiar with Linux will probably discover something useful with in this book. Consider it my holiday gift to all of you! It is far better than an ugly sweater I assure you.
To me Linux is a great technological achievement, but it is a much more amazing social achievement! You have plenty of alternatives to Linux to use as an operating system. The real wonder of Linux is its open source development, distribution, and community driven approach. Linux has changed the world in ways far beyond what its technology provides. Great technology changes what we build, but great technologists like the ones behind Linux can change how we work together. This is one of the reasons why I love working with Linux, and I hope that you’ll read Mr. Shotts’s book and be inspired to do the same.
Happy holidays to you all!