Hacker Humor: Evolution of a Linux User
From: Nev Dull <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Forwarded-by: "Muli B.Y." <email@example.com>
James Baughn wrote:
Evolution Of A Linux User
November 28, 1999
During the past year, the scientists in Humorix's Vast Research
Doom have studied the behavior and attitude of the typical Windows
and Linux user. They have found that the average Linux user goes
through ten stages of development from a "Microserf"
to an "Enlightened Linux User". An eleventh stage,
"Getting A Life", has also been observed, but only
on extremely rare occasions.
The 11 stages of evolution are summarized below. Note, however,
that this life cycle is not universal. Many pundits, Microsoft
stock holders, and PHBs never advance beyond Stage 0 ("Microserf").
Moreover, many extreme Slashdot addicts are stuck between Stages
6 and 7 ("Linux Zealot") and never evolve to Stage
9 ("Enlightened Linux User"). And, unfortunately, far
too many people are unable to leave Stage 8 ("Back to Reality")
and achieve Geek Self-Actualization due to problems outside of
STAGE 0. MICROSERF
You are the number one member of the Bill Gates fan club.
Your life revolves around x86 computers running the latest version
of Microsoft solutions: Windows, Office, Internet Explorer, Visual
Basic, and even Bob. You have nothing but hate for those eccentric
Mac weenies with their click-n-drool interfaces and those stone-age
Unix oldtimers with their archaic command lines.
You frequently send angry letters to your elected representative
about Microsoft's "freedom to innovative". You think
lawyers are evil (unless they are defending innovative companies
like Microsoft). You own an autographed copy of a book that was
ghostwritten by Bill Gates. Your blood boils when somebody forwards
you a so-called Microsoft "joke" by email.
In short, you are a Microserf.
STAGE 1. FEAR, UNCERTAINTY, DOUBT... ABOUT MICROSOFT
Your world-view begins to sour as you encounter a growing
number of annoyances with Microsoft products. The number of Blue
Screens increases, however you ascribe the problem (at first)
to conflicts with poorly written drivers that came with your
peripherals. Icons keep jumping around the desktop unpredicatably.
You spend 30 minutes one day idly searching for an obscure configuration
option in the Control Panel.
Slowly but surely, you begin to have doubts about the quality
of Microsoft software. Then, the Microsoft Network, to which
you have dutifully subscribed since 1995, begins to double bill
your credit card. You attempt to rectify the problem, but are
stymied by the burgeoning bureaucracy of Microsoft's Customer
Support Department. Fear sets in... will you get your money back?
Meanwhile, something called "Linux" appears on the
fringe of your radar. You immediately dismiss the idea of a viable
and quality Microsoft alternative (Linux is Unix-based and therefore
must suck, you conclude). Nevertheless, you wish something could
be done for some of the annoyances in Windows. But you do nothing
STAGE 2. FEAR, UNCERTAINTY, DOUBT... ABOUT LINUX
You keep hearing about this Linux thing, and Open Source,
and Apache, and FreeBSD as well. One of your friends installs
Linux and says, "It's cool, dude!" You discover that
the selection of Windows books at your local bookstore has remained
constant while the Linux and Unix books are multiplying like
rabbits. You argue, "Well, this just means Linux sucks...
if there was such a large demand for it, there wouldn't be many
books on shelves."
Nevertheless, as time wears on and Windows becomes more fragile,
the temptation to give Linux a try becomes more and more irresistable.
While at your local SuperMegaOfficeSupplyStore, you pick up a
boxed version of Red Hat on impulse.
With much hubris, you completely ignore the documentation
and attempt to install the OS by the seat of your pants. The
installation is a failure; Linux simply cannot work with the
WinModem, WinSoundCard, WinIDEController, WinPrinter, WinMonitor,
and WinDRAM that came with your "Windows 98 Ready"
machine from CompUSSR. You don't realize this however, since
you didn't read the FAQs and HOWTOs. You immediately blame the
problems on Linux and give up. You ditch your Red Hat copy by
selling it on eBay.
After the installation fiasco, you leave fearful, uncertain,
about this "alternative" operating system. Windows
may have its problems, but Microsoft will fix them in the next
upgrade, you reckon.
More evolution of a Linux user--->>