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Joy of Linux 74

Chromatic slipped this review under our door. You need a few laughs at this point in the summer (ok, Northern hemisphere residents at least) to distract you from the heat of summer and the cost of air conditioning, and Joy of Linux has some esoteric geek humor in store, even if it's intended mostly as a mostly serious field guide to Linux nerddom for amateur anthropologists, like parents, girlfriends and bosses.

Joy of Linux
author Michael Hall, Brian Proffitt
pages 340
publisher Prima Tech
rating 8
reviewer chromatic
ISBN 0-7615-3151-3
summary A witty introduction to the wild world of Linux, suitable for the friend, relative, or significant other of a devoted geek.

The Scoop

It's 2001. Do you love your operating system?

That's a silly question for the average user -- a computer's made to do stuff. The operating system hides in the background, usually dormant, sometimes hostile. Besides Solitaire at lunch, the best thing about a computer is turning it off and going home for the day. Of course, to an unrepentant Amiga, Mac, OS/2, *BSD, BeOS, or Linux fan, the question makes perfect sense. An OS has personality and history. They collect followers who put up with quirks and kinks, defending their platform even past the point of practical death.

The Joy of Linux explores this phenomenon as it relates to Linux and Open Source. It's written in a friendly, easy-reading manner, punctuated with Joy of Tech style cartoons (from Nitrozac and Snaggy). There's just enough information to teach your mother something and just enough sly innuendo to keep your brother reading. Aimed at potential and new users, die-hard penguinistas will find chuckles but few surprises.

What's to Like?

Joy begins with detailed but readable looks at the allure of Linux, the history of Unix, and the growing popularity and commercial rollercoasters of Open Source in recent years. Next, the text explores the question, "What do I do now?", distilling hard experience into suggestions for finding help. More than a list of newsgroups and websites, chapter two explains the concept of sweat equity and promotes self-reliance. Chapter three talks about FUD -- both pro and contra Linux. It's fair and reasonable, with potshots reserved for the shrill faddish fanboys who spend more time complaining than contributing.

Tackling delicate topics, the next two chapters shy away from few controversies. First come three perpetual flamewars: vi versus Emacs, GNOME versus KDE, and the distribution wars. The honest assessments will disappoint everyone hovering over carefully crafted flames, ready to e-mail the authors. (That's probably a good thing, for the rest of us.) Chapter five explores the seeming juxtaposition of women and technology, with three case studies (Linux Chix, WITT, and Helix Code).

The book's second half pushes the innuendos further. Several serious discussions lie couched in metaphors and double entendres. These chapters cover system security, dual booting, migrating from Windows to Linux, hardware support, embedded devices, gaming, and multimedia. Aimed slightly above a novice level, this should be accessible to anyone capable of installing Linux.

The authors pepper their prose with personal anecdotes, some related to Linux and computers, others as analogies. They both write with a single voice, so it's difficult to tell where Hall breaks off and Proffitt starts. It makes for a mostly seamless narrative. The text is also readable, written with genial humor and occasional subtle winks.

What's to Consider?

This is a book for Linux newcomers. If you can compile a kernel without having to look up directions, you may enjoy this book, but it's not aimed at you. Instead, it would serve well as a companion piece to something more technical. If 'Running Linux' is your manual, this is the cultural and philosophical guide.

Some of the cartoons require a little more insider knowledge than the rest of the book. For example, if you don't recognize aliens dressed up as maddog, ESR, Larry Wall, and Linus, you won't understand the comic on page 34. Consider that incentive to read conference speaker lists, if you dare.

The Summary

Clever, but not too clever, The Joy of Linux answers two questions: "What is this Linux thing?" and "Why do you like it?" Written for home users more interested in getting things done than salivating over new hardware, it's a good introduction to a confusing, vibrant culture. If you're in the mood for a light read to amuses and inform, this book will meet that need.

Table of Contents

  1. Do You Know Who Your Millions of Partners Are?
    1. The Penguin on Top
    2. Are You Experienced?
    3. I Don't Do Windows
    4. Kissing Cousins, Lovers' Quarrels
    5. Chix Who Don't Fake It
  2. Doin' It
    1. I'm Clean! I Swear!
    2. Switch Hitters
    3. The Joy of Toys
    4. You Want to Put That Where?
    5. Messing around: The Penguin Plays Games
    6. Loud and Graphic
    7. Breaking up Is Hard to Do
    8. The Linux Sutra: Resources

You can purchase this book at Fatbrain.

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Joy of Linux

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @07:29AM (#2180209)

    There are some of us who have devoted their lives to their work. I'm a 28 year old male geek and I've never had sex and I don't want any.

    I've seen enough promising careers ruined by a guy "just experimenting with sex", getting hooked on it, "going out" with a girl and eventually getting married to satisfy his addiction to sex (that's what he thinks, anyway).

    No more 70 hour weeks after that. Suddenly the "pay isn't that good" anymore either. Why? Because the young missus wants her jewellery, clothes and her own apartment in the "better" part of the city.

    Believe me. Linux is far better than women.

  • But us linux geeks already know where to get our info... maybe the "starting with linux" books are for us to give to non-believers... This sounds like the kind of book I should give my dad.
  • Even if you missed the Joy of Sex reference in the title, the chapter titles are a dead giveaway:
    1. Do You Know Who Your Millions of Partners Are?
    1. The Penguin on Top
    And so on. It's all over once you get to:
    8. The Linux Sutra: Resources

    I mean, it's not even meaningful outside of the context of the unusual title of the book. I think most of the people on here pointing out the joke need to give the average Slashdot reader a bit more credit.
  • And let me point out (as one of the authors) that these two were one of the the highlights of the project for me: when the publisher told me they'd do the book, I rejoiced. They're a big part of the book.
    Michael Hall
  • .. then I'll buy it.

    The Joy of X [amazon.com] is a superb book - a little old but a great book about the hows and (more importantly) the why's of X, and had a better pun in the title (92, before computer books had much of a sense of humour).

  • I'm sorry, but I dont want to do anything with this leatherman [villagepeo...ficial.com] and some cat-5...
  • Nice troll. The best are when you suspect trolling but reply anyway, in case the message is serious.

    You know those articles where your eyes glaze over and you don't understand or care about what's being talked about? Those are the articles for the real geeks here. Sure, /. is read by plenty of wannabes, script kiddies, and interested bystanders. And sure, when you see books about Linux here, many of them are gonna be "Linux for average /. users or their friends". There aren't a lot of books with titles like "Linux for geek gods", other than con-jobs by exploitative publishers. The reason is that the really interesting stuff can't all be put into one book. You have to integrate what you learn from multiple sources, and apply your own filters. If you're reading /. waiting for discussions that'll make it all click for you, you've missed the point. If you're ever going to understand it, you have a few years of assimilation to go, at least, and you have to do homework outside of /. You'll get out as much as you bring to the table, and it doesn't sound as though you're bringing much right now.

    /. is not a discussion site in the way that some mailing lists are. People comment on articles. The point about it, for me, is that (a) it brings interesting things to my attention (a human-mediated "intelligent agent"); and (b) often, people who know a lot about the subjects raised comment on them, and add information that would be difficult to get otherwise, from more mediated sources. Despite the trolls, the flames, and the fr1st ps0ts, a lot of good stuff appears on this site and it's not hard to find, if you know what you're looking for.

    Finally, the /. humor can be peerless, although again, you have to understand it to get it (tautological, I know).

    All your sociological pretensions are belong to you.

  • Call me lame, look down on me, you have every right to, but an awful lot of people like me exist.

    Hey, I'm not calling you lame, even if my comments might have seemed dismissive of newbies. That isn't really what I meant. What's lame is the sort of close-minded post I was responding to. What I should have said is that /. provides a wonderful sort of cross-fertilization between worlds, if you're open to it. Even a troll like the one I was responding to can generate interesting exchanges which might point people in useful directions, which is the only reason I bother to respond.

    As for running Linux: you definitely need to play with it to learn. Hard disks are so cheap these days, if you can't buy one, maybe you could get an old one from someone who's upgrading and add it to your machine. If you really want to avoid messing with your Windows config, install Linux on a 2nd drive and use your machine's BIOS to enable the drive you want to use and disable the other (or if you're really paranoid, unplug the unused drive's power). This isn't the "right" way to do it, but if you're worried that you might, say, trash Windows with a LILO install when you're getting started - not a completely baseless concern - then what I'm talking about eliminates that worry.

    Although you didn't raise it directly, I think the question of "why use Linux", implicit to the whole issue of what's cool and what people's motivation is, is a very valid one. Linux isn't the answer for everyone, right now. I use it because I'm a developer, and because I hate the bugginess and lack of control I have under Windows. Having the source to everything, even if you only have a minimal clue about what to do with it, can be incredibly empowering. You may not always know what to do with the source, but someone else might.

    For non-developers who want to learn, though, Windows presents the same basic problem - it's a prepackaged, minimally customizable solution. Microsoft goes out of its way to hide the innards from you and make it difficult to modify. If you're a granny or a flute player and all you want is to be able to email your buddies and surf a little, Windows isn't so bad. But if you want more than just a predigested, spoonfed solution, if you're curious about what's going on under the hood and want to learn about it, then Windows is an exercise in frustration.

    Linux can be frustrating too, in a different way, but the payoff is a lot greater - real knowledge, rather than just learning non-transferrable superficialities about Microsoft's latest marketing-approved flavor-of-the-month.

    BTW, if you manage to get Linux running, and get a little comfy with it, you might look into running it as your main install and running Windows in a virtual machine using something like Win4Lin [netraverse.com]. I do something similar myself - my main desktop environment used to be Windows NT, which I still need for work, but now my base environment is Linux. I actually use VMWare to run NT on Linux, not Win4Lin (which runs Win9x), but it's the same basic idea and should work just as well. I reboot my machine a lot less often since I switched.

  • those of us in the midwest are living with near 100 degree heat and 98 percent humidity. maybe you're just getting all the AC from all those buildings leaking out :)

    those of us in the real world with that green growing stuff around us are dying from the heat. even those of us 500 miles north of you.
  • in Minnesota it's just trees :P
  • > ...because, for the average IT guy, the "joy of sex" consists of a few self-administered minutes of looking at the SI swimsuit issue in their parents' bathroom.

    Nah, for the average IT guy the "joy of sex" is a new computer. Or if he's done without for a few days, he'll settle for for a point-release kernel upgrade.

  • Dude, 25 celsius is NOT hot! It's pretty damn good. Try living with 35 and high humidity...
  • "onnellinen onnellinen ilo ilo" is a (poor) translation of "happy happy joy joy" into the Finnish language. For a Finn it sounds way too clumsy and idiotic compared to the original, which has an excellent rythm. The Ren&Stimpy show translators here in Finland had a better sounding translation, but I can't remember it (I think it was something like "hupi hupi kiva kiva").

  • Yet another book for the outsiders. But is it really for the outsiders, are are most of the slashdotters actually outsiders? Slashdot hereby further encourages the Linux fetish without any depth or discussion..and I am concluding that slashdot is not for Linux users at all but is meant to humanize them to the outside world. [...] But perhaps we should abandon our pretensions and seriously discuss how many of us actually are using linux or have any interest in using linux, and how many of us are just trying to be cooler than thou.

    Well, if you've been here long enough, you've certainly noticed that this place is probably not the place to go for intelligent discussion with depth. That's what k5 and various mailing lists and/or newsgroups are for. The rapid turnover rate of articles here doesn't encourage the long debates that are possible on other forums. The absence of killfiles and the presence of idiots posting irrelevant crap as ACs can also make it difficult to carry on a real debate.

    So: The people who are actually using Linux or have any interest in it often don't trumpet their OS choice to the world at large. They're busy coding, documenting, working, or screwing around, and they're mature enough to realize that there are other OSes out there, and sometimes these are better tools for some users. Anyone who's constantly shouting "Linux R00LZ! W1ND0Z3 DR00L5!" is either 14 years old or a moron and can be safely ignored. "Cooler than thou?" Come on, you are not the OS you run. A Linux-using luser is still a luser, and a Windows-using BOFH is still a BOFH.

    If you want to see "discussion without the filtering of marketroids", then you might want to subscribe to a LUG mailing list. Many LUGs have these, and discussion varies quite a bit. "This is why we should boycott Adobe!", "Mac OS X is cool, here's 5 reasons why", "What modules should you put in your Apache?", "Converting from well-defined HTML to XML", and "Call for presentations: Local Chamber of Commerce needs several speakers to talk about Open/Free Software" have all come up in the last week on my local LUG's list.

  • "out of date"?

    Have I been without lovin' so long that you've gone and changed sex on me?

  • by Old Wolf ( 56093 )
    What is "onnellinen-onnellinen-ilo-ilo" ?
  • ...because, for the average IT guy, the "joy of sex" consists of a few self-administered minutes of looking at the SI swimsuit issue in their parents' bathroom.
  • I find it quite weird that people can think that using Linux makes you "cool". My work has always involved one UNIX or another, so I've always used Linux at home. For me, being a Linux user meant having to buy whatever hardware is currently supported and not always what you would want to have, spending extra time to learn about the OS and how to make it more secure and tune it to my preferences, learning C so that I could debug and enhance the programs that I use routinely, learning how to make do with documentation not written by professionals and sometimes no documentation at all, getting weird looks for not knowing how to operate a Windows PC (whaddaya mean, you've never used Windows?!) and a lot of other stuff that would be hugely inconvenient for most people.

    I'm OK with it, I wanted to learn all this stuff anyway and Linux kinda grew on me, so now I wouldn't trade it for anything else. But I can't see how any of this would qualify as "cool". Maybe my definition of "cool" is seriously outdated...
  • by EXTomar ( 78739 ) on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @11:03AM (#2180228)
    It is plainly obvious that the title and chapter titles of the book are referenced to sex and the book "Joy of Sex". The last part, Part III "GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE" is espeically sneaky about its sexual references. ;-)
  • yeah, tell me about it. methinks it should be posted as funny. wait a tick..i posted that!


  • is this like the Joy of Sex book for geeks?


  • What is that green growing stuff? And is it legal?
  • by toupsie ( 88295 ) on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @06:49AM (#2180232) Homepage
    (ok, Northern hemisphere residents at least) to distract you from the heat of summer and the cost of air conditioning

    Are you kidding me? NYC has been freezing this summer! It's an hour before noon on the last day in July and its only 71.1 F!!! So much for Global Warming, we are suffering from Global Mildness this year.

    Also I was very disappointed when I learned that the "Joy of Linux" didn't have any sexual positions for my AlphaStation to get it on with my PPC box under RedHat. I even tried this command:

    grep;touch:finger:finger:strip:unzip:mount -t wet dev/girl:fsck:fsckfsck:yes:yes:yes umount /dev/girl: zip:sleep

  • for the average IT guy, the "joy of sex" consists of a few self-administered minutes of looking at the SI swimsuit issue in their parents' bathroom.

    Surely this tired old stereotype is dead now? I know lots of IT guys - most of them are married + kids, etc. Anyway, if I was a teenage IT geek who still lived with my parents I'd be taking the laptop into the bathroom, not the SI swimsuit issue !

  • but what can you do when the heat's killing you...

    Go sit in the server room......mmmmmmmmmmm.....cooooool breeeeeeze

  • Slashdot hereby further encourages the Linux fetish without any depth or discussion ...

    Odd that you, a self-proclaimed "outsider" (I bet most people on this site are like me- ... on IE or AOL.") would take it upon yourself to criticize any aspect of interpersonal interaction within a "culture" you are "observing". Not only odd, but downright unscientific conduct for a self-styled " ... amateur sociologist ... ". May I have the e-mail address of the professor who teaches your class ... I'd like to send him a link to your post so he can properly grade the quality of your research.

    If you have been observing /. with an open and objective mind for any length of time, I am all but positive that you have reached a conclusion that there is no such thing as a "typical geek". I say I am all but positive because from my observation and participation in the community (and my admittedly prejudiced point of view) it is the only scientifically valid conclusion you can reach. The only three characteristics I can think of that all geeks seem to have in common are 1) overwhelming curiosity about *SOMETHING* (not necessarily limited to computers), 2) great flaming passion about their opinions on matters of which they may or may not have a significant degree of knowledge, and 3) they tend to be somewhat more literate and well-read than the average populace. In this lack of uniform, easily classified characteristics and tastes they are not significantly different from high school football players, cheerleaders, MDs, college professors, professional athletes, housewives and other "cultures" within our society.

    Geeks like sci-fi, poetry, adventure stories, horror fiction, non-fiction and autobiography. They like every single type of music that exists from country & western to grunge rock, techno-dance and heavy metal (Yep, all of them ... I've even met a few geeks who still think disco rulez. It's been my observation that quite a few geeks like classical music in the workplace, but maybe that's just a compromise solution). They dress in everything from t-shirts and jeans that need to be burned instead of laundered to three-piece suits costing more than a month's salary for some people. Linux "gurus" I'm personally acquainted with range in age from 14 to 56 ... I am 51. In terms of geekdom, I'd say I fall in the late teens-early adult age range because I didn't get HEAVILY involved with computers until the early 80's.

    I use linux, administer linux, Solaris and Tru64 for a living, and could give a rat's posterior whether it's cool or not.

    Now, go the fuck away before I REALLY get pissed.

    Do not meddle in the affairs of sysadmins,
  • Guess I'll need to reinforce my bookshelf a little bit more. I need to find something better looking then the pieces of old teliphone polls I'm using now anyway.
  • uh, I understand that some of my geek brethren fon't get out as much as they should (not passing judgment) but there are some of us that are quite geeky that get some often and not always the same girl and we still maintain our geekiness. and by the way what geek still uses paper to find inspiration? for the cost of a subscription to a magazine I can get a years worth of usually not so bad pr0n from cyberage. and i don't have to worry about the missus (whoever she might be) finding it cause she usually knows nothing about computers (certainly nothing about linux). just trying to take the edge off the sterotype. some folks seem to have forgotten that geek is chic these days.
  • Anyone ever see the old "Joy of Sex" book from the '70s? *shudder* The hairy heroin addict-looking-hippies they had in the illustrations... Could you imagine if that same book were done all with geeks? The pale skin... the "gallons of Coke and take out food" physique. And I'd hate to think of what they'd choose to do with a Leatherman and some cat5....
  • Crikey. So far I've managed to find out about
    • unix
    • minix
    • posix
    • aix
    • ultrix
    • hp-ux
    • xenix
    • irix
    • arix
    • a/ux
    • ctix
    • dvix
    • dynix
    • ep/ix
    • sinix
    • esix
    • eurix
    But not sex.

    Is it posix compliant? If I ask nicely?


  • LOL! I can always ask her. :-)

  • Don't forget folks, you can also pick up the Joy of Linux from our humble webstore. [geekculture.com]

    .... ya, sure it's a bit more expensive than from the big guys, but you can get it signed and personalized by Nitrozac and I, a neat-o Joy of Linux button (a secret bonus), as well as that Internet-famous Nitrozac ribbon and tissue wrapping.

    I now return you to your regular programming.
  • (ok, Northern hemisphere residents at least) to distract you from the heat of summer and the cost of air conditioning

    Are you kidding me? NYC has been freezing this summer!... So much for Global Warming

    Southern hemisphere Cape Town was 30 celsius today - and it's supposed to be winter here. Tell Mr. Bush we like the weird temperature changes, and the record droughts, and the record storms...
    mrBlond (I don't email from Malaysia)

  • oh joy! i nut-flex. oh, joy left unix. the july fox ion. -km
  • i will unrepentantly say that open source turns me on way more than awkward rhetoric on the gastrointestinal dangers of anal and poorly rendered watercolors of some washed-up boy model's flaccid genitals.
  • while i certainly see your point, i also think that by that rationale you could ask why we need more pornography.
  • Because it should be noted that the cartoons in this book are done by none other than the talented Nitrozac and Snaggy from The Joy of Tech! The review, as kind as it was, did not highlight their efforts nearly enough!

    Brian Proffitt
  • Jesus. I'm all for women's rights, equality, et al, but this all-encompassing, gender-inclusive, sexual-orientation-inclusive, language lawyer, political correctness stuff is absurd. Perhaps it should have read: "even if it's intended mostly as a mostly serious field guide to Linux nerddom for amateur anthropologists, like parents (including but not limited to heterosexual parents, single dads, single moms, divorcees, homosexual parents (gay or lesbian), and all permutations of trans-sexual parents), girlfriends, boyfriends, trans-gender heterosexual partners, trans-gender homosexual partners, eunuchs, hermaphrodites and bosses."

    Please excuse me while I vomit into my hat.

  • why not grandfathers and cousins?

    it's a suggestion, get over it...

    crap like this is exactly why women don't always get taken seriously... (and when it's crap like this, quite rightly so)

    if any of the male technobabes I know did currently have girlfriends, this would certainly be on their christmas list from me...

    don't be so damn literal...

    cos I just don't have the patience...

  • this is a book for the masses, metaphorically following The Joy of Sex, which was also for the masses...

    If you want Linux to be a serious player in the OS market, it's got to be used by more than the geek population... and that means getting information to the masses

    a large number of the WinNation have never even heard of Linux, let alone know anything about it...

    this is the sort of book to give to those people you know, who don't understand it...

    that means girlfriends, boyfriends, friends, parents, siblings, cousins, bosses, co-workers, janitors... just about anyone you know who uses Windows...

    if they don't know anything about it, they'll never switch to it...

  • its not about "mentioning everyone", its about "not excluding most people"

    and to not exclude them, they have to all be mentioned... this is where it gets silly...

    Why did I not mention grandfathers and cousins? Because they're not being excluded here

    Why not? they're not mentioned... which is your basis for the argument of sexism here...

    it's hardly a secret that the majority of readers at Slashdot are male, based on knowing your audience, I don't think this was a sexist comment. As a woman I didn't find it offensive. There are far more males than females here...

    There's a lot of guys out there who will give this book to their girlfriends, it's not a strange concept.

    Just because boyfriends weren't mentioned doesn't make them excluded.

    You can't mention every "group" all the time, whether it's the sexes or ethics groups or socio-economic groups...

    Second, how is "crap like this" the reason why women arn't taken seriously in the world of "geeks"?

    Not in regard to the world of geeks, but when serious equality issues are trying to be resolved, it's the nit-picking of things like this that people concentrate on, not the issue at hand, it trivialises serious battles, no matter on what ground they are being fought on.

    the way he was speaking implied to me that he sees "geeks" as only male

    This is where paranoia can cause a lot of problems, if you expect bigotry, you will in time create it. Attacking those who aren't trying to box people in, only creates resentment, towards you and the people you are trying to "protect".

    When you see something like this, try and think of it as being written by someone you know doesn't support sexism. Would you see it in another light? If so, you're projecting your own fears upon someone who may well not deserve it.

    Why is the average Tech salary for women $10,000 under men?

    Because governments still haven't passed laws on pay having to be equal between the sexes, until it's a law, don't think any company will choose to spend more money.

    That aside, there is also the issue that a lot of women abandon their careers to raise children, not just tech careers, but in general. Many men do this too, but not nearly as many as women. This does have an affect on wages earned.

    since replying to my comment is only an attempt to critisize someone on thier right to critisize

    I'm disagreeing with your opinion, not saying you don't have the right to your opinion, there's a big difference... again, paranoia is not your friend

    my comment might make someone realize that they should put more thought into the stereotypes they have

    What about the sterotype you have? that anyone who does not mention a female in a generalisation is being sexist?

    I'm probably getting more exasperated with regards to this topic as I see it brought up again and again at Slashdot (mostly by males as it turns out), and it's not done in a way that improves the relationship between the sexes, or offers solutions, it's usually blame and pointing the finger. This doesn't get anyone anywhere, especially the women you're trying so valiantly to defend...

    Just because someone isn't mentioned, doesn't mean they are excluded...

  • It's alright to love your operating system. Replacement keyboards are very inexpensive.
    "Linux is a cancer" -- Steve Ballmer, CEO Microsoft.
  • while [ 1 ];do

    # vi ./my_superduper_driver.c
    # cc -O2 -Wall -I/usr/src/linux/include -DMODULE -D__KERNEL__ -DLINUX -DEXPORT_DYMTAB -o ./my_superduper_driver.o ./my_superduper_driver.c
    # insmod ./my_superduper_driver.o

    invalid operand: 0000
    CPU: 0
    EIP: 0010:[<c01d3b95>]
    EFLAGS: 00010206
    eax: dffedf5c ebx: c190ef40 ecx: 0000000f edx: 8005003b
    esi: c190c000 edi: 00000001 ebp: 00000000 esp: dffedf54
    ds: 0018 es: 0018 ss: 0018
    Process swapper ( pid:1, stackpage=dffed000)
    Stack: 00000000 000004a3 00000001 c027b244 c02cd383 c0116fe7 00000493 000004a2
    00000005 00000c42 00000282 00000001 c02cd383 00000020 c01d4d82 c0266ece
    c0266ec7 00000493 c01d4d12 00000f40 c190e000 c190ef40 c190c000 c190ef40
    Call Trace: [<c0116fe7>] [<c01d4d82>] [<c01d4d12>] [<c01d4e0b7>] [<c01070e9>] [<c01074bc>]
    Code: 0f 11 00 0f 11 48 10 0f 11 50 20 0f 11 58 30 0f 18 4e 00 0f
    Aiee, killing interrupt handler
    Kernel panic: Attempted to kill the idle task!

    Ah DAMN !!! [reboot]


  • by canning ( 228134 ) on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @07:15AM (#2180253) Homepage
    It's alright to love your operating system, just as long as you don't LOVE your operating system.

  • Just my penny's worth of my experience. I've been following /. for well over a year but confess to still being a windows user. The main reason why I haven't got linux? I can't install it, firstly because I've only got a 2gb hd, and I'd need both doze and linux so it'd be a bit tight, and secondly because I can't afford to mess up the install and I'm afraid of doing it. Call me lame, look down on me, you have every right to, but an awful lot of people like me exist.

    I met a friend on icq who is a linux geek, and we were talking about how I knew nothing about computers (I really didnt- "name some operating systems" "...er...windows...mac...um...")but was desperate to learn. He simply told me to read /., which I have done ritually since, posting occasionally, hey I've even got a karma of 15 and lost count of the times I've had moderator points. And I have learnt from /. more than I could have hoped. I've learnt about the whole open source thing, and yes I'm a newbie in every respect, but every day I'm learning, and that's what /. is for.

    Nearly every book will have some sort of audience for which it is entirely suitable, and just like you need the mixture of stories on /. to appeal to different people, you need a variety of books, both light hearted and serious, to maintain a widespread interest in a subject and to keep it alive.

  • As I sit here, waiting for my DSL provider's tech support to pick up my call, I'm reading this article and thinking: why do we need another book on how great Linux is?

    Before you start writing my off as a half-wit, flame-baiting troll, let me explain myself. Books on how great Linux is have been around for, what, 6 years? I don't think that anybody that's an active part of the Linux community needs to reread yet another tome on the advantages of Linux. In the same vein, no non-Linux user considering a switch to Linux needs to read more than one or two articles (much less books) on the advantages of Linux to understand where the advantages lie in switching.

    Instead of seeing talents and efforts "wasted" on writing new books, I believe these individuals could be working towards a greater goal of writing a more intuitive UI for Linux. Or perhaps they would rather be teaching the masses how to use the OS. There are so many better uses for their technical prowess that I'm just left wondering, "Why?"

    Der Klempner

  • Yet another book for the outsiders. But is it really for the outsiders, are are most of the slashdotters actually outsiders?

    I bet most people on this site are like me- an amateur sociologist on IE or AOL.

    Slashdot hereby further encourages the Linux fetish without any depth or discussion..and I am concluding that slashdot is not for Linux users at all but is meant to humanize them to the outside world.

    Here's why..there is too much cultural stuff on this website for it to be anything other than a love letter to the Windows users of the world. I originally started reading it for discussion among linux users that wasn't quite so audience conscious, i.e. discussion without the filtering of marketroids. I was working on a sociology paper that involved "geeks" as it were, and I wanted to read something nonmediated to get a sense of their culture. But I have seen, over the year or so that I have been reading this site, many introductory books about Linux and very few discussions beyond that level.

    This is good for many people like the teenagers who are just getting into technology, etc. and yes, I know that this isn't the kernel-developemnt mailing list or anything. But perhaps we should abandon our pretensions and seriously discuss how many of us actually are using linux or have any interest in using linux, and how many of us are just trying to be cooler than thou.

  • I'm one of those Mac lovers [bbspot.com]!
  • This book [reedbooks.co.uk] was published in 1972. But this book [about.com] was published in 1931. The rip-off is more famous than the original, you're ripping-off a rip-off, and some of these "jokes" are almost 30 years old now.

    The older book is probably more useful to most of you anyway, since I'm sure you eat more frequently than you fsck.

  • Total troll-sh*t, but here I go, anyway...

    GNU/Linux was never intended to pull revenue from any market. The fact that it pulls any revenue for anyone is amazing.

    You just don't get it, do you. You cannot measure the success of any FSF or Open Source "product" like you would a for-fee product or service.

    GNU/Linux is successful in spite of the deterioration of its for-profit advocates. In fact measuring it's *real* success is absolutely impossible -- yet.

    My organization runs dozens of 24/7 servers with GNU/Linux. In the office we run almost a dozen workstations with GNU/Linux. The source of the OS for most of these is a couple of burned CD-Rs that someone brought from home!

    Thanks for trying to FUD us, but we simply know better. Shut up! already.

  • It's way the hell out of date in its attitudes towards homosexuality, contraception, and STDs, inlcuding AIDs.
  • Yeah, and all the pencil drawings were done by a famous SF artist (I forget his name). BTW the original is out of print and the updated version "The New Joy of Sex" has photos instead of line art. It's got savage reviews on Amazon, were they say it's as out of date as the original.
  • It's 2001. Do you love your operating system?

    Well, not yet, but I hear they're going to put out an RPM for that in 7.2...
  • I think we should all do what we are best suited to do to promote Linux. Perhaps this author's strength is in writing not programing a GUI.

  • by Talisian ( 442704 ) on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @07:33AM (#2180264)
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It helped me to understand the culture and history behind GNU/Linux and the open-source movement. Linux experts would most likely find it redundant but I think it is worthy of their attention anyway so that they can recommend it to others as I do.

    PS. This is my first post on slashdot :-)

  • Well, the cover is a takeoff of the "Joy of Sex" cover.

    Of course, there isn't a chapter on the pleasure of being a lone Linux user, or the pleasure to be had from networking 2 or more Linux "boxes" together in various ways. And the original Joy had pictures, not cartoons like in volume 2.
  • Yeah... actually, i'm a little SICK of the stereotype. I'm a good-looking guy, or so my beautiful girlfriend claims, and I've rarely been single since the age of 14 - yet i'm as big a geek as most here, bigger, in fact, now that /. has degraded (the same way RHPS's culture degraded). I think back in teh day the stereotype was largely correct - look at John Draper and his buddies, they're all socially inept ugly malfunctional individuals - thus having time to get into the deep deep deep stuff. but these days the deep and hard work has been done, mostly, the wheel has been invented - and we simply read a few books and then go do the things people have already figured out - so those of us with a life to live can still become 'gurus' and 'geeks'.
  • Ok. Peep my sexiness here [nitg.org] and hers here [nitg.org]. then take into account the fact that i just got hired last night as senior network architect for a new ISP. then tell me geeks don't have good-looks, hot girls, lives, etc :D
  • LOL she's tall, thin, flat sexy stomach, NICE rack and backside...

    she's also a turkish muslim (obviously westernized to an extent) so i doubt most guys would even get a 'hi' (although i don't know why a white american atheist such as myself is so lucky) let alone a 20-dolla-sucky-sucky
  • sure. i'm in charge of designing building and running the entire thing. the idea is to provide dialup access to office workers who wish to work from home - let their companies buy per-seat licenses to our network which has encrypted internet-carried connections to the office network. not geekish? you bet... or something. kthx. pics from wallet? har. :D you're just jealous n stuff k bye
  • uh no i haven't decided HOW to handle it yet but MS will not be part of the answer unless there is no other way :D
  • i sure do.. and i enjoy it. sense-of-self is critical to life - and the purpose and meaning of life is to find happiness for oneself. self-confidence, self-valuation, self-preservation - see a common theme? 'self'. yup, i'm a rational egoist, aka a whole man. having a big ego != arrogance. arrogance is undeserved egotism, and is usually coupled with a belief that you are inherently better than others - whereas rational egoism, also known as 'rational self-interest' is simply a belief that you are better than most others because of the choices you make and the way you manage your life - which, when you think about it, is entirely rational. we pass judgement on murderers, thugs, thieves, and other lower forms of life - why not on intellectual criminals, those people who willfully ignore the facts of reality (also described as 'refusing to think') :)

  • why girlfriends? What about boyfriends? This suggests that geeks are all males (or possibly lesbians?). I know this is nit-picky, but problems like this will never go away if people don't realize thier omnipresence.

  • As long as we can say "Assuming that geeks are males is perfectly all right", it will always be a safe bet, neh? What girl would feel accepted by a group that is comfortable with such statements? To answer your question, I don't write he/she whenever I'm reffering to "someone" because I typically am aware of thier sex. If I were to write about a stereotypical "geek" I would be tempted to write "he" since most "geeks" are guys, tho I don't find myself in this situation very often and typically try to avoid it. But if I were to refer, in general, to all geeks, I wouldn't speak in gender exclusive language. I don't characterize extreamly unfair stereotypes when I write. I'm not calling anyone an asshole here, I'm bringing this up because Sexism is a problem mostly because no "one" wants to deal with it. Its important to notice that people make unfair assumptions everyday.

  • dear lord.... now I remember why i never post on slashdot
  • Your excused. But I'd like to point out that I wasking asking for all whatevers to be represented here, just not 51% of the population to be excluded. "included", not "excluded".

  • sorry about the sp; I was typing to fast :)You're excused. But I'd like to point out that I wasn't asking for all whatevers to be represented here, just not 51% of the population to be excluded. "included", not "excluded
  • Why did I not mention grandfathers and cousins? Because they're not being excluded here... you people don't understand, its not about "mentioning everyone", its about "not excluding most people". Especially people who tend to be excluded from things like this.

    Second, how is "crap like this" the reason why women arn't taken seriously in the world of "geeks"? Do you mean to tell me that the reason students in the lab I work in come to me with questions more often than my female co-workers is because people have been pointing out instances where women are excluded as members of this techno-clique? People stereotype women as being less techo-saavy than men, that is wrong, and something needs to be done about it.

    Thirdly, I've been trying to figure out what it was about my comment that made so many people angry enough to reply. I'm not makeing some grand condemnation of the author, nor am I trying to label him as a sexist. I only made the comment because the way he was speaking implied to me that he sees "geeks" as only male, and this subconcious way of characterizing people is responsible for the weighted decisions people make against women. Why is the average Tech salary for women $10,000 under men? Its because of the same subconcious feelings about women in technology that would lead one to write the sort of comment I'm pointing out. So, what I'm saying is, we meerely need to "notice" comments like this, in order to insure we have the right ideas in our head rather than some stereotype which may lead us to make unfairly weighted decisions.

    so, if you have the patience to reply to my comments, maybe you should also have the patience to listen to comments which you may think are "too damn literal". Trust me, the latter is much more important, since replying to my comment is only an attempt to critisize someone on thier right to critisize (hypocrisy?), while listening to my comment might make someone realize that they should put more thought into the stereotypes they have and the times at which they may weight thier decisions.

    I'm not a feminist because I want to "pick up chicks" or impress people with my moral superiority or any bullshit like that (obvisuoly from the responses, thats not whats happening), rather I say things like this because I hate labels, stereotypes, biases, and other bullshit which represents an inconsistent and popular way of identifying and reasoning about individuals.

  • no one likes to have thier faults pointed out, right?(maybe thats why so many people post anonymously) The reason I don't like to post on slashdot is the utter lack of thought going on in these threads... I'm talking about predjudices here and someone had the gull to "prejudge" me as a prick trying to lie to pick up chicks...based on nothing but grand assumptions about liberals... You should care about this reason, you and your "we", which is, I'm guessing, anonymous cowards, because having inconsistent ways of thinking makes you more than just an improper moral judge, but also a bad programer ;)

  • The above post should have been prefaced with:

    Dear Penthouse Forum: I never thought something like this would happen to me, but dreams do come true...
  • It took me a while, but the "from the X dept" line on this means Happy Happy Joy Joy.

    (Had to find a Finnish dictionary)
  • by UnderScan ( 470605 ) <jjp6893@@@netscape...net> on Tuesday July 31, 2001 @08:06AM (#2180281)
    "How you doing' wit yo fine self?" gawk; talk; date; wine; grep; touch; unzip; touch; gasp; finger; gasp; mount; fsck; more; yes; gasp; umount; make clean; make mrproper; sleep
  • I'm sorry you have to hide it. I'm lucky enough to have one that likes p0rn as much as I do.

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. -- Wernher von Braun