March 19th, 2012


Shells and Jobs

Quick expanded thoughts on an online techie discussion on Unix shells:Collapse )

The style of his responses kinda bugs me, maybe like how diehard Mac fans get that Stolkholm Syndrome, or Amiga Persecution Complex, or .. well, what the OS/2 community was like. Some of this is of course a legitimate clash of values; for me, I want a lot of power and I want it as legally unencumbered as possible (hence preference for GPL) and with few gatekeepers (hence distrust of heavy-handed app stores). It's really the unnuanced "my chosen platform is the best at everything" reflexive fending off of legitimate criticism that bugs me. While Linux and the BSDs have been my happy home for many years, if asked about their problems I could probably manage many blog entries about design shortsightedness, poor implementation, socio-technical problems, and the like. While I think Apple's products should be avoided because they're bad for the state of the tech industry, I can talk at length about things they got right technically or UI-wise and about some of the positive effects Apple has done for the tech industry. When that nuance is lacking in others and they have a sports-team mentality towards the whole thing, there are few things more irritating.


To be a Radical

For someone who self-describes as a radical leftist, I sometimes find it strange how often I am defending (or at least explaining) the status quo to people online (where almost all of my political activity takes place). What does it really mean to self-identify as a radical, am I actually best categorised as one (if not, perhaps I should remove the identity), is it inconsistent with defending the fruits of civilisation or defending mainstream institutions?

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