Explaining FreeBSD features

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at toybox.placo.com
Wed Jun 22 07:26:27 GMT 2005

>-----Original Message-----
>From: Erich Dollansky [mailto:oceanare at pacific.net.sg]
>Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2005 5:57 PM
>To: Ted Mittelstaedt
>Cc: Fafa Hafiz Krantz; questions at freebsd.org; advocacy at freebsd.org
>Subject: Re: Explaining FreeBSD features

>I do not think that it the design of Windows which makes it target. It
>is the kind of support people with no knowledge get which makes it.

People pay for Windows, not for FreeBSD.  The support structures are
totally different because of this.  If support is what hinges on getting
the "no knowledge" people on board, then you may as well give up now
because your never going to be able to fund the kind of support structure
Windows has from FreeBSD.

>> This gives rise to a rather serious Catch-22 with FreeBSD:
>> You need to really understand intimately how FreeBSD works
>> and how computer software that runs on it works in order to
>> get it to work well enough for you to learn intimately how it
>> works.
>I do not think so.
>If people with no knowledge would get proper answers when they run into
>problems instead of the hint to read the manual would help a lot here.

Why should they?  If they were paying someone for FreeBSD support that
is one thing.  Nobody is getting paid to answer questions on the mailing
list and on Usenet, if a no-knowledge person asks a question that is
answered in the manual, then it is going overboard already, to even
tell them to RTFM.  They really shouldn't be asking questions if they
haven't RTFMed.

>What is the difference to FreeBSD if the system is running once?

Bringing a large number of ignoramuses on board who are dedicated to
continuing to be ignoramuses, does not help the FreeBSD project at
all.  It may help some people making money off servicing those people,
but otherwise they are deadweight.

You know, even raw newbies who have RTFM can help the FreeBSD project
by answering posts on the support forums with pointers to the manual!!

>There is no need for an interface like this if the people starting with
>no computer knowledge would get proper help just to get the machine up
>and running.

Proper help is in the manual, it is in my book, and in Greg Lehey's book,
and in several other books written by a number of people.  My book is
in the local public library, check it out!  So, I believe, is Greg's.
The official manual is online.  There are hundreds of web pages that
people have setup regarding FreeBSD installation that come up with

I am sorry you are going to have to do better than that.  The proper
help is out there, you just have to spend a little effort looking for it.

>Let it tell me this way. I have a neighbour who has a Ph.D. in biology.
>If she would give me the same answer when it comes to
>gardening, I would
>stop gardening as I do not want to know the background. All I want to
>know is how I can get rid of a special kind of pest.

I can only ask why do you bother to garden in the first place?  Without
that background, you don't know why the pesticide that she recommends
works.  And next season if it doesen't work, you don't know why either.

It's like the saying "give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach
him to fish and you feed him for a lifetime"  You just want the fish - I
want to feed myself for the rest of my life.

Sadly, your attitude is one of the reasons that the United States is
run into the ground by a bunch of religious conservatives these days.
people are just like you - they don't want to know anything about Stem
research, they just want to be told whether it's bad or not.

Honestly, before you knock it, you should try to understand how the world
works sometime.  It's really a better way to live.  Do you really want to
die like your distant ancestors did - not knowing why the rain falls, or
the wind blows, or the sun and moon rise and set?  Should the human
strive for an advanced technological society where all the members have
absolutely no clue as to how anything they use in their daily life even
Are we to become a society of infants, with the machines taking care of
because we do not understand how they operate?


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