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Linux.com: Waking Up

Jun 30, 2000, 11:57 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Rob Bos)

"Some days, you feel as if everything you've believed, for weeks, months, years, and decades, is suddenly wrong. You are forced to reevaluate what had been formerly held as an assumption beyond question. This happens in little things as well as large: when you suddenly grok a program in its entirety; or suddenly see the pattern, the order behind a system of organisation that formerly had been incomprehensibly vague and undefined."

"This is part of life. We take in information, think, build structures of thought unconsciously in our mind, and when suddenly that structure is complete, it bursts into our consciousness and changes everything. This feeling of completeness, of seeing the whole of a structure, is a fundamental part of understanding Linux. Out of chaos comes beautiful order. Vagueness turns into flexibility. Confusion turns into choice. Argumentation and hostility suddenly become diversity and productive conflict."

"Comprehending the overall structure of Linux isn't important. That comes in time. To understand it, start with the small things. Notice that every program keeps user-specific configurations in that user's home directory, and that every program keeps global configuration files in /etc. Understanding this is a good thing. Notice that all devices on your computer can be referenced in /dev."

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