"Dave Neary was at college in his native Ireland in the mid
1990s when he discovered free software. He had "managed to get
through a maths degree doing very little programming", and went on
to do a research degree in image analysis where the ability to
program became an essential part of his work. He remembers 'turning
to a friend and saying: 'I understand that these things are
variables but what's the star thing in front of the variable name?'
When he stopped laughing he told me, and that's how I discovered
"'The piece of software I was working on would only compile on
UNIX so I ran an X-Server on my Windows desktop until somebody said
'You're not using Windows. Why don't you just install Linux and be
done with it?', and I had to say 'Linux, what's that?'"