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Ask An Ordinary Teenage Slashdot User

Roblimo posted more than 13 years ago | from the voices-from-the-gallery dept.

Linux 475

These interviews have gotten pretty celebrity-oriented lately. To break the routine, this week's guest is an unknown, 15-year-old, Linux-using, Slashdot-reading high school sophomore named Clinton Ebadi I met at a local LUG meeting. Clinton's mom, who drove him to the meeting (his first), was happily surprised to find that there was a large group of people (of all ages) out there who instantly accepted and respected her son; his relatives, teachers, and classmates looked at him and saw nothing but a slightly strange, slightly pudgy loner. So ask Clinton anything you like about being a kid geek (a living, breathing Katz character, you might say) or anything else, including MentalUNIX or the ncurses-based front end he's working on for Splay. Post questions for Clinton below. We'll send him 10 selected ones by e-mail, and expect his answers within a week or so.

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Question (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#1416944)

What is your favorite color?

Re:GF? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#1416945)

The kid is a 15 year old linux nerd who has his mom drive him to meetings of other local linux nerds. You figure it out, tex.

Are you a nerd, a geek, or just a regular guy? (1)

mfh (56) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416947)

I'm 17 and I'm a senior in high school. I've been using Linux since about the age of 13 or 14, when I was a freshman. Probably not unlike yourself, I learned to program basically through books and peer support. Long hours in front of the computer, yadda yadda yadda.

My grades aren't shitty, but aren't that great either. B average. That means I got as many Cs as I did As :)

I started my current programming job when I was 15, before I could drive. I don't know anyone in my school who has the same skillset or mindset as I do, but I see all sorts of people like myself online. Such as you.

I don't know why, but I'm not considered a "nerdy" person in school. I know I sound incredibly ... stupid when I say this, but I'm not a nerd. My skillset isn't very exciting or unique at all (i have no especially 31337 sk1llz, d00d), but it gets the job done and my friends think I'm a god. I don't think I fit the typical nerd-geek-in-high-school social stereotype, either. I'm wondering if the majority of high-school Linux users are total all-out socially reclusive nerds or are rather regular folks that happen to have a high-tech hobby.

I think I fall into the latter category. I enjoy other activities aside from coding, etc, such as snowboarding and playing the guitar and piano. I have plenty of friends (male and female!) from all sorts of cliques, ranging from the football team to the color guard to even the car club (!) at school. My friends say I'm a fun guy to be around because I make people smile and laugh.

So what about you? Which category do you fit into? Would you say that you're a nerd (socially reclusive, awkward around members of the opposite sex, completely inundated with your passions), a geek (enthusiastic about your passions, but still know how to have a good time with others, possibly only others with the same interests, not socially awkward), or just a regular guy with a high-tech hobby like me?

Personally, I wish there would be more of my type in school. I think I'd have more fun talking with them and spending time with them instead of seeking them out and digging them out of their holes just to have a conversation with me.

- Mike Hughes

Rant (1)

Langley (1015) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416950)

No offense to Clinton, I'm sure he is a nice kid and all, but who gives a fuck what he thinks!

I honestly can't believe that people are interested in this interview.

"These interviews have gotten pretty celebrity-oriented lately."

Of course they have! It is not so much the celebrity that attracts us to the interviews, but the fact that they obviously did something to earn that celebrity.

If I wanted to find out what a 15 year old kid thinks about anything, I'd go onto any number of chat rooms arywhere on the internet and ask them! Or maybe just post an 'Ask Slashdot' question, to hear their responses.

Slashdot has really been hanging by a thread lately with its articles, but why must you make it blatently obvious that you have no news to print at all!?

That being said, my question is: what is your stance on the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933?

Do you hate school? (1)

defile (1059) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416952)

I hated school. The last thing that my schools seemed interested in was providing an education. I constantly pressed them for more information and better classes, but 95% of the time "advanced" classes meant that there were more opportunities to do busy work to try to make your college application look good.

There were days where I'd just skip school and instead hang out at the library all day. In retrospect, I wish I had dropped out of school instead of graduating before I went to work (to hell with college, I wasn't going to start paying for "education"). Do you feel this way? And if not, why?

Re:Reactions (1)

Kenyon (4231) | more than 14 years ago | (#1416958)

HA! Some brainkid. He can't even spell "experienced".

Re:Real post... (1)

FiNaLe (4289) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416960)

I remember way back when...
The kernels were 2.0
The year was 1997
I was 12 and a Highschool freshmen

I remember staying up all saturday night editting X-Windows configuration files by hand. BTW this was slackware, so none of that wussy automatic stuff. No Gnome, KDE, I used LWM [] as a window manager. Very Functional and Very Fast. I have to say looking back I'm very proud of my traditionalist approach.
Right now I'm running Mac OS on the ol' G3 Powerbook, No After Effects or lightwave for linux / however no blender for the mac ('till OS X), But I'll be eagerly awaiting OS X.

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

aphr0 (7423) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416969)

heh. That's not half as bad as Trick Daddy's album titled [] . Song 1 - Log on. Song 16 - Log off. Be sure to check that album cover art; top quality artistry there.

Are you offended? (1)

juuri (7678) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416970)

By being called a "living breathing Katz character"?

I sure as hell would be.

wow, could you be more self-absorbed? (1)

forkboy (8644) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416971)

Who says you need to be a celebrity to be asked questions that the slashdot crowd would like to know the answers too? The majority of us here were in the same place as this kid is now, and would love some insight into how things work geek-wise in high school these days. Not only for the US readers, but many foreign readers seem interested too. Damn, dude, get off your high horse. If you're not interested in the review, don't read it.

My Question (1)

Nameless (8793) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416972)

Clinton --

Hello, my name is Cory, and I'm just finishing (or at least imagine that I'm just finishing) the stage your are in now. I'm 19 now, done with High School and working full time leading development on e-commerce software. I offer this information merely as a reference for my questions:

Do you feel that your peers (teachers/students) make an attempt to understand you? While in HS, I got a very distinct feeling that no one (parents/teachers/admin./ect) even made an attempt to connect with me. Eventually, I got over the feeling of constant rejection ... I'm wondering if you are experiencing similar feelings, or if your community is more open to people of our interests, and how you feel that acceptance (or lack thereof) has changed your feelings about technology.

Are you socially active in HS? I had 0 friends in HS, but had many friends who were older/younger, however, almost none of my friends were my own age. I'm wondering how you interactive with your friends, and what kind of people are they.

Do you feel that people older than you (especially those people in authority positions, teachers /HS admin.) distrust you because of your abilities and intelligence? While I was in HS, I was constantly under suspicion of causing various computer malfunctions, and was even suspended a few times for things I wasn't involved in. Do you feel a similar backlash at school?

Where do you intend to go after HS is done? I haven't made my mind up, but College looks less and less attractive each day. I have a job I like, new job offers almost daily, my own house, privacy, etc. I live in a college town, and from what I see of the social scene / "education" it seems barely better than HS (only with more alcohol involved.) What are your thoughts?

Athens, OH
Nameless ((

Social surroundings? (1)

earthy (11491) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416975)

First a bit of background: I'm 25 and therefore technically one generation older than you are. However, my little sister is 15, so technically in your generation. My little sis and I get along splendidly, but then again, she always had two older brothers to hang around with. She also gets along fine with people her own age, and is really very much a 15-year old.

As I am the oldest in my family, when I was fifteen I had no such 'luck'. I have always been youngest in class, and always spent time with people at least roughly a year older than I was. Therefore I was always striving to keep up, and usually succeeding... but for the social aspects of life.

Anyway, I was wondering, what are the ages of the people you regularly hang out with?
And what do you think of people that are your age?

Languages. (1)

Requiem (12551) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416979)

What's your favourite programming language, and why?

Re:The Three Most Important Questions Ever (1)

Whizard (25579) | more than 13 years ago | (#1416994)

Who are you?
What do you want?
And where the hell are my pants?

Re:an interesting subject (1)

ff (35380) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417011)

Okay, I have a question for limpdawg.
Who is your greatest inspiration in life?

finding a date (1)

SquierStrat (42516) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417015)

Being a teen geek myself, I have a horrid time finding a date! Do you have such troubles? If yes does it bother you? If no, what's your secret????!!!!

How did you get into computing in the first place (1)

I_redwolf (51890) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417018)

I mean; I'm 20, 5 yrs off of yah and I system admin for well respected companies. Right now i'd feel pretty much at ease job security wise but I haven't finished college yet (associates). I also am a "weekend warrior" and do military intelligence crap once a month. My question to you is how did you get involved with computers? For me I fit all the geek attributes of being A-SOCIAL etc etc and i'm a minority so "geekness" crosses all boundaries. I went through the bbs'n, 2600 meeting (the plaza in nyc ), windows sucks, OS/2 rocks, hrmm whats this Linux thing phase. After I installed slackware (at kernel version 1.2.13) I knew that I loved unix. Then I had to get my hands on every unix like system as Digital Unix was far from my grasp. In any event, i'm sure its been alot different for you and I'd love to hear how you started your trek. I thank a computer programmer from IBM back in Dec 94 for showing me linux. I don't know where I would be had it not been for that. SO what about you?

Electoral Dysfunction (1)

ktakki (64573) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417025)

Did the recent presidential election fiasco make you as cynical about politics as Watergate did when I was your age?

Or is politics irrelevant to you?

Do you have the same low-level anxiety about terrorism or AIDS that I had about the Cold War and nuclear annihilation when I was a teenager?

Or do you feel safe?

"In spite of everything, I still believe that people
are really good at heart." - Anne Frank

Education (1)

McSnickered (67307) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417031)

Continuing with the recent /. threads regarding the usefulness of High School and College educations, do you personally see your current secondary educational experience as a help or hinderance to your all-around development (social, intellectual, prankster...etc). Do you plan to go on to college because you want to, because you see it as a necessary evil, or do you see the college experience as a waste of time considering your current skills?

Re:I know curiosity killed the cat.. but (1)

po_boy (69692) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417036)

"Old habits die hard . . . thats why I got that oozie from Walmart" - Nadine Edwards

do you mean "uzi"?

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

nuggz (69912) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417037)

The mainstream stuff today is manufactured shit. Britney Spears N Sync and crap is just put together by a production team to make $$$$.

Real bands are out there, they just don't have the marketting behind them.

Re:drug use? Drugs suck (1)

cultobill (72845) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417044)

Personally I think not only should they legalize drugs but the government should also subsidize it. People who want to do drugs are going to do it regardless of whether it's legal or not. So you make it cheap enough so the people who are going to abuse em can easily buy enough to overdose themselves. We clear the world up of some otherwise losers, and we save money on fighting a war and treating a disease that we'll never win. This is all part of the platform for my political party..."The lotto reform" party. In addition to the drug subsidization we also want to reform this corrupt lotto system, I have been playing for a year now and I still haven't won millions. Vote for me as president and I'll make sure that these astronomical odds are brought down to levels where you and I can all benefit. [ Reply to This | Parent ] Personally I think not only should they legalize drugs but the government should also subsidize it. People who want to do drugs are going to do it regardless of whether it's legal or not. So you make it cheap enough so the people who are going to abuse em can easily buy enough to overdose themselves. We clear the world up of some otherwise losers, and we save money on fighting a war and treating a disease that we'll never win. This is all part of the platform for my political party..."The lotto reform" party. In addition to the drug subsidization we also want to reform this corrupt lotto system, I have been playing for a year now and I still haven't won millions. Vote for me as president and I'll make sure that these astronomical odds are brought down to levels where you and I can all benefit.

Umm, other than the lotto thing, you have a good idea. Another reason to government-subsidise it: make shitloads of money. Honestly. Cut that deficit down, way down, with the combined money made from: no war on drugs, and revenue from drugs, like the taxes on alcohol and tobacco. Tax it just like those, and all is good.

Re:an interesting subject (1)

limpdawg (77844) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417047)

I would have to say that my greatest inspiration to do the things I currently do was the associate pastor of my church, whose paying job was as a systems analyst at Boeing, it was through his family that I got introduced to the Internet, BBSes, warez, and all that good stuff associated with computers. My family bought their first computer from him, and I got several games for free, like the Quest for Glory series from his son. Ultimately this led up to my installing Linux in 1996 at the end of my freshman year in high school.

Roblimo's new low (1)

MicroBerto (91055) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417057)

...slightly pudgy loner.

Congratulations, Rob.

What a nice guy you are. I mean it. I'm not being sarcastic. Really! This is one of your best ever!

Mike Roberto
- GAIM: MicroBerto

Re:Real post... (1)

JJC (96049) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417062)

pan [] is a free newsreader which looks/works a lot like Agent for Windows. It uses NNTP servers directly like you would in Windows, without you having to worry about keeping a news spool etc. etc. Anyway, here's the
full feature list [] . If this is the only thing holding you back, I'd suggest you give it a try. (There are of course other UNIX news readers that would probably fit your needs, but I'm just promoting the one I use)

Re:The Three Most Important Questions Ever (1)

stu72 (96650) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417063)

Wasn't it the thrust to weight ratio? Sparrow/Swallow? I can't remember anymore.. I used to have the whole thing memorized - so much for my teen years.

Re:If you were stranded on a desert island (1)

bobv-pillars-net (97943) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417065)

Depends on what kind of network connection the desert island had. 56k? T-1? T-3? Fiber?

Re:my question (1)

cerulean (99519) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417067)

Instantly accepting and respecting someone is called `being friendly', in my opinion.

Maybe you place a very very high value on the meaning of respect, as in "to consider worthy of high regard", but respect can also mean "to refrain from interfering with". As for accept, in this context, I think it means " to give admittance or approval to" or "to regard as proper, normal, or inevitable". So what's wrong with people who instantly accept and respect someone?

From my point of view, accepting and respecting someone instantly simply means you don't make fun of them instantly, and you don't turn them away. There's plenty of time to disrespect and reject people once you know for certain you don't like them-- there's no reason to get a head start on it.

Would you care to explain yourself more clearly?
How is respecting someone by default detrimental to the respector?

Re:But IQ tests are unfair! :) (1)

Tuba (107057) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417076)

When I was drafted - and no, I didn't end up in the army, the first time I've had a use for my bad back ;-) - the army representatives actually tried to talk me into joining anyway. They said I'd make an exellent officer, as my results in their combined IQ/psych-test was the best they'd seen in a few years.

The value of the above statement = 0

Why?, well, first of all I know several people who are way smarter than me, even though they'd probably do worse on the test. Basically IQ-test aren't worth the paper they're printed on ;-)

For those of you perplexed by the whole draft issue (no, not british beer...), I'm from Denmark. We do not have an entirely professional army, actually some 40% (AFAIR) are draftees - now does that suck or what? Would any /.'ers wan't to crawl in the mud, when they could be in front of their computer?

But to get back OT.... I've been that kid once, and believe me, I wouldn't want to change a bit if I had the opportunity. Geeks/Nerds/Whatever actually end up as quite "normal" people in time, it just takes a few more years to get there. Not that we stop doing what made our peers consider us geeky, rather those things end up being valued rather more when the afore mentioned peers finally grow up. When I was 15, no girl would even think of dating me. Now that I'm 21, they've started to show a bit of interest - just too bad (for them) that I'm engaged to one who didn't mind last year ;-)

To round of this insane rant, a quote from Scott Adams' "The Dilbert Principle":
"While it is true that many normal people would prefer not to date an engineer, most normal people harbor an intense desire to mate with them, thus producing engineerlike children who will have high-paying jobs long before losing their virginity."

The script kiddie stage (1)

strlen (117515) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417084)

Ok, this is serious. Common prejudice stats that all the teen age geeks are script kiddies -- I totally disagree with that; but I do think that many new hackers have went through the script kiddie stage and have evolved from that into a UNIX geek. Have you?

Re:Rant (1)

kill-hup (120930) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417091)

The Glass-Steagall Act prohibits banks from offering a full range of financial services and prevents securities and insurance firms from accepting deposits or affiliating with deposit-taking institutions. The goal of the proposals is to give financial institutions the flexibility they need to most efficiently allocate capital and to compete in the international marketplace while also ensuring the safety of the financial system. Key themes in the committee's work will include devising a simplified regulatory structure, the distribution between banking and commerce, and the structure under which their affiliation may take place. The 104th Congress introduced legislation to repeal the Glass-Steagall Act, but agreement could not be reached largely because of a dispute regarding the extent to which banks should be regulated in order to market insurance products =)


Re:The Three Most Important Questions Ever (1)

ekidder (121911) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417093)

I prefer:
Who are you?
What do you want?
Why are you here?
(and, of course, Where are you going?)

X versus console (1)

mauddib~ (126018) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417109)

I see you're working on a textbased application (based on ncurses).

I wondered: do you stick to programs like mutt, vi, ircii/bitchx, tin, w3m/lynx etc., or do you use their gtk/qt equivalents?

I find this interesting, because: more and more new posix compatible operating systems users get sticking to these X based tools, and totally leap over the /real/ power of these systems: console based apps (which work over telnet, ssh, don't need themes to look good and are quicker to use). Please note: this is all IMHO :]

Success (1)

markwusinich (126760) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417113)

In every task there are two options: You may think you will be successful, or you may think you will not be successful. Either way you are probably right. If you could improve your ability to do any one thing, What would it be?

being a teen geek... (1)

dr4ma (131729) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417119)

i found it very hard being a geek teen, i grew up with lots of "friends" that were not, mainly "friends" because of the drug relativity. i didnt like drugs anymore and lost all of my so called "friends" and locked myself in my moms home for 2 years (15-17) only emerging for cigarettes and caffiene junk food. i was always in search of young geeks like myself that liked programming, liked unix/linux and other things. I finally found one the day i really emerged from the pit of my room, one of my sisters friends that i had worked with when i was 13, at the time we hated each others gutz, now we are best friends, he is 1 of like 4 people i would concider friends. plus getting my first tech job at 18, i made a few more older geek friends and 1 more thats my age. if i had to go back and do it all again, few things i would have changed, saying goodbye to dad (died when i was 12) and not doing so many drugs and would have gotten rid of aol quiker. also learned more perl, cgi, c, and other programming an sys admin stuff. being a geek teen sucks sometimes, you you always have the online community. =) where you will find nicer kinder peoples.

your peers? (1)

sparkane (145547) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417125)

Could you comment on your peers?

A little background motivation for this question: I am in my early 30s, and have been under the growing realization that I really have no idea what kids go through in growing up now; having been a teen when Duran Duran was in its heyday doesn't seem like the best of credentials. I've also been starting to realize that the young are somewhat (or more than that for some) frightening to those not young, as is anything that becomes alien. But the strange thing about the young becoming alien is that we all weren't alien to it, once.

With that in mind, I am interested in hearing your perceptions of the kids your age, even (maybe especially) those with whom you are not friends (though I'm not inviting you to rant :). I am intersted in hearing what you perceive as their wants and needs, their dreams and ambitions, their anxieties. I realize this is a big question but I don't want you to pose as a spokesperson for your generation, just to hear your own (perhaps biased) perceptions of these things.

Many thanks and much good fortune to you, sparkane

I know curiosity killed the cat.. but (1)

DeICQLady (150809) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417126)

The media, teachers, grownups in general like to think of our generation as apathetic, the recent disappointing turnout of youngin' for the e(gulp)lections among other things. Other than geeks you've known and talked to, is this apathy a general consensus or is there something more to it (in your opinion)?

PS: What I tell myself when people try to screw me over, is "wait till you come bangin at my company door, beggin for a job... I'll have security escort you off my property..."

Naughty boy (1)

Orome (159034) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417138)

Do you masturbate ?

The Future! (1)

TheLocustNMI (159898) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417139)

My question is this: You, as a young geek, are faced with a world and workplace that is recovering from the boom of the internet. Things seem to be calming down now, for the most part, or at least coming down to a reasonable level.

Where do you see yourself in a couple of years?

In college, at work, independently wealthy?

Does the internet still hold a promise to the younger geeks as much as it does (or did) to us, the older? Is it still as much of a wide-open terrain?

Question (1)

RazorJ_2000 (164431) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417144)

Given that you're half my age and you have a much younger generation's perspective and beliefs, where do you think computing and virtual experience will be in 10 years?

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

natenate (172771) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417149)

When I was 15, my father said, "how can you listen to this? It's noise! There's no melody, it's just boom boom boom!". He was talking about the Beatles. Today, I am horrified to find myself saying the same thing about all rap/hip-hop/whatever, Britney Spears, N Sync, and just about everything else I hear that's been recorded recently.

It's not your age. There is just very little originality and creativity in mainstream pop music today. I'm 17, and I wonder how some of my friends can stand listening to god-awful shit like Creed, Third Eye Blind, Kid Rock, blah, blah, blah... They all sound exactly the same, like shit.

Stereotypes (1)

Sebastopol (189276) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417165)

When I was in HighSchool (86-90), the main stereotypes pretty much followed the 5 set down by John Hughes in "The Breakfast Club" (nerd, jock, freak, hoodlum, princess). There were very very few minorities in my school, so everything matched the mold w/o much deviation.

Has any recent movie captured the stereotypes of today's public schools? If so, what movies, and what are the generalizations/stereotypes most prevelant?


Are things getting worst for teens? (1)

Big Torque (196609) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417168)

When I was a freshman in high school in 1984 things started to change the drinking age harder standards for grades more and harder crackdowns on drug use by teen. There seemed to be more willingness to trail minors as adults. It all seemed to me them and now as very mean spirited as a angry reaction by conservatives right wingers to stop what ever. By contrast my best friend who is 5 years older and by father who is 25 years older seemed to go to high school in a time of kid will be kids. They seemed to get more concern from their adults than iron fist orthodoxy. How is it for you now? To me it seems even worst now than then.

Question for the list (1)

Pru (201238) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417171)

If you are dabbeling in Linux, you most likely know a good set of the basics of computers and networks as a whole. What sort of role do you play at school with computers? Do you go to a school where they put tons of security and filters up, if so do you circumvent any to do what you need to do? Have you ever had any problems or been held back because of your schools computer or network policy?

Question (1)

Pru (201238) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417172)

Do you find it hard to get the resources to continue to learn programming/linux/computers, resources like new computers, second computers for os experiments, and computer books dont come cheap. Do you ever have a hard time fitting them into the budget?

Re:drug use? (1)

Marc2k (221814) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417184)

Stay away from a drug called PHP though, that stuff will rot your brain.

Re:Reactions (1)

Marc2k (221814) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417185)

Considering yourself smarter than most people isn't necessarily a bad thing, particularly if you have a low self-worth/self-esteem otherwise. However, with that mentality, it _is_ easy to begin thinking of yourself as better than most other people. Although, "Brainkid" is rather over the top...

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

ilschiz (222945) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417187)

as a 16 year old, i'd say you are for the most part right
personally, i dont like the beatles to much, but thats probably because the only drugs i do is the occasional pot smoking
the new bands you speak of (N'sync, britney spears, etc) do suck REALLY badly. i dont get how any1 could like them/respect their music either.
There are some good new bands tho.. bands i personally like are fear factory, rage against the machine, praga kahn, lords of acid, orbital.. others. All those bands are slightly older than the little pop bands you speak of. a pretty good rule is usually 'if they are own tv, they suck'.. although i dont watch tv anymore, heh :P

also, i like a lot of older bands. led zeppelin, the doors, pink floyd.. amazingly good music.

i find i'm a small minority though.. most people love those pop bands, buy all their music..
one thing i have noticed among those people is that, not that i have much of a right to judge them, but they seem very immature. ::shrug::, my opinion, at least...
hope this answers your question.

Do your classmates know what is GNU,Linux? (1)

xcyber (228841) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417191)

Do your classmates know what is GNU,Linux? or any other free softwares? do u face difficulties when explaining to them that you love linux?

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

litui (231192) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417199)

I can't listen to too much Creed, but there are a few songs I like. Higher, included. What's This Life For is another. I like music for the feel and the words usually. And if the words suck, it better damn well feel good. And I'm not in it for the Jesus pushing either.

Re:What are you listening to? (1)

litui (231192) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417200)

Well, I wasn't there in the 70s, but I can vouch for the fact that "popular" music in this time period is not decided on by the masses. Instead, it is decided on FOR the masses. Britney Spears isn't the result of an audience that loved her music; she's the result of an audience that will allow the media to dictate to them what is "cool" and what isn't. Those of us who have been raised to not be "sheep" tend to listen to music that suits our interests, ponderances, et cetera. Whereas the programmed media children listen to that which is put in front of them. Yeah. Prime example of letting the TV and society raise your kids.

Record companies sell artists like Britney Spears because they know it'll catch on like the Barbie complex. Little girls will listen to it because all their friends do and because there's a commercial for it every ten seconds. Little boys will listen to it because of the yet unrealized facination with the opposite sex. It's made to sell. Sure, some people may actually LIKE the music. And that's fine, but this kind of manufactured fanatacism isn't right.

Ah well. I'll stick to my Moxy Fruvous, Barenaked Ladies, Collective Soul, and They Might Be Giants and act oblivious to whatever else is going on.

Re:Time Management? (1)

litui (231192) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417202)

Simple, I DID have to repeat my senior year ;)

Q: (1)

gnudutch (235983) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417204)

Do you plan on going on to college, or doing your own thing for a while? Attending college does have its benefits (a degree for one), the great ones seem to drop out early and strike it big on their own. Or is it too early to tell?

Programming Languages and other stuff (1)

SevenSeasOfRhye (239196) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417208)

Most of the programming languages are, IMHO, absolute crap.
They kill your creativity.
What are your opinions about this?
Also, have you ever tried PROLOG or LISP?
If you have, how do you think they compare with the others?
NB:This is meant to gain an insight into your mind, not for my information (I have tried everything I've asked you about).

Secondly, as someone posted earlier, what do you think about this PEER driven materialistic society?
Don't get me wrong. I'm not a Sadhu on his way to Nirvana.
The point is I'm 17 and I find that most of the people around me are un-interested in matters like global warming, pollution, the population explosion etc. All they really care about are Babes, money, booze, sex, bitching about how Engineering college sucks and the works .
Which side of the fence do you belong to?
If you do belong to mine, have you managed to deal with this (in your own mind?).

Thats it.


WebWiz (244386) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417218)

Who would you rather make out with:

Jack Nicholson or Demi Moore?

"Who let the dogs out" --> Will someone explain this to me?

Re:A geek for all ages. (1)

Tin Weasil (246885) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417227)

Sorry. When I was 15, a 300bps modem was something to get teary-eyed about (I didn't get my first 2400Bps modem until I was 23). And Macs had just gotten on the Market in 1985, so most of us thought that they were cool, or at least cooler then the IBM PCjr.

Geeks outlook (1)

uknutter (248148) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417228)

How do normal non-geeks view you as a person? Are you accepted for who you are at school? Do you ever wish you were just normal, if there is such a thing? Could you live without computers and technology? If you could be a programming language which one would you be and why?

Re:an interesting subject (1)

Dr.NickRiviera (251701) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417236)


First, let me tell you that I've watched your non-coding, teenage career with much interest, and it's a pleasure to have the opportunity to interview you.

And now the questions.

The handle 'limpdawg'...brilliant. How did you come up with that one? Personally, I lack the creativity to invent unique handles, thus the only handle my inferior intelect was able to invent was that of a popular Simpson's character. I regret my choice every day of my life.

Judging by your user info page, you have only recently emerged on the Slashdot comment posting scene. Why the long wait in posting? I, for one, have been eagerly awaiting the opportunity to engage in thoughtful conversation (as we are now).

Allow me to again express how fortunate I feel in being granted this interview.

Seriously, though. There seems to be some controversy around the timing of your Slashdot debut. What is your response to the people who claim that your debut is, rather conveniently, timed just after the death of 300 chinese in a horrible christmas fire [] . Are these people to believe that it is mere coincidence?

Thank you, and god bless.

Re:Are you a nerd, a geek, or just a regular guy? (1)

celerity02 (256071) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417241)

I'm wondering if the majority of high-school Linux users are total all-out socially reclusive nerds or are rather regular folks that happen to have a high-tech hobby.

I have also wondered this. I'm an almost-17 year old female who is big into computers in general and Linux and the open-source world specifically. Taught myself HTML by getting books out of the library on it when I was 12. I discovered Linux and installed my first Linux system back when I was 13 or so.

I'm still learning - through things like helping to sysadmin the Linux server at my church, messing around with my personal Linux box, etc etc etc - but I find Linux very interesting (and much better than Windoze). I also plan on teaching myself how to program soon. I know the basics of a few languages, but not much.

Socially though, I'm also considered a well-balanced person, lots of friends, co-editor of school newspaper, one of the yearbook editors, and involved with the student government at my school. So for me at the moment, this computer stuff is really a hobby I guess, although a very consuming hobby. It certainly isn't the only thing I do.

So do other high school users just do this for a "hobby"? Or do you find that this turns into an all-encompassing way of life?

Re:Stick with it Kid! (1)

GodInHell (258915) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417259)

All hail discordia!
Hand me a hot dog roll now.

Hang In There. (1)

sharkbiter (266775) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417284)

Do you ever feel that even though the other people are your age physically, they have the mental IQ of a carrot? This isn't a joke question. At 16 I was a tall, skinny, and clumsy person. Classes were too slow, few teachers could reach me. Tests were a breeze, libraries consumed most of my time. Granted that the times were different, and that the liberal encroachment of the minority societal kneebiters not as extent as today. My "peers" were a bunch of ignoramuses who would rather destroy than to build. But that is the essence of youth, is it not? They couldn't see ahead one day much less a whole lifetime. Ah cartharsis! Ah epiphany! It wasn't until I left the old hometown and got in with a bunch of more likeminded individuals that the party really began. A bit much to ask your average sixteen year old maybe, but I've met a lot of really intelligent youngsters since my days as one. I truly enjoy seeing that there are "serious" youths out there. I wish you the best of luck in future, and don't let the dark side of technology pull you in. I've also seen enough bright individuals sucked in to that trap as well. Am I not right, K?

Re:Activities/Clubs (1)

Blackthorne_S (303278) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417296)

Hey Just though I would mention as a high school junior what clubs i'm part of. Right now most my time is in working on my schools entry for US First but I'm also part of the anime club at school.

my question (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#1417297)

Roblimo said that your mom was happy to find people "out there who instantly accepted and respected her son." Do you agree that people who instantly accept and respect someone for any any reason are stupid and not worthy of our praise? Blindly respecting someone based on any reason - is a form of prejudice and a detrimental one to the respector - don't you agree?

What is... (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#1417298)

...the meaning of life? Be concise and brief.

Re:What are you listening to? (2)

jafac (1449) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417302)

to quote David Bowie.

"Cha cha cha changes
Turn and face the strange,
whoa look out you rock 'n rollers
Pretty soon you're gonna get older. . ."

Yeah, I looked forward to that when I was a teenager, then I listen to what's coming out, and I moan, why does it have to suck so?! Is this just me being an old fart? hating new music because it's different from old, from what I'm used to, from what I grew up with, experienced my glory years with? The music that I lost my virginity to, the music that I puked a bottle of peppermint schnapps to -

Or does this new stuff actually truly really suck?

I think it sucks. In the empirical sense.

Your Education (2)

thegrommit (13025) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417320)

I'm assuming that you're not perfectly happy and intellectually challenged by your current classes.

How would you go about improving the education you've received?

Re:my question (2)

Soko (17987) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417323)

I think, Mr. AC, that this may be a question of understanding. Your question is valid, but is perhaps a bit out of context, and somewhat trite in nature.

Clinton's mom found him among like-minded intelligent people, who understood her son's needs and wants, where he could actually interact socially instead of being looked at as "different" or "weird". From the links Roblimo provided one would assume that he's writing a front end for a command-line MP3 app and helping to build a new Linux distro from the ground up. To any geek that met Clinton, this would be worthy of a fair amount of respect. Initially, anyway.

Pehaps your question would have been better phrased as "How difficult was it to be acepted by your fellow geeks, even though you're only 15 years old? Did they treat you as an equal, or give you the "wunderkid" treatment?"

Any interest in electronics (2)

anticypher (48312) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417333)

When I had a yearning to learn computers, the closest I could get in an american high school was an electonics course. I was fortunate to have a good teacher who had created a good program out of very little resources. Now, computers are just another electronic tool for me.

Does your school offer the types of courses you are interested in? Are there programs to help boost students into various careers, such as programming, electronics, and any other technical skills? If there isn't, how do you and the other geeks at your school cope? If there are programs in place, are you taking advantage of them as much as possible? Have you looked into taking entry level university courses at night to help satisfy your geek skill level?

the AC

Re:What are you listening to? (2)

Hard_Code (49548) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417334)

I'm "only" 21 and in the span of about 5 years it seems musica has pretty much gone to shit. About 70% of the people I really liked are either dead or havent produced anything for a LONG time. The other 30%, fortunately have continued on and produced more cool stuff (with the exception of perhaps U2's discotheque CD, but I hear they have a better one out). There are only a handful of decent new bands (IMHO). The rest is New Kids on the Block rip off, pop crap.

And for the record I do appreciate "classic" 60s, 70s, (hey, even 50s) music. It just seems that all that you hear on the radio these days is prefabricated pop-crap. It's not that it sounds *bad*...but that it is so disgustingly contrived and retreaded (of course generations before me probably say that about everything I like).

Re:Reactions (2)

mikeylebeau (68519) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417341)

being a 16-year old brainkid

Congratulations that you're so smart and all, but it really is ridiculous that you consider yourself a "brainkid". NO one, and I mean NO one should consider themselves smarter than the rest, it's just a recipe for becoming an asshole hermit, heh. We're all smarter than others in some way, especially many of the very technically-inclined folks on /. but thinking that of oneself is something that cannot be only thought; it will be represented in who you are and how you act. And it's great that people tell you that you're so smart you should be older or whatever, but take it as a compliment and keep your head size in check.

Re:What are you listening to? (2)

Rand Race (110288) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417354)

And if you like Op Ivy, check out Common Rider. I think it's one of the guys from Op Ivy, but don't quote me on that.

Lot's of good ska out there. Slackers, King Chango, Hepcat, DHC, NY Ska-Jazz Ensemble...

There is tons of good stuff being made today in many genres (I've been into insurgent country lately. Check out Bloodshot Records [] ), not that you can tell by listening to the radio or watching MTV.

Others like yourself... (2)

SuperJ (125753) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417358)

Clinton, I'm [] a Linux loving, Palm using, GNU C++ coder like yourself (I'm 17). I'm in a rather unique situation however. I attend the Math, Science, Computer Science Magnet Program at Montgomery Blair High School. [] This means that I'm around a decent amount of geeky kids like me. I've been able to set up MBLUG [] and I'm also a student computer operator. We've got a lot of technology available at our school, as well as adults who help us take advantage of this technology.

What is your experience in this area? Is your school technology have or have-not? Do you have a crowd of computer geeks at school or are you the solitary one? Are you shunned for your geekiness or accepted?

Best of luck,

Time Management? (2)

hetfield (129762) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417359)

I see that you're writing some software, which from personal experience I know is no small task, regardless of the language or goals of the project. Being in college, I basically only write code during breaks or right away in the beginning of the semester, when my work load is light.

I remember high-school to be just as hectic as college, with the addition of the hormonal upheaval caused by adolescence. How do you find time to write code? How do you think it has affected your lifestyle (compared to your non-geek peers)?


Re:What are you listening to? (2)

ZanshinWedge (193324) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417371)

New music doesn't "suck", and you can sometimes get an odd idea of what "new music" is by listening to the radio, MTV, etc. because frankly those outlets are mostly out of touch with "the music scene" in general. They play the top selling songs for the last year or so but nothing else, and that tends to result in a hodgepodge of stuff that appeals to some but not to everybody.

Personally, I'm no oldster (pushing 25), but I'd say I haven't "lost touch" yet music wise. I don't have much interest in the present craze of boy and girl bands (blech), but there's plenty music out now that I like and listen, some of it is even popular. My music tastes are pretty eclectic though, my playlist spans several centuries and a large number of styles, everything from classical and jazz to "classic" rock&roll and pop to electronica and techno to hip-hop and punk and some that can only be classified as "other".

I think that some people just don't take the time to listen to music they are not already into. And when you go into it with that much prejudice and your not really paying attention to the music but mentally listing reasons why you don't like it, you can't help but hate it. I find that often I have to listen to something completely new (new band, and even more so a new style I'm not familiar with) a few times before I even know whether I like it and how much I like it.

Re:What are you listening to? (2)

ZanshinWedge (193324) | more than 14 years ago | (#1417372)

Now, to be fair, Brittney Spears does have a good voice and is musically talented. However, the bubble gum corporate pop stuff she does really sucks.

Musical Instrument(s)? (2)

wheel (204735) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417373)

Do you play a musical instrument or instruments? Which one(s) Do you read music and how well, or are you an "ear musician"?

Questions... (2)

Technodummy (204943) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417374)

Do you think politics could effect technology in the future? if so, how will this effect you?

What's one tip you'd give to someone starting out with Linux?

What's your favourite technology?

Is there any technology you think could be a bad thing?

Re:What are you listening to? (2)

Alioth (221270) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417377)

When I was 15, my father said, "how can you listen to this? It's noise! There's no melody, it's just boom boom boom!". He was talking about the Beatles.

It's funny - last year, my father asked me, "Why do you like this stuff?"

He was also talking about the Beatles. It sounds like my father is probably a similar age to you. The Beatles had broken up before I was born, and my father was interested why I was listening to this "old stuff".

I explained to him that good music is good music, no matter when it was made. My CD rack contains music from the 1940s (Duke Ellington) to the year 2000. If it's good, I'll buy it.

Lots of people say that music today is terrible etc. - and this is probably a constant. They wistfully remember how good music was in the '60s etc.

However, most '60s music can have the same accusations levelled against it that people level against the likes of Britney Spears and N'Sync today. Most oldies are "samey" and manufactured-sounding. But there are a few bands who really did something good - like the Beatles, and the Who. Or in the 1970s, Pink Floyd and Queen, and so on. Today's good ones (IMHO) are bands like Radiohead, the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Ben Folds' Five (incidentally, Ben Folds' Three would be a bit more accurate!)

I recently went to a Roger Waters concert (he was Pink Floyd's lead singer). The friends who I went with were betting we'd be the youngest there, but a large proportion of the audience was younger than me (I'm 28). There were a lot of teenagers there. Pink Floyd music is genuinely good music. I also saw the Who, and although the audience was predominantly older than me, there were a lot of people in my g-g-g-g-generation ;-) I guess the Who isn't going to f-f-f-fade away either

Re:drug use? (2)

Rigid_Glitch (264755) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417384)

This is rather interesting.

Most intelligent geeks experiment with a drug only after reading/learning hard facts about them. Not one geek FOAF tried any drug through peer pressure - or because it 'was the cool thing to do'.

But that should hardly surprise anyone.

I also should mention that out of the 5 professional Microsoft admins and security officers I have met, ALL drink heavily.

But that should hardly surprise anyone.

How do you feel about education? (3)

Aphelion (13231) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417387)

"It is only the ignorant who despise education." - Publius Syrus, 42 B.C.

How do you feel about higher education? I understand that there are a lot of undue challenges you face (from your teachers, for example) in high school because of whom you are. Do you think this might discourage you from higher learning?

Many a UNIX admin are donning a job instead of college, but don't realize that they will be the first to go once a recession comes around. How do you feel about this possibility?

drug use? (3)

TurboJustin (34296) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417390)

Do you use any drugs? Before discounting this question, take into account that it's being posted by a recent HS graduate who, for the most part, fits the same description.. would like to compare notes ;p peace

Later musical transitions (3)

Ted V (67691) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417392)

I'm just 23 right now, but I'm an avid Jethro Tull Fan. Their new music is good, but in a different way from their old music. My favorite Tull album was released the very month I was _born_! So it's not just a generations thing (although I'm not a Beatles fan), and I still listen to some random 80s and 90s music.

Quite honestly, music really does suck now. It's not your imagination. The problem is that people learn to like whatever they're told to like. And since the early 90s (maybe 1993), the record companies have put more and more control into the radio stations. That's why you'll hear stuff like, "Here's the new one from N'Sync!" when the song was released 9 months ago. Radio has turned into music advertising for a few selected bands that the RIAA has chosen for the "big money winners" this year. This lets them better predict which CDs will sell well, maximizing profits.

In other words, new music sucks because the RIAA learned that you don't need good music to make a profit.

Incidently, this profit maximization is the reason the RIAA hates Napster. It gives people access to a very wide range of songs which makes it nearly impossible to predict which CDs people will buy next.


Reactions (3)

Stskeeps (161864) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417393)

Okay, as being a 16-year old brainkid, I have experinced a lot of times, people saying that - you cannot be 16! you're too damn smart!. Have you ever experinced that - to people _not_ belieivng you are so young? I mean, people think I'm like 24. Also, how did you learn to code? Books? Education? Parents/Family?. Also, can you combine "life"(whatver it is) and your "geek" life?. If not, my advice is that you should learn to have both a life, and be a geek at the same time - you'll end up alone else =P

A geek for all ages. (3)

Tin Weasil (246885) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417396)

Here's my question:

Way back when, when I was a 15-year-old BBS geek, the hot technologies were the C64, TRS-80 and the recently released Macintosh and Amiga computers (none of us kids gave a second look at the IBM PC.)

I was just wondering if you have taken any time to seriously consider what the future of Information Technology might be, and what, if anything, you are doing now to make sure that you will have the skill you need to get a good job once you get out of High School/College.

If you were stranded on a desert island (4)

dattaway (3088) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417399)

and could only have one cd to load a blank computer, what would it be?

Why a new Linux distribution? (4)

Alan Shutko (5101) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417400)

There are tons of Linux distributions, and each one has a different reason for being. Most distributions seem geared to one major point: learning how to make a distro, supporting a specific niche like small routers, being easier for Linux novices.

What's your vision for MentalUNIX? Why do you feel that you need to make your own distribution, and what specifically will your distribution do to make it fulfill that need better than existing offerings.

(The website seems to lack a clear description of the overall goal, though it has some mentions of new setup tools.)

Just Curious... (4)

Brazilian Geek (25299) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417402)

Are you now or have you ever been a Slashdot troll? If so, please comment on the feeling of being a troll, if not, what is your favorite troll?

Thank you.

All browsers' default homepage should read: Don't Panic...

GF? (4)

EverCode (60025) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417403)

(assuming that you are not gay)

Do you have a girlfriend, or at least an interest in some girl you know?

If not, then what type of girl are you looking for? Would she have to be a nerd too?

Activities/Clubs (4)

Student_Tech (66719) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417404)

What kinds of activities/clubs do you participate in(sports, yearbook, drama, NHS, FFA, FBLA, Science Club, Math Team, ect.)?

I'm a 16 year old, Junior, who is does a computer class afterschool on days when I don't have yearbook afterschool. For me getting home before 4:30PM is a good day. (My Frosh yearI was at drivers ed @ 0655 and was yearbooking or computer classing until 1800 for 2 weeks solid. 11 hours a day @ school.)

What do you read? What do you write? (4)

webword (82711) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417405)

Question One

What do you like to read? What material strikes your fancy? What are your favorite books and magazines? I know many folks your age; some read a ton and others read nothing. I find that I read almost everything online, particularly news. What about you, sir?

Question Two

Most folks your age like to write a lot if they are intelligent, which you probably are. Do you write poetry? Short stories? Do you draw and write comics? Do you write technical manuals? If you don't write now, do you have any plans to write?

John S. Rhodes [] -- Industrial Strength Usability

LOL -- Dumbest Story at Slashdot for 2000 (4)

StoryMan (130421) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417406)

LOL -- Drag out the freak.

"Hey, look at the freak!"

"What is he?"


"A geek freak?"

"In the flesh."

"Does he talk?"

"I dunno. Ask him."

"Do you talk?"

Freak: "Yes."

"He talks!"

"Look, the geek freak talks!"

"What do you do?"

"I am 15."

"Freak goes to school."

"Hey, dammit, he's not a freak."

"I am not a freak."

"That's right. He's a normal guy."

"Then what's he doing here?"

"Somebody thought it would be interesting to ask him questions."

"What kind of questions?"

"What kind of questions do you answer?"

"I don't know. They dragged me out here. Ask me a question."



"Hmmm. Okay. How about this: why did you volunteer to be on Slashdot?"

"I didn't. Someone thought it would be a good idea."

"The idea is that he's a normal guy."

"A geek."

"Then why's he in the Slashdot JonKatz freakshow?"

"I am not a freak."

"I know you're not a freak. I understand that. But I'm asking: why are you here?"

"I don't know. Ask Slashdot."

"It's because of Katz. He figures that geeks get a rough time in school. He figures that Slashdot is a different crowd."

"We are?"

"We'd appreciate his differences."

"Appreciate what?"

"That he's ..."

"A geek?"

"I guess."

"Did anyone think that by dragging him out and making him into an 'Ask the Geek' editorial item that you're not actually helping the guy?"

"Oh no. We're helping him. We care."

To the geek: "Do you feel helped?"

"Not exactly."

"What do you feel?"


"Like you're in the spotlight and people are looking at you?"

"Um. A little. Yeah."

"Are people asking you questions?"


"Are they good questions?"

Geek shrugs. "Some."

"A lot?"


"Not many?"

Geek shrugs again. "No."

Now answer honestly! (4)

OlympicSponsor (236309) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417408)

In 8th/9th/10th grade I was unpopular (hung out with the losers, didn't go to dances, etc). 11th and 12th grades I was merely neutral (went to some dances, knew a lot of people, but I wasn't a jock or anything). I bring this up not out of relevance, but to show that "I've been there."

My question is: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? What I mean by that is: Many geek teenagers exhibit anti-social characteristics, including: poor hygiene, little or no conversation skills and attitudes (for instance know-it-all-ism) that are off-putting. Do adolescents get into computers because they don't get along and don't understand why, so turn to computers (books, D&D, whatever) as something they can understand/master? Or do adolescents who get into computers/whatever use up so much brain capacity with intellectually challenging tasks they can't learn how to interact with others? Or some third thing?

(Please don't get the impression I'm saying you are a smelly, greasy, know-it-all loser--obviously I've never met you. But the lead-in mentioned being a "pudgy loner" and Katz, so I can assume you aren't dating a cheerleader.)
MailOne []

What are your plans for college? (5)

Zachary Kessin (1372) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417409)

If you have thought about it what do you want to do after High School? Do you have any ideas about college or further education?

Besides computers and high tech to do you have any hobbies.

The cure of the ills of Democracy is more Democracy.

Times Change (5)

HRbnjR (12398) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417410)

When I was a geek in high school (10 years ago)... it was not cool at all. The computer club was definitely frowned upon by the "cool" people. My question is, with the rise of the internet, and computers becoming pervasive in "normal" peoples lives...has this changed? Or have geeks gained some respect?

I read an article somewhere (Wired?) that said geeks were the new sex symbols...doctors and lawyers used to represent power and success and where what men stereotypically wanted to be, and what women stereotypially chased after. But now, as it is suggested, do you think geeks have invaded some of this position? Do you see any attitudes like this in school?

What are you listening to? (5)

geophile (16995) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417411)

When I was 15, my father said, "how can you listen to this? It's noise! There's no melody, it's just boom boom boom!". He was talking about the Beatles. Today, I am horrified to find myself saying the same thing about all rap/hip-hop/whatever, Britney Spears, N Sync, and just about everything else I hear that's been recorded recently. I don't buy much new music, but lately I've been buying CDs to replace my old LPs (The Who, Genesis, and yes, The Beatles).

At least there's Elvis (C, not P), They Might Be Giants, and Komeda.

Is it just me, or my g-g-g-generation, or does new music really suck? What are you listening to?

By the way, I was stunned to find that Jethro Tull is still putting out new stuff. A recent one is called I am not kidding.

Childhood toys? (5)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417412)

Pretty much every geek I've asked remembers loving construction type toys as children. I know my fave was Capsella because of the motors and gears, but there was always a big box of Legos in my house, too.

Did you play with toys like that in your 5-12 years?

What were your favorites?


How is it? (5)

dbarclay10 (70443) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417413)

Hey, what's up? :) I'm not a teenager, but I am a Linux user, and a rather dedicated one. I've come to the realization over the past year or so that, indeed, MS Office is actually a good software packager. Well, relatively speaking, of course ;) I find it fast, relatively lean, feature-complete, and more-or-less stable. I was wondering if you yourself have a particular software favorite that doesn't run under Linux?

Thanks for your time,


Barclay family motto:
Aut agere aut mori.
(Either action or death.)

Girls (5)

Stoke (86808) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417414)

At the age when most teens seem to be crazy over the opposite sex and dating, how is your situation with girls? Assuming you dont have a girlfriend, do you feel better off without one taking away your free time, or is it something you wish for?

The Three Most Important Questions Ever (5)

nubis (126403) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417415)

The three most important questions ever:

<British Accent>

What is your name?

What is your quest?

What is your favorite colour?

</British Accent>

Greatest Generation (5)

gestalt (131586) | more than 13 years ago | (#1417416)

This is taking a bit of a larger context in mind, here, so bear with me for a moment. In the last couple of years, there's been a lot of talk from people like Tom Brokaw about the 'greatest generation'- people who became adults in an age where there was a clear cause for something... for example, World War II, but including all sorts of causes and movements through the decades; up until what seems to be when you and I have spent our time growing up. I'm a bit ahead of you at age 27, but I feel we are both products of a vacant, mass-media driven, consumption-oriented culture that has inherited no clear path, mission, or movement from our society.

Lots of people would look at this as the benefit of living in a free, peaceful, prosperous part of the world (relatively speaking). I can hear them- "Be grateful, kid!" But, it seems that these are the same people who call generations prior to ours (who had their causes and ideals thrust upon them) the 'greatest generation'. Generally, they're closer in age to that generation than yours or mine.

So, my question is this: In this world where there is no clear path to follow, no absolute right or wrong, no great struggle to leap into, what do you see as the primary motivating factor in your life? For people born before us, there were battles to fight that could be universally agreed upon and used as a framework for their lives. These days, our value doesn't extend much farther than how much money we spent at the Gap last week- so for people who want to make something of themselves, that mission must be coming from within. What is that for you? Technology for its own sake? Getting rich? Finding friends and having interesting experiences? Dare I say it, to CHANGE THE WORLD? It's a difficult question that I haven't found an answer for myself yet.
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