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Girls Like Linux Too

CmdrTaco posted about 15 years ago | from the stuff-to-read dept.

Linux 220

BootHead sent us the article at ZD-Net that appears most designed to draw a link from Slashdot in quite some time. Its about Women and Linux. Course they call them "LinuxChix" (cough) but its just sorta the standard tirade on "Girls can be Geeks Too" (which no geek argues with in theory, we just never be able to find girl geeks of our own ;)Update: 09/16 09:29 by H :Check out the additional linkage about the debate of whether "Women need an OS of their own."

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I'm a girl, I'm in IT (5)

sclatter (65697) | about 15 years ago | (#1678810)

As far as I can tell, there are as many women in IT as really want to be in IT. I wish it were otherwise, but the aspiring techie women that I have worked with have typically lacked the "fire in the belly" that drives guy techies to be really successful in the business.

I don't think this is because women are stupid, or that IT is intrinsically hard. Women are just socialized with different values and priorities, and geeking out is not usually one of them. ;-)

That said, women who bitch and moan about the glass ceiling bug me. In my experience my advancement has been pretty much based on how hard I worked and how smart I am. If you are good enough, your gender becomes irrelevant. Sure, every now and then a poorly socialized male makes a stupid comment, but that's what a sense of humor is for!

On Girl Geeks (1)

Amphigory (2375) | about 15 years ago | (#1678811)

Having the good fortune to be married to a girl-geek, I can tell you that they are a most interesting and entertaining tribe.

It is especially disconcerting when you fire off a stream of techno-babble and she ripostes smoothly. For example:

Me: Honey, I really need to get another 256MB of RAM.
Leisa: Why?
Me: Because it will make my computer faster and I need to do some software development... for work. yeah.
Leisa: You already have 128MB of memory... What kind of software needs more? And isn't that a game???
Me: Well.. you see it's a new C compiler and...
Leisa: A new C compiler? Whaddaya think I'm stupid?
Me: Uh... Please?
Leisa: You don't need more memory. When are you going to get me a CDR?

Having said that, the she-geek is a wonderful creature. Because, ultimately, she understands the technology lust that drives the true geek (I'm going to make her read this post :)) Even better, all my friends are jealous that my wife actually understands what I say.

Of course, the biggest downside of female geeks are that they are hard to find. You just gotta hang in there guys.

Re:Oh yeah! (1)

MaggieL (10193) | about 15 years ago | (#1678812)

It's the *ratio* that sucks, right?

Re:Can't Find One? Make One! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678832)

How do you get them away from irc though? How do you keep them from getting nasty little word macro viruses on your windows boxes? How do you get them to shutup and play halflife? The only thing I know to do with em is get them naked and put em on the net.

they are still a minority in the group thou (1)

josepha48 (13953) | about 15 years ago | (#1678833)

I'd be willing to bet that they are still a tiny minority, which I feel is a shame.

I have seen this with other 'hobbies' and technology in general. "Not that I am saying that Linux is a hobbie", but I have noticed that there are certain things that are considered 'male' and certain things that are considered 'female'. Now don't take this out of context, I don't agree that tech is male, but the fact is that not many women got into tech until the last 20 years it seems. In my engineering classes there were 3 women, as opposed to 50 men.

I watch Star Trek Voyager, religiously every wednesday. Many people don't watch it because the captian is a woman. I do. I think it portrays our future as rather 'mature'. A future where woman can be captians of star ships, engineers, and lets not forget 7 of 9 ;-).

I think that the fact that there are women in Linux or Linuxchix is actually a precursor of things to come.

The future is technology. We cannot deny this if we are to survive as a species.

Without technology many people would have died from hurricane Floyd that were given time to evacuate. This is a fact folks. Tech is good.

Tech brings people together. However we as a species still need to learn to 'control' tech and not abuse the power that it gives us like certain companies do just to make money.

This is just my opinion on the subject. I am a male not a female. So send all flame and hate mail to > /dev/null. :-)

Re:find your geekess (1)

ansate (84383) | about 15 years ago | (#1678834)

has it occured to you that maybe we'd rather not be found by you guys?
nyah. :)

An article by Alan Cox's Wife (3)

Amphigory (2375) | about 15 years ago | (#1678835)

I think that there are many geek women -- their area of geeky interest is just usually not computers and they are usually a bit more practical than we are. For example, This article [] from Alan Cox's wife was published in LJ a few years back.

Just thought you guys would find it interesting.

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (3)

Mithy (30439) | about 15 years ago | (#1678836)

This is essentially true. There was a very good BBC Open University programme on the history of computing which seems to be repeated annually which outlined this phenomenon. In the early days of computing when "coding" was very much a menial task, viewed in much the same way as data entry is seen today - often consisting merely of converting machine language into holes in a punch card (for example) - there were a lot of women filling this role. With the advent of assemblers, compilers and larger secondary storage, the need for these coders dwindled, IIRC, and "coding" became more and more the province of engineers and scientists. The original coders were eventually pushed out of the picture, it would seem.

This isn't the post you're looking for. Move along.

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678837)

Don't make me laugh. It's easy to point the finger at men and discrimination but it is not, and was not, true. I have never seen a teacher or prof or student discourage or do anything but favour womyn. The jobs are there too, I've had orders [from our almost all female business analysts] to hire any semi-qualified womyn ahead of men because our programers were all male... 200 resumes later... no womyn have applied.

If there is a finger to point, it's at Cosmo, Seventeen and at womyn themselves. Even IF there is some bullshit to put up with in IT, it's trivial compared to the rewards of the field and the advantages given because of the lack of females. If womyn would rather take french, psych, run-jump-and-play[kinesiology] or english lit than a course which will give them easy money, well, thats their choice to make, isn't it.

Re:Differing sexes, differing attitudes. (1)

FlyGirl (11285) | about 15 years ago | (#1678838)

> they tend to view programming as a job and an
> interest - not a lifestyle

Actually, this point WAS brought up at the meeting
(I was an attendee). One of the women said that
she has lots of female co-workers, but very few
true "geek" co-workers - a kinship that she likes
to have and an attitude that I understood.

There are quite a few of us out there. It's
jusk taking time for SWE and SysAdmin to become
a goal for more younger girls.

I am a geek and proud of it (1)

GirlGeek (92131) | about 15 years ago | (#1678839)

When I grew tired of Windows crashing and slow running aps, my geek boyfriend introduced me to Linux and Perl scripts. Now I am learning to manipulate data with blazing speed. There are geek girls out there for you geek guys. Just don't expect us to look like a supermodel.

Re:that's pretty rad.... (1)

MaggieL (10193) | about 15 years ago | (#1678840)

Why a *closet* TS? What's wrong with an out TS woman? They're more fun, IMHO. Ya can't get reassignment surgery while you're still in the closet, for one thing.

You DON'T need a dick to use Linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678841)

They need to call the group Linux Chix in order to get women to join it... but it's not restricted to women. So, are these women in other Linux related groups, or are they only able to join things that have the word 'chix' in the name?

Oh yeah! (1)

Oscarfish (85437) | about 15 years ago | (#1678848)

I have to forget about looking for girls here on campus and find one in a Linux users' group instead :) Any female Linux fans here?

true men (2)

fundflow (87625) | about 15 years ago | (#1678850)

Well, geeks are known to be chauvinist pigs...

Oh this macho feeling of the true man riding in the plains of the TCP/IP stack.


A related story (2)

HeUnique (187) | about 15 years ago | (#1678853)

Don't forget this related story [] . It's talking about a Linux distribution for girls..

I'm raising my daughter to be a girl geek (5)

georgeha (43752) | about 15 years ago | (#1678857)

She's three, and right now her favorite computer activities are painting with Gimp or Paint (she prefers adding strokes to Teletubby images), searching the web for cat pictures, or posing for my parallel port camera.

The other day I captivated her by playing a wav of her crying at 2 months, she couldn't get enough of it.

Once she can read, I think I'll teach her to rebuild the kernel.


I'm gonna get moderated down for this, but... (3)

rde (17364) | about 15 years ago | (#1678859)

My girlfriend signed up to Linux chix a while ago, and signed off shortly after because most of the talk was about linux-unrelated matters.
She show me a few choice messages, and I sniggered mightily.
Of course, I haven't signed up to a mailing list yet that didn't have some non-zero signal-to-noise ratio, but I do like some of the messages to be relevant.
Another point: are nerd grrls really as marginalised as once they were? Most of the developed world is suffering from a shortage of qualified IT staff, and even the most entrenched chauvinist has to consider the unthinkable; females or even -- gasp! -- saggitarians.

Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (2)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 15 years ago | (#1678863)

> we just never be able to find girl geeks of our own

That's because the geek girls are all home glued to their screens, just like any other flavor of geek.

More of the tired old ramble.... (5)

Mithy (30439) | about 15 years ago | (#1678865)

....about how few women there are in I.T., but with the word "Linux" thrown in to make it sound trendy and up-to-date.

There's a simple reason why there are few women in I.T. A lot of the "alpha geeks" of today (to rip that awful phrase from the article) tend to be in their late twenties and thirties - which means they were first using computers, on average, back in the late Seventies or early Eighties when home computers started coming into the mainstream - and at a time when education was still so backward that even those schools which had any kind of I.T. curriculum certainly wouldn't dream of having girls on their course.

Geeks have to be caught at an early age. You want more women in I.T.? Get your four-year-old niece/daughter interested in how to code, and sit back and wait twenty years.

This isn't the post you're looking for. Move along.

Hmmm (1)

drwiii (434) | about 15 years ago | (#1678867)

You know you're addicted to Linux when you see a group of female Linux users and think, "man, these would make a great Beowulf cluster.."

Sorry. It had to be said. (:

Quite frankly, I'd go for any woman, as long as she's not from the Windows clan. :P

that's pretty rad.... (1)

cswiii (11061) | about 15 years ago | (#1678868)

Wish I knew of a few female linux enthusiasts in the DC area. I'd love to show them my box.
(no alternate meanings implied ;)

Seriously though... they took the Linux Expo from us; the least they could do is charter a LinuxChix around here, or hand out computer science scholarships or something... we need more geek grrls!

My experience with girl geeks (3)

Raleel (30913) | about 15 years ago | (#1678870)

I went to a small university with a small computer science program (about 10-20 active members) and roughly 1/2 of the students were women. It was quite neat. They were just as geeky as the rest of us, but they concentrated on entirely different aspects. While most of the guys were hardwre junkies, most of the girls were software junkies. I think this is actually a trend. We sat down and talked avout it one time, and most of them said they didn't care how the hardware worked, as long as it let them get their job done.

On the other hand, and I'll use my wife as an example, they did care intimately about how the software worked. My wife is a software engineer at heart. She cares that the software is PERFECT. She will rake you over the coals for the littlest error, which is good. Other girls in the group followed a similar line, being programmers at heart. I know the program was wierd, because the math dept, which was linked to the CS dept, was also half women. One of my professors commented that that attittude of "women can't be geeks" had not gotten to that section of the world yet. Lets hope it stays out.

I think, though, that this illustrates an important point, that women geeks may not look like the traditional geek, but still are technically oriented. Work with it. Having that different view point will only help you. Girls out there reading this, do not be afraid of geek guys. They respect knowledge most of all, and will probably get all horny at the thought of a woman who can code them under the table ;)

BTW, my wife uses linux. Just last night we dicussed her doing her senior project on open source software and software engineering. She RABIDLY hates Microsoft. I mean RABIDLY. SHe was saying to me that when she gets her new computer (she has picked it out, yea she picked it because it was cute, but it comes with linux, from she was going to put BeOS and OS/2 warp on it, and Linux. Oh yea, and she can Calculus me under the table any day.

If you are interested in the school, check my email address.

Re:find your geekess (1)

Waldo (4398) | about 15 years ago | (#1678871)

"I think Malda should post a list with all girls on slashdot (where else would the geek girls hang out?) complete with emails so everyone can choose his own geek girl :)"

This would be really unethical and I'm sure Rob would never do this. Besides, Rob is already doing his part by funding The Rob Malda Hot Chicks in CS scholarship fund.

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (1)

Mithy (30439) | about 15 years ago | (#1678872)

Don't make me laugh. It's easy to point the finger at men and discrimination but it is not, and was not, true.

I'll grant that there is certainly little problem with discrimination against women in applications for I.T. jobs. The problem starts long before that - in the classroom.

It may have been different elsewhere, of course, but I know several women in the 20-30 age range in the UK who expressed an interest in computers at primary or secondary school and were actively discouraged from pursuing a career in the field.

And for what it's worth, this prejudice was not the sole province of male teachers.

Okay, in these slightly more enlightened days the discrimination against women in I.T. education may no longer hold, but of course for a lot of women the damage has already been done, so to speak.

This isn't the post you're looking for. Move along.

Re:find your geekess (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678873)

Yeah, that ought to make sure none of them ever come back. And encourage most of them to change their email addresses. Most female geeks I know (and I'm married to one) just want to be treated as another geek, which the pseudo-anonymity of the net provides. Why add them to a "Dating for the Desperate" club without their consent? "To understand what recursion is, you first have to understand what recursion is."

Re:Differing sexes, differing attitudes. (1)

Clover_Kicker (20761) | about 15 years ago | (#1678875)

>On the eve of the twent-first century men do
>still dominate most walks of life. But given the
>massive advances in attaining equality for women
>in this century, I don't think it will be long
>before the issue of women in computing becomes a

That's pretty damned optimistic. Where the hell do you work/go to school?

In any job I've had, there have been many many fewer techie women then men. Is that because I've worked for places that hired on a sexist basis? No, it has to do with the supply of women entering the field.

When I did my BCS (graduated ~ 5 yrs ago), the babe ratio was about 6:1

Last year I taught MCSE and CNA classes. The female ratio was better... about 4:1 or 5:1. (Shouldn't really be referring to students as babes, eh? :) )

We've got a hell of a long way to go before we have anything close to equality.

As a previous poster said, we've got to change the attitudes of the preschoolers and elementary kids, that's our only hope of getting more women in the field.

Speaking of attitudes, the guys who are interested in getting more women in the field because it'll give them more women to look at/hit on/whatever.... You aren't helping.

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (2)

froz (69551) | about 15 years ago | (#1678876)

*Chuckle* as i look upon the linuxchix mascot. Do all female linux users dress in such a navel-exposing fashion? Maybe I should go to a meeting. But seriously...
This chix thing is definitely a good thing as far as i'm concerned. An industry run on testosterone is a one-sided industry. You're right about girls not being encouraged to participate in anything technical. This kind of bias is extremely obvious at my school where the librarians will instinctively turn to the nearest male student when they encounter a 'problem' with a puter. I fear that the educational system has unknowingly brainwashed me (and others) into thinking that only guys are proficient at technical stuff. Hence, I was surprised when more than one of my friends(chix) told me they wanted to do comp sci next year at uni or something equally technical.
The subsequent discussions we had on techy stuff was refreshing to say the least. ie, refreshing from the usual dribble I hear from guys.
From my observations, it seems that technically-adept guys i know talk about their puters like a bunch of rev-heads talking about cars. They always boast about how they managed to clock an extra 33mH from their new celeron, etc.
The chix I talk to tend to talk more about how puters can actually be used for cool stuff. (interesting to note that more than half the users on icq are female, but maybe this is related to something else).
Don't get me wrong, I love a good discussion on making my machine work as fast as physically possible in order to get that extra fps in q3test. But it's nice to hear someone whose opinions aren't testosterone-induced.
Viva la chix!
BTW, I'm a guy...

Female geekness... (1)

SyscoKid (78729) | about 15 years ago | (#1678877)

It's hard to find a good geek girl.. I think there needs to be match maker board, just for geeks.

But back on the subject, it's cool that females are getting into the linux scene, but there are going to be alot of fights becuase the whole male ego going on about how 'guys are better' at such and such.. I never agreed w/ that. So I back the whole female particapation.

Re:A related story (0)

Haven (34895) | about 15 years ago | (#1678878)

I don't feel that an independent linux distro aimed at women would serve the beginning female linux users very well. What kind of things would you put in such a distro? Would [] make a pink background with flowers for icons? What would happen is a company would create a female-distro and pack it full of chauvinist innuendos (like the pink X-Theme). What next a linux distro for african-americans? On the internet everyone is sexless (not the act! the state), raceless, and ageless. Creating something like a female distro would destroy what people like LinuxChix are trying to do. I just think it is bad Karma

Speaking of which.. (1)

Kitsune Sushi (87987) | about 15 years ago | (#1678895)

It's not like most people don't use the words "geek" or "nerd" in a derogatory manner to describe us in the first place.. I suppose it's easier for them to cope with than saying, oh, the "intellectual elite" or the "future rulers of our world to whom all must submit or face their technological wrath".. Er, ah.. I mean to say.. :)

Re:A related story (1)

Daniel (1678) | about 15 years ago | (#1678896)

Um, is this a satire piece? I really hope so..


Re:I'm gonna get moderated down for this, but... (1)

MoToMo (17253) | about 15 years ago | (#1678897)

Personally, i feel that the anti-sexist movement is stonger than sexism, at least in my workplace. We have a female in desktop support who really doesn't have a clue. She can't even troubleshoot routine win95 problems. She calls in sick once a week on average, is always late, and often leaves early. This has been going on for months and I think that management is afraid to fire her from an otherwise 100% male department because of the threat of being accused of being sexist and the posibilty of a lawsuit. There are bad employees both male and female, and she's one of them. But i really think that if it were a guy in that position, he would have been long gone.

And yes, i do work with Win95 and NT, at home i run linux (Debain) you have to PAY me to use M$. ;)
(we have a roomful of NT servers, but unfortuantely, i am not in a position to make decisions on what software we use, i'm but a lowly Co-Op)

Re:I am a geek and proud of it (1)

anthonyclark (17109) | about 15 years ago | (#1678898)

Just don't expect us to look like a supermodel

The single young geekguys I know all have unrealistic expectations of beauty. They tend to watch porn/tv/movies where girls are "enhanced" by computers/surgery/hours of makeup|exercise or selected by simple casting. Said guys then have difficulty relating to real girls (she's not liv tyler therefore she's not a great girl). Said guys then talk to girls even less and watch porn/tv/movies even more.

Vicious circle.

Typical conversation:

ME: have you talked to that girl yet?
OTHER GEEK GUY: no way! (shuffles feet nervously). Have you seen the latest FHM? Gail Porter is lush.

However, talk about pot calling kettle black. There's a gorgeous geek girl working for our Y2K team, but can I pluck up enough courage to talk to her? (the answer rhymes with "hoe")


Re:Nya Nya (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678899)

My most recent ex was an NT Server babe.

It should be reasonably clear why she's an ex. ;)

Re:I'm raising my daughter to be a girl geek (1)

warpSpeed (67927) | about 15 years ago | (#1678900)

Same Here, I have 2 girls, 2.5 and 4 yrs. Both know how to operate thier system (Windoz98) to run thier games. I need WINE to run games for them. They like using paint and printing it out on the color printer, They don't surf, yet...

They may not turn out to have geek tendancies(sp?) but they will have a lot of exposure! Any geekyness that they get from daddy will have every opportunity to make its way to the surface. :-}


Re:Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (1)

rde (17364) | about 15 years ago | (#1678901)

Erm.. if they're all glued to their screens, why don't I encounter more of them online?
You're not looking in the right place. Just log into any chat room on the planet and say 'Are there any women here?' You'll be inundated.

Coincidence: I've a life of brian .sig, and I've just noticed a life of brian quote in my message. Spooky.

Re:I'm a girl, I'm in IT (3)

meersan (26609) | about 15 years ago | (#1678902)

Why are geek girls so hard to find? The IT field is one of the most interesting, dynamic and exciting in the world today! Why aren't women interested in computer science? If there really is no societal pressure involved, is something biologically different with women's brains? As a female geek myself, I'd have to say I think it has more to do with education and the expectations of our status-conscious culture.

Just like males, we go through the pressure cooker of high school, with all the emphasis on conformity and appearance that implies. Even worse, girls in my high school were routinely encouraged (both by teachers and other students) to take algebra instead of trig, trig instead of calculus. And if you plan to major in a scientific field in college, you really need to start in high school. It can mean the difference between majoring in electrical engineering or information management. Women seem to get "steered" into less math-rigorous fields.

The result? Whenever I meet a geek guy and start talking about my computer-related interests, his eyes goggle out as though he's found the Promised Land.

Re:Female geekness... (1)

anthonyclark (17109) | about 15 years ago | (#1678903)

I think there needs to be match maker board, just for geeks

There is:

Peer2Peer []

Yeak Geeks! Don't look for geekettes! (4)

JPS (58437) | about 15 years ago | (#1678914)

Look everyone, if you are a geek, then don't look for a geekette. That's a no-no. Oh sure, you'd have plenty of things to talk about first, but then... Two friends of mine are living together and they are both (good) sysops. When I discuss with them on monday, it's like:

- [Me] So what have you been doing this week-end?
- [Him] Oh. That was cool! We spent the whole saturday night debugging our new kernel driver! By the way, did you know that there was a bug in the file /usr/src/linux/foo/bar.c? Let me explain, blah blah blah blah blah blah...
- [Her] That's not perfectly accurate, in fact, it turned out that we found the bug by analyzing network traffic using the tool we developped last month and that the module was sending a bad IP header when blah blah blah blah
- [Him] Well yeah, it was lot of fun! [to her:] talking about networking, have you solved the network problem in our company, you told me that a box was loosing a very high number of packets.
- [Her] Well, no I spent the whole day yesterday to change cables but nothing, the problem must be coming from somewhere else. Any idea?
- [Him] mhhh
- [Her to me] how about you?
- [Me] err. I went to see a movie on saturday :)

Geeks are stereotypedly (what a cool word) supposed not to have a social life. I thing the stereotype would apply even more to geek couples :)

Re:On Girl Geeks (1)

jeddz (37986) | about 15 years ago | (#1678915) the downside of geek women comes out! I figured alls I needed to do was to get me one of dem dere geek women, and my life would be complete. ;-) Nevertheless, a conversation in my relationship:

ME: Sweetie, I'd like to get a new motherboard and a couple of new processors to upgrade my desktop.
HER: Uh-huh. And how much is that going to cost?
ME: Cheap! Like only $600, because you see, I'm going to overclock those two bad boys with this new board that Asus has...
HER: No.
ME: But...but...I could move my old motherboard to the gateway machine, and so it would be like getting two new computers for the price of on...
HER: Have you paid off the last batch of computer stuff you bought?
ME: Well...ummm...
HER: No.

So I wonder if I have it any better. ;-)

"That second bedroom WILL be a server room if I have my way about it!"


Re:A related story (1)

richnut (15117) | about 15 years ago | (#1678916)

I dont think Linux needs a new distribution.

OTOH it would be interesting for Linux to be able to incorporate different personalities in the UI to accomodate for the differences in the way males and females use computers. I'm sure Microsoft is working on it already.


Re:I'm gonna get moderated down for this, but... (2)

hellbunnie (70297) | about 15 years ago | (#1678917)

Those choice messages included things like a discussion about whether the linux chix or their boyfriends did the housework, some 18 year old guy going on about wanting to 'give one' to one of the female list members, an announcement of one girls engagement to her boyfriend and his fiance... need I go on?

There's plenty of room for those kinds of discussions on the web, but a linux mailing list id not the place for them. Any other mailing list I'm on would have banned a good half of the posters to that list.

Amazingly enough I think I must have been the only one who found the discussions off-topic. Nobody else complained once, infact the polygamous marriage announcement was met with congratulations and supportive messages from other polygamous people and the replies to the 18 year old on the pull consisted mainly of the phrase "hehe :)".


Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (1)

deefer (82630) | about 15 years ago | (#1678918)

Geeks have to be caught at an early age. You want more women in I.T.? Get your four-year-old niece/daughter interested in how to code, and sit back and wait twenty years. Yep, that's how geeks are made!!! ;-) Add a pinch of tech manual, a smidgen of attitude, and pressurise at 120 Atm! Et Voila, instant geek! ;-) Seriously, there just aren't enough geek grrls in the world. But the few I have met have been hotter than Satan's kitchen on curry night at coding (possibly because in order to survive, they must be that extra cut above? Who knows...). Mind you, I've never met a geek grrl who programmed in assembler, or one that exhibited the poor social skills us male geeks are alleged to have (or should it be lack?); then again if you spend your life surrounded by drooling male geeks, I guess you have to learn some interpersonal skills...

Some pickup lines for you (1)

Hasdi Hashim (17383) | about 15 years ago | (#1678919)

There's a gorgeous geek girl working for our Y2K team, but can I pluck up enough
courage to talk to her? (the answer rhymes with "hoe")

I misplaced my email address. Can I have yours?

I have a harddrive. You wanna mount it for me?

You know what the 'A' in 'A drive' stands for? That's for All Night Long.

Seriously, dude... just say something to her. Ask her out or something. Maybe she is waiting for you to ask her. The worst she'll do is to say no.


Re:A related story (1)

hellbunnie (70297) | about 15 years ago | (#1678920)

>OTOH it would be interesting for Linux to be able >to incorporate different personalities in the UI >to accomodate for the differences in the way >males and females use computers.

That assumes an awful lot about the differences between males & females. I would argue that most of these 'differences' are just due to the fact that guys have more exposure to computers from a younger age. If that's the case then to modify the UI depending on whether the user is male or female is going to entrench those differences and do more harm than good.

If you want to try to customise the UI depending on how people use computers then the system should record data about how each user uses the computer and use that as the basis of any modifications. You can't just base it on something like their gender. Everyone uses computers differently anyway, I don't believe that gender has that much to do with it.


Re:I'm raising my daughter to be a girl geek (1)

Uart (29577) | about 15 years ago | (#1678921)

Now that's responsible parenting! The more linux users the better. Learning linux makes you smart too. hehe.

WELL said!!!! (3)

Electra (78589) | about 15 years ago | (#1678922)

Very well said indeed....Anyway, as a girl, I find all the sexist attitudes towards technically inclined women very frustrating! But I won't rant and rave about that one since it's been said so many times. But I would like to let my fellows know that they need to take a look at their attitudes about girl geeks.
Everone knows that geeks tend to be very chauvanistic, and I don't think many girl geeks speak out about what it does to us ! Not only do we have society's hang ups about geeks to deal with-but our own kind gives us shit. Alot of girl geeks feel they need to sacrifice their womanhood and femininity to be accecpted as a serious member of geek society. Which is a motherload of shit!!! Most women don't talk about it but it's the truth Take a GOOD look arond at the girl geeks you do know, and you'll see what I mean.
I am one of 4 women in one of my classes and 2 of them are total mud-ducks. In the beginning of the class-the teachers took a bet on which of the students would fail-and of course I was in the list of do-nothigs and the two ugly chicks were said to do well. All because I have long red nails and I'm quite good looking(not to be conceited) and I REFUSE to give up any of my feminine traits to be taken seriously! Needless to say those ugly chicks routinely fall behind me, and one of the teachers actually apologized to me.
All this girl geek, boy geek stuff is ridiculous. We are ALL geeks, and should stick together!
Death to ZDNet for publishing that article.


So What... (1)

Zoltar (24850) | about 15 years ago | (#1678923)

Maybe I'm not the typical geek type guy... but I really have no desire to meet or date a geek girl. I mean...why would I want to date someone who is like me, I have always gotten the most from relationships with women who are very different from me. I spend enough time with my PC... I would rather be with someone who will expose me to new and different things.

Re:My experience with girl geeks (1)

punkrawk_freak (92096) | about 15 years ago | (#1678924)

Is that the extent of your experience with geekgirls??? Sheesh! You've got a lot to learn boy... They're the most horny breed of women out there.

Different People (1)

nano-second (54714) | about 15 years ago | (#1678925)

It is not so much that male and female geeks are necessarily different, but that all people express their geekiness in different ways.

That said, there are a number of different factors that affect the female geek. I can't speak for those in buiness as I am still in university. But there certainly does seem to be a lack of other female geeks in my cs program. Thus, because I wish to have geeky friends, most of my friends are male. And these being enlightened guys raised in the 80's, they accept me as an equal.

However, sometimes, the female geek runs into the problem that to be accepted she has to be "one-of-the-guys". While this is fine for some people, like me, some women are not like that. They may be geeks, but they do not want to just be "one-of-the-guys". This should be ok, too, and often, isn't.

Re:A related story (1)

Jeld (17209) | about 15 years ago | (#1678926)

The mere fact that this "user group" has a discussion on this topic, makes me think of them as stupid. They do not have to spend time to make a distro to achieve that. I do believe that this "group" ( cough will kill me today ) should stick with simpler subjects like weather and health. :)

"I don't think that it is a good idea to have a separate distribution," wrote Emily Ratliff, adding that there are already too many. "And I would hate to open up another avenue to criticize women who love computers, i.e. 'They are too stupid to use the real thing'. "

Re:You DON'T need a dick to use Linux? (1)

punkrawk_freak (92096) | about 15 years ago | (#1678927)

No, you dont need one... but i find the extra limb increases my typing speed twofold. \|/ .. hehehe

Re:Yeak Geeks! Don't look for geekettes! (1)

Manuka (4415) | about 15 years ago | (#1678928)

That's pretty accurate... My geek wife [] and I have been known to geek out hard, and have fights ocer who gets to admin the server.

There are some wonderful advantages to having (and being) a pet geek. The downside? Who gets the toys? (hence the second techie income to pay for them) We had to purchase TWO PalmPilots when we got them. And so on.

Re:that's pretty rad.... (1)

MaggieL (10193) | about 15 years ago | (#1678929)

The courage to hit on one, or become one?

Re:Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678930)

Yeah. But how many of them are men?


Peer2peer. (1)

SyscoKid (78729) | about 15 years ago | (#1678941)

It's a great idea, but that one lacks.... Alot! 20 and up? I'm 19 and there are no pics.. Oh i'll shut up and send them a letter.. =>

caution, lest we be divided (2)

Rylen (60270) | about 15 years ago | (#1678942)

I read slashdot practically every day, but rarely post. You lot are fairly capable of covering everything under the sun to do with the subject without my banter :-) ..but linuxchix?? it's nice to see another 'we-like-linux' site, and the fact that it encourages girls is good too, and hey - the logo rocks - but I'm not sure it's heading the right way. the thought of a 'female' distribution (why?) is worrying.

I'm sorry to see that linuxchix was formed after some comments on Slashdot. I've never read anything that really put me out on here. perhaps rather than creating our own niche, we should look at the root of the problem, though?

I like the idea, and will probably subscribe to linuxchix. but i wouldn't want us girls (sorry, but i can't stand the term geekgirl - does every male user say 'geekguy'?) breaking away to start our own thang and completely miss the point that linux is for everyone together. all hold hands!! lalalaa, etc.
sooo...could we have a mission statement from linuxchix pls?

Re:Sorry.. (1)

rde (17364) | about 15 years ago | (#1678943)

Cool link. Why's it on a BSD page?

and you wonder why?!? (4)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678944)

Ok, I'm gonna be a little provocative here, but think about it.

Well, well. You wonder why there's so few female geeks? Hmm, just look at this /. post for example - it is rather typical of the system:

"it's just sorta the standard tirade..." means to me "stop whining, girls, it's not an issue anyway". You men want us to stop "whining"?

Well then start by taking an unfortunately still valid issue *serious*. btw: why is it that when women complain it's always viewed as "whining" while when men complain ist "protest" or "justified anger"? Could it be that that is because you just don't *want* to take us seriously? Because that would mean thinking about whether you have to feel guilty yourselves and maybe (gasp) having to change your attitude a little? Ohmigawd, that would be WORK - can't have that, right?

"which no geek argues in theory but..." means to me "they don't really exist anyway because _I_ (read: cmdrTaco) never had one let me have sex with her" Tell me: why's it that all the techies who surround me, even those who have far superior knowledge are scared shitless of me because I know my stuff pretty well ? They all LOVE to TALK with me about computers/EE/technology and stuff but when it comes to dating who do they pick up?

Some "barbie" to whom they can feel superior to because she'll come to him with the "please do this and that for me you big strong man I'm too weak/dumb for it" routine for each and every crap.

You want a geek-girlfriend? Here's the 3 step easy solution:

1. open your eyes. Chances are there is one around you already but everyone is playing her achievements down or she just doesn't boast about herself which makes her invisible between all the loud shouters

2. respect her for what she is. She's probably no "barbie" so don't expect her to spend 5 hours in front of a mirror every morning - that's not what you said you wanted anyway, right? And she's not in the world "to get laid by _you_" - she's not a target but rather wants to choose her mate among *equals*.

3. don't be frigthened yourself. As I said - most men I know are *terrified* to "loose their face in front of a woman" and therefore are damn tough to the geek women they meet. Result: many geeky women are very tough in return as self protection.

Just 2 cents from a geek woman.

Re:that's pretty rad.... (1)

cswiii (11061) | about 15 years ago | (#1678945)


eh? I said 'alternate', not 'alternative', heh.

Unless I misinterpreted your statement...

Re:that's pretty rad.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678947)

I'm working up the courage.

Re:A related story (2)

rob colonna (72681) | about 15 years ago | (#1678949)

Come on, they could take this distribution and bundle it with the new Barbie computers, and make it so that every time you started up q3a, it would say, 'wouldn't you rather play house', or when you started MAPLE, it would say 'math class is hard'. They could bundle the LinuxPPC for Girls with the Strawberry iMac, too! think of the possibilities!
(And then puke.)

A world dominated by men and penguins... (1)

punkrawk_freak (92096) | about 15 years ago | (#1678951)

...Now what a disaster that would be. I personally prefer to be dominated by sea-lions. Rahhh!

Re:They actually love FreeBSD... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678952) is running Apache/1.3.3 Ben-SSL/1.28 (Unix) FrontPage/ mod_perl/1.16 PHP/3.0.7 on FreeBSD

It would appear that they're even smarter than we thought. Keep trying dilweed.

Re:true men (1)

rde (17364) | about 15 years ago | (#1678957)

Well, geeks are known to be chauvinist pigs...
Of course, you mean male geeks. Not that I'd accuse you of any inherent chauvinist piggery...

Damn right..! (1)

Kitsune Sushi (87987) | about 15 years ago | (#1678958)

Finally, a topic we all (well, most) actually care about! However, I might point out that a girl found on campus would probably be easier to spend time with irl than one found on a users' group unless its a local group (or you have money to drop on plane tickets, moving, whatever :). Which is not to say that I'm against following through on /both/ methods. Ha!

Re:Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678959)

The proper way to spell geekettes is geekress.

btw, Linux is already a chic chick, so LinuxChix is redundant and quite gaudy.


Women: (1)

Hermetic (85784) | about 15 years ago | (#1678960)

Our assitant net admin is a female. As geeky as they come. She plays games with the rest of us on the network.

Of course, now I know why I don't date geeks...

Re:Oh yeah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678962)

hehe i wont bother looking for gurls here on my campus, the guy to girl ratio here sucks like 7 to 1 if that good

Re:I'm gonna get moderated down for this, but... (1)

senrik (69607) | about 15 years ago | (#1678964)

At work we do have a woman doing desktop support (along with 20 something other guys) I don't think she is marginalised at all. All we care about is can the person do their job, are they a team player, etc. We joke with her as well as anyone else. (albeit its not a linux shop, but i think that OS doesn't really matter as much in this regard.)

But then again, my wife is not a geek at all.

Nya Nya (2)

GutZilla (83636) | about 15 years ago | (#1678966)

I am one of the fortunate few to have a Linux babe that fixes anything I can break and then explain how she fixed it so I don't do it more than 3 more times.

She is incredibly patient with me and only gently suggests I read the Readme or Install files before simply charging ahead and installing packages and expecting them to work the first time.

So I repeat....Nya Nya ! I got a Linux babe :)

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (2)

grahamm (8844) | about 15 years ago | (#1678968)

Yet 20 years ago when I started working in a mainframe programming site, there were plenty of women both as programmers and team leaders. So the very strong male bias seems to be more recent. But again, there were not many IT college courses in those days, so most people were qualified in some other discipline and "transfered" into computing.

Interesting.. (1)

Kitsune Sushi (87987) | about 15 years ago | (#1678970)

"LinuxChix isn't gender biased, though. Men are welcome at meetings and, by Richardson's count, about 20 percent of the 200 members of LinuxChix list are male."

Wow, those guys are smart (where do I sign up? :). Of course, it seems sort of like the idea of guys taking Home Ec or other "girl-oriented" classes in school just to meet women. Sort of defeats the purpose of a female-oriented club, though, doesn't it? Well, aside from the fact that it will draw more women than men due to its very name (or will it..?)

Re:My experience with girl geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678975)

First need to find a girl who knows more and does things faster than me. So if I'm getting horny from a girl who codes me under the table? I don't know, but if she wants to code she must get here own machine(s). BTW the only females I know hate ICT or just don't know shit about ICT.

Re:Some pickup lines for you (1)

anthonyclark (17109) | about 15 years ago | (#1678976)

Seriously, dude... just say something to her. Ask her out or something. Maybe she is waiting for you to ask her. The worst she'll do is to say no.

I'm sure a few guys can relate to this. When I see her, I break out in a cold sweat (and, no, spraying head to toe with anti-persperant doesn't help ;-). My stomach does back flips, my vision blurs and my IQ drops from maybe 150 to about 30. Everytime I turn a corner in a corridor or walk into the canteen and see her, I'm always laughing or grimacing or doing something that makes me look like the elephant man.

I know lines are "bad" but the best thing I can think of to say is "Hello, I like girls" in my best Igor voice (the igor voice would be unintentional, but guaranteed)

And, why do I get on really great with girls who are already attached?

I think Homer Simpson put it best (misquote) "But Marge, women have curves and voices that drive us crazy!"

Do you geek grrls know what effect you have on us guys?


PS. yes, I've got it bad.

Re:caution, lest we be divided (1)

punkrawk_freak (92096) | about 15 years ago | (#1678977)

Here's my mission statement: Lets work together, my equal - my fellow human - Just because you've got extra fatty portions linked to your abdomen and a different sexual organ doesnt mean to say we cant all be LINUXPEOPLE... sheesh!

Re:I'm raising my daughter to be a girl geek (2)

HappyHead (11389) | about 15 years ago | (#1678978)

My neice (3 yrs) was mad because her new (pre) school won't let her use the computer by herself, and they said they don't have an internet connection. Kinda sad, since she knows more about it than my mother. ("No Nana, you put the cd in here and push there!")

A Linux distro for women, was Re:A related story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678979)

What kinds of things would you put in such a distro?
Well, I expect that if a male knew that, there would be no need for one.

Anyway, I don't see anything intrinsically wrong with distros aimed at specific groups of people, if there was actually an advantage to it.
I guess I belong more to the "We are all individuals" camp, then the "Everyone is equal" one.

But I think it needs to be said, that if there was to be a Linux distro for women, it would have to be based on Debian.

Since many people have asked, Debian is pronounced 'deb ee n'. It comes from the names of the creator of Debian, Ian Murdock, and his wife, Debra. []

Jim Wase

And different backgrounds as well! (1)

LizardKing (5245) | about 15 years ago | (#1678981)

For better or for worse, I have no formal computer qualifications, so I cannot comment on the numbers of women undergraduates coming through the system. The only course I did attend was an evening HNC (somewhere between A-Level and BSc), this had a very healthy ratio of women to men. More of the women dropped out early on, but by the end of the first year more men had dropped out overall.

As for my optimism - after the week I've had I'm trying my best to look on the bright side of things at the moment. Normal (grumpy) service will resume next week when I find out if I will ever get full use of my left hand back ...

Chris Wareham

Girl OS? (1)

John Whorfin (19968) | about 15 years ago | (#1678982)

You mean that's not what BitchX is?

Re:Some pickup lines for you (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1678984)

And, why do I get on really great with girls who are already attached?

Well then, just pretend this girl is already attached, and you'll get on with her fine. Then pick your moment and go for it !

Re:and you wonder why?!? (1)

ushirageri (80820) | about 15 years ago | (#1678987)

I believe your observations to be quite correct. Traditionally, most, I say most, men have had the attitude of "no women knows more about tech stuff than a man" (I think maybe it's kinda like the Tim Allen effect) Men are kinda like turkeys, they tend to huddle and prop each others ego. Most guys aren't quite sure how to react when confronted with a "techie chick".(sorry for the stereotypical phrase)A lot of guys feel threatened by a female because of the slow process of changing traditional roles. (The old "I work, you stay home and cook, have babies...") Some people just adapt quicker than others. As a sidebar, I would think that the High Tech industy, with it's rapidly evolving climate, would be more immuned to this but apparently this is not true.

Re:Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (1)

PigleT (28894) | about 15 years ago | (#1678994)

Erm.. if they're all glued to their screens, why don't I encounter more of them online? ;|

find your geekess (1)

Giraffit (33167) | about 15 years ago | (#1678995)

Well, since so many slashdotters are bothered by their inability to find their very own geek girls (TM) - I think Malda should post a list with all girls on slashdot (where else would the geek girls hang out?) complete with emails so everyone can choose his own geek girl :)

Happy hunting!

Re:Interesting.. (1)

Patman (32745) | about 15 years ago | (#1678996)

"LinuxChix isn't gender biased, though. Men are welcome at meetings and, by Richardson's count, about 20 percent of the 200 members of
LinuxChix list are male."

Then don't call it LinuxChix. This is one of my major peeves in this world. For crap's sake, is it a Linux group for women? Then why are men there. If it's not a Linux group for women, then don't call it LinuxChix. Same goes for the Society of Women Engineers, which allows men, scientists, writers, etc. in to their little organization. How 'bout giving it a name that makes sense?

Sexism in an article about anti-sexism (2)

Pascal Q. Porcupine (4467) | about 15 years ago | (#1678997)

I couldn't take the article seriously after the headline, in which it calls female geeks "she-geeks," and then whose subtitle was about battling sexism. I'm sure the article was informative, but it just seemed to laughably hypocritical to, right off the bat, make female geeks seem like something to be belittled.
"'Is not a quine' is not a quine" is a quine.

Can't Find One? Make One! (1)

MikeA (23144) | about 15 years ago | (#1678998)

They may be hard to find but you can make them. No I don't mean you should code one or buy one at a store. Just introduce a girl you know to computers. Women will become just as interested as men. The problem may be getting them away from the screen after they get there. Be afraid, be very afraid!

Re:More of the tired old ramble.... (1)

deefer (82630) | about 15 years ago | (#1678999)

Geeks have to be caught at an early age. You want more women in I.T.? Get your four-year-old niece/daughter interested in how to code, and sit back and wait twenty years.

Oh gah.. (2)

Kitsune Sushi (87987) | about 15 years ago | (#1679000)

To think I was talking about there being too many distros in response to /Corel/! You know, there is a very good reason why there are only a few "real" distros.. That's because only a few actually serve to fill a particularly niche that needs to be filled, and the rest is just another pile of ammunition set down on the table with the "big boys".. except that they're firing blanks rather than the full-force cannon shots of Debian and Red Hat.

To be honest, a distro (much less an OS) targeted toward women makes less sense than anything else I've heard lately (ever..?). This isn't body wash or perfume we're peddling here, people!

Individualized toilet stalls (2)

vchang (89147) | about 15 years ago | (#1679001)

Stephane Miller joked about the perks of being one of a handful of geeky women at work. Because she's a tech worker, the ratio of women to restrooms is about one-to-one on her side of the building. "Every woman there could have her own toilet stall," she said. "I'm thinking of labeling mine."

Heh heh! This was the case in the early days of the company I work at. There was a one-to-one ratio of female-employees-to-stalls.

Late one evening, the girlfriend of one of my co-workers was visiting. She came out of the women's bathroom laughing and dragged her boyfriend into the bathroom to show him something...

Not only were each of the stalls individually decoratively labeled, they also had color printout pictures of their "owners" :-)

Re:A related story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1679002)

"Strong enough for a man, but pH-balanced for a woman"? :-)

Re:that's pretty rad.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 15 years ago | (#1679003)

Well, I'm in the DC area, and I consider myself female, but I'd probably be right in guessing a closet transsexual is exactly what you're looking for... ;)

Speak for yourself! (1)

runswithd6s (65165) | about 15 years ago | (#1679024)

but its just sorta the standard tirade on "Girls can be Geeks Too" (which no geek argues with in theory, we just never be able to find girl geeks of our own ;)

Speak for yourself. ;) They're out there, boys; you just have to do a little footwork out there to find one. Once you have, your life will never be the same. Imagine having a conversation with your girlfriend about the intricacies of structured C programming and having her not only participate but reciprocate as well!

I'm one of the blessed few to find such a woman, and I remind her how lucky I am every chance I get.

Re:Where are all the geekettes, you ask? (3)

anthonyclark (17109) | about 15 years ago | (#1679025)

You do.

It's just that most geekresses|geekettes|geekgrrls use a nick that doesn't scream out "I'm female!" I know several female geeks that use male names and nicks to cover themselves against online abuse.

PS. if geek is male, then shouldn't it be fegeek? (joke)

Differing sexes, differing attitudes. (3)

LizardKing (5245) | about 15 years ago | (#1679026)

One thing that I have noticed about women computer programmers as compared to their male colleagues, is that they tend to view programming as a job and an interest - not a lifestyle. Many male computer people, and especially wannabe ones live and breath computers, from hardware to software. For the average male geek it's reflected in the books that they read and the clothes they wear - typically cyberpunk and sloppy casualwear.

Obviously this is still a generalisation, but walk around any IT office, and the female staff will be less distinguishable from their counterparts in say accounts or human resources, than the males.

Maybe that's why women are a less vocal, but rapidly growing part of the IT workforce. As men tend to be more openly and loudly competitive than women in most walks of life, they leave the impression that they dominate the field.

On the eve of the twent-first century men do still dominate most walks of life. But given the massive advances in attaining equality for women in this century, I don't think it will be long before the issue of women in computing becomes a non-issue.

Chris Wareham

Re:Interesting.. (1)

mkelly (78105) | about 15 years ago | (#1679027)

I can't see why they feel the need to form LinuxChix at all - why not just make more of an effort to integrate into existing Linux groups and change the balance, instead of segregating themselves.

Female Geeks? oh yeah. (1)

mosch (204) | about 15 years ago | (#1679028)

At my company we've got quite a few women geeks around. More men, but my department has 12 people in it, 4 of whom are geeks. I guess I've always been lucky, I've never had trouble finding myself a snappy little geek girl. There's something so amazing about a cute girl who calls you up and says 'something's wrong'... then proceeds to ask questions about why SNMPd is disappearing without a core file.

Re:Interesting.. (1)

Yoho (91635) | about 15 years ago | (#1679029)

But even if they wanted to keep this list "male-free", there would always be the "in-the-internet-noone-knows-youre-a-dog" - problem ...

It is even possible that the ratio male/female on this list is exactly the opposite...

Would be bad news for them guys looking for chix :-)
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