Linux has come a long way… No I’m not going to start this article like that. Maybe the road taken by Linux is long but compare that with a more successful and commercial propriety operating system and you might wonder why Linux has taken so long to arrive.
That is certainly a question I wonder out loud, specially when wondering about the limits I faced when using Linux as a Civil Engineer (my lesser known alter ego… ahem)
So a Civil Engineer right? Got to be the most boring line of work eh? Ted Morsby, anyone? Not always, but it’s okay. For me atleast it is. But that maybe my way of life. I would be happy dispatching letters and cleaning toilets as long as I get my job satisfaction and not caught up in beurcratic wormholes. However I work as a government employee so that’s not always a given. The wormholes goes deep and at the end of the day, when I come back from work, it still feels like my soul is wandering that path.
Enough about my job, this article was and still is about Linux.
Hold your horses, not so fast. Being in the government ties your hand up quite a bit. The first thing that gets weighed down is the computer system itself. For anyone who ever suffered because of lacking administrator rights, you all can drink to my woes.
The first year was the worst. I had, what I would call, I computer system that was straight from the middle ages. Not only due to the old and outdated hardware, mind you. Those were not great either, but I have made due diligence with really crappy hardware in my past. This pure system was completely locked down. Running Windows XP and domain controlled, I lived an year with the wrong aspect ratio on my screen because no IT guy in the office could find a graphics card suitable for my system. The main software, the holygrail of all Civil Engineers, AutoCAD was so bloated at these low resolutions, half my screen was filled with sidebars. The constant warnings about how my Kaspersky Antivirus was outdated, how my office suite was not activated and how my XP was counterfeited (seriously man, my government has no ethics) I was being dumbed down and too afraid to do anything due to possible consequences
Living life like this for an year and it reached its toll finally and I straight up just said ‘screw this’ and took my PC apart. After unlocking the BIOS (it was password protected) I got rid of XP and got myself good old… Windows 7
Windows 7, good ol’ shiny OS that was ‘Vista done right’. I really did not have much problems with Windows 7 other than having to get a bunch of software in the wrong way (my ethics matched the government I worked for).
Finally the time came when I could comfortably shift to Linux. Having successfully found an alternative for every program I used on Windows, I can get by with Ubuntu in my office. No more user restrictions and outdated antivirus notifications for me!