Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Code Linux

I came across this Finnish movie about development of Linux operating system.
Movie portrayed many things like :
Free software and Open source, how they are different and what is their basic philosophies.
How loosely knitted programmers across the globe can work together.
How can some one make business out of open source, in fact they portrayed many organization's early history like Redhat, VA Linux works and some Chinese Linux company.
They also challenged some basic principles of software organizations like closed source system.
And yes as usual loads of Bill Gates and M$ basing(I love this part.)
Some portions of interview with RMS and Linus were kool, although very contrasting personalities but have similar ideas.
The movie have some part of Linux being dragged into political controversies things, but Linux has came out of all this.
The Idea of a hacker is presented very well.
I loved the movie, kinda inspirational

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


"Hey Man, you are _THE_ Man!". Well these are my words of appreciation for the great hacker who thought the concept of man pages. As far as I know any help available on this planet can not be more standardized or comprehensive than the man pages of unix. The format of man pages is fixed all through out the generations of all sorts of unixes(linux included). Man pages are most readily available and I find them much much more convenient than googling around. Man pages are precise. clear-cut, comprehensive and very very well written and the great thing is they even report the bug or any other such flaw, if it exists. In the vast world of unixes, where each command itself is a utility, the number of commands has increased to a surprisingly large number and remembering all of them is difficult and not very productive, also they have switches and options for each command. So, I can think of only resort to this problem is to just remember one command, that is "man" and here you are, the undefeated warrior of unix world.
Man pages are well divided with respect to kind of users using them. They cater to all kind of users may it be a normal user, an admin or an application developer or even a kernel hacker. Everyone in unix is so-much in love with man pages, that one cannot imagine his or her day without doing "man X something".
Some people think unixes are cocky and elitist kind of OS's, well yes, they are just great and everyone loves it that way. Similar concept is applied to man pages, man pages seems very cryptic to many people, but they are very standardized and always follow a fixed pattern and hence are consistent throughout.
So people, whenever in doubt in unix just be a "man".