The FreeBSD 'zine

June 2000 : Letters from our Readers

Bits and Bytes
by Justin Bishop <[email protected]>

Hello. I'm a Senior in Highschool that's always had an avid interest in computers. For the past two years, I've been editor-in-chief of our local newspaper, and I was pleased to learn just last night that I won the Statewide award for best editorial writing here in Virginia. Last summer I used Slackware for Linux for about a month, RedHat 6.0 for about three months, BeOS for about 4 months, and I've been a beta-tester for Windows2000 ever since beta-testing on the OS first began. For the past two months I had been using strictly Windows2000 for it's wide software support and I had been disappointed by BeOS's lack of Java support and the headaches of trying to install software in Linux. So I poked around the geek community and became interested in FreeBSD 4.0. That was a week ago and as I sit here writing this letter I am watching X-Snow cascade down WindowMaker 0.62.1! I've fallen in love with FreeBSD. It runs faster and more stable than linux and it's porting ability of auto-installing programs for me is a godsend.

Let me get to the point---I spent about a week toying with the system and trying to get everything working. There seems to be so many things that could be more easily explained and more readily for a user like me. It seems so many of the writers for the geek world write inelegantly and don't really understand what a "newbie" needs to know. I've tried about 7 window managers and have poked through the pros and cons to all of them. KDE is what I used to run in RedHat and after experimenting with so many options here in FreeBSD, I realized how clunky and slow it really was. If you'd permit me I'd love to try and synthesize these rambling into a general summary of everything i've learned that I think another computer-user interested in learning more about FreeBSD might be interested in.

I think I stand at an interesting crossroad between the world of journalism and geekdom and I'd love to help if at all possible. Besides writing my own articles I'd be happy to assist in editing or anything else needed to help the cause of the FreeBSD 'Zine. I think your site and ``magazine'' is a great idea with the potential to become a hub for the FreeBSD world just as Slashdot is for Linux or BeNews for BeOS users.

Thanks for your time,
Justin Bishop

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