J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Sun 27 Apr 03 10:27
I agree - this is one of the real issues with command-line computer literacy, the cool stuff is hard to do. Here I'll offer one way to understand the problem, in the hope it'll lead to us developing something of a solution: Think about written literacy - plain written language skills: Assume you have a friend, an intelligent, creative, curious, motivated friend, who does not know at all how to read and write. Assume that friend has grown up with an entirely iamge-based language, maybe they cannot even speak in words and sentences. Now, make a list of the top 10 easy things your friend could do with written langauge.
Gail Williams (gail) Sun 27 Apr 03 21:57
Heh. And write the list in pictures, since your non-word-wielding illiterate pal needs that to understand you. Thankfully we're not that badly off, or nobody'd get interested in learning command line except to be cool.
J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Sun 27 Apr 03 23:02
Well you can say "we're not that badly off" if you like. It might still be useful to try and think trough how, exactl;y, you would teach writing in those conditions. How do we teach children reading and writing?
The Phantom of the Arts Center (tinymonster) Mon 28 Apr 03 19:55
Well, we let 'em learn to talk first.
J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Mon 28 Apr 03 20:07
That's agood point. I do believe that Unix evolved, and is often best learned in a verbal, face-to-face environment where someone can show you how it works. At least until you get to a certain level and can seek out answers on your own.
Matthew Good (gnomish69) Sun 4 May 03 23:24
The difficulty with learning from a book can be summarized fairly quickly. I ask a friend some advice on a technical issue. Usually only a few seconds or minutes are required to determine whether or not assistance can be rendered, while... I may search a book, or books, for hours looking for something which *might* help me. Additionally, books are far more reluctant to help me work through a problem.
J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Mon 5 May 03 12:39
On the other hand, books are very patient. Passive, but patient :-)
Brian Slesinsky (bslesins) Sat 10 May 03 19:14
And you might not find what you're looking for, but you're likely to learn something.
J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Sun 11 May 03 12:45
The best way to learn Unix, in my opinion, is to be in contact with experience Unix users, for example at work, at school, on The WELL, etc. and also to have access to some good written resources, stuff you can read at your own pace at lunch time, and also have next to you when using the computer.
Robert Byrne (zoodle007) Tue 27 Apr 04 02:27
matisse thank you for your book, I have found it very helpful and am learning unix rapidly as a result of reading it. Keep it up!
J Matisse Enzer (matisse) Fri 30 Apr 04 07:38
Hi there! I'm glad you like it. (and thnaks to cdb for pointing me to your comment!)
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