[mythtv-users] "get the sources and fix it yourself"

Jay R. Ashworth jra at baylink.com
Fri Sep 28 14:34:20 UTC 2007

On Thu, Sep 27, 2007 at 09:11:14PM -0600, Bearcat M. Sandor wrote:
> >Happily, Eric Raymond and Rick Moen have taken their valuable time to
> >explain this to you and everyone else at almost nauseating length:
> >
> >	http://www.catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html
> >
> >I commend it to the attention of everyone here *who did not pay a dime
> >for the thousands of dollars of software running their mythbox*.
> That misses my point entirely. Actually, i agree with the ideals of almost 
> everything in that link which i have read over and over. It's full of great 
> advise. However i wish Ramond had never written it. It's unkind, snide, 
> sarcastic and if i showed one of my clients this, they'd go screaming back to 
> Windows


You've put your finger on it, right there.

Clients are *people who have paid you for the right to ask you stupid
questions impatiently.

> My problem is that i feel i have to say to my clients "Look, please go to XYZ 
> place for help but be aware that there are assholes out there who will call 
> you stupid and tell you to RTFM, even if you have to say 'i don't remember 
> what the manual is, or "Step off. I just started using Linux yesterday. and i 
> just wanted help rather then search aimlessly through the tangle of google."

See above about "money".

For almost *any* open source project, there is *someone* out there who
will be glad to take your money to let you be an asshole.

Cause that's what the people who are violating ESR and RM's precepts
are doing: they're being lazy, stupid, sloppy assholes.

If you think that's an overreaction, then may *you* someday be the
lead developer on a sizeable project used by *hundreds of thousands of
people*.  :-)

> Most people are not able to do some of the things in this smart-questions 
> document. I have clients who call me for Windows problems because they can't 
> figure out how to change the font size in their email or they don't realize 
> some other thing that we find trivial and can do in 2 seconds.  These are 
> average people who are smart in other areas, but my wife were i not around, 
> would never use Linux.  

Sure.  And they pay you.  And you tolerate it.

So do I.

I don't tolerate it from people who don't want to pay for it.  

Ass, gas, or grass, as the old dashboard sticker says, nobody rides for

> As far as your comment about the thousands of dollars worth of software, no 
> one is entitled to help, but does the fact that the help is free mean that a 
> slap in the face is acceptable along with it?

You didn't read the part where they were careful to make clear that
hackers are a different cultuer from civilians, and like all
intercultural interactions -- say, a Texan and a New Yorker? -- people
are likely to misinterpret as hostile behaviours which are not intended
that way... did you?

-- jra
Jay R. Ashworth                   Baylink                      jra at baylink.com
Designer                     The Things I Think                       RFC 2100
Ashworth & Associates     http://baylink.pitas.com                     '87 e24
St Petersburg FL USA      http://photo.imageinc.us             +1 727 647 1274

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