[LoCo-US-AL] [BALU] Linux Proficiency

Thomas Stover thomas at wsinnovations.com
Fri Dec 19 06:19:18 GMT 2008

    I'll start with a rhetorical question. What does being proficient at 
computers mean? Exactly, nothing - that's way to open ended. What are 
you more interested in? At a certain point that is all you have to go 
about the answer to your question. To put it another way, the only way 
you will ever be worth a salt at anything you do of course is to explore 
and follow the things you find a passion about. That never stops. At 
some point along the way you just step back and go, "hey you know there 
sure is allot of stuff I know". That sounds like what you are doing 
already. Just keep going. Now if some more specific things don't come to 
mind right away, that's fine. All that means is that for now you want to 
explore what some of the worlds are underneath that next layer.
    For instance, step way back and look at it in maybe a new way. What 
intrigues you about this whole linux thing anyway?

- The power it gives you to put together an applied end result? Like wow 
we did that job for $30,000 less than the other crappy way.

- Where does it come from? How to mold it to my designs? How to create 
things leveraging tools and knowledge from that world?

- What are other people doing with it? How exactly does it make so much 
of the internet work? How is it used for research, or business? How do 
you do something you would do with another OS the linux way?

- How does it work? What's under the hood? What is are all the moving 
parts doing?

Start with questions like that. I bet everybody on this list has a 
different idea about what linux (and the worlds of related software we 
always lump in there implicitly by that word) is.

Another way to look at it is that really tons of linux stuff isn't 
really linux stuff at all. It applies all over the place. TCP/IP & 
network in general, Software development, unix-ish system 
administration, server infrastructure stuff like storage networks / 
redundancy / fail over & load balancing, etc...

Michael Ramm wrote:
> I am not a goals kind of guy, but I have decided that in 2009, I would
> like to become proficient in the Linux operating system.
> What exactly does that mean? I am not really sure, and that is why I
> bring the question to the lists.
> I have been using Linux full time on my work laptop since late 2007. So
> I am at about 1 year of using Linux everyday. I am light years ahead of
> where I was when I decided to move to Ubuntu. I have stayed with Ubuntu
> on my work laptop, but my desktops at home have seen Ubuntu, Crunchbang
> [1] and Arch Linux on them. I have settled on Crunchbang 8.10 for my
> desktop, and possibly my next work laptop.
> When I first started thinking of metrics that I can use to measure
> proficiency, I thought of some sort of Linux certification. There are
> two Linux certifications that I found. CompTIA Linux+[2] and Linux
> Professional Institute [3] has a three level certification program as
> well. I am thinking that I would not get the actual certification, but
> instead just pass some of the practice tests. I have heard from a
> twitter friend who is also a Linux trainer that both of those certs are
> out of date.
> What are your thoughts on metrics for Linux proficiency? What can I use
> to gauge my progress through this trek?
> Thanks for your help.
> Michael

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