I am a sadist too

John Naughton, a writer for The Observer, wrote an interesting piece about how he was able to ignore the latest internet virus warning.

I sort of know how he feels. All around him are people who are screaming and jumping up and down and stressing out because their important files might be compromised. Some are internet and pc savvy enough to update their virus definitions, have personal firewalls and so on - but many just don't have the skills or the knowledge to be able to do anything about it.

Naughton, however, goes through the virus scare without any concern whatsoever. He has not had one virus or worm or piece of malware on his PC since 1999 - and this despite the fact that he is connected to the internet 24/7.

You see, Naughton runs Linux.

In the early days, when Naughton was confronted by people regaling him with stories of viruses and worms and how they have hurt them, he would often speak to such people about the great virtues of Linux and how safe it is and how wonderful open-source software is and so on. The problem was that his audience just didn't want to listen. Eventually, Naughton decided to stop talking about Linux and simply nod in sad agreement, "mouthing the soothing bromides favoured by vicars when dealing with terminal cases." I'll let Naughton tell the rest:

And the moral of the story? Simply this: as far as computing is concerned, most people are masochists. And I am a sadist, because I have stopped flogging them with the truth.
Yep, that's how I feel. A friend of mine recently switched from Linux back to Microsoft XP when he bought a new computer. I can partly understand his decision, but on Saturday we were on dialup for about 3 hours as he downloaded new virus definitions. The computer is also very slow for the first 15-20 minutes of its operation for some reason. But I won't say anything - there's no point since I have Cassandra Syndrome about things like this.

From the usr/bin/oso Department

© 2005 Neil McKenzie Cameron, http://one-salient-oversight.blogspot.com/

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