Archive for May, 2008

Should I read or should I let you do it?

Monday, May 5th, 2008

I found myself feeling like a little bit of an outsider listening to the latest TWIT podcasts. They seem to read so much and I feel like I don’t read that much. I look at myself and say, “You really need to pick up your pace, these people are so much better than you because they read.” Well, this thought was very short lived. I guess I should get a book on confidence and self-esteem (problem solved I just ordered one). I’m constantly reading. I read because of something my Great grandmother told me when I was young about the bible. She said (and I paraphrase), “Anybody can come and tell people anything about their faith because most of them don’t read it for themselves.” Absolutely brilliant.

Due to this and reading a blog post once about a guy that was saying that he reads nearly 60 books a year, my bookshelves are huge and overflowing. In the car I even listen to audiobooks instead of the radio. His point really touched me. He felt that if you read nearly 20 books on any subject you could pretty much be considered an expert on that subject. I partially agree because I feel like a mixture of practice and usage with some subjects truly make you an expert.

I don’t want to let someone else always tell me second hand. I understand that that is exactly what a book is but a lot of times I just take it for granted that the person that is writing the book is pretty good at his/her subject. I have since done websites for authors and found that you also need to look at their publisher too because good publishers tend to weed out some of the rift raft but there’s good to be learned from the rift raft. Corwin Press, for one, is like a blog mentality for authors. It’s pretty easy to get published it seems. Maybe you’ll see a book coming from me soon.  I just have to figure out what I want to talk about.

I like where Amazon is taking this with the Kindle. I love this idea because you can just download your books in digital format. My only problem with this is getting used books. I have learned to order used books for as cheap as $1 on Amazon. After paying $400 for the Kindle sometimes I might want to load it up with cheap books. However, it seems that buying in digital format can cost me more even though I’m saving the environment. Audible.com isn’t helping much there either. Well, I guess, I’ll just stick with my way for now.

Oh, and for all of you like me… I found the source of my insecurity. I don’t read fiction and it seems that all the people that I listen to do. Don’t feel like an outsider. Read what you want as long as you read. Start with my blog.

What is freedom?

Sunday, May 4th, 2008

I was just listening to a podcast called Lugradio recently. They had a rather interesting debate that sparked a lot of thoughts about what I believe.

As a little background, Lugradio is a British podcast. The four members of the show throw around ideas about Linux and open source software. Now, I know that it may seem that freedom is relative to the location in the world you live in. You’d be wrong. Freedom is relative to you as an individual. This shows in the similarity in thought that open source software has ignited worldwide.

By definition “Freedom” is: Liberty and the release of ties, bonds, and obligations. To be obligated to use only free or open source software would be an obligation thus making us no longer free. At the same time to look at only open source software as good wouldn’t negate our freedoms but it would be irrational.

The open source movement can’t just be a band of raving technical zealots. Has that ever really worked? Legitimate religions of our time had to learn this early in their histories. People don’t listen to the person that’s just ranting and raving and casting condemnation on others. They are free too. Free people learn by education, choice, and reasoning. However, they have the right to choose whatever they want even though it is not the “right” choice.

I always think of it in perspective of all the cars on the road. If you looked at all the cars that exist you should ask yourself “Why?” Given the needs and styles wanted by a particular buyer a computer could kick out the perfect car according to color, body type, passengers, mileage, fuel consumption but yet there are so many.

Feel free to decide. That is the joy of being free.