Using GNU/Linux == Assembling Your Own Ammunition

The reasons that I use GNU/Linux (and only software that is free as in freedom on my personal machines) are probably much different than the reasons that you do. I use GNU/Linux and FOSS software because I believe that you don’t truly own a piece of technology until you understand how it works, and have the freedom to do whatever you wish with that technology. Also, I really really really really like the fine-grained control over how each piece of my technology operates.

I recently had the epiphany that I pack/assemble my own ammunition for my guns (cue crazy gun-totting American comments) for the same reason. I am forced to understand the mechanics of how my guns function (which is pretty straight-forward) and I am given fine-grained (pun intended) control over how the gun will function each and every time that I use/fire it.

Upon having this epiphany, I starting thinking about other apects of my life where my beliefs in/about Free Software are applicable. The results were quite numerous:

  • I prefer to work on my own car rather than having somebody else do it
  • I love cooking by taking an existing recipe and adapting it
  • Almost every mechanical thing that I own I have repaired instead of replaced
  • I grow most of my own vegetables
  • I brew my own beer

And whats more is that I take pleasure in doing these things – which is more important that any other benefit. If fiddling, tweaking, breaking, and fixing aren’t in your bag of skills and desires, that is fine. I am not advocating that everybody needs to free software, or pack their own ammunition, or brew their own beer, or grow their own veggies. I am simply advocating the opinion that if you can’t fix it and then repair it, then no matter what you think, that technology owns you completely.