By Way of Introduction

Wow, watching my dashboard, the Boing Boing story has brought, not surprisingly, a literal flood of new readers. I’d be surprised and pleased if even a tenth of you decided to stay and keep reading, but thanks to everyone who followed the link.

Just by way of introduction, I would like to emphasize the “self-proclaimed” qualifier. I am still learning about many of the subjects I discuss here and on the podcast. I think audio makes it easier to convey that sense. If my writing comes across in any way as overly authoritative, that’s not my intent and is probably a function of rushing a post out. Humility is a quality for which I strive and I honestly do not mind corrections and constructive criticism. I will defend observations and hypotheses I think are substantiated but never presume to know everything. I have been known to cede an argument in light of better or more complete facts.

The goal of both the podcast and the blog is primarily to provide a sustained focus for my own reading and edification. The temptation to skim the various information sources I follow, rather than digging a bit deeper, is often quite powerful. There is just so much material to taken in on any given day. And I work for a living, so there is a natural limit to the hours I can reserve to simply satisfy my curiosity. The periodic nature of the podcast, in particular, and the desire to produce it consistently provides a hefty counterweight to the temptation to slack. And the ease of feedback helps keep me honest. If I make a mistake, honest or otherwise, I very much expect to hear about it.

And, yes, the title is a nod to Neal Stephenson’s similarly named essay. But as my long time listeners know, it is also a legitimate nickname I earned during my early days with Linux and, I hope, a constant reminder of some of the principles that make the Unix command line, in particular, so compelling even after all these decades.

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