Linux offers something for everyone, it’s not just for geeks.
Not everyone who uses Linux are programmers or geeks who feel they have to rebuild software applications. To this day, I still have not recompiled a Linux kernel to improve performance. But hey, enough advanced talk for now. This post is dedicated to the vast resources for learning Linux that are out there (and have been out there for a long time).
Some suggestions for learning about (and using) Linux.
- Listen to Linux-oriented podcasts. There are many linux podcasts, but one I recommend for newcomers is the Linux Reality Podcast by Chess Griffin. I listened to these podcasts while commuting on a bus. Visit the Linux Reality RSS Feed (links and descriptions of each episode). See my post on how to download multiple audio files with the command line. Podcasts are an easy-to-follow resource available on your schedule. If something sounds confusing, you can always google the phrase or method that doesn’t make sense. Here is a link to various linux podcasts.
- Visit forums (not newsgroups). You’ll encounter the phrase “Google is your friend“. Well, if google is a friend, then google.com/linux is an even better friend. Chances are good that your questions about Linux have been asked already. Viewing the online forums can show you just how big and (most of the time) helpful the Linux community can be. Don’t overlook e-mail discussion groups such as Yahoo.
- Tinker, experiment, and have fun at your own pace. Browse the major book stores at their computing/programming section and you’ll find lots of Linux books. I highly recommend The Linux Phrasebook by Scott Granneman for a few reasons. Firstly, it’s packed with helpful tips that I still use today. Secondly, it’s small and portable. Lastly, it’s a Linux book as opposed to an Ubuntu or Red Hat Linux book (which are fine books, but they are likely written with a specific OS version in mind, thus it can go out of date. The Linux Phrasebook’s subtitle is “Essential Code and Commands”, making it a “general” resource that can help you get familiar with almost any Linux distribution.