158 reputation
8
bio website scottseverance.us
location Dallas, Texas, USA
age 33
visits member for 3 years, 2 months
seen Jun 25 at 2:03

My first Linux experience was in 1998 (via telnet into my university's server to read my email with PINE). I've run Linux on my own machines off and on since 1999 and exclusively since 2006.

My first distro was Slackware, which I quickly broke. I then went back to Windows 95. After that, my friend helped me install Debian, which I used until I replaced that machine. I found Debian too difficult to install on my own, so I put Red Hat on my newer machine. At that time, yum didn't exist, and Red Hat only offered updates if I logged in to X as root, which I rarely did. So, it quickly became outdated, and OpenOffice 1.1 couldn't handle right-to-left text, which I needed for one of my university classes. So, I started using my Windows XP laptop most of the time. I couldn't install Linux on the laptop because the NTFS tools of the era couldn't resize my partition.

After a couple of years, I decided to switch my Red Hat box to something more modern. I wanted to move away from the RPM package format, so I tried installing Debian again and once again found it too complicated to get all the features I needed. Then, I read about an up and coming Debian-based distro called Ubuntu that had just released their latest version. So, I installed 6.06 (Dapper Drake) and have used Ubuntu exclusively as my main OS all my machines since that time. I only boot into Windows a few times a year. I've tried a few other distros' live CDs, but so far have always decided that the benefits of those distros aren't significant enough for me to switch over.

For the first many years, I used the command line most of the time, as early Linux GUIs weren't up to many basic tasks. These days, the GUI tools have made leaps and bounds and are quite usable. Nevertheless, I often prefer the command line for many tasks. I'm much more likely to use vim than Gedit. But, I quite appreciate GUI tools for a number of tasks--perhaps most tasks these days.


Sep
26
awarded  Popular Question
Apr
16
comment Filtering desktop users by user agent string
Thanks for the comment. However, since I'm trying to determine which site version to serve Javascript is not a very good approach. I need to determine the appropriate version before I serve the page. If I use Javascript, I have to load a page, then detect, then redirect. That would waste time and bandwidth, and just seems silly. The detection needs to be on the server side.
Feb
14
comment Filtering desktop users by user agent string
Thanks for the list of user agents. However, it's years old, only tangentially related, and doesn't do anything to help solve my problem. My question isn't about the numbers; they were only background. That should be clear since I introduced my question with the bolded statement, "Here's my question."
Feb
14
revised Filtering desktop users by user agent string
added 565 characters in body
Feb
13
comment Filtering desktop users by user agent string
@elssar: Sure, my statistics come from there. However, I don't know how to convert those statistics into browser detection code.
Feb
13
comment Filtering desktop users by user agent string
Thanks. However, this is detecting mobile browsers, which is a moving target, and only 10% of my traffic. I want to detect desktop browsers. Simply negating the regex you give wouldn't work because it is presumably incomplete, or at least would be incomplete as time passes. It would result in some number of mobile browsers falsely being identified as desktop browsers.
Feb
13
asked Filtering desktop users by user agent string
Dec
7
awarded  Autobiographer
Dec
7
awarded  Analytical
Dec
6
awarded  Critic
Dec
6
revised What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
added 249 characters in body
Dec
6
comment What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
-1, because asking the user is a rather poor way to determine the default. Certainly it should be easy to change the language, but any decent website ought to find a reasonable default without having to ask.
Dec
6
comment What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
@xyious, Peter Taylor: There's a very real use case here: someone who travels with a laptop. Public wireless is readily available in many places around the world. When I had a layover in Dubai a couple of years ago, I was disappointed to find Facebook and Google suddenly change to Arabic, although that's a language I don't know. I was using my own laptop with an English OS and browser.
Dec
6
awarded  Editor
Dec
6
revised What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
Added option 3
Dec
6
comment What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
Regarding Wikipedia, see my upcoming edit. Basically, Wikipedia's approach seems to be especially poor, because it relies on the user explicitly selecting a language rather than using readily-available methods to determine their likely preference. Regarding Google, browsing to google.com in Korea results in a redirect to google.co.kr. YouTube stores this info in a short-lived cookie (so I keep having to set my prefs), and Blogger can't be changed without logging in. Google is good at many things, but l10n isn't one of them.
Dec
6
awarded  Student
Dec
6
awarded  Teacher
Dec
6
comment What's the best way to determine users' preferred language?
If users don't configure their browser's language settings, then the browser defaults to the OS language (at least in the browsers I've tested). This should theoretically be more accurate, since computers sold in a given country will likely be set to that country's default language (providing results that are nearly the same as geolocation), but people who are traveling will generally have an OS in a language they know. So, I suspect that users' configuration choices aren't a significant factor.
Dec
6
answered Setting DNS when registrar and host is different