It happened last week. My computer (well, it is really Deepak’s laptop which I got because mine broke) is old and started slowing down. I wanted to just erase everything and start afresh. But sitting in a lone computer in an unknown country without a tech savvy student at a stone’s throw, I decided to not do anything harsh. This would not have been the first time I would have seriously regretted tinkering due to frustration. The last time I tried “changing” my computer, all data was lost and even the Compaq service guys put their hands up. Of course, I got a guy in a shanty to repair it for 500 bucks. He did not even have a UPS, but he got it done. Here, I cannot hope for cheap genius. So, I resisted.
I saw my Ubuntu CD cover shortly after that and thought the same thing I thought when:
1. I was supposed to do my homework in fifth grade and I spent the whole evening changing inks to see which felt best. (The resulting blue grey was most hideous.)
2. I was supposed to practice music and I spent the whole afternoon searching for the best songs to sing.
3. I was supposed to write a test paper and I went shopping for foolscap paper.
4. I was supposed to study for the exam and I started looking up relaxation techniques.
5. I was supposed to make a PPT for presenting to my client and I spent the whole day looking for templates, not getting any and then making my own.
So, you see, I was quite certain this changing the operating system was yet another feeble attempt at delaying work. I have matured you see and a great manifestation of said maturity was not to fall for self deceiving tricks.
Another thing to note is that I am utterly loyal. Ask my teddy bear of 22 years, my friends, my husband or my clients. Now even though I hate Microsoft, I feel a high degree of loyalty to it. Especially because of Bill Gates. He is a great man, with a big charitable heart. See, all our windows copies were free. Ha ha, just kidding. But seriously, he funded my library and so I am very grateful to him. So if I had to change operating systems it could not have been just because windows sucks…it had to have been more. So with a heavy heart, I installed Ubuntu from my old CD. I am all for open source and open knowledge transfer and to work on my new project on best practices knowledge sharing, this would be a perfect OS.
An amazing thing happened after that. I had to dabble with some lines of command and I could change partitions while getting instructions online. I had finished checking mail, social networks and writing up an article all in ten minutes. Then I sat staring at the empty desktop wondering what I should be doing. I realized that for years I had been doing the same routine which would take me much more time. I did not know what to do with that sudden burst of extra time. All that time and energy that I expended on Windows would account for around half of my life. And that’s a big price to pay for any OS. Not so loyal now.