Too old to Rock’n’Roll?

I look back to the days of black screens and white characters with wonder. Was that me who once initialized and partitioned his first harddisk with debug commands because fdisk was not around yet? And was that me who installed his Linux distributions from floppy disks, using the command line to install and configure and build kernels whenever a new feature was needed?

I can’t believe it. I don’t remember building a kernel during the last 6 years, the last time I did the 3-step to install an application from source has vanished in foggy memories as well. Oh yes, I do use the command line to install updates, to edit this or that configuration file. I ssh to our server and do this or that task and I edit our website’s PHP applications with vim. But where are the times when I spent weeks on my Emacs and Gnus configuration? Today I am using Thunderbird for mails and spend my time in web forums instead of newsgroups.

It is so much more comfortable to use those point&click systems, you get your work done and after all it even looks so much nicer! But lately it became boring, too. I remember the excitement when I found a new Lisp line to solve a problem with Emacs, the “Yes, I can!” feeling when my selfmade kernel did what I wanted it to do. I even miss the hours of failure, the never ending nights I spent searching the web for a solution.

Yes, I miss all this but I also know that those days are gone.

Here I am, singing along with Ian Anderson…


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