When I look back at my behavior in this forum after 2 days, I can only be surprised at my macho attitudes. I’ve been moving around this forum like an elephant in a china shop.
What I accuse others of, namely fleetingness, superficiality, aggressiveness, carelessness, sloppiness, prejudice… all of these negative characteristics I am guilty of myself. I practiced all of this myself here and lived it out uninhibitedly. This morning I barely wanted to look at myself in the mirror. Something like that really bothers me. And at my age. No joke. It should be a lesson to me. If an old man like me can still learn any lessons.
This forum is really something special. How many times in the last 40 years have I been advised to simply reinstall software when I have problems and then hope that it will work out? And how often did that help? 1 time out of 10 maybe. At most.
Not more often. That was completely different here. I also had to get proof that I had written Cutshot instead of Shotcut. Without the written evidence from Shotcut-Leader, I would never have believed it! What is that? Incipient dementia? Rather not. It must be something like rigidity of age. Well-rehearsed, firmly anchored prejudices.
The bottom line is: I was quite an idiot. There’s no other way to say it.
In the summer of 1961, my father spent an hour trying to teach me what “Multiplication” was, the mathematical function. Little has changed since then. When Shotcut Leader tries to explain to me 60 years later the various layers of interconnectedness between Debian, Ubuntu and Cinnamon, the integration of the “frei0r plugins” into this mélange and why it has to be exactly this way and not otherwise - then I can hardly follow his explanations.
I didn’t understand multiplication as a child; it was so terrible that I never forgot it again. I didn’t understand it! The worst thing was when, after an hour of agony, my mother left the table where she, my father and I were sitting, shaking her head and sighing, saying that I had lost all the hops and malt. Decades later, I saw such a scene a second time in the film biography of the pianist and singer Ray Charles, whose mother had made similar comments to her son.
Feelings of inferiority were unavoidable and these particularly applied to the subjects of mathematics, physics and chemistry. My school years were the worst time of my life mainly for this reason. I wasn’t booked as the winner. Back in 1966, when I was 13, I bought the Beatles’ LP “Rubber Soul” with my pocket money. My mother had already been dead for five years. In the same year I attended a Rolling Stones concert in the Ernst-Merck-Halle.
And ultimately I’m too stupid to even play chess. It’s that simple. I proved this irrefutably in the long-term test. And that also applies to the subjects of chemistry and physics. For example, to this day I still don’t understand how electricity works and why a light bulb burns. The debacle of my childhood of not understanding multiplication was later repeated in other areas. I have read 20 times how electricity works. But I still don’t understand it!
With my kind of intelligence I couldn’t get a stab anywhere. I would never have invented the wheel. And yet: When I started my own company in 1999. I was online at my web address www.auskunftei.com, I had programmed all the HTML and Perl elements myself, without any outside assistance, just with the help of two books. Despite my cognitive deficits, my website in 1999 was visually and functionally better designed than the website of the global company Mercedes-Benz AG from Sindelfingen, Germany. How was that possible? - Ask Mercedes. It was probably my obsession. The furious, sheer desire to be first on the internet.
Still, I smell better than I think. So far that hasn’t changed. I can still detect tiny traces of scent, almost like a dog. If I walk along an avenue here when there is no wind, I can smell the cars (diesel/petrol) parked in front of the terraced houses and the dinners being served in the respective apartments. I can smell a burning cigarette from over 100 meters away! I painstakingly taught myself everything in the IT sector. If I’m going to learn at all, I have to teach myself.
I have to try it out in practice. Most of the time this works, but not always. The older I got, the more confident I was in assessing what was still possible cognitively and for what I was too stupid to do it. I simply tried to replace the lack of intelligence with experience. But when I was only 12 years old, I saw again and again, even outside of school, that I was downright stupid. Two purchases of Faller model kits were unforgettably bad. These were small boxes that were available and sold in toy stores and whose contents had to be assembled according to the instructions. These puzzle pieces depressed and disillusioned me and finished me off. I couldn’t put it together and my father couldn’t help either. Many similar bankruptcies followed in my life and my previous posts in this forum are the latest, most up-to-date evidence of this.
Another kind word to the shotcut or video leader. Since I was unable to learn higher-level programming languages such as C++ or Java due to my math deficits and never got beyond my rudimentary BASIC, you were instinctively right in your assessment that all I could do was lie down in a bed made up of the softened Linux Mint and that I couldn’t get past clicking on pre-cut finished products. You thought falsely taht I’m the type of person who tears open a frozen meal and heats it up and then thinks to be a 3-star chef. In 1986 I acquired two strategically chosen programs, namely “dbase 3” and “Framework II” - both from Ashton-Tate. A year later I replaced the “dBase” with the twice-fast relational database program “FoxBase”, which even had its own compiler. Programming a relational database is simpler and more powerful than the old BASIC ever was. The program combination mentioned is still good today when it comes to streamlined word processing. Since Microsoft has discontinued active support for their old operating system MS-DOS, I downloaded the “DOS-Box-0.74” (www.dosbox.com) for free from the Internet.
I still work today with the old programs that I bought in 1986. I am practicing something that is considered impossible. I have been working with the same PC programs almost every day for 36 years, even if only in the areas of arithmetic and writing, instead of wasting my time constantly relearning and constantly upgrading and updating. It helps that Ashton-Tate has been bankrupt for decades. This means that their “update neurosis” is literally buried forever.
Most modern software “updates” are as nonsensical as a second appendix. Some are not only unnecessary, some are even significant steps backwards compared to previous versions. This is certainly true in the Windows area. I may now work even faster and more efficiently with my Framework-Foxbase-database combination than any competitor with a modern Office package. This is because while I am still writing in the text, I can address relational database fields and integrate them into the text. Framework’s macro language was specifically designed to interact with the database interface. The company later went bankrupt only because most customers believed Microsoft’s marketing promises. Ashton-Tate and Borland’s programs were often technically better than Microsoft’s. But Microsoft had both hands on MS/DOS. Ultimately, the company founded in 1975 was able to conquer the whole world because every IBM-compatible PC needed MS/DOS. This is by far the most important reason for their success. Then Windows.
In Germany, only the CCC was aware of the cultural background of microtechnology, which was still completely missing from the Greens. The hippie movement started from Berkeley in San Francisco. Steve Jobs and other pioneers like Ray Kurzweil and Jaron Lanier came from the hippie tradition and wanted to finally operate the personal computer under their own control. That was their main motive. They wanted to achieve exactly this emancipation from the military-industrial complex - and nothing else.
It was undisputed among the PC revolutionaries at the time that this “democratization” should necessarily go hand in hand with the simplification of computer applications, dear Shotcut Leader. Your name has a strangely dangerous sound to the ears of a German. But that’s only on the sidelines. Luckily you’re not German. The pioneers have already fought the battles for simplified operation. For decades. And after 40 years, some old student comes along and simply lies down in the comfortable bed made by the application repositories in Linux Mint, for whose existence the pioneers and probably also the Shotcut leader himself had to fight for years. He comes along without any achievement of his own and demands the comfort that others have built for him. It’s completely understandable, this attitude. It’s true. Factually that is correct. You just have to be careful that you don’t get caught up in your need for justice and truth and end up becoming something like the doctrinaire preacher of a Puritan religious community, who preaches pure doctrine to his sheep in a black gown with a raised index finger. And so the democratic goals, the wishes and dreams of the pioneers are reversed into their exact opposite, namely the rigid attitude of the military computer complex and their respective developers in the mid and late 1960s, the evil monopoly of power, from which the pioneers absolutely had to break out.
Many waves of ups and downs repeat themselves in history.
They, who saw the device primarily as an empowerment tool, at the same time the Apple II came out. It was what was then the instrument of self-liberation from the traditional power structures of big industry. The pioneers finally wanted to work with their own computers and no longer beg for hourly access time in the universities. They wanted their own tools. The liberal, often even anarchistic spirit of companies like Apple or Google still bears witness to the free-spirited roots of these pioneers. The practical and theoretical pioneers of the hi-tech movement were even able to make their libertarian ideas the basis of the first Internet regulation passed by the US Congress in 1996. This regulation was virtually free of any rules compared to the previous regulations that had been in place before to regulate the press, radio and television. Everything was supposed to be done more liberally and without paternalism. Two diametrically opposed, essentially even hostile movements suddenly grew together and merged. In a stunning unique way.
Firstly, the freethinking of the former hippies and secondly, the neo-liberalism of the Chicago boys around the economist Milton Fridman. Only because of this and only from this mixture could the most free medium in the world emerge as it appears to us today.
All these libertarian dreams of democracy and justice and freedom have long since been lost in the strict, bone-hard commercialism and paternalism of Billions of Windows users and the strictly proprietary operating systems of all unsuspecting customers of the giant Apple imperium.
Why did it happen like this?
The answer could be: “Communication is not just pleasant.” True, as you can easily see from my thoughtless statements in this forum. In 1986 it was still said: “No powerful person, no person of power, wants systems in which he is confronted with the diverse will of the grassroots.” -
That’s what people thought 1986, around 7 years before Tim Berners-Lee developed his HTML for simplified communication at the Cern in Geneva, thereby making the Internet possible for practical use. With all sympathy, you can see how wrong this statement is 37 years later when you look at Donald Trump’s ex-Twitter account (now “X”). - That was simply unimaginable back then.
1986 the German members of the CCC even went so far as to say that “the computer could help to put democracy on a new basis”, although even then they had to know full well that the computer was just a tool. Of course, since the terrorists in the Middle East began showing their beheadings and bomb-making instructions on the Internet, we all know this now. Sleight of hand. You’re always wiser afterwards. The Poles at that time moved between total denial and technical-romantic enthusiasm. I don’t hide the fact that for me the “pure tool” was ultimately much more than just a hammer or a new toasterand rather a promise to liberate oneself.
The PC was certainly an empowerment tool of first order, gradually virtually replacing one technical device after another. First the typewriter, then came VisiCalc, the spreadsheet that allowed financial simulations that had never existed before. Programmable, relational databases followed. Then the technical draftsman was replaced, the typesetting studio, the printing shop with whose help I typed my 800-pages book, the same printing shop where you still ordered your letterhead back then, the fax, then the sound and photo studio including the darkroom . After all, films could be edited on the PC and you could also be defeated at chess. Still questions?
I’ll also donate my 100 euros! Promised!
Thomas - alias Klaus Nomi.