With over 100,000 members - share how you were initially introduced to open source technology! We have varying stories, backgrounds, industries and skill levels that make up the fabric of this community, we would love to hear how your story began.
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I started a career in IT in 1992, I liked the power that unix has, and was very intrigued by the idea of open source. In the mid nineties my local computer store had a small section on linux. I bought a very early version of Ygdrassil linux, Slackware, Red Hat when it still came on floppy disks. I bought Star Writer, later Star Office and played around with it. In the beginning I was going from Windows to linux, back and forth, but very early on I switched my office laptop over to linux and now I have been using Linux exclusively for at least 20 years. When the first OSDEM (now called FOSDEM) was organised in 2000 (or 2001) I went there with a bunch of guys of our local linux user group, and loved the energy of the event. I went to all subsequent events and really hope that next years event will be a live event again, if covid doesn't mess things up again.
I definitely will not go back to closed source. Every time I have to fix something on a colleagues laptop, I absolutely hate the primitive state of 'that other operating system'. There are settings in the Control panel, settings in the new Settings app, hidden settings you can only reach through obscure voodoo in the registry. It is a mess. It looks nice at first glance, but then again you can polish anything until it shines on the outside.
The only regret I have is throwing all my ancient linux books, posters, and cds away during a home-office cleaning session quite a few years ago. It was quite a huge collection from the early days and it took a lot of space. But nostalgia only hits you when you reach 50 I suppose...
I was doing intern work for an IT department and one of the issues they had was getting the Red Hat Linux server running (v2.4) to talk to the rest of the network. I was informed that if I could get it to communicate and install the needed software I would have a job there permanently. So I used the primitive internet at the time and connected to various boards which led me to the solution. Configured the kernel, installed a few packages that were missing and got it running. Since then, I've always been a fan of Open Source initiatives and Linux in general.
Have been using different flavors of Linux when trying to deploy home labs for several learnings. Be it learning containers, ansible or any application deployment for testing purposes, I have used open versions of Linux. Have also used Postman and Github to help support my automation efforts.
I was first introduced to open source technology when I first started high school. A close friend of mine couldn't stop talking about "this amazing Linux OS, Ubuntu". I dove head first into Linux and the open source community and never looked back. That was one of the most significant moments leading me up to the career I have now!
Many (many) years ago, I was working for a large outsourcing company doing administration of HP-UX running Oracle and a large, custom application written in C++. After a couple of years, I was asked to take over a different account that was also running HP-UX but they were planning to migrate to RHEL 5, PostgreSQL and the application was being re-written in Python. Suddenly seeing the benefits of open source was enlightening and change the whole trajectory or my career. Since then I've embrace open source and and became an evangelist at subsequent jobs.
Like many Red Hat colleagues, I was introduced to open source technology at university. The LKCamp (study group of open source projects, focusing on the Linux kernel, for all interested people and without technical prerequisites) at University of Campinas taught me first about Linux and then unit tests (KUnit) in a workshop. So came my first collaborative patch, which was pushed to the mainline.
In high school, participating in ACM contests and algorithm development, we did everything in Linux, there I met some of those who are now great friends and mentors.
At the university we managed to implement a cluster with open source so that students who did not have a computer at home could occupy a workspace and carry out activities.
I feel like that was a long time ago. I was introduced back in my first year of college in 2001. They started out talking about all the different types of open source software and then we got to experience our first desktop Linux (open source) system, using GNOME as our GUI. But the fun was always the CLI for me. The rest is history.