Sometimes it takes running into problems to be able to examine the inner working of a system. So I installed the latest version of Ubuntu on my laptop and everything seemed to go smoothly but then after logging in, I noticed that the “start menu” was not rendering correctly and I couldn’t see any of the shortcuts. I went on google (and bing is my default search engine for over a year now because I’m trying to give them a chance) trying to solve what I thought was probably a graphics driver related issue but soon stumbled upon a totally different solution, Cairo Dock. I could actually install and use a different “start menu” if I so happened to choose, it made me reflect on the years of being stuck to the same old start menu in Windows XP and Windows 7. I then found out there were many other desktop management environments at my disposal just by virtue of it being linux. This is probably when it occurred to me about the numerous other things I would discover if I kept using this operating system regularly, and that’s the word.
While working on the “assignment” assignment, I realized that creating assignments for a course is an involved process. The focus of the assignment I think should be to expose students to fundemntal mechanisms of solving problems, therefore it is better to avoid problems which have multiple problems but all sharing a similar problem solving mechanism. Further, when it comes to this class, I found that the biggest obstacle for me in developing more interest was my unfamiliarity with the linux operating system environment. So my focus in completing the assignment was to come up with something that allows maximum freedom in how its accomplished while also being a useful enough tool to encourage students to use it for their own needs thereby creating one more personal incentive to stay in the linux environment. While I have learned a whole lot about the linux environment, I anticipate I will learn a lot more if I used it for all my computing needs.