Originally Published: Monday, 25 December 2000 Author: Katharine "Wintersun" McCoy
Published to: daily_feature/Linux.com Feature Story Page: 1/1 - [Printable]

Struggles of a Website Designer

Are you good at coding, or playing around with html? You think you are pretty hot when it comes to hacking away at mysql huh? But, when it comes to doing a personal web page... You are stuck? Read on to get some empathy from Katharine!

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Lately, I've been trying to work on a new design for my Web site. I'm trying to create a completely new image. I'm even going so far as to move it to a new domain. One of the biggest holdbacks has been creating a graphic and a stylesheet for the Web site.

I'm not the artistic type, never have been. My brother inherited the graphics skills and I inherited the scientific mind. I always considered it to be an even split. I now sit in front of my computer trying to create a design on my computer that reflects all of the images that I have floating around in my mind. It's hard. I have been spoiled my entire life because I haven't had to express any of the artistic ideas that come into my mind. Instead, I let other people do my work.

My attitude towards graphics and the arts reflected my former attitude about operating systems. I'll let someone else do the work while I get an easy out. Everything's completed for me, I just have to click a button. Growing up, Windows was great. All was laid out for me. As I got older, Windows became more and more frustrating because I could envision all of these things that I wanted to do with my operating system, but couldn't. If I found a bug in the system, I had to wait for a service pack to be released before it could be patched. That would sometimes take months, too.

Then I discovered Linux. It allowed me to do the things that I couldn't in Windows. If I found a bug, I could fix it myself. If I didn't like the way things were, I could change it. In exchange for this freedom, though, I had to do it all myself. I had to learn commands to get around the kernel. I had to learn the differences between the kernel and the window manager. Before, all of this had been packaged together as a single operating system. Those days were gone.

Linux isn't easy to learn. In fact, Linux has caused some of my greatest frustrations. But, some of my greatest moments have occurred when I made a breakthrough and figured out something new. A lot of people wrestling with Linux may want to give up. They want Linux to be just like Windows. Sorry, it's different. It gives you a type of freedom not possible from Windows. Nor will it ever be. But, in order to gain that freedom, you have to give something of yourselves. You have to be willing to work a little harder to get things accomplished. In the end, you'll have the great reward of doing something exactly the way you wanted to do it.

I'm going to get back to my Web site now. I have a lot of hard work ahead of me before I'll be able to finish it. But, when it's done, it'll be the way I want it and nobody will have done it for me.

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