"free" as in "nothing better to do with your day"

Ways in which Linux has stolen my time from me recently:

  • Getting an external Firewire drive to work: 8+ hours.

    I finally had to resort to having jungar come over and figure it out. Turns out the Firewire card was conflicting with my (secondary, slower) SCSI card in some obscure crazy way. Solution: throw away the SCSI card. Side effect: I no longer have any way to use my scanner. (I had the scanner and disks on different cards, since the scanner (HP-4C) is ancient and only does SCSI-1.)

  • Getting a wheeled mouse to work: 3+ hours.

    For most of that time, Google evidence was actually suggesting that I was going to need to upgrade my kernel to get the mouse wheel to be recognised! This mouse has two buttons, a wheel (which is also a middle button) and three extra buttons (one on each side, and one below the wheel.) But after much thrashing, I finally managed to get all the buttons working except the little button below the wheel (it now always sends the same code that scroll-wheel-down does, which is pretty useless.)

Amount of effort either of these tasks would have required on a Mac:

  • Zero.

Fundamental tactical error made during the execution:

  • Failure to preface all efforts with a rigorous protocol of heavy drinking.
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