How did people here learn GUIs

Martin McCormick martin.m at
Tue Jul 19 17:22:04 UTC 2016

	This has been extremely fascinating as many of the rest
of you report things that are familiar to me. I am also retired
now but for 25 years, I ran Oklahoma State University's domain
name and dhcp servers as well as built a lot of automation for
our network operations group.

	My job as stated by my boss when I was hired in 1990 was
to learn Unix and the C language and learn all the tools there in which, to
me, was like being payed to play all day with the idea that I use
that knowledge to make our group more productive.

	The problem with learning GUI's for me was not the
concept so much as knowing what keys to push to make it work. I
actively avoided Windows since for most of my working life,
most Windows screen readers were outrageously expensive money
pits in which you basically pay double or triple for your work
station. I could have gotten all the JAWS I wanted in my job, but
I knew I would one day not be working there any more and would
have to caugh up that money myself if I got too much in to

	I did eagerly start on the Mac around 2007 and have a
Dell system that sometimes runs a version of orca which I think
is a beautiful creation. The name ubuntu is supposed to mean
"something good from the efforts of many" in an African language
and it is incredible that it doesn't cost a thing to just go out
and get it. It makes me almost feel guilty to use it, not having
contributed anything yet.

	If you have good spacial concepts, you can think of where
things are on the screen and then you must understand what to do
when you hear or read terms like Scroll Bar or encounter a table
in Macos or orca. 

	To me, that can be very frustrating to run in to
something new while trying to fix something else but I am afraid
that that is life.

	I have to admit that after 25 years, I can usually make a
C program work and there are still lots of things to learn about
Unix but I have never regretted going this route as it appears to
build on solid ground and as someone else here stated, it doesn't
take anything away but adds to it and makes it better.

	There is also nothing like the registry and I am over the
moon glad about that.

Jude DaShiell <jdashiel at> writes:
> I learned Unix way before I touched any of its gui's. The flavor of unix 
> my
> employer had was bsd and it had the learn utility operational. I was able
> to go through many of those lessons and read man pages and then got into a
> unix class. Later me and some other members of the penguin users group 
> took
> about a year to figure it all out but I finally got Redhat 5.0 installed
> and talking. From there I tried out Slackware (no longer a viable
> accessibility alternative) and then moved along to debian. I got help with
> the last two installations and the idea it would be possible by listening
> to some of those main menu programs on acbradio. I did a little bit with
> orca while employed at home but have had more time for it now I'm retired.
> I also got into archlinux while employed and still use that flavor of 
> linux
> allbeit on a separate hard drive.

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