Why do you use Linux? expanded from Converting text to mp3

Linux for blind general discussion blinux-list at redhat.com
Thu Jan 27 03:39:20 UTC 2022

Initial Disclaimer: Ubuntu 5.10 was the first Linux Distro I used
seriously, though I did play around with other distros prior to that.
I believe it was around Ubuntu 6.06 or 6.10 that I switched to running
Linux 24/7 instead of dual booting with Windows XP. While I've been
visually impaired my whole life and blind in my right eye since
infancy, I didn't go blind in my left eye until 2012, when I was 25,
and by then, I had switched from Ubuntu to Debian and gone through
most of the major Desktop Environments of the day.

I have a computer science degree and can write my own terminal
applications in C++, so maybe I'm  biased, but in my experience,
setting up a fresh install of Linux is much easier than setting up a
fresh install of Windows, or at least it was back when I could see and
based on installs of Windows 2000, XP, and 7... Admittedly, most
Windows users never have to do a fresh install of Windows themselves
while most Linux users do have to install Linux themselves and I have
never attempted a blind install of Windows, though I'd rank the blind
installs of Linux I've done as easier than the sighted installs I did
of Windows.

When I first switched to Linux, it was for many of the usual reasons,
didn't want to deal with Microsoft, wanted to avoid proprietary
software, wanted to dodge the majority of malware, wanted something
that would use fewer system resources, it was the geeky thing to do,
etc. I had long since ditched the usual Windows Applications in favor
of the cross platform FOSS standards like Firefox, OpenOffice, and VLC
and had always been more interested in console and handheld gaming
than PC gaming, and what Windows-only applications I did have
attachment to ran fine in Wine, so I didn't have too rocky a
transition, and probably would have ditched Windows sooner except it
was my freshman year at university and instead of having a television
in my dorm room, I had an external TV card connected to my laptop.
Once I made the switch, I fell in love with Apt and how it allowed me
to just select software from a list and upgrade all installed software
all at once instead of having to manually install every piece of
software I use and having to manually upgrade each application

By the time I went blind, I had been a full time Linux user for so
long that Windows Accessibility never crossed my mind., though there
was a few months between when my vision got too bad for just making
the fonts as big as possible to work and when I got a usable screen
reader working, and admittedly, the distro I'm using comes preloaded
with a lot of stuff I don't use, so a clean install invovles a lot of
removing unwanted packages, but it gives me a live DVD I can refresh
when there's a new release, boots up talking, and which I can install
to hard drive and the only thing I need sighted assistence for with a
new computer is fixing the boot order. Plus, the same disc serves as
both install and rescue disc.

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