Roughly eighteen years ago, I happened to mention to a new colleague that I was having issues with my home PC, and we commiserated for a while on the terribleness that was Microsoft Windows. (These were the days when we were still using Windows 2000 at work, and my home PC was still running Windows 98.) Toward the end of our conversation, he proceeded to tell me about what he felt was a better alternative to Windows (and Macs) — Linux.
The next day, he brought a CD into work, onto which he had burned a copy of SUSE Linux. He told me that if I wanted to give Linux a try, feel free to give him a call should I run into any issues. He also gave me a stack of back issues of various Linux related magazines. I went home that evening, perused through some of those magazines, and installed Linux on that problematic PC. I was hooked right then and there.
I'm eternally thankful to my friend for introducing me to Linux, but more importantly, I'm grateful for the way that he introduced me to Linux. He was not pushy or condescending, and he was extremely patient with all of my noob questions, of which I had a LOT in those early days. His patience and willingness to help, coupled with the fact that he did not act like a gate keeper with a superiority complex, is definitely one of the reasons that I am where I am today.
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