Overview of operating systems - Linux compared

This is an overview of Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems from a usage perspective. While the other videos have been using Linux for various tutorials, this video attempts to just offer more background about how Linux is crafted and why it has so many distributions. The ugly term is Fragmentation, which is true, but one could also look at that as choice and options.

Since this is only focusing primarily on the desktop, desktop user interfaces (UI) are also explained a bit, as well as highlighting useful features/commands for installing applications on Linux.

This is not an in-depth comparison as there are many many differences in terms of how the architectures, permissions, and code bases differ between each OS. I hope this at least offers some background as to how the flexibility of Linux can lead to some complexity, and how that complexity can be managed.

Some more sources for images and market share are largely taken from Wikipedia:
(Note: there is a bit of variance in the numbers I show and the raw desktop numbers from NetMarketShare data, but there is a constant variance. Windows is still king of desktops, Linux rules in the server space and, through Android, the mobile markets as well.)

Introduction to Programming: Python, Java and Javascript

This is an overview of writing a basic converter program in 3 different languages, Python, Java, and JavaScript. I personally have used this as an exercise to learn new languages particularly the process of getting variables, manipulating them, and returning an output. These concepts will help with almost any program that you want to make in the future.

The video took a little longer to talk through than I anticipated, but 15 mins per language is hopefully acceptable. Again just something I hope can help people get started.

Source code:
Links to more information:
A few books and other sites that are helpful - Intro to Python, Learn Java in 8 hours, W3 schools, and more. Here are a few links. There are also countless tips and tricks just by Googling and searching through https://stackoverflow.com/.
Here as well is a quick video about how to setup the OpenJDK package in Linux. Alternatively, Windows, MacOS, and RedHat Distros can install from Oracle directly or at the above link.

GIMP tutorial

This is a tutorial about one of the most popular open source and free Photoshop replacements around - GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP). Its a powerful image editing tool with paths, color management, and layers. While not 100% on the scale of Photoshop or Lightroom, it does offer a great deal of functionality.

GIMP is available on most desktop platforms, including Linux, Windows, and macOS. Hope the overview is helpful to get those with and those without any image editing experience started.

Download GIMP
iPhone image source: https://techupdatess.com/its-time-to-take-googles-pixel-phones-more-seriously-engadget/
(again not mine, just used for the tutorial)
Ton more other info is available, confirmed GIMP is roughly 25 years old, so a lot of info is out there if you Google.

Open Source vs Free to Use

So as this content gets flushed out, I want to ensure that I'm clear with what this blog and videos series are and are not.

I chose Open Source Tech Training (OSTT) as a name because I hope in some small way, this can help your average user get over any fears or uncertainty about open source and free tools. That said, what I share, is my own experience and workflows, not all of which are 100% open source. For example, the introduction to GSuite or Google Docs is a way that I tend to use email and office personally, and professionally these days. GSuite is free to use to a point (create your Google account get 15 GB of space in their cloud) but would not be considered open source as the underlying code is not public.

So what is open source? Search in Google and a few definitions come up:
  • Open source - "denoting software for which the original source code is made freely available and may be redistributed and modified." - Google search result for "Define open source"
  • Open-source software "is a type of computer software in which source code is released under a license in which the copyright holder grants users the rights to study, change, and distribute the software to anyone and for any purpose." - Wikipedia
A couple of items needed are the software is free to use, but the code must also be freely available, and allow for other people to make changes. Lots of tools and services, like Linux which we covered, FreeBSD, or Signal Messenger, adhere to the standard of open source. Those with the knowledge and willingness, can go find the code (much of which is shared via GitHub), and can tweak, modify and help improve the code that is there. 

It's a community. Open source is built by both skilled developers and unskilled people looking to learn, spending time to improve code and projects. Many people will explain how they became involved and often it has to do with pure interest. Open source can also allow for a wider net of developers to work on something. While a corporation would have more control on direction for a project, it takes a lot of resources to create modern applications, including both the initial development and testing and debugging. Open source helps as anyone who finds a bug can report it and become involved in the process of fixing it, so for many smaller projects its a good way to get started to help iron out bugs and field test a software at least at its most basic level. 

Coming back to this blog and effort, I am no developer, and haven't been involved in the community aspects, though I have great respect for the people who have that knowledge. What Open Source Tech Training seeks to do is explains how to use open source and free software to handle common tasks. In that sense, I talk almost purely about the usage of these tools, and am not too concerned about the nuances of only using open source. Its really about finding what works for your workflow, and what we're focusing on is some tips and tricks to explore how these tools can be used.

Using G Suite and Google Docs

G Suite is the current term for the whole range of office / productivity applications that Google offers for free with your Google account. Beyond just Gmail, it includes the following applications:

  • Gmail
  • Docs (like Word)
  • Sheets (like Excel)
  • Slides (like Powerpoint)
  • Drive (cloud storage / file sharing)
  • Forms
  • Hangouts (messaging)
  • Meet (concalls)
  • Sites (your website)
  • App maker
  • Jamboard
  • and more...
G Suite when viewing their site is the business variant for enterprises and has multiple subscriptions. That said a standard Google account will also have most of these features, particularly all of the Google Docs, Sheets and Slides, so it is easy to get started. For more info about the professional version see here.

More useful links about getting started using Google Docs and G Suite are below:
Though not open source, it is very useful to get started with as most already know, and we'll be exploring some more cool features that it can do with Forms, Sheets and Scripts in a later tutorial.