By popular request, another one from the Ars Mailbag™:
"*Fwd: [Ars Technica] Assignment: I do not troll.*
I teach. I instruct. I do try to make folks angry at times by being critical. I also make every effort to get folks to think critically, sometimes by spoofing folks who support stealing technology or folks who have no idea what they are talking about.
I know that many IT administrators might not have liked some of my posts. Many might not have understood some of them. But my point was one emphasized by Steve Job: The fusion of liberal arts with science helps create user-friendly computing. By citing poetry, literature or art, and by pointing out that it might not be commonly appreciated by purely scientific IT types, I was insisting that the IT types should broaden their horizons, or at least focus on making users more productive.
If you think that concept is trolling, then you need to expand your horizons. I do not suffer much ineptness.
I am 65 years old, an Apple user of every product the company has made since 1988, except some models, of course, a newspaper editor of 30 years, a computer-aided designer, Internet page creator, page designer for the front pages of two large metropolitan newspapers. I have been a newspaper writer, reporter and editor for my entire life. I won a Pulitzer Prize honorable mention for a series exposing political corruption in Fayetteville, NC. I run a small business with customers worldwide.
I was awarded a Westinghouse Science Talent Search scholarship and attended Davidson College on a Merit Scholarship. I later attended Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. I also taught undergraduate courses in literature at William & Mary on an assistantship.
I know what I am talking about, and as I get older I tolerate far less ignorance than I once did.
I also use Linux and Windows and do some fairly sophisticated programming in five languages, mostly Java and html, a little Pearl, Applescript, and C.
I have been an Ars Technica reader ever since there was an Ars Technica, and have always, until now, considered your approach to be both enlightened and knowledgeable.
I do not troll. The only response I seek is self-questioning, not a flame war.
I was recently named mentor of the year by a computer programming professional group with more than 500 members. Perhaps I'm getting too pedantic in my old age.
If you think I have nothing to add to your exchange of information, you are, perhaps, correct.
But I would appreciate the favor of your insight. I'd like to know which of my posts offended you and why. I admit that I intended to offend any unthinking reader who doesn't understand the effect of stealing intellectual property. I also intended to offend any IT person who has no interest in creating the greatest possible productivity among people who use his company's technology. And I believe that a site where no one is ever offended may be too milquetoast to inspire much thought or to attract many readers.