Future of Linux User Groups

Mel Walters

Insanity Keep repeating the same again and again and expecting different results.
(definition by Albert Einstein)

Being Remarkable

Peoples’ expectations have changed. The new normal is remarkable, [1]  or something worthy of remark. Call it weird, normal is just plain boring. Authenticity[2]  is also a must.
I propose we stop being boring or irrelevant; and remarkable will become easier with practice.

What Can We Do?

Here are a few ideas:
  • Improve things for people who want to be creative and not fussing with their computer all the time. Minimize incomplete, inaccurate or bad technical advice. I will use virtual machines to try out my own advice. There are definite advantages in doingsomething including:
    • Installation dependency requirements will all be met by starting with a base system install.
    • Achieving letter perfect documentation by copying from true to life examples, even though they be virtual.
    • Not having to disturb your real system to do the trial runs.
    • Define preferred Linux distributions and configured programs to fulfill desired functions.
    • Being able to prepackage a custom Linux distribution may also work out as a bonus. I will be trying this on my virtual-box.
    • Instructions can be considered adequate only if clear and complete enough to be followed to success.
  • Do something. A perceived risk will not be as risky as doing nothing at all.
  • Look at the whole job. Being only 98 percent done is is very frustrating. Don’t stop short.
  • Do not become hypnotized into self imposed limits.
  • Let us drop the black and white, right and wrong. Adopt Integrative Thinking.[3]  So by seeing both sides, you pick neither one or the other, but come up with a better solution. (You keep more friends this way too.)
  • Everybody is really good at something, so look inside and drop the “I can’t”.
  • We repel those we really need; if we put false class distinctions on abilities.
  • It takes demonstration (leading), not memos or bylaws to change culture. [4] 
  • Questing for the ultimate programs/operating system combination is worth revisiting. Thanks Jerry for pointing out Solyd XK Linux, looks interesting. I have taken it for a spin in virtual-box.
  • Just to show you we can be interesting, I would like to give a talk about how cool and easy high quality FOSS[5]  self publishing is these days. Now why on earth would that be useful or noteworthy in our modern economy? (e-publishing and paper too)
  • By appreciating our potential and present members,[6]  boring will go out the window.
  • Freedoms and Fair Use “License”: Abundance is the new market, not scarcity. It’s like Love; It works when you give it away. Don’t hold back. Trust your customers and they will trust you. When they trust you they will buy from you. Think of it as the only thing that scales big and small. There is no where to hide in our information economy. Share your knowledge.
  • There are 10(2) types of people in the world; Spoiler [7] 
    • 1(2) Those who get it.
    • 10(2) Those who don’t.
  • You can join a local LUG,[8]  or if that will not work for you, consider joining ours.
At our last meeting I saw a passion in some to experiment, to try out new. They may be among our future leaders? All it takes is joining our mailing list,[9]  and your involvement qualifies you as a Tier I member of CLUG[10] .
People are telling me that meeting in person is still important. Lets face it, we must have fun while doing it.
The future looks bright for CLUG, to anyone willing to collaborate in doing what’s needed. Complicated has to get easier and easier, do more with less!


1)  Seth Godin, Book: Purple Cow – Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable (2009)
2)  Seth Godin, Book: All Marketers Are Liars Tell Stories: How Marketing Really Works
And Why Authenticity Is the Best Marketing of All (2012)
3)  Roger L. Martin, Book: The Opposable Mind – Winning Through Integrative Thinking (2014)
4)  Jason Fried; David Heinemeier Hansson, Book: Rework (2010) from 37signals.com and basecamp.com
5)  Free(dom) and Open Source Software
6)  those wanting to use such cool technology as Freedom and Open Source Software
7)  10base2  = 2base10  think binary numbers
8)  Linux User Group
9)  Club members have experimented with things like IRC chat in the past, so keep in mind other ways to collaborate.
10) http://clug.ca/membershi/

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One Response to “Future of Linux User Groups”

  1. Ron Edwards Says:

    I am currently a tier one member awaiting a meeting to become a tier two member. First question ….. does ‘member in good standing’ include a NEW tier two member? Issue: I am unwilling to see a needed group fold because no one was available to step up to the plate. Whether for short term or longer, if the fine print in the bylaws allows it, I will volunteer for the duty. Issue: While I have used Roberts Rules of Order and parliamentary procedure, it has been many, many years and would need someone to help me there. Issue: I would be willing to do this ‘provided’ the member responsible for the ability to use the current meeting location of the downtown U of C room isn’t the one leaving!! While I am a relative new user to Linux, I am certainly not new to computing. I would be pleased if you could enter into a discussion with me relative to these issues. I check the enclosed email address frequently. Issue: I do not use a cell phone (by choice entirely) so if one is required, I will need to withdraw my offer. Looking forward to hearing from you soon, sir. Ron Edwards

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