For those of you who may have not heard about aardvark, I’ll briefly enlighten you. It’s kind of like Amazon’s Mechanical Turk service (artificial artificial intelligence), crossed with google crossed with whatever IM client you use. You have a question about something, and you tag it – submitting it to be answered by one or more of the several thousand experts signed up to the service. I’ve had mixed experience with it so far, I’ve had some real dingers asked of me but 1/3 times I’ve felt like I’ve actually helped some poor sap out. The key thing it’s supposed to avoid is LMGTFY syndrome, as even the most expert of experts will probably need to look most stuff up.
Anyway, it’s a cold and grey day here in London and I’m knackered after flying in from visiting my girlfriend in Germany this weekend. The last thing I wanted to see at the top of my inbox was this:
I am not an expert in linux, however I gotta give a presentation about it, it is said: 1-evaluate the design, what is good and bad about it? 2- what are the limitations? 3- how would you extend it?.
- Will C. M / West Palm Beach, US
I mean, seriously. I understand that with tools like wikipedia and google at our disposal, there isn’t much we have to look very hard for these days – but this is the equivalent of buying your homework from the class nerd.
I couldn’t let this stunning lack of modern manners go unpunished, could I?
Good morning William C,
I would really suggest that you NEVER use Aardvark for things like this, Google will probably give you far more bang for your buck. But if (as it appears) you’re a really lazy person and prefer to hope that other people would write your presentation for you, I guess it’s got to be worth a crack!I would never ask a question like yours in Aardvark.
The person that gets your question might be a total bastard, you see? This is the internet, after all. How on earth did people get education before the INTERNET, eh?
But luckly, i’m a really nice guy from Great Britain (see, there’s no WAY an englishman could be in any way evil, our homeland has the word ‘GREAT’ in the title. I hear Americans like to say ‘GREAT JOB’ a lot to congratulate each other, so that’s got to be a clear indication of of non-bastardly ways). I’ll happily tell you that Linux is like SO AWESOME and like TOTALLY Amazingly Well Designed™ because it was made by a tiny Swedish robot pretending to be a man from Finland. Finland is in France, don’t you know. Some people think that’s evil, pretending to be from another country, but it just makes me feel a little horny to know that a scandinavian robot (that I could probably buy in IKEA) came up with the whole thing. I even think Linux is a sexier name than minix, the OS he rewrote in from in the first place.This evaluation is based on many, many years of using the OS in it’s many flavours and forms. I’ve used strawberry flavour, Ubuntu flavour, Debian flavour (which tastes like Ubuntu with bits in), raspberry flavour and also Slackware. Red Hat always tastes a bit like cardboard, but sometimes you just have to eat some cardboard I guess.
So, in summary – the good: sexy, scandinavian, tastes good most of the time, and is Open Sourced which encourages development for the sake of development rather than financial gain. The bad: You can’t run Microsoft Office on it. So I’m told.
Your second point that you need to come up with on your presentation is about limitations. Hmmm. Limitations. I’d say the only limitation is that it’s very hard to properly research on the internet, there’s hardly ANYTHING about it on facebook or myspace. I heard that there are other bits of the internet that say stuff though, so maybe you could look there? Oh, and it’s not so great for people who can’t/don’t/won’t RTFM. You might need to google that one. Top right of your web browser, unless you’re using Internet Exploder then it might say something about a bing. I’m not sure if that’s a search engine, it didn’t come with any of my linuxes. Linuxes? Linuxen? Perhaps that’s another limitation, difficult plural nouns.
Your third and final point – extending it? Well that’s so eeeeasy! Just say it slower. Liiiiiiiinnnnnnnnuuuuuuuuxxxxxxxxxxxxx. How far do you have to go with it? Did your tutor (or heaven forbid, your immediate superior at WORK – christ I didn’t even consider that you might not be at some kind of school) give you any more guidance than that?
I sincerely wish you all (none) the best with your (TOTALLY ALL YOUR OWN WORK I HOPE) presentation, and your Future Endeavours in LIFE™ (seriously, UR DOOIN IT RONG. I tried to say that like a ‘lolcat’ for you. Do you see?).
Wuv and huggles,
~A belligerant Englishman
The funniest part for me was the chirpy cheerful autoresponse from aardvark itself:
I sent Will your answer.Thanks for the helpful reply! That’s what Aardvark is all about.
Yes, that is exactly what Aardvark is AAAAAALL about. ;D