A question popped into my head: What would this new-fangled "Minimalist Linux user" use for hardware?
Linux users use commodity hardware. And for the responsible computer user, whom cares for the environment and their world, then using the hardware you already own is the best option! Not that I'm saying that anyone should run hardware less than what they can handle. Just don't buy a new computer if you don't need one. If you do, consider buying used.
When I rented my current laptop for my studies (a decision that was not my own, let me assure you) I was surprised at how sluggish Windows Vista was. It felt like everything was delayed and and slow. I installed Ubuntu on a side partition and suddenly everything was back to normal. And yet, I noticed that the desktop was not any more springy or special because I was running a machine 4-to-10 times more powerful than my original laptop.
The machines I run would be what I'm given. As someone studying code and programming, I don't need much.
I have a desktop I've repaired and thrown together. It has 1 GB of RAM and an Intel E5200 processor. For a Linux user who wants to build a stable, fast and versatile machine, I suggest something along these lines. It is running, if my memory serves me correctly, Fedora 11, and it has few flaws for my uses.
Related blogs to this subject:
-HeliOS project - A heated and somewhat angry yet educational walk down with a man who founded an organization in Texas for donating Linux-installed second hand computers to those in need.
-Linux ecology how-to - Discussions about using Linux in an Earth-friendly manner. Minimalism and power saving technologies go hand in hand.
-K Mandala - A nice and interesting blog from a man who uses only command lines and who used to be an Ubuntu forum moderator.
-Lightweight Linux - A fellow Blogspot blog about using lighter Linux systems for older computers. Outdated at times, and not updated much, yet still interesting to read.