Post-Book Discussion

I got reviewed! And I broke my silence around here because I want to talk about the points that were brought up. Not necessarily a defense, just to talk.
For instance, in chapter 2, aberinkulas talks about trying to wean himself off of buying cheap video games. I understand the desire to not have clutter, either in space or on a hard drive, but if space isn’t an issue and the games aren’t interfering in his ability to be productive, I would argue simple indulgences, like cheap video games, are healthy.
In the case of this blog, there's a certain disconnect between my theoretical examples versus the actual execution and the actions I choose. In this case, I didn't explain my example very well and my point was lost.

The problem with the games is not the games themselves, but rather that my hobby became buying games, not playing them. I was more focused on making a collection, a perfect blend of genres and game designs, than actually sitting down and enjoying the games I purchased. I still have this problem sometimes. Additionally I miss the disparity between "need" and "want" and sometimes get a little too obsessed.

Though if we're talking about game playing as well, then it can be argued that I would be better served with a novel, which would be just as cheap, has a better chance of entertaining me, and usually lasts longer. But that's another blog.
There’s also a discussion of defaults in chapter 3. aberinkulas comes down in favor of minimalist distros with no default applications. I actually find it more minimalist to have a lot of standard programs pre-installed. At this point, I really don’t use media players very often, so I appreciate that OpenSUSE chose Banshee as the default player for me. It saves me the trouble of researching players and choosing one to install. A blank distro with no default software is great only if you know every piece of software you want. But if you don’t know and don’t care, defaults can be very helpful and time-saving.
I've become more moderate on this issue since I've last discussed it, but I still feel that default applications shouldn't get too out of hand. While "A blank distro with no default software is great only if you know every piece of software you want" is true, it is equally true that "A distro with lots of default software is great only when someone else decides what software you should want."

I agree there's a place for desktops filled with default applications, and there's some software that should be picked for us over others, but letting it limit us to a smaller subset of software isn't very conducive to exploring new ways of doing our usual tasks. Nor, might I add, is it very useful when you're trying to write a blog about Minimalism in Linux/FOSS. Unfortunately that is a very small niche.

Finally, toward the end of the book, aberinkulas skewers some aspects of the minimalism movement, poking fun at some of the people who seem to be trying to buy their ways into a minimalist life. The minimalism sub-reddit had a thread discussing this a couple of weeks ago.
I'm glad I'm not the only one reading r/minimalism. I'm not a big fan of Reddit anymore (all the big communities do are beat dead horses, senselessly, mindlessly) but I keep up with that one and there's some excellent content sometimes. I can also happily recommend Frugal and Anticonsumption, as long as the opinions there don't frustrate you too much.

As a parting note, I still write a blog. It's not about minimalism most of the time though. I don't intend to write another eBook or similar projects, though I still update the tumblr sometimes.

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