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🤗 What my mom told me at 12 years old and how it changed me.
When I was around 12, I learnt about Linux (an alternative operating system, like macOS or Windows) and I became obsessively curious about it.
I found Ubuntu, the most popular version of it, and I managed to download it and try it out.
I messed up, though —
After trying it out for weeks using a “Live CD” — not actually installing it, but using it by keeping the CD in the drive — I decided to perform my most complicated computer experiment yet, installing Ubuntu as a dual-boot system on my family computer.
For the uninitiated, dual-booting an OS is different from installing an app or program on your computer – it involves messing with the system on a low level, risking bricking your computer, essentially.
All was going well, until I accidentally allocated 30GB out of 40GB to the Linux partition, leaving only 10GB for Windows XP. The opposite of what I wanted to do. And I could figure out no way to reverse what I just did.
So I tried to “delete” Linux — deleting the bootloader in the process — in layman’s terms I essentially bricked the computer.
It wouldn’t start anymore.
I was devastated —
And so I went to my mom and confessed to her what I just did.
She told me “Don’t worry about it. We’ll just call the technician and have him fix it. When it comes to computers, most problems can be fixed – so don’t be afraid to experiment!”.
This was what gave me the courage to experiment more and more, and try out riskier and riskier things with the computer, knowing that “hey, worst case we just call the technician and he’ll fix it.”
I even decided to open up my computer just for the heck of it once.
I opened up the computer “just to see”, I installed different kinds of Linux OSes, I connected different peripherals just to see what would happen, and this one time (once I had my own laptop, so the ol’ desktop was a spare) I made it into a headless print and file server, monitoring it using a remote desktop tool over the network.
Eventually, I broke the machine so many times that we stopped calling the technician to fix it. I could just fix it myself.
I was 13 at the time.
My proud achievement — a headless print and file server.
What I learnt —
I had made an assumption that if the computer broke, we couldn’t fix it. My mom’s words simply invalidated my assumption.
What assumptions about un-fixability do you hold in your life right now, that are stopping you from being courageous? Are they valid assumptions? Or can things actually be fixed at little cost?
Hit “reply” and let me know your thoughts.
By the way...
This is my 10th issue! For 10 straight weeks I’ve been writing every single week! Just thought I’d bring that up! 🎉