Jacob: 4 Years Old, and Troubleshooting PCs

December 12th, 2010

Back in April, I wrote about Jacob and I building his first computer together and how it’s running just the Linux command-line interface — no graphics at all. And he loves it.

Well, as is often the case with him, his interest in various things waxes and wanes over time. He hadn’t spent much time with his computer lately, until I suggested he try it one day. He did, and rediscovered sl (a simple program that draws an animated steam locomotive using ASCII characters) again. I showed him how to string sl commands together with the semicolon to get lots of trains, and he loved that.

Since then, he’s discovered that the up arrow accesses bash history and saves him typing.

But more impressive, the other day while I was at work, he was playing with his computer and it looked to him like it had locked up. (I believe he had hit Scroll Lock from talking with Terah.) He was fussy and bothered by that, but then decided he could fix it. He pushed to power button to turn it off, waited for it to shut down, then turned it back on. And logged himself back in. And got right back to his steam locomotives. I run Linux, so he had never been exposed to a power cycle as a troubleshooting mechanism.

You’re looking at one very impressed dad. And perhaps another future Debian developer?

Categories: Children & Computing, Debian, Family, Linux

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  1. Mark

    If rebooting is first step in trouble shooting he might make a better Windows technician.


    terah Reply:

    Yeah, I was a little surprised John was pleased with that!


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