May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
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He who will not reason is a bigot;
he who cannot is a fool;
and he who dares not is a slave.
- Sir William Drummond

The main purpose of the site is to promote "slightly skeptical" approach to IT, to stimulate critical thinking about system administration and software development as professions. To increase resistance to media brainwashing. Skepticism is generally any questioning attitude towards knowledge, facts, or opinions/beliefs stated as facts, or doubt regarding claims that are taken for granted elsewhere.

We try to eschew the conventionally favored obfuscations about IT workplace and related propaganda (for example about "cloud computing" or IT outsourcing) and expose the theater of absurd which often both academic and, especially, corporate IT represents (sometimes in the form of humor; it's often the best medicine against conformism, stress, and overload.). It is important to be aware about dangers of the IT workplace such as psychopathic bosses (aka toxic managers). The latter have several varieties with micromanagers, bullies, narcissists and authoritarians as the most common. You also need be aware of a standard under neoliberalism corporate waterboarding procedure called performance reviews ;-). After all you are just a consumable resource.

Due to resources limitation this is a very limited and incomplete effort. Layout of the site Spartan with mostly plain vanilla HTML and design tries to avoid overcomplexity trap even if at some expense of readability. Some pages are long, some very long.

Not all pages are current: the site develops as a living tree and active area migrate with time depending on the current interest of the author. Many links are broken, but using Google one can find new location for probably 80% of them. The rest is gone: electrons have some weaknesses in comparison with paper as for long term storage of information :-).

Softpanorama is a very simple in layout, Spartan site. It does not use any Web 2.0 technologies. It's primary focus is self education and in this area content is the king. So based on limited resources we have, sophisticated layout was sacrificed. The site is one of the few "compiled' web sites where target pages are not generated on request, but are precompiled when a change in content arrives.

In 2012 "open source" is really old overused and abused concept and computer science education that once was flourishing, now is a neglected area in deep crisis. Very few people understand that computer science (CS) education is one important area were open source really shines: the academic value of open source software (OSS) cannot be overestimated ( "free/open for education" is one of the most important meanings of "free software".)

This site promotes exactly this usage of open source and view open source development as a special type of academic research (with the same pitfalls and limitations involved). Open source like love is a very complex subject and we reject romantic ideas inherent in both Stallmanism and Raymondism. For example, I see nothing wrong with using open source development as a career jumpstart, the stage on which talented programmers can demonstrate to themselves and the world the level of their talent before moving on to other, possibly closed source, projects. And vice versa, after such person works in corporate environment for several years, the frustration can reach level when some level of participation in related to work experience open source project might be a good safety valve, the best way to preserve sanity :-).

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Old News ;-)

[Jun 05, 2021] "Back to basics" movement against overcomplexity

[Jun 04, 2021] Defensive programming

[Jun 03, 2021] KISS principle and Fighting Software Overcomplexity

[Apr 27, 2021] Linux command line helpers

[Dec 29, 2020] Softpanorama sysadmin utilities

[Dec 28, 2020] Oracle Linux Documentation

[Oct 09, 2020] Pythonizer: Translator from Perl to Python

Python for Perl programmers
Pythonizer: Translator from Perl to Python
Pythonizer user guide
Full protocol of translation of by the current version of Pythonizer

[Feb 01, 2020] Pages that Google AI classifies as "Dangerous or derogatory content"

[Feb 01, 2020] Pages that Google AI classifies as "Dangerous or derogatory content"

That tells us something about Google Dangerous or derogatory content Yes, that's right Pope speeches are dangerous ;-) Dangerous or derogatory content Critique of neoliberalism as a rule of financial oligarchy s dangerous too Dangerous or derogatory content Especially if it is viewed as failed hegemonic statist (state enforced markets) ideology similar to Trotskyism ;-) Dangerous or derogatory content And the important question of whether the US election is a kabuki  theater and the Dell State runs the country without and concent of voters is also dangerous and derogatory.

[Jan 09, 2020] Redirections due to Google botched detection of "Dangerous or derogatory content

[Jan 08, 2020] Iran saberrattling page was revised


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    See also Softpanorama unique collection of OSS humor The best medicine against conformism, stress, toxic managers (including micromanagers) and overload. It includes:

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    Solaris DNS Tutorial, part 1/3 : Solaris DNS Tutorial, part 2/3 : Solaris DNS Tutorial, part 3/3
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    Neoliberalism as a Cause of Structural Unemployment in the USA : Unemployment Bulletin, 2010
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    Toxic managers
    Micromanagers : The psychopath in the corner office : Narcissistic Managers : Borderline Psychopaths : Female Sociopaths : The Techniques of a Female Sociopaths : Empty Suits (Aggressive Incompetent Managers) : Authoritarians
    Fighting Corporate Psychopaths : Observing and Documenting Behavior of Corporate Psychopaths : Communication with Corporate Psychopaths
    Surviving a Bad Performance Review : Office Stockholm Syndrom : The Fiefdom Syndrome : Learned helplessness : Signs that you might be dismissed soon
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    Bureaucratic ritualism : Bureaucratic alienation : Bureaucratic Inertia
    Bureaucracy as a Political Coalition : Meetings mania
    Absurdity of bureaucracies : Bureaucratic avoidance of responsibility : Bureaucratic Collectivism
    Military Bureaucracy : Military Incompetence
    Toxic stress: Burnout
    Information Overload : Drinking from a firehose -- informing ourselves to death :
    Mental Overload : Sleep Deprivation : Office Slaves: the rise of bullshit jobs :
    Workagolism as escape path from social problems
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    General : VNC : VNC on Linux : VNC on Solaris



    Groupthink : Two Party System as Polyarchy : Corruption of Regulators : Bureaucracies : Understanding Micromanagers and Control Freaks : Toxic Managers :   Harvard Mafia : Diplomatic Communication : Surviving a Bad Performance Review : Insufficient Retirement Funds as Immanent Problem of Neoliberal Regime : PseudoScience : Who Rules America : Neoliberalism  : The Iron Law of Oligarchy : Libertarian Philosophy


    War and Peace : Skeptical Finance : John Kenneth Galbraith :Talleyrand : Oscar Wilde : Otto Von Bismarck : Keynes : George Carlin : Skeptics : Propaganda  : SE quotes : Language Design and Programming Quotes : Random IT-related quotesSomerset Maugham : Marcus Aurelius : Kurt Vonnegut : Eric Hoffer : Winston Churchill : Napoleon Bonaparte : Ambrose BierceBernard Shaw : Mark Twain Quotes


    Vol 25, No.12 (December, 2013) Rational Fools vs. Efficient Crooks The efficient markets hypothesis : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2013 : Unemployment Bulletin, 2010 :  Vol 23, No.10 (October, 2011) An observation about corporate security departments : Slightly Skeptical Euromaydan Chronicles, June 2014 : Greenspan legacy bulletin, 2008 : Vol 25, No.10 (October, 2013) Cryptolocker Trojan (Win32/Crilock.A) : Vol 25, No.08 (August, 2013) Cloud providers as intelligence collection hubs : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : Inequality Bulletin, 2009 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Copyleft Problems Bulletin, 2004 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Energy Bulletin, 2010 : Malware Protection Bulletin, 2010 : Vol 26, No.1 (January, 2013) Object-Oriented Cult : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2011 : Vol 23, No.11 (November, 2011) Softpanorama classification of sysadmin horror stories : Vol 25, No.05 (May, 2013) Corporate bullshit as a communication method  : Vol 25, No.06 (June, 2013) A Note on the Relationship of Brooks Law and Conway Law


    Fifty glorious years (1950-2000): the triumph of the US computer engineering : Donald Knuth : TAoCP and its Influence of Computer Science : Richard Stallman : Linus Torvalds  : Larry Wall  : John K. Ousterhout : CTSS : Multix OS Unix History : Unix shell history : VI editor : History of pipes concept : Solaris : MS DOSProgramming Languages History : PL/1 : Simula 67 : C : History of GCC developmentScripting Languages : Perl history   : OS History : Mail : DNS : SSH : CPU Instruction Sets : SPARC systems 1987-2006 : Norton Commander : Norton Utilities : Norton Ghost : Frontpage history : Malware Defense History : GNU Screen : OSS early history

    Classic books:

    The Peter Principle : Parkinson Law : 1984 : The Mythical Man-MonthHow to Solve It by George Polya : The Art of Computer Programming : The Elements of Programming Style : The Unix Hater’s Handbook : The Jargon file : The True Believer : Programming Pearls : The Good Soldier Svejk : The Power Elite

    Most popular humor pages:

    Manifest of the Softpanorama IT Slacker Society : Ten Commandments of the IT Slackers Society : Computer Humor Collection : BSD Logo Story : The Cuckoo's Egg : IT Slang : C++ Humor : ARE YOU A BBS ADDICT? : The Perl Purity Test : Object oriented programmers of all nations : Financial Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : The Most Comprehensive Collection of Editor-related Humor : Programming Language Humor : Goldman Sachs related humor : Greenspan humor : C Humor : Scripting Humor : Real Programmers Humor : Web Humor : GPL-related Humor : OFM Humor : Politically Incorrect Humor : IDS Humor : "Linux Sucks" Humor : Russian Musical Humor : Best Russian Programmer Humor : Microsoft plans to buy Catholic Church : Richard Stallman Related Humor : Admin Humor : Perl-related Humor : Linus Torvalds Related humor : PseudoScience Related Humor : Networking Humor : Shell Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2012 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2013 : Java Humor : Software Engineering Humor : Sun Solaris Related Humor : Education Humor : IBM Humor : Assembler-related Humor : VIM Humor : Computer Viruses Humor : Bright tomorrow is rescheduled to a day after tomorrow : Classic Computer Humor

    The Last but not Least Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage and those who manage what they do not understand ~Archibald Putt. Ph.D

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    Last modified: June 05, 2021