Edit: Unfortunately, the images originally included in this post are gone, because of hosting problems in late 2009. My apologies.
The Ubuntu community reaches every corner of the planet; it’s diversity is easily proven through the participation of people like PmDematagoda. Hailing from the town of Kottawa, Sri Lanka, PmDematagoda is a recent addition to the staff, but has at least a decade’s experience working with PC systems and Windows. XP and a virus introduced him to Linux, and from there, Ubuntu was only a short step away. …
Tell as much as you’re willing about your “real” life — name, age, gender, location, family, religion, profession, education, hobbies, etc.
Well, my partially-full name is Pramod Dematagoda (middle name’s a secret). I am 17 years of age and I am loving it, except for the part with the school work, which I dislike. But it is in any case an important part of life; because of some proverb.
I am a male, nothing much to say about that, and I am a Buddhist though I am not a strict one or a zealot. I do respect other religions just as much as my own because I think that all religions — even though they may differ ethnically or in the way they convey their teachings — have the same effect and that is to make people decent (if not a little decent) in what they think, do and say.
I live in the sleepy town of Kottawa in the country of Sri Lanka and I must say that even though I have lived in Sri Lanka my entire life, I still marvel at many of it’s beautiful and exotic locations.
About my education, it is not towards the IT side (uh-oh), instead it is towards the Science side so I study Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Maths, though I do read through IT books and stuff as a sort of hobby.
About my family, I am the only child and I live with my mother (sadly, my father passed away when I was 2 years old) along with my grandparents and my aunt.
PmDematagoda and family
When and how did you become interested in computers? in Linux? in Ubuntu?
The first time I used a PC was when I was about 4 years old and since it was 1995 the PC’s were rather good and had proper interfaces (by the standards of 1995). The OS in that PC was MS-DOS and I got to like it rather quickly.
Also I was very curious about it; this in turn led me to “conduct freaky experiments;” I must admit that most of them failed and in which case the consequences were undesirable. After MS-DOS I took the ladder and used Windows 3.1, 95, 98, NT, 2000, etc. until Windows XP.
About my introduction to Linux, it is rather strange. I did not make the change based on the fact that Linux was really good, but instead it was based more on my belief that it would be better than the copy of XP I already was using — which had been struck by virii of sorts and, even though it ran Kaspersky, still did some crazy things that eventually led to a hatred between the system and myself.
I then recalled the words of a friend of mine while attending a French class about an OS called Linux (I had no idea about Linux or even its existence before that), more specifically Red Hat, so I decided to investigate. This eventually led me to Ubuntu though most specifically it was Ubuntu Ultimate Edition.
So then I got all ready and took the great and installed UUE, immediately after I started to boot it I was astounded by it’s look and feel and great community and immediately got attached to it; I also got addicted to the great community of Ubuntu which for me was (and still is) Ubuntu Forums.
When did you become involved in the forums? What’s your role there?
I got involved in the forums right after I started to use Linux. My role there? I am moderator and I work hard in trying to help people solve their problems with Ubuntu and also help out the other moderators and administrators with keeping the forums nice and clean.
Are you an Ubuntu member? If so, how do you contribute? If not, do you plan on becoming one?
I am not a Ubuntu Member as of yet, though I am trying to get that honour by continuing to help out in both Ubuntu Forums and Launchpad.
What distros do you regularly use? What software? What’s your favorite application? Your least favorite?
Ubuntu of course. My favourite application is a difficult decision since I have so many, but if it came down to the application that I use the most then I must say that it is Firefox 3 on Ubuntu Hardy. I do not have a least favourite application on Linux/Ubuntu.
What’s your fondest memory from the forums, or from Ubuntu overall? What’s your worst?
There are so many fond memories on Ubuntu Forums that I really do not know what to pick, but I guess the most fond memory I’ve had was when I managed to finally help a guy get his Nvidia 8800 GT card to work on Linux which in turn helped others out. The reason it is the most fondest? Because it took a lot of pages and attempts to get it done which taught me quite a lot as well along the way. The least fondest memory? Hmm, I really cannot think of one.
What luck have you had introducing new computer users to Ubuntu?
It was not all good luck but I did have some successful conversions with three of my friends who were really impressed by Ubuntu and may hopefully help in propagating Ubuntu, I still try to spread Ubuntu whenever I can.
What would you like to see happen with Linux in the future? with Ubuntu?
With the way Linux is gaining popularity I expect Linux to be dominating over Windows within the next few years provided that certain events do occur, but even if those events did not occur I am still confident that Linux would dominate in the end. My hope is that Linux will keep going the way it is going right now instead of thinking that it has achieved victory and starting to degrade instead of improving itself which could mean it’s end (I do not want to even think of this).
Provided that Linux keeps going the way it is right now, I hope Ubuntu will lead the way of the distributions that specialise in making Linux easier to use by many people from beginners to maybe even administrators.
If there was one thing you could tell all new Ubuntu users, what would it be?
If you face a problem on Ubuntu do not be dismayed or lose hope, there is always a way of fixing a problem on Linux/Ubuntu, all you have to do is to search in the right places. You should also remember that there is a great community that is always willing to help you out.
Also if the community helped then please try to return that favour by helping out other Linux beginners through their own problems, thus the great cycle continues.