Why my Software Library Looks so Random

People generally ask me why the software I use seems so random. While I prefer Linux over Windows, I prefer the Microsoft Office Suite over Libre Office. OK, the latter might not be true anymore.

I do also use Open Source software like Etherpad, Gnumeric, LaTeX. I even code slides in HTML5 for my presentations. But that’s the problem: I can only do that when I work alone or the people I work with have acquired a certain skill set.

I can’t use LibreOffice when I work with my fellow YouTaite. The concurrent editing options are terrible. Not to mention I’d still need a file syncing service. Good luck to the poor one who gets to resolve editing conflicts. “Why don’t you use Etherpad instead?” they say. That doesn’t support colors and we need those for our scripts. So we’re stuck with either Microsoft Office 365 or Google Docs. And I prefer Google over Microsoft, the reasons are a topic for another time. And since Google Docs has been around for longer YouTaite more or less all use Google Docs for that.

Practicability is the most important thing to when using software. I have made both good and bad experiences with Closed Source and Open Source Software. So I stick with whatever works best.

Audio mixing? Audacity is great for simple tasks, but if you need more it doesn’t quite cut it. Ardour might be a real Digital Audio Workstation, but setting it up and using it is a real pain. So I decided to buy REAPER. And I’m happy having paid for that. And it runs perfectly fine in WINE.

And then there’s software you can’t get around, like GitLab. I could try and wing it, but it’s way too useful for that. But hell, they are worse than Microsoft in the 90’s! Any time an update rolls around, features stop working. And worse, bugs already fixed in a prior version reappear. To me it looks like you can’t even use your own software! So what if I’m only using the Community Edition?! I use that software so I can produce my own code, not to test other people’s code!

There’s a solution to that problem:
CommitStrip: A Magical Cure