16 December 2000
Pete Grubbs is a self-described OS/2 wonk, a former doctoral candidate in English literature at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, a former part-time faculty member at Penn State and is still mucking about with a copy editing/creation service, The Document Doctor, which tailors documents for small businesses. He has also been a professional musician for 20 years and is working on his next album, scheduled for release in early 2001.
If you have a comment about the content
of this article, please feel free to vent in the OS/2
eZine discussion forums.
20 Questions from Warpstock 2000
We OS/2 users are an anomally in many ways.
We're more computer literate than most; we have a higher percentage of programmers
in community than the world at large and, since we're a much smaller and much more
connected group, we tend to know each other, if only by name. One of the names
that fairly jumped off the program at me during this year's Warpstock was Daniela
Engert. Unless you've spent the past couple of years living under a rock or
using that other opertaing system (as though there's a difference), you'll recognize
that name as belonging to the author of a set of replacement hard disk drivers available
at Hobbes ( danis506r136.zip
) which offer drastically improved performance over IBM's original IBM1S506.
Daniela graciously agreed to spend some time with me for the following interview.
(N. B. : While the title for this series is "20 Questions,"
the more punctilious reader will discover that this interview has only 19 questions.
We are currently negotiating with the Florida State Supreme Court to request a recount
and will make no further official comment pending their ruling.)
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Who are you?
D.E. -- Daniela Engert.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Occupation?
D.E.-- Electrical engineer
doing custom systems.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Why did you
come to Warpstock?
D.E.-- To meet lots of interesting
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Is this your
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What are your
impressions? How is this similar to previous Warpstocks? How different? What were
your expectations? Were they met? Exceeded?
D.E.-- It's interesting. I'm
quite satisfied to be here. I've met lots of interesting people.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Where is OS/2
heading? Is it going in a direction that you can follow?
D.E.-- That's a tough question.
I think it is heading more into a same direction that linix is. It is getting more
support from the OS/2 community. We should no longer rely on IBM. There is a proof
that people from the community can stand on their own feet. There are many people
from the community who are doing interesting things to support the community.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Where do you
want OS/2 to go? If you could realize your wildest fantasy (about OS/2), what would
D.E.-- I'd like to see it eveywhere,
of course, but let's be realistic. I'd really like to see it in our world where
it mattered. I don't think it needs to be on every computer but I would like to
see it on those computers where it is necessary.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- If you could
send one message to IBM, if you could send the people directly involved with continued
OS/2 development one short e-mail and know that that message would get read, what
would you say?
D.E.-- I'd like to say, support
us, give us the infomation we need to improve OS/2 ourselves.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What do you
use your OS/2 machine for? What do want to do with OS/2 that you can't?
D.E.-- Actually not that much
because I'm in the business and I'm quite happy if I don't have a computer runnning
at home. I write letters, go online.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What does the
OS/2 community mean to you?
D.E.-- It's a kind of family.
I feel comfortable being in the community. It's the reason I do all this stuff for
free. Being part of a movement.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Are conventions
like Warpstock, Warptech, etc., important to you? Why?
D.E.-- Yes. People have to
meet. Just to see who the other guy is.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What application(s)
do you want to see in development for OS/2?
D.E.-- Staroffice. I like it.
what I would like to see is VisualAge, but that's discontinued for OS/2.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Is there a killer
app for OS/2? If so, what is it?
D.E.-- I don't think so. OS/2
by itself is the killer app. It's such a good enabler.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- How has IBM
D.E.-- I got inside info on
the core code and support in developing this driver. I'm quite happy with the support
from IBM, IBM Germany. Quite a difference. In person, Oliver Stein.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Has Big Blue
D.E.-- No. Never.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What is OS/2's
relationship to the community? What is our community's relationship to OS/2?
D.E.-- The computer is so powerful
and gets more powerful when you have the right software on it. What the right software
is is a matter of perception. Some people switch their computer on with whatever
came with it. Other people know if can do more. They know that they can do more
OS/2 e-Zine!-- What is your
single biggest frustration as an OS/2 user?
D.E.-- I'm really disappointed
about the perception from the outside of the community. Most people think it's dead;
[that] it should be dead. I'm very upset about this point of view.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Do you ever
envy Windows users? Why (or why not)?
D.E.-- No, no I don't because
I can do everything on my OS/2 machine that I want to do. I don't have needs for
glitzy stuff on Windows; it doesn't help me getting the job done on my computer.
It [the computer] is a tool for me. If the tool can do what I need to get done,
ok. If it does it good, it's even better.
OS/2 e-Zine!-- Any parting
D.E.-- I'd like to say to the
community: Get up, stand up do something for your favorite operating system. Don't
wait for others to get your job done. In the words of John F. Kennedy, Don't ask
what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.