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[tlug] Self-introduction

Good morning.

My name is Thomas, I am a native German but have been living in Japan
for 36 years. Apart from being an acupuncturist
I work here as a freelance translator for about 30 years.

That is, where the computer comes in. In the good old days a mechanical
typewriter would do just fine,
but today everybody has to use computers for everything, so that Big
Brother can be watching.

I am NOT particularly fond of computers and definitely NOT any sort of
specialist, but need to work with the computer.
I need: a wordprocessing tool → for years now I have been using
LibreOffice / a mailer / a browser / a whole lot of dictionaries (I will
come to this again).
When I press the key "A", I would like to get an "A" on my screen, if
printed on paper and be able to send (mail!) that "A" to whoever has
requested it.

As long as the tool(s) = computer can give me that, I am not much
interested in the inner workings of the machine and I am not really
warming up to the idea
of learning a whole new language ("computer") just in order to use that

For many years now I am more or less desperately trying to get away from
Microsoft products, but Linux is definitely NOT facilitating this process.

My first encounter was with something called "Linguas OS = Linux for
translators" (ubuntu based).
When I found that, 7-8 years ago, I first was very excited having
finally found something just for me.

It quickly turned out, however, that I could not make it work .. AT ALL!

Since then I have been trying on an off for more than 7 years, using
multiple machines, multiple "versions" / "flavors" of Linux
(the stack of CDs/DVDs I burnt already stretches to the moon) and spend
hundreds of hours on end on my efforts; probably 50-100 times more/longer
than on all my other machines/OSs put together. And I am getting nowhere.

By now I can install the system, because I did that hundreds of times
already, but everything beyond that stage .. is an endless stream of
One after the other. The well advertised "Linux just works^TM is
something, I have not yet experienced over all these years. Sometimes I
am really asking myself, why I still keep trying.

On multiple mailing lists pertaining to the relevant flavors, I
regularly (usually very quick) am told, that if I "don't know s**t about
computers, I should not dare go near the da** thing."
And/or, when I ask stupid questions like whether Linux needs antivirus
software (I asked, because I didn't/don't know), some people point out,
that the asker is probably a "person of below average intelligence
(retard)". That is probably true, but not helpful.

After all this, I sometimes tend to get a little grumpy and frustrated
(showing in my language).

So, here is not THE, but MY thing.

I am almost 60 years old, have rather limited computer skills, DO NOT
understand "computer mumble-jumble", but NEED a computer for work.
20 years ago I temporarily worked with Mac, but now Windows machines
(ALL translation agencies usually ask for Windows files).
And I also need some stuff, Linux apparently does not offer, like proper
dictionaries etc. THAT is, where virtual machines and Wine etc. come
into play.

Right now, my "production machines" are: at home = new computer running
Windows8.1, my little acupuncture clinic = Optiplex 620 still running WinXP
(I get blackmailed from the translation agencies, telling me, they will
not send me any new work, unless I "upgrade" my system).
Besides that I have a notebook PC running Win7; two notebooks from my
kids running kubuntu 14.04, 64-bit and xubuntu 14.04, 32-bit (Tuxtrans)
Since "Mint" is the flavor that appeals to me most, I installed Mint
17.1 Cinnamon, 64-bit on the Optiplex 745, which used to be my
production machine at home.
So, this is not exactly an "experimental machine".

I had hoped, I could get it up and running sufficiently, to replace the
WinXP machine.

And people on the other side of the world suggested, THIS LIST could be
place, where I can find the help I really need.

With your permission, I would like to ask a number of probably stupid
questions AND would appreciate answers in plain English
even a retard like me can understand. If it helps .. I do speak and
write Japanese and German too.

Thank you.

In the hope of not being too offensive.


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