Weirdness and WTF

Letters to ed(1): the FreeBSD Journal Letters column, years 1-3

You asked.
He didn’t answer.
The We Get Letters column of the FreeBSD Journal has been called “a tsunami of bile disguised as experience and erudition,” “a torment to the eye and a stain upon the soul,” and “the corroded battleship anchor that will drag an otherwise illustrious Journal to an ignominious demise.” If you ask people who aren’t the columnist, you’ll get a less luminous view. Perhaps even negative.

We sincerely apologize.
This collection of the first three years illustrates how rapidly Lucas abandoned any pretense of answering questions usefully—or, indeed, paying any attention whatsoever to his correspondents. It is unacceptable. What the editors conceived of as an innocent letters column quickly transcended bitterness to become elevated, even elegant enmity. Against everyone.

Apologies are insufficient.
In an attempt to keep these columns from teaching other articles bad habits, we have confined them in their own private volume. The publisher expects it to be presented as evidence at his inevitable competency hearings, as well as most of the civil suits. Next week’s suits, at least.

“While we appreciate Mr Lucas’ unique contributions to the Journal, we do feel his specific talents are not being fully utilized. Please buy his books, his hours, autographed photos, whatever so that he is otherwise engaged.” – John Baldwin, FreeBSD Journal Editorial Board Chair

See Lucas reading a letter live at Penguicon 2019!

Get the book from:

  • My print bookstore
  • My e-bookstore (non-EU only, because VAT)
  • Gumroad (with EU VAT)
  • Amazon US, Amazon AU, Amazon UK, Amazon CA, Amazon DE, Amazon FR, Amazon ES
  • Kobo
  • Apple
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Google Play

    Only Footnotes

    Only Footnotes
    Only Footnotes. Because that’s why you read his books.

    Academics hate footnotes. Michael W Lucas loves them. What he does with them wouldn’t pass academic muster, but that doesn’t mean the reader should skip them. The footnotes are the best part! Why not read only the footnotes, and skip all that other junk?

    After literal minutes of effort, Only Footnotes collects every single footnote from all of Lucas’ books to date.* Recycle those cumbersome treatises stuffed with irrelevant facts! No more flipping through pages and pages of actual technical knowledge looking for the offhand movie reference or half-formed joke. This slender, elegant volume contains everything the man ever passed off as his dubious, malformed “wisdom.”

    Smart books have footnotes. Smarter books are only footnotes.

    *plus additional annotations from the author. Because sometimes even a footnote needs a footnote.

    Available from:

  • my print bookstore
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Amazon US, Amazon AU, Amazon UK, Amazon CA, Amazon DE, Amazon FR, Amazon ES

Special Editions

These are not commercially available anywhere.

FreeBSD Mastery: Advanced ZedFS

Made for Allan Jude. Discusses ZedFS rather than ZFS throughout. Contains an additional footnote that Allan still hasn’t found. (Yes, I know the French is wrong, I should have reached out to my French-speaking readers.) Five copies exist.

FreeBSD Mastery: Jails (Bail Bond Denied Edition)

An edition made for charity auctions, with the cover art I would be forced to use if I was in jail and did not have access to artists. Five copies exist. I have one, one was auctioned at BSDCan, one at the Penguicon charity auction, and one was auctioned for Soroptimist International Grosse Pointe.

Ed Maste

When I released Ed Mastery, I didn’t realize that hundreds of people would think of FreeBSD’s Ed Maste and decide I was writing Ed Mastery. It’s the same as the regular edition, except the ry is struck out everywhere. Five copies exist. I have one, one went to the BSDCan charity auction, and poor Ed got three as a thoroughly inadequate apology.