Reading the Manual

RTFM, was a term I heard (directed at me, many times) back in the early 2000’s when I was first learning about the linux/unix operating system. It cuts deep. It can discourage those young eager learners that are just starting out.

Though I would advise against using the phrase, because of it’s crassness; I think it's still wise advice. Remember, people put a lot of work in the manuals. They want people to read them. Don’t ignore the manuals. Ensure you read the really nice, sometimes poorly worded, and confusing manuals... if you can.

And make sure you’re following your own advice, live by example.

This is totally true for me, I admit, I have not run man on every command I’ve ever used. I know first hand that sometimes you can read a manual and not grok it. It’s helpful to ask questions to get the clarification you need. Don’t be afraid to reach out either, I’d be more than willing to help if I can.

One thing that stuck with me, even though it was a hard pill to shallow, the manuals are there. Often times I still find new and vaulable information in them. Information I didn't fully understand the first time I read them, if I ever read them to begin with.

Also, check out this website for help on command line: it's amazing for detailing out (sometimes complex) linux/unix commands.

I still have to look up the xargs command. Every. Single. Time.