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  May 15, 2012                  

Varia:  DSM-5 + Linux.Ubuntu

The mild and the long-suffering may suffer forever in this world. As long as the patient will suffer, the cruel will kick.

(The Reverend Sidney Smith.)

This is just a brief Nederlog with two sections

The reason to keep it brief is explained in section 2.

1. DSM-5

I got considerably more visitors and hits the last days, and it seems to be mostly related to what I wrote about the DSM-5, and notably the last Nederlog:

That's nice, so it is a pity that some of the links in that did not work until today: Now they should. The reason they were not is explained in the next section.

Here I only mention

        1 Boring Old Man

who is in fact a retired psychiatrist with interesting and sensible ideas. He has been blogging since December 2005, and I have not read his blog till very recently, but he has been writing sensibly on the history and background of the DSMs and he is presently engaged on a series called "dreams of our fathers".

It is all quite interesting, especially if you have a medical, psychiatric or psychological background, and it has lots of information I never knew (being Dutch and no psychiatrist or medical doctor).

And I should also mention

        Dx Revision Watch

where you can find lots of information, including many links and downloadable files about things related to the DSM-5 and also to the World Health Organization's ICD. This site is by far the best survey of these subjects.

2. Linux.Ubuntu

At present, I am working on two computers, one 64 bits and one 32 bits, and three operating systems: Windows XP on the 32 bits computer; Windows 7, on the 64 bits computer, and Linux.Ubuntu on the 64 bits one, that I also hope to rapidly install on the 32 bits one.

I wrote about Linux and Ubuntu before in Nederlog this month

        Computernews: Linux on a stick!                      
        Some nice things:  Methylation-protocol  +  Ubuntu Linux

and got this

        Ubuntu Linux 12.04 LTS        (from ubuntu.com)
        Ubuntu (operating system)   (Wikipedia)

5 days ago installed on the 64 bits computer, on the hard disk, and have been feeling considerably better since, though indeed not more healthy.

The reason is that this is computing as it should be: Free, open source, well crafted, honest, good looking, smart - Ubuntu Linux has it all, and I like it far better than any Windows I have used:

I can strongly recommend it - it is much more safe, totally free, with loads of excellent software, all or nearly all free and open source, a much better OS than Windows AND easy to install (see my: Ubuntu Linux) AND more pleasant to work with than Windows as well, for it has better help, has been designed - very well indeed - with users of Windows in mind, and has folded 4 desktops in 1 in a very nice way, which is a very handy way to organize one's work.

In fact, here is a brief installation guide, which is like the one explained also in the above link to ubuntu.com, at least for people who still run Windows XP or later. I found it very easy, for it took only 4 steps for me:

    1. Download the iso image for Ubuntu
        This is 702 MB and will take a while. I downloaded the 32 bits version
        because this was recommended by ubuntu, but will probably soon try
        the 64 bits version.
    2. Download
pendrivelinux (in the same directory is the easiest)
        This is a small executable (a little more than 1 MB).
    3. Start up the executable, and let it make a USB stick with Ubuntu
        This requires making several choices but these are all very clearly
        explained on the website of

After I had done that, I could directly start up Ubuntu from that USB drive by closing Windows, starting the computer and using the BIOS (on most computers this requires pressing Esc, Space, F8 or something similar, during startup of the machine, and before it starts Windows) to start from the USB stick rather than from the harddisk from which Windows starts.

For many users this may be the most techie step required, since they may never having seen the BIOS user interface, and may not even know they have a BIOS. Well... it has, as you find explained in the last link, and you need it.

If you know little about it, you shouldn't change anything in it: All you need to do is find the option that instructs the BIOS to start from the USB stick rather than from the hard disk. (Be sure not to change anything else here, if you don't know what you're doing, for this may create problems. Then again, you do not need to do anything except find the option to boot from a USB flash drive, and choose that.)

If you made the right choices, Ubuntu will start up from the USB stick, and it is likely it will have internet access right away, since it uses the data from Windows. 

Now you can find out what it is like. If you had Windows 7 and installed the 32 bits version of Ubuntu on the USB stick, you'll find that Ubuntu looks like Windows on 32 bits rather than Windows on 64 bits, but then you are runnning a 32 bits OS. It doesn't look quite as crisp as Windows 7 but then it is a much better, much safer, much better documented, and clearly more productive OS.

As I had done it, I could not save changes to the USB-stick, but that is very probably my doing. In any case, I liked what I saw so much - do try the Ubuntu software centre, that is part of Ubuntu: LOADS of excellent, free open source software, that installs at a click and your password - that I soon decided to do step 4:

        4. If you like Ubuntu on a USB, you may like to install it on your HD: There
            is an option for doing just that - Install Ubuntu 12.04 LTS - and it does
            everything for you, including partitioning your hard disk, with your

And then you are where I am now, apart from a load of programs I downloaded and installed using the Ubuntu download option.

I do find it far more pleasant than Windows, because I find it more intuitive. Here I have to admit that this probably has to do with the fact that I can program, which helps a lot to understand programs and the possibilities of computers, but it is also true that the people behind Ubuntu Ubuntu seem to have done a lot to make Ubuntu intuitive for Windows users who do not know programming.

Overall, the feeling is like Windows XP 32 - but a lot better, with better help, a better interface, and better software in most fields, and besides a lot safer, and how computing should be: Free, open source and developed honestly and openly by its users.

I am much impressed and well pleased, and the only problem I have at present is that my personal data are still spread over two computers and three operating systems, and that most days the last week I use some of all of them, mostly because that is the shortest path to some goal, given how I have it arranged at the moment.

I do spend most time in Ubuntu, simply because I like it far better than Windows, for lots of reasons, that also include that I find its intuitive feel a lot better: It works as intelligent programmers design things to work, rather than as corporate managers feel the public should put up with.

Finally, and since I am a philosopher (more than most other things, and certainly more than I am a psychologist), I should mention that the main man behind Ubuntu is a South-African called Mark Shuttleworth who got inspired by the

Ubuntu philosophy     (<- Wikipedia)

which has been explained in these terms - and I quote from the last link 


Ubuntu: "I am what I am because of who we all are." (From a translation offered by Liberian peace activist Leymah Gbowee.)

Archbishop Desmond Tutu offered a definition in a 1999 book:[3]

A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, based from a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.

Tutu further explained Ubuntu in 2008:[4]

One of the sayings in our country is Ubuntu – the essence of being human. Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can't exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. You can't be human all by yourself, and when you have this quality – Ubuntu – you are known for your generosity. We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole World. When you do well, it spreads out; it is for the whole of humanity.

Nelson Mandela explained Ubuntu as follows:[5]

A traveller through a country would stop at a village and he didn't have to ask for food or for water. Once he stops, the people give him food, entertain him. That is one aspect of Ubuntu, but it will have various aspects. Ubuntu does not mean that people should not enrich themselves. The question therefore is: Are you going to do so in order to enable the community around you to be able to improve?

I agree it is idealistic, and like the 1999 specification best, and in case you object to this form of idealism, you should realize that most objectors are idealistic as well, except that they are so in more unsavoury and egoistic ways, like most of the candidates of the US Republican party in the last primaries, whose idealism amounts to "greed is good".

There will be no doubt more about Ubuntu on my site, for this is the sort of operating system I have been hoping for since the late 90ies, and I find it very heartening it has at last arrived, no doubt through much hard work by a lot of truly intelligent and benevolent persons.

Highly recommended!

Corrections, if any are necessary, have to be made later.


As to ME/CFS (that I prefer to call ME):

1.  Anthony Komaroff Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS (pdf)
3.  Hillary Johnson The Why
4.  Consensus of M.D.s Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf)
5.  Eleanor Stein Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)
6.  William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
7.  Paul Lutus

Is Psychology a Science?

8.  Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)
 Maarten Maartensz
ME in Amsterdam - surviving in Amsterdam with ME (Dutch)
 Maarten Maartensz Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

Short descriptions of the above:                

1. Ten reasons why ME/CFS is a real disease by a professor of medicine of Harvard.
2. Long essay by a professor emeritus of medical chemistry about maltreatment of ME.
3. Explanation of what's happening around ME by an investigative journalist.
4. Report to Canadian Government on ME, by many medical experts.
5. Advice to psychiatrist by a psychiatrist who understa, but nds ME is an organic disease
6. English mathematical genius on one's responsibilities in the matter of one's beliefs:

7. A space- and computer-scientist takes a look at psychology.
8. Malcolm Hooper puts things together status 2010.
9. I tell my story of surviving (so far) in Amsterdam/ with ME.
10. The directory on my site about ME.

See also: ME -Documentation and ME - Resources
The last has many files, all on my site to keep them accessible.

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