Welcome to Opinionated Guides #

Opinionated Engineering makes up the majority of this site, and aims to bring you from normie to neckbeard technomancer.

Opinionated Music will take you on a journey of sound design and artistic expression via sonic exploration. Buckle up bois, it’ll teach you all about 𝓂𝑜𝒹𝓊𝓁𝒶𝓇 𝓈𝓎𝓃𝓉𝒽𝑒𝓈𝒾𝓈𝑒𝓇𝓈 while we’re at it.

Opinionated Design is split into two sections. The first aims to help you not suck at art™ and the second is a stroll though making a website like this one.

Opinionated Philosophy is a place for me to screm my oppinions into the void an attempt to apply philisophical ideas and reasoning to modern problems.

The Interviews section will introduce you to some kick ass engineers, musicians, and kool kids from all walks of life.

If you’re interested in what I have to say, there’s some ⠀ ⠀⠀ ⠀ ⠀⠀ too.

Finally, there’s some Other miscellaneous pages too. Content in this section ranges from discussions of conlangs like toki pona to 10,000 word rants about technology.

Note that this website is mostly open source and I really appriciate contributions ❤️

The site is hosted though GitHub Pages, so all you have to do is submit a PR on GitHub.


Character is owned by me, art is by Siplick

Alright, but who are you? #

I’m Vega!

I have degrees in both Computer and Electrical Engineering. I am very into music, especially guitars and modular synths. I enjoy spending my free time scouring the internet for new things to learn and falling down YouTube pits until 3 in the morning.

I’m one of those people that types on a split Dvorak keyboard. I love old technology that predates me so much that I wear an old vacuum tube as a necklace. I like long boarding around town and playing video games.

I’m pretty opinionated, but I’d like to think most of those opinions have been tested reasonably rigorously or have at the very least come from a fair amount of experience, though I know I will need to update this site based on new information over time. I will occasionally try to sway you into my camp - like getting you to use Linux - for reasons that are both practical and ideological; however, I hope that once I share my reasons for both you’ll agree as well. Of course, I greatly enjoy a good debate and hearing new information too, so if you disagree, to me that’s even more valuable.

TLDR: I enjoy programming guitars and playing computers 💾 I strum Dvorak, and type in chords 🤘

Why? #

Why write Opinionated Guides?

The answer changes from time to time,

At first, I had this grandiose idea that I could offer something akin to a college education for computer science and engineering, with a good dose of electrical engineering for good measure.

And maybe that’s possible still, maybe over the course of a decade OpGuides will still end up as that. But I don’t think that’s even what I want anymore. I don’t want this to be Vega’s Opinionated Big Ass Book To Give You An All-In-One Education, both because VegaOpBABTGYAAIOEdu is far less catchy, and because I don’t even think it’s possible. The more I write on this the more I value input of others and other resources I find, and the more happy I am that I called this project Opinionated Guides.

A Guide. That’s what I want this to be. I want OpGuides to be a resource that’s like your friend you can come back to for advice on where to go next, and I think that’s something the internet really needs.

Search engines are were awesome for finding information, but only when you know what to look for, so I figure OpGuides can be a sort of curated information source, with the crappy results filtered out, the best resources I know of included, and a healthy mix of entertainment in the education so that it’s not a chore to read.

But that’s what I want, not the why.

Why am I doing it?

I’m deeply passionate about what I write about and I really, really just want to share my passions with others. The idea that much of the information for the topics I care about is either:

  • Being behind the ever growing pay wall of college education

  • Being presented in the most horribly dry to read text books

  • Or being glossed over as people get a poor excuse of an engineering (or other technical) education that misses out on so much of both the really important stuff and the really, really fucking cool stuff

is crazy to me.

Because of everything from an abusive text book industry to capitalism as a whole what we have right now is expensive, boring, low quality, and isn’t even worth it.

Seriously, look at how poor of a value even a technical education is becoming! College prices have sky rocketed, the dream of finding a career with decent work-life balance is imploding, and the big employers of computer engineers and computer scientists are being generally fucking evil and I just don’t get why anyone would want to do it….

…except for 18 year old high school graduates that have been fed the line that college is necessary for them to have a fulfilling life and have been repeatedly told how much it’s expected of them to go to college.

I fell down that trap. College is not worth it today. Sure, I have a good paying job, but I taught myself nearly everything I know via YouTube, not by going to class.

Because of my college experience I do know what college gets right and wrong, what is covered and isn’t. So, while I think I could have done a lot better on my own, it did serve as the catalyst. It gave me the terms to search, it pulled the curtain back just enough so that I could see some of the options. I think that’s all that’s really need for someone with enough motivation to be able to succeed, so that’s what I want OpGuides to do.

If you are going to college, I hope that OpGuides can supplement your college education. I hope that I can finish the job of opening the curtains to show you the full stage, to show you the things you missed or re-light that spark of passion.

OpGuides won’t ever be a single resource and should never be in print. The reason I know I can do better than what most existing higher education provides is because instead of shying away from the internet and other resources for the sake of selling a book, I want to show them off and link to them. That’s why I think I stand a chance of making something that can compete with college: I’m not alone, I’m a guide, showing you around the internet and introducing your to my other totally not para-social relationships friends.

As an added reason, it really annoys me how much knowledge is lost due to poor indexing. See Discord, or the Death of Lore (Jason Scott)

On the note of links, those that I think are a cut above the rest will have a lil’ symbol next to them to mark them as being particularly good resources.

Thank You! #

Copper Level Supporters

one time contribution of $10+ or any monthly contribution on GitHub Sponsors or Patreon

Albert Wavering

Simon Grunwald

Silver Level Supporters

one time contribution of $50+ or $5+ monthly contribution on GitHub Sponsors or Patreon

Nikolay Shebanov

Steve Phillips

Gold Level Supporters

one time contribution of $100+ or $10+ monthly contribution on GitHub Sponsors or Patreon

If you would like to sponsor this work, please do so on GitHub Sponsors →

or tip me on Venmo, @vegadeftwing

Contributors #

Thank you to all of these people for your content contributions to OpGuides, the work you’ve put in really hepls!

And an additional thank you from the bottom of my heart to Loial Otter, Soatok Dreamseeker, and Cadey Ratio for the opportunity to do an interview with each, as well as to all my friends that have read over the guides and helped point out issues and gaps in content, and finally to all those that haven’t just responded with ‘RTFM’ and worked with me as I’ve asked some of absolute legends in their fileds to help with the OpGuides project. ❤️

Copyright #

This guide links to and re-hosts a bunch of other content. If you don’t want your content shown here please submit an issue on GitHub or just poke me on Twitter. I have done my best to ask for permission where necessary when other resources are used.

As for the license, everything on OpGuides except

  • The images, quotes, videos, and code that are marked as being from elsewhere or are dynamically loaded from other sources (YouTube, Twitter embeds, JavaScript, and the like)

    Why: Nobody has the right to re-license another person’s hard work
  • The OpGuides name and Logo

    Why: To avoid confusion
  • The Interviews section (https://opguides.info/interviews/*)

    Why: Other people should have the right to know where their interviews are hosted and request they be removed
  • The Blog Section (https://opguides.info/posts/*)

    Why: Many of the posts are about my life, copying them is just weird
  • Images of the character ‘Vega Deftwing’

    Why: I shouldn’t have to have my likeness on a page with content I don’t get a say in
  • Resources given special permission by the artist for OpGuides (all are located in static/nonfree/permissiongranted)

    Why: Permission was given for OpGuides, but not for an arbitrary website

is licensed under CC-NC-BY-SA 4.0, with the a few extra stipulations

  • Contributors must agree that I (Vega) can still collect donations though the site - at the moment this is though GitHub Sponsors and Venmo, though this may change in the future. This covers the cost of the domain, and gives me a little spending money to justify purchases that allow me to write further content.
  • Contributors also agree that I (Vega) or one other person - “The Backup” - I appoint at a time may grant this same exception to those wishing to host a fork of OpGudides themselves. In the event that I am unable to grant this exception further, the last person appointed “The Backup” becomes the copyright holder of the OpGuides name, logo, Interviews, and blog posts and may appoint a new backup.

What this means is you are welcome to fork the project; however, if you want to host it yourself you’ll need to remove the nonfree folder of content in the static folder at the base of this repo. If you’d like to collect donations (to cover the cost of hosting and encourage development) you’ll need to ask for an exception from me (Vega). This exception will almost certainly be granted if you’ve put in any more work than just changing the logo around and removing the nonfree folder.

It is worth noting that a fair amount of content on OpGuides is presented under the assumption of fair use, some of this done more liberally than it probably should be. Many images on OpGuides are used because of broad permission granting statements on the authors websites such as the statements from xkcd and Sarah Scribbles. Some images are almost certainly violations of copyright, but exist under the same gray area that has let meme and gif culture flourish. If you plan to host a fork of OpGuides you may want to consider your own level of comfort regarding the usage of this content and change pages as necessary.

At the bottom you’ll find a fancy logo that acts as a link to the Webring that this site is a part of.

If you would like to support my development of OpGuides, please consider supporting me on GitHub Sponsors or dropping me some spare change on Venmo @vegadeftwing - every little bit helps ❤️