Welcome to Opinionated Guides #

The biggest section of this site is Opinionated Engineering, but that isn’t to say Opinionated Music, Opinionated Design, and Opinionated Philosophy aren’t worth checking out too.

You’ll also find some other miscellaneous stuff, such as Interviews, and blog posts.

The site is mostly maintained by me, Vega


Character is owned by me, art is by Siplick

But I more than welcome contributions. Either submit a pull request or, if you’re dedicated to helping a lot, I can add you as a contributor if you get in touch with me (find me most places as Vega Deftwing).

Alright, but who are you?

I’m Vega, a Computer and Electrical Engineering student and I’m very into music, especially guitars and eurorack. 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 that guy that types on a split Dvorak keyboard, and that wears an old vacuum tube around my neck, but I also 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?

Honestly, 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 Comp Sci, Comp Eng, and Electrical Engineering.

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. Like somehow 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 as college prices sky rocket, the dream of a graduate with work-life balance is imploding, and the big employers of computer engineers and computer scientists being generally fucking evil and I just don’t get why anyone* would do it.

*except for 18y/o high school graduates that have been fed the line that college is necessary for them to have a fulfilling life and that their parents expect it from them

I fell down that trap. College isn’t worth it. But maybe I can use that education to give anyone who finds these guides a better one. Because of my college experience I do know what college gets right and wrong, what is covered and isn’t. And, 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.

If you are going to college, I hope that OpGuides can supplement your college education, that I can finish the job of opening the curtains to give you the full stage, to show you the things you missed or re-light that spark of passion for the same things that I’m passionate about yet college managed to turn into a dull delve into cryptic and dead yet far too expensive text books.

OpGuides won’t ever be a single resource and should never be in print. The reason I know I can do better 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.

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.

There’s also just a point of being utterly pissed off at the quality of my eduaction (see Why did I pay to go to college?) and then seeing just how poor the quality of a formal education often is when compared to what is availble from YouTubers that have perfected making entertaining education that actually sticks with you. I think this segment, starting at 37:08, from this video touches on this well.

Thank You! #

Copper Level Supporters

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

Nikolay Shebanov

Albert Wavering

Silver Level Supporters

one time contribution of $50+ or $10+ monthly contribution on Github Sponsors or Patreon

Gold Level Supporters

one time contribution of $100+ or $20+ 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!

Want your name on this list? Sumbit a PR on Github

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 a bunch of other content. If you don’t want your content linked 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.

At the same time, some images and most of the text on OpGuides is the original work of either myself or other contributors. For the text, I don’t really care, but for the images, gifs, etc. I do retain my copyright; however, you -the reader- are totally free to use it as long as it is NOT used…

  • to promote racist, sexist, or other shitty views that are contrary to what I’ve said in other places in this guide
    • Of course you still have fair use rights for criticism and review, but you know how those limits apply.
    • Don’t be a dick.
  • in a commercial text-book without asking permission
  • commercially in general
    • If you’re a professor or educator, please link to me, but I swear to god if you try to make students pay for an even 1 credit hour class and just say ‘Oh, here, read this’ I will be livid enough to seek legal action.

If you repost content from OpGuides instead of linking to it directly it’d be very uncool of you to not at least credit the OpGuides project with a link.

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 Patreon or dropping me some spare change on Venmo @vegadeftwing - every little bit helps ❤️