1999 Readers' Choice Awards

You voted, we counted—here are the results.
Favorite Linux Web Page: Slashdot.org

“Long live Cmdr Taco!”

“Next to Linux Journal? Slashdot.”

“Man are the ballots going to be stuffed on this one :-)”

Was there ever any doubt? It's not an exclusively Linux page, but Slashdot takes 41.3% of the vote. Freshmeat.net is second with 16.6%, while none of the others did very well at all. Discouraging news for Linux gamers: Happy Penguin (The Linux Game Tome) made only 0.8%.

Favorite Shell: Bash


“You know, bash could also stand for best of all shells. :^)”

The Bourne Again Shell gathered a monstrous 77.8% of the vote, by far on of the bigger victories in this year's poll. tcsh managed 10.5%, and ksh got 5.2%. There would probably be a different distribution between shells one likes to use and shells one likes to write scripts for, but it's clear that bash is where it's at. Shells have cool names like ash, bash, zsh (to keep in mind when naming your children).

Most Indispensable Linux Book: Linux in a Nutshell

“What a stupid name, Linux Secrets! What secrets can software whose source code is available on the Internet have?”

“/usr/doc is your friend. ;)”

Scoring a seven-vote victory, Linux in a Nutshell by Ellen Siever, et al. won over Matt Welsh's classic Running Linux, 19.0% to 18.8%. Last year's winner, Network Administration Guide, was third with 11.8% of the vote. There are many books for beginners, but these were selected as the best. Truly there is no shortage of Linux books, though I wonder how the Linux Documentation Project is coming along. It received many write-ins but not quite enough to make a showing, and technically speaking it's not a book. Still, the enthusiastic support for LDP shows where Linux users' loyalties lie.

Favorite Web Browser: Netscape/Mozilla

“Netscape, but it's a cope sort of thing.”

Five people “accidentally” wrote in Internet Explorer—they officially lose. Netscape, deemed the “lesser of the evils” by voters, wins with 86.7%. Netscape may sometimes leak memory like an NT box, but let us never forget what it did for the Open Source movement (that guy Raymond, Linus Pauling, et al.). Lynx came in second with 8.3%, and the K File Manager was third with 4.4% (good job, guys; this one is fast for a graphics browser). Mnemonic appears to be completely dead, and Arena is not so successful right now either. Hopefully, Mozilla will stand on its own by next year. Ah, who uses the Web anyway?

Favorite LJ Column: Kernel Korner

“Kernel info is fun for the whole family.”

“The one with Marjorie.”

“upFRONT is my high-level Slashdot: what Slashdot won't tell, I can read from upFRONT. It has things to check out and news to talk about.”

“Kernel Korner” is the perennial favorite this year with 26.9% of the vote, followed by “Best of Technical Support” which had 21.2%. This probably says something about LJ readers. David Bandel's “Focus on Software”, each month a wild assortment of rarities from the software world, scored number three with 16.3%. Reuven Lerner's consistently popular “At the Forge” was a close fourth at 13.1%, and received many glowing comments. “Linux Means Business” had 11.1%, and the new “upFRONT” managed 4.1%.