My Journey into Programming
I've been programming in one form or another since my teens. In fact you can still download some of the first programs I made for the TI-83+ calculator over at ticalc.org.
After working with the TI-83+ BASIC programming language and some Assembly code for that calculator, I moved onto Java. I spent a summer learning Java via a Sam's Teach Yourself I got from the local library.
I took a summer class one year that taught us how to model a 3D character and import into the game Unreal Tournament 2003, which got me interested in 3D modeling. When it came to picking out colleges I wasn't sure what I wanted to do for a living, so I went with MSB since they had a Game Development program that had a little bit of everything in it. I took classes for programming(VB.NET,C,C++,Java,Flash), drawing, 3D modeling and animation, Database, and even Sound. Two years later and I had an A.A.S. in Programming and Game Development.
After college I decided I preferred working on web development. So I found a few jobs in that field, and that is where I am today.
My Exploration with Linux
I became interested in Linux in my early High-school years. I finally took the plunge when I found out about some nasty security/privacy rumors surrounding Windows Longhorn(the development code name for Vista). Those rumors turned out to be false, but it was too late and I was hooked on Linux.
I started out with Red Hat Fedora installing one of the early versions, 2 or 3 I don't remember. However I quickly moved away from it because "it looked too much like Windows", which was what I was trying to get away from in the first place. So I decided to go all in and install Gentoo. I used that for years and learned a lot about how Linux works.
Once I got tired of the long install times of Gentoo and having to compile every application, I moved onto Ubuntu. I think was version 6. Unfortunately, every time the version changed the upgrade would break my system, and I'd have to spend the day figuring out how to make my system usable again.
Which brings us to what I'm currently running, Debian. I started with etch or lenny, and have been using it since.