Re: Horrifying suggestion
Ethan Benson wrote:
> teaching newbies how to run arbitrary code as root on there machine
> without having the slightest idea what it is going to do is a bad
> idea. the fact that this is targeted at newbies makes it WORSE.
Well I'm certainly not advocating the above. All my suggestion did
was to provide a way _in_ to Debian, for someone who might be
interested in trying it out, but who isn't familiar with Linux.
There's almost nothing you've said in your mails that I don't agree
with - we're singing from the same hymn sheet, so to speak.
Here's the scenario when my suggestion would be a good idea:
Take a user who is familiar with 'doze, who happens to get hold of
the potato CD's, and wants to compare Debian and 'doze. These are the
steps after he/she gets through the Debian install, chooses X and the
Gnome desktop, then gets to the "Have fun" message at the end, and
1) LILO....lots of text flying past... mycomputer#Login:
Newbie logs in:
What's this black console screen? Where's the GUI?
3) Newbie goes away and buys a copy of O'Reilly's "Running Debian",
learns about the "startx" command.
4) newbie@mycomputer$ startx
Now twm starts up. Newbie sees a grey screen with an X in the middle,
one that maybe even responds to the mouse. Newbie clicks some buttons,
gets some menus, opens a shell. Having read all about Gnome, he/she
knows that the panel is the thing to run.
5) newbie@mycomputer$ panel &
Now we're getting somewhere... maybe this can be automated? Newbie
goes back to the books, finds out which files to edit.
6) Newbie has not used vi or emacs before, so has to choose one, and
learn that first.
7) Newbie edits Xsession (that's what O'Reilly says), adds in calls
to icewm, panel and gmc.
That wasn't too hard, you might say. Newbie is now at almost the same
state as after using go-gnome (my suggestion). Elapsed time? Depends
on whether the bookstore has the book in stock, and how many evenings
the newbie is willing to invest in what is for him/her still only an
Using go-gnome? Elapsed time 25 minutes. OK, newbie is still dumb, but
now has an opportunity to click around the system and find out stuff,
maybe even discover that Debian is better that 'doze! Newbie even gets
sawfish installed, so the GUI looks nicer still!
> im sure the legitimate helix script is all well and good, thats not
> my point, my point is teaching newbies how to run arbitrary code from
> a web server as root is not a good idea.
Hear, hear! Never run arbitrary code from a web server as root!! Now
if the helix-gnome packages could just be incorporated into Debian, we
wouldn't even be having this discussion.
> i haven't seen anyone say how to look at it, just how to pipe into
> /bin/sh and run god knows what as root!
To look at the script, just enter this url in your favourite web
> > Sarcasm noted. What you really mean is "Debian is not for
> > newbies". Well we all know that. I happen to have discovered
> > that this might no longer be the case...
> thats not what i am trying to say at all, i am trying to say that
> making things easier on newbies is a good goal but we should not
> make it TOO easy, it keeps them dumb and ready to be attacked
> sucessfully and it keeps them from learning this new system.
And if the newbie can't get it installed at all, then he/she is also
kept from learning this new system. More money goes into B*ll G***s
pockets as newbie gives up and buys 'doze2K.
> MS has demonstrated that making the system TOO easy and the users
> too dumb leads to disaster, we should learn from their mistakes
> instead of making them again.
I couldn't agree more! Long Live Linux!
"Asking for quality software from Microsoft is like asking for the wine
list at McDonalds."