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Re: Info sucks?

>>"Avery" == Avery Pennarun <apenwarr@worldvisions.ca> writes:

 Avery> On Thu, Sep 17, 1998 at 01:23:27AM -0500, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
 >> I really think we should not be having this discussion. To
 >> prove it, read my comments below. 
 Avery> [...]
 Avery> But there are good and bad interfaces, and I take that as an
 Avery> absolute fact.
 >> Absolutely. 

 Avery> We can say that there are good interfaces and bad interfaces,
 Avery> but we can't have a discussion about what defines one or the
 Avery> other?  How odd.

	What's odd about that? Everyone may agree that there are good
 interfaces and bad interfaces, but the classification of good
 interfaces(emacs ;-) and bad interfaces (CUA;-) varies from person to

 Avery> Or do you insist that there are no universal
 Avery> concepts we can follow that lead to a good user interface?
 Avery> How defeatist.

	Oh, how naive. Over the last decade or so I havce seen this
 brought up time and again, not just by individuals, but by whole
 departments and cmpanies, and have seen all these efforts devolve
 into a morass of personal opinions.

 Avery> Or are you saying that if YOU like it, it must be perfect, so
 Avery> we have no need to discuss improving it?  How closed-minded.

	Oh, rubbish. My contention is that you do not seem to
 undertand the basics of human interaction when it comes to religious
 subjects. Yes, there are bad and good religions. Mine os obviously
 superior. There are good and bad OS's. Mine is obviously
 superior. There are good and bad editorsd. Mine is obviously the one
 true editor.

	How long do you want the list to drown in such jihads?

 Avery> I've read the Debian mailing lists for almost a year now, and
 Avery> most people here bother to think about other people's points
 Avery> before spouting their own.

	Really? Listening to you talk about Emacs's interface, one
 would not have thought so.

 Avery> I have thought about yours: I have given you a list of
 Avery> interface features that make a program easier to learn and
 Avery> easier to use for people (the vast majority of the population)

	And I have given you my opinion of those features. Or are your
 opinions ``more equal'' than mine?  I frankly would not consider most
 of them improvements. 

 Avery> that can't read tutorials and remember everything the first
 Avery> time.  For those people (a tremendous portion of the
 Avery> population), programming in emacs-lisp is simply impossible.

	Are you a member of this population? Really? And you run
 Linux? If you are not, how do you know?

 Avery> Some people (a massive quantity of them) do not have
 Avery> sufficiently logical minds to be able to program.  We should
 Avery> not require them to.

	You do not need elisp to use Emacs. I have seen nothing that
 makes Emacs interface any less ``intuitive'' than CUA. Apart from

 Avery> I have nothing against the emacs interface, and little against
 Avery> the vi interface :), for power users.

	Oh, jeeze. Talk about patronizing attitudes and biases.

 Avery> I have some major complaints about the UI in most other Unix
 Avery> programs.  But they all ignore fundamental user interface
 Avery> design concepts that, in many scientific studies, have been
 Avery> _proven_ to make the vast majority of people more productive.

	Proven? Are you sure you are not using the word incorrectly?

 Avery> A wonderfully detailed summary of several UI studies can be
 Avery> found in the book "The Trouble with Computers" by Thomas
 Avery> K. Landauer.  It's a bit dry, but the information inside is
 Avery> worth the effort.

	Ooh. Yes. A reference. I'll see if I can get hold of this. 

 Avery> Please read his results before you tell me again that this
 Avery> discussion is invalid.

	It is invalid, despite what the book says. Past experience, if
 nothing else, would prove it so. However, I shall indeed go and read
 that book.

 Avery> With this, I leave the thread, because I have no more good
 Avery> points to make on this subject.

	As do I. Hopefully, the thread would die out now.

 Ahead warp factor one, Mr. Sulu.
Manoj Srivastava  <srivasta@acm.org> <http://www.datasync.com/%7Esrivasta/>
Key C7261095 fingerprint = CB D9 F4 12 68 07 E4 05  CC 2D 27 12 1D F5 E8 6E

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