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Re: testing is broken

Manoj Srivastava <srivasta@debian.org> writes:

> 	*Sigh*. When would people learn that opinions of user
>  interfaces are highly subjective, and jejune statements like that
>  above add little to the discussion?

Well, let me say that what I dislike about the interface is:

It is hard for new users to tell *what* screen they are looking at;
things seem "jumpy" from format to format, hitting a key makes the
whole screen change in a confusing way.  

Users who say "I want all the optional packages", which every official
Debian statement says they should be able to do, get a vastly
confusing maze of conflicts.  

When package A suggests B, and B conflicts with C, and the user wants
A and C, dselect reports that as a problem.

The first time I really spent time using Debian was with potato.  I
used dselect, and spent an hour or so thinking about packages,
choosing one by one, and then I got an amazingly bizarre maze of
conflicts.  I'd resolve one one way, and then another would come up.
There was no rhyme or reason to which conflicts went with which
packages.  I've never heard of a new Debian user who found dselect a
convenient interface.

It was suggested by a friend "use apt", and amazingly, it
was trivial to deal with.  I went through the list (again, because
dselect didn't make it easy to save what I had selected without going
through installation/conflict).  I used apt, and it was really
trivial.  When I did an apt install on a package, apt nicely printed
out what conflicted, and I made a decision and it was easily and
quickly implemented.

I don't really have an objection to dselect for those people who find
it comfortable and like using it.

But it should not be suggested to the new user, and the few things
that apt still doesn't do now, should be priorities.  (The real biggie
is dealing with suggestions and enhances.)

One interface would be:

$ apt-get install foo
Package foo suggests also installing package bar; install it too

Pretty simple and functional.


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