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Re: Debconf Templates Style Guide

Scripsit Matt Zimmerman <mdz@debian.org>
> On Fri, Oct 31, 2003 at 07:43:09PM +0100, Henning Makholm wrote:

> > So instead you're recommending an approach that forces the user to
> > choose *before* reconfiguring between
> >  a) not being told what the maintainer thought was a sensible default
> >  b) not being told how he has currently configured the package

> You aren't making sense.

Gee, thanks.

> You said that the problem was that the user wanted the safe defaults
> and couldn't tell what they were.  I provided an idea for a
> solution, which was to give the user an option to forget their
> current configuration and confirm the safe defaults.  Now you're
> complaining that the user has too much choice.

No, I'm complaining that the user does not have the information he
needs to make an informed choice.

What would be so terrible about letting the user know *both* of what
the maintainer thinks is a sensible default *and* how the packages is
currently configured?

> > Which is not terribly helpful to a user who wants to make an informed
> > choice *between* the safe default and his own prior customizations.

> Writing a paragraph of text attempting to tell the user what the safe
> default is, without making reference to any UI-specific widgets, is a waste
> of time and space.

You seem to be saying that giving useful information to the user is a
waste of time and space in general. Why, then do debconf questions
have long descriptions at all, then?

Henning Makholm                                              # good fish ...
                                                    # goodfish, goodfish ...
                                                         # good-good FISH! #

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