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Re: suggestion

On Sat, Mar 02, 2002 at 11:52:31AM -0600, will trillich wrote:
> short version:
> why not have your .signature reflect which debian you're using?
> long version:
> i've noticed that occasionally someone who uses, say, potato,
> asks for advice and information, and the answers some from
> another debianista using, say, woody. much of the time this is
> not a problem, but then there's the occasional situation where
> the woody (or sid) system has something that potato (or woody)
> doesn't. and neither asker nor responder indicate which systems
> they're using.

Will, missing relevant data in problem reports and responses is 
certainly a pain as you indicate, but I think it's better to try
to educate novice posters on submitting good, informative reports
on a per case basis rather than trying to implement your .signature


1) You simply won't get enough people to change their .sigs to make
this useful.  The .sig for a lot of old hands on the Net is an 
expression of their personalities:  you'd have as much luck in trying
to persuade them to change their hair styles, manner of dress, or
favorite soft drink.  

2) There are a lot of people who just mentally filter out the .sig as
noise.  I've been on the Net since, oh, '97, and within a month I had
pretty much stopped looking at .sig blocks.  I rarely look at them now
unless they are BIG or otherwise eye-catchingly ugly.  It would be 
the last place I would look for information relevant to a problem 
report.  This "ignore-sig-block" habit is so ingrained I doubt that
I could train myself to consistently look at list .sigs unless I used
Pavlov/high-voltage-electroshock conditioning.  I'm deeply sympathetic
to novices on the list (I'm one of them!), but not enough to run 
current through myself to alter a reflex.

You've identified a real problem, but I think your fix is unworkable.

Mark S. Reglewski
.sig-less by choice and habit


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