[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [dvd-discuss] Gedanken Experiment -Unix and Norton

Jeme A Brelin wrote:

> I don't think "convenient" is something a general purpose computer will
> ever be, by its very nature.  The attempts by Microsoft (for example) to
> create a system that doesn't obviously need administration and software
> that doesn't require an understanding of what it does in order to use it
> effectively have created a sterile environment that grossly limits the
> capabilities of the machine and the people using it.

For computers I think it is a mistake to label them "you must be this
tall to ride this attraction" in terms of computer skills.  This was the
genius behind the original Macintosh.  When a functionality can be
encapsulated such that only "domain knowledge" (art, accounting,
analysis, etc.) is needed to use it (and not "general computer
knowledge") this does not limit, but frees.  More people can use the
tool to do what THEY do best,  if that doesn't happen to be computers. 
Portrait artists thought the camera was a debasement of portraiture. 
Graphics artists (the cheap ones without the Mac II's) thought
Illustrator was a debasement of graphics design.  Both groups were
wrong, and more people were empowered to express (with of course uneven
results).  For an EMACS user (that explains *everything*) anything that
doesn't require knowledge of Lambda calculus is a sterile, cheapened
debasement of computers.  You're wrong too.

In HCI people talk about usability contrasting the piano with the CD
player.  The CD player can only play prerecorded music (a "sterile")
limited environment, while the piano has an combanotorically limitless
("general purpose") music making ability.  Yet their is room for both
(and many shades in between).  While I, as a drummer, really dislike
drum machines... for my friends that are guitarists/composers a drum
machine is a a vital creative tool.

"It is an absolute rule that all dogma must be abolished." -- .002


(who is in recovery from EMACS)
<troll>VIM Rules!</troll>