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Old 11-28-2003, 08:21 PM   #16
mac_phil
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Quote:
Originally posted by DrD

The terminal is cool, but don't fall victum to bigotry! There ARE better things out there, better ways to accomplish big tasks in simple ways.
Vaporware. There is no user interface out there more powerful or faster than the command line. There are GUIs that have a less steep learning curve. I'm not saying the command line is the one user interface for all time. It is simply the most powerful and fastest interface we have.


Quote:
A terminal is just a reliable system tool. IT IS NOT what an OS should be oriented around when it comes to user desktop systems. It SHOULD be oriented completly, in every way, around the user who's computer it is.
This is a contradiction. You say:
1)The OS should not be oriented around the command line.
2)The OS should be oriented completely are the user.

Since some users prefer the command line you have contradicted yourself.

You've simply taken your personal preference and defined it as 'user oriented.'
 
Old 11-28-2003, 08:48 PM   #17
slakmagik
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Quote:
Originally posted by DrD
Yeah. YEAH. That's exactly what I meant. Comon, you're smarter then that.
Yeah, and I meant I wanted my screen to be black most of the time.

My point is that your notion of 'advanced' seems to be conditioned by using and liking a GUI and knowing that it's a more recent interface. My notion of 'advanced' is conditioned by what's efficient, sufficient, and powerful. And by appreciating language.

You asked if I wished it 'hardly interacted' with the user. You demand that it be oriented around the user whose computer it is. I'm not feeding stuff in on punch cards. The very name of the thing is 'interactive login shell' in its usual invocation. But I do like feeding stuff in on punch cards in a sense, in that scripts do carry out a sequence of (usually) non-interactive commands. And that's oriented completely around me. Because I told it what to do, rather than jumping through some interface's checkbox-pushbutton interface. But that's just me and a lot of Linux users. If you *do* require graphics to feel that the computer is oriented around you, fine - there's a zillion graphical interfaces out there and an operating system or two that essentially has nothing else.

And don't get me wrong - I usually use a GUI because I find the web an interesting, but graphical, place and the one instance (other than actual graphics rendering) where a GUI is superior is mozilla vs. CLI web surfing. Given that I'm in the GUI to surf, I'm in a GUI in general. But I always have terms up all over the place. I have nothing against a GUI, as such, but the idea that it should replace the CLI or even become primary is a big reason I quit using Microsoft stuff and switched to Linux. I don't want that taken away again.

Last edited by slakmagik; 11-28-2003 at 08:49 PM.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 08:51 PM   #18
slakmagik
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Quote:
Originally posted by mac_phil
...This is a contradiction. You say:
1)The OS should not be oriented around the command line.
2)The OS should be oriented completely are the user.

Since some users prefer the command line you have contradicted yourself.

You've simply taken your personal preference and defined it as 'user oriented.'
Crap. I didn't realize there was another page. Excellent point - I sort of stumbled around that in my post, but you nailed it.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 09:17 PM   #19
DrD
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Perhaps, perhaps.

Here's what I mean:
I'm talking about "User Centric" - I'm not really talking about preferences per say, or that sort of thing. (Even thought that is important)

With a command line interface, you enter the computer on it's terms. Being as complicated as computers are, the command line can be a very difficult thing to work with. It can be like learning another language. You have to learn how to tell the computer to do everything. You have to learn how the operating system's file system works before you can really start to do things with your computer. It's also maticulous, spell something wrong, use the wrong case, or accidently move into the wrong folder to attempt something, and your in for some frustration. You have to know how things are layed out, you have to be able to visualize the file system you are moving through, etc etc. You're getting about as close to talking to the computer, as if you are a computer itself, as you'll get.
Very powerfull, very effciant means of doing things... also very maticlous, very picky, very unfreindly, and most of all, unhuman. You've got to know exactly what you are doing or you get lost very easilly.

With an (ideal) GUI, things are oriented like this - what you see is what you get. There's no langauge to learn, just a couple quick concepts. Turn the computer on, and there's the desktop - showing you the storage devices in plain site, with their names, and pictures showing you what they look like. No more shortcuts (I find them illusional and kind of misleading), just a what you see is what's on your computer kind of apoach. So, getting your way around is as simple on clicking on where you want to go- click the hard drive. Instead of showing a complex file system, have simple catigories (that in reality, are just folders somewhere in the complex file system). Catigories like Programs, Music, Movies, and System Tools, and perhaps one or 2 more things. So that everything is there - it's in plain site, and it's what's on the hard drive - only oriented in a way so that the user sees stuff in simpler terms. And, while I'm at it, why not encapsulate programs? So that the folder that contains a program is the program itself! Say you install a game, like halo. Why not contain the game in a single executable folder, with everything inside of it, that you simply click on, to play? You could always right click it, to view the contents. Just like a zip file. So your asking "why do this, its the same thing". Because this changes the whole scope... with a single game icon like this, it's practical to move the whole game to your desktop - just grab the game, like halo, and move it where ever you want. The whole game gets moved! If you want to uninstall halo, there's no complexities, just click on halo and hit delete, the whole directory structure and everything inlcuded in the game goes with it. That way, it's "modulated" and much more user - centric. Actually, it's much more "object oriented" that way, drag programs around wherever you want them, or music, or games, and just place them in whatever catiogory you want. Want to run a file? Drag it onto the program you want to run it with. So simple, isn't it? Want to see the contents of the game? Right click the game and click view contents - It will show you the files, folders, and the whole directory structure - if you want to - there's no handicaps here. These are the same advantages an object oriented language has over a structured langauge.
Think about if you download something - just physically orient it to where you want it, whichever catigory you want on your hard drive (Programs, Music, Movies, or any custom catigories you make, or just to your desktop) Then, either jsut click the program to run it, if it's not a system specific thingy, or click it to install it, if it needs to be compiled or installed to run differently on different systems. All as an encapulated folder-executable thingy like I was talking about before. You could run something simply run something you see, what you see is what you get. It makes the desktop so much more "modular" and object oriented.

Meanwhile, keep the heavy duty - computer efficant linux file system going! Keep the terminal aroudn, it's a great heavy duty tool! Make it embedded right into the operating system, so that it has full access to everything, and isn't handicapped by the GUI, or so that it isn't running "on top" of the GUI, but alongside it. If you want to learn the intricacies of the OS, if you want to learn the file system, if you want to do uber things that go beyond the scope of the GUI, go right ahead! Have a handy dandy super powerfull terminal tool right in there with the system tools, on the hard drive
Have some other system tools avaible, nice, advanced things, in the system tools catigory on the hard drive. Make them unmoveable or undeleeable. Make them object oriented encapulated icon units too, jsut like the other programs.
Don't LOSE anything by going to a super human, object oriented desktop based what you see is what you get ideal.
Get all those things, keep the heavy duty tools that give you complete control over how the system actually works, should you choose to go down to that level and mess with things.
Undernieth, the file structure is still uber-effciant, there's still /etc, /usr, /lib, still there. Still accesable through all the non-handicapped sytem tools you could want.
And at the same time, the basic user uses a completely object oriented aproach to his computer, what you see is what you get apraoch, with encapulated programs in "catigories" that are just a simpler means of showing the file system.

And yes, I'm thinking about supporting or starting something that works like this. Quite a project, but worth it I think, for everyone.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 09:41 PM   #20
DrD
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So what do you all think about that? It's got all the efficancy of the linux file system, and all the power tools, while at the same time it's "object oriented", it's user friendly up the gazoo, and shows the storage devices in terms that are easier to accept. I esecially like the encapulated program idea. And the catigory based method of showing the file system.
Click the Hard drive, you'll see Programs, System Tools, Users (for other users desktops), Music and Movies perhaps, and in reality these are just folders somewhere in the effeciant linux file system. Click on Programs, and wallah! There they are! Organized like a start menu, only you're not looking at a fake tree of shortcuts, your actually looking at the programs, each one with it's own encapulated file structure (like zip files). You can move them to your desktop, uninstall them, etc, simply bly clicking and moving them, or clicking and delteing them, very user centric and a little more diealistic for most people. And it's something I'd think even uberleet people who know the file structure well could appreciate. They'd have a little more fun with the simple things like moving their games around, or whatever, and catigorizing their hard drive with a slightly differnt outlook.
Need to do some important system specific file restructuring that lies beyond the scope of that? Fire up the terminal! Why not? You can get all the intrin-sic power you wish.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 09:44 PM   #21
fr0zen
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1) There's no magic powder for which one could add water and instantly have a functioning GUI.
2) GUI's tend to introduce bugs, and user-inconsistencies. Say it forces me to do something I don't want to do.
3) Keep it simple. Why make it difficult? The terminal isn't difficult, it's straight-forward thinking, really. Sure, it's text nonetheless, but you use your eyes to read text, do you not?
4) What's the difference between using a cursor to click on a graphically specific area to enable a particular function, and using an input device to transmit a sequence of characters into a rectangular input area designed to enable the same function?

Lets say you go to click that 'button' and the installer crashes. What now?
 
Old 11-28-2003, 10:03 PM   #22
fr0zen
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The problem with "what you see is what you get".... is that it is not always true. The truth is that what you see is simply what you see.

You must crawl before you can walk, and walk before you can run. A GUI cannot load out of thin air, it must exist on top of another layer, a simpler layer of straight-forward commands used by the interface to communicate with several hardware devices that may or may not even be compatible with each other.

Such an interfacing system, even though you consider it object oriented, is nothing more than an illusion itself. The truth is, computers aren't object oriented. Hardware isn't object oriented. Projecting the contents of a harddrive as mere 'objects' would require a standardization that simply does not exist. The mere concept would involve assumptions, and where you assume assumptions, you typically run
into problems.

So, rather than make assumptions, don't make any. GUIs have the weakness of lacking scenarios. Object oriented doesn't make people smarter.

Consider the example of mathematics. Straight forward language, simple, unhuman, you might say. Are you saying it's more beneficial to use your fingers, or blocks, or apples, for determining the sum of ten and ten? What about the derivitive of e to the x squared?
 
Old 11-28-2003, 10:10 PM   #23
twilli227
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DrD, what distro do you use? Have you heard of apt and synaptic? If you want gui, these will probably help you in your quest. Luckily for me, I did not become too depedent on the gui in windows before I found out about linux. At first, I was clueless and lost in the cli. It took awhile before the cli started becoming intuitive to me. There have been other threads about this same subject. Some people might not have the time to put an effort toward the cli, fine. To each his own, but listen to what has been said here. For some or alot of us, the cli is faster, intuitive, and powerful.
Not everybody has the same needs or wants. If you want to change somethig, then by all means, go for it. That is what linux is all about, freedom of choice.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 10:34 PM   #24
Whitehat
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It sure seems that this DrD asked a simple and valid question and he's getting "eliteist" Linux guru responses.

I agree with him somewhat. 80% of people that use computers don't give two craps about the nitty gritty stuff that the command line can do. What he needs is a Mac.

The command line barrier is why Windows and Mac have a stronghold on the desktop OS today. It proves that only us geeks like to mess with command line.

I will say this though; there are simply some times that I don't want to have to mess around with the command line. I just want to double click something and have it install for me. I'm just too darn tired some days to sit there and mux with the Konsole to get stuff going.

I realize that GUI installers don't come from thin air, but I do know that we should let the folks make them that want to, and let the other people who want GUI installs just use them

a note to mac_phil
you said
Quote:
Vaporware. There is no user interface out there more powerful or faster than the command line. There are GUIs that have a less steep learning curve. I'm not saying the command line is the one user interface for all time. It is simply the most powerful and fastest interface we have.
I disagree. It is powerful yes. It is Linux/Unix yes! It is not "the most" powerful fastest interface we have. I will guarantee you that I can create an OU in Active Directory's management console faster than you can create one via command line for LDAP.

I can double click an RPM file and have it installed faster than you can open a console and type "rpm -i /whole/path/to/install_file_4.5.63.0.rpm".

I think we should give DrD a bit of slack. I'm pretty close to buying a new Mac with OSX because I love the different OS, but I'm tired of messing around until the wee hours of the morning getting stuff to work sometimes. I don't want to spend my life learning how to use the tool. I want to use the tool There is a happy medium. Windows has that happy medium. Powerful Windows scripting for the geeks and network/system admins, and also a brainless GUI for the "users".

Peace out,
Whitehat
 
Old 11-28-2003, 10:56 PM   #25
mac_phil
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Quote:
Originally posted by Whitehat
80% of people that use computers don't give two craps about the nitty gritty stuff that the command line can do. What he needs is a Mac.
80% is probably too modest. I agree with the second point; see my comments on OSX and Lindows.

Quote:
The command line barrier is why Windows and Mac have a stronghold on the desktop OS today. It proves that only us geeks like to mess with command line.
Saying 'Windows and Mac have a stronghold on the desktop' is like saying 'Windows and Amiga have a stronghold on the desktop.' It's Windows with the stronghold. Windows had this stronghold even when it relied on the command line! Do you remember when playing most games invovled creating boot disks, or messing with autoexec.bat? Windows 3.1 had this stronghold and relied on the command line.

Quote:
I will say this though; there are simply some times that I don't want to have to mess around with the command line. I just want to double click something and have it install for me. I'm just too darn tired some days to sit there and mux with the Konsole to get stuff going.
I think we all agree on this, and, in most cases, Linux satisfied this desire. Not in all cases.

Quote:
I disagree. It is powerful yes. It is Linux/Unix yes! It is not "the most" powerful fastest interface we have. I will guarantee you that I can create an OU in Active Directory's management console faster than you can create one via command line for LDAP.

I can double click an RPM file and have it installed faster than you can open a console and type "rpm -i /whole/path/to/install_file_4.5.63.0.rpm".
Perhaps, but I'm tempted to ask what this has to do with the price of tea in China. Surely you aren't claiming that the superiority of the GUI over CLI will be determined by a race to complete these tasks?

The real question is how would you use the GUI to search a few hundred text files to find that letter you wrote to Aunt May last winter? Or to have your machine email you when your IP address changes? It can't do these tasks. It can't do anything novel. With commands, pipes, and regular expressions, you have the ability to create the functionality you need.

In any case, I think the GUI clearly loses the rpm test, at least with Mandrake. On the CLI I can simply use urpmi, which downloads, checks dependencies, and installs. Using the GUI to google the program, download it, find it in your file manager, then doubleclick on it probably takes more keystrokes and at least 5 mouseclicks.

Quote:
I think we should give DrD a bit of slack. I'm pretty close to buying a new Mac with OSX because I love the different OS, but I'm tired of messing around until the wee hours of the morning getting stuff to work sometimes.
I don't think any of us are treating him poorly, we're just saying, as you're saying, that OSX is what provides this functionality. We're also denying that the GUI is better, or more advanced, or more elegant, than the CLI. It's clearly easier for the uninitiated to figure out than the CLI, thus it's in that sense easier. It isn't faster or more powerful.

Last edited by mac_phil; 11-28-2003 at 10:59 PM.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 11:02 PM   #26
Scruff
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Well here's my 2 cents: A GUI gives you the functionality that the developer intended. That makes it limited and therefore less powerful than the CLI. Period. However, with Linux and Open Source software, if the GUI doesn't do what you need, at least the opportunity exists for you to modify it so it does. Windows and Mac rely too heavily on the GUI, and closed source provides no real opportunity for modification, so the user is totally limited by the programmers idea of The Perfect Application.

For users that prefer a GUI-only environment, that makes linux kind of a trade off. I guess it depends on how important it is for the user to have complete control. It's important enough for me

Last edited by Scruff; 12-01-2003 at 05:46 PM.
 
Old 11-28-2003, 11:18 PM   #27
twilli227
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quote:
It sure seems that this DrD asked a simple and valid question and he's getting "eliteist" Linux guru responses.

He did bring up a point of view that is felt by alot of people that are trying linux, but he is not getting an elitist point of view. To some people the cli is the way to go and to others the gui is. Both views have been discussed and everybody is giving good comments. No problems
 
Old 11-29-2003, 12:06 AM   #28
Whitehat
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Well put twilli227
 
Old 12-01-2003, 09:55 AM   #29
Charlie Spencer
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Yet another newbie chimes in with his uninformed opinion:

I have an automatic transmission in my car. I wouldn't have a manual tranny if you gave it to me. While I can drive one in an emergency, I'm not good enough to do it without worrying that I'm damaging something. It requires me to pay attention to something I'd just as soon ignore. I know people who buy cars with a manual transmissions and they enjoy driving them. For professional drivers, it's a requirement. For me, an average goober going from Point A to Point B, it's a nuisance that I don't need.

The command line is definitely more powerful, whether you are in Linux or Windows. As a network technician, I use it, and I expect the same of my peers.

However, I don't expect the -AVERAGE- office / home user to know how to use it. It gives access to a level of power that most of them don't care about. (It also requires they be able to type accurately, something many of them can't do any better than I can shift gears.) Please note that I do not consider anyone here to qualify as an average user. Your interest in alternative operating systems has already raised you above the average level.

As Whitehat noted, sometimes you want to use the tool, not spend a lot of time learning about it. The average user just wants to use his computer. A GUI should address his / her routine needs, including installing new software and removing it when no longer used. I'm not saying Linux GUIs do this any better or worse than Windows or OS X; just that in a better world, GUIs would handle this without problems. Then if the average user wants to learn more, the CLI is always available.
 
  


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