[clug] Why do we do what we do in Linux? [was Re: Text editor]

Scott Ferguson scott.ferguson.clug at gmail.com
Wed Oct 29 18:38:51 MDT 2014

On 30/10/14 03:47, Bryan Kilgallin wrote:
> Hi Scott:
>> That's more an example of how a proficiency in one field (law) doesn't
>> automatically translate into a proficiency in another (IT).
> We're supposed to engage in lifelong learning!

While I agree, your response doesn't seem to directly relate to what you
are responding to. (puzzled)

By all means snip out irrelevant material - but please try not to remove
the context.

>> You limit your choices by choosing from a category
>> e.g. shells - then make you decision on the basis of "fit for purpose" -
>> only you can determine what weights to apply to that decision matrix.
> Yes, I chose the fish shell.

I'll take that as an agreement (to the now, trimmed out of context, point).

>> In your case one of the "fit for purpose" definitions you 'might' employ
>> could be "how much support/guidance can I get" (which may rule out
>> blackbox and xnest).
> Yeah--otherwise I spend forever with shelved, half-built projects!

The pejorative is presumably the result of a misunderstanding. Neither
of those projects are "half-built. Both are frequently used in embedded
Linux projects.
Lack of continued development doesn't mean "unfinished". e.g. qmail.

> I understand that a great many published programs each consist of
> someone's pet project!

Starting with the kernel.

>> Marketing is something generally done by commercial organisations do to
>> drive sales.
> That's promotion, or selling. More generally, identifying a need is what
> expands a market!

Marketing (creating a desire) and Sales (commercial transaction) are
distinct from Promotion (creating awareness). Not only from a
perspective of fields of knowledge and business activities - but also
Identifying a need, in this context, is Market Research.

But we digress... far from the original subject and even one of the
subsequent tangents of "winning a desktop war".

> Although supposedly "free"--I have found that trying to compute the
> Linux way entails endless nights and a desk covered in scribbles on
> Post-it notes!

I suspect you stretch "free" too far when applying it to "free of
effort". Don't you think?

>>>> Users don't drive development compel != impel (tail not wave dog).
>>> Last Sunday at a graduates' party, I sat next to a user analyst. Who
>>> gave the exact opposite view!
>> A *commercial* point of view no doubt (and that person would hardly
>> propose their job was meaningless). Did your "user analyst" "get" Linux,
>> or were they distracted by market imperatives?
> She had absolutely no idea how her agency's network operated!

That wasn't my question.

>>> Adults learn based on comparison with their vast prior experience.
>> All humans do (abstraction and leverage).
> By analogy.

I'm not sure what to make of your constant rephrasing.

>> Your printer doesn't need to do "landscape" - the print software on
>> linux is perfectly capable of turning the print 90 degrees before
>> sending to the printer (Orientation).
> The Printing application communes with my Brother HL3150CDN LED printer.
> But I have been unable to get landscape orientation to work. Attempting
> to print landscape--yields right-truncated portrait output!

That's an issue that deserves a new post with an appropriate subject
line to attract useful information and make the results accessible to

This thread has already veered off into too many tangents, which while
interesting, would be more productive (to the many) if they were
separate subjects.


Kind regards


“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you
know for sure that just ain’t so.”

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