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RE: Kind request: fix your packages



On Sun, 2003-10-05 at 23:14, Jef Spaleta wrote:
> Sean Middleditch wrote:
> 
> > The absolute worst thing about analogies is that people take parts of
> > them that don't apply to the situation
> 
> Then stop using analogies....

I tend to find them useful when explaining things, at least when talking
to people who can think abstractly.  If nothing else, I can get a good
laugh at people whose language thought patterns haven't evolved past
grade school level.  ;-)

> 
> > Perhaps I should've used cars as a cleaner analogy.  ;-)  I
> > don't know how most of my Ford Ranger works, and I couldn't care - I
> > just get in and drive the thing.
> 
> Right, out of the pan into the fire...
> and if you just used a computer without trying to add functional
> elements to it...your repeated user of mechanical transportation analogy
> would be a much better fit. Do you drop in a v8 engine into your car,
> when you need more power? Do you upgrade your brakes to abs when you
> need better brakes? Do you drop in an 4 wheel drive when you need it?

Going with the anology (which is getting insane - guess I know which
abstract levels I need to use from now on), replacing an engine or brake
systems is like replacing a kernel or core desktop.  That's a major
functionality upgrade, not an add-on.

> Your analogies still stink. When someone finds that a certain car has a

Thanks.  That's *really* useful to the discussion.  You're putting *way*
too much thought into this analogy stuff.  ;-)

> "bug" do the car manufacturers expect users to install it...or do they
> have a recall and have an expert fix the problem? Normal mundane car

Recall: manufacturer issues a "patch", which the user uses a "expert"
update utility to apply.  No more bug.  Only difference is the user
doesn't have to physically get up and go anywhere.

> users do not routinely try to add functionality or enhance functionality
> to their cars by themselves. Cup holders, fuzzy dice and cowhide seat
> covers...maybe...but those things are more akin to themes, desktop
> wallpapers and skins in the computer world than real functional
> elements. Hell most car users wouldn't even THINK about even installing
> their own stereo system without some expert assistance. Adding something

And now you've wonderfully and pointlessly gone beyond the abstraction
of a metaphor.  Hope you had fun.  ^,^

> like air conditioning is frankly well beyond a normal car user.  But
> mundane computer users try to add functional components all the time,
> without a thought to how its suppose to work. That is what upgrading
> software and hardware in a computer is really...upgrading major
> functional elements of the tool. Normal users of cars and planes, do not

My word processor is not a "major functional component".  It's a wrench
in my toolbox.  (crap, I used another metaphor, now I'm going to have to
listen to people drag it into some pointless comparison based on bolts
and jackhammers or something. ;-)

And hardware, I might note, is another thing entirely.  Completely
beyond the scope of the original discussion.

> and should not attempt to add significant functional elements without
> help or understanding...and using your analogy neither should computer
> users. It comes down to what a "user" is suppose to be doing when the
> "use" the software. Is downloading and adding new functionality really
> "using" the computer? Or is it tweaking it?

Good point.  The difference is, a car comes with everything you expect a
car to have.  I don't buy a car without wheels and then go to add them. 
A computer, on the other hand, never comes with everything you want,
unless you're a *very* basic user.  (i.e., you browse the web, use
webmail, and maybe write a paper.)  In which case, they aren't probably
going to even try installing software, so that is pointless (as I think
your point was supposed to be.)

Unfortunately, most people want utilities they don't already have.  In
personal experience, it's games (most of my friends are college kids and
don't use their computers for many useful pursuits ;-) altho my family
members tend to go for weird little utilities that do something-er-other
they think is great.

The "packaged for each OS release" approach fails, because (a) you will
NEVER get everything people want packaged in Fedora Core/Extras, and (b)
nobody wants to hear "you have to wait 3 months for the next release of
your OS, which is kind of a pain to do since you have to sit and wait
and watch all your software upgrade and cross your fingers nothing
breaks and/or changes like it has with *every other* OS upgrade so far"
when they just want to install FooWhiz, especially when they're sitting
at its website with the "FooWhiz 1.0 with extra Bar available NOW!" on
their screen.

> Isn't my little store bought cable modem/router with a webinterface a
> computer? I use it all the time without actually downloading and
> installing any sort of software on it. I think your definition of "use"
> and "user" is overly broad and is itself a sort of misplaced analogy.

I generally refer to a desktop computer.  Fedora isn't a router OS.  ;-)

(And yes, it *is* a small server OS, but people running servers aren't
the ones that I'm worried for ;-)

> 
> -jef"if car manufacturers handled bug fixes like software companies..i
> would have gotten several lengths of electrical wire and a couple of
> engine mounting brackets in the mail with instructions on how to replace
> them...good thing car manufacturers have recalls to dealerships
> instead"spaleta

Wow, that nickname must be a pita during group introductions.  ~,^

-- 
Sean Middleditch <elanthis awesomeplay com>
AwesomePlay Productions, Inc.




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