[linux-elitists] Re: Yet another mozilla atrocity (UIs, etc.)

Jeremy Hankins nowan@nowan.org
Sun Oct 5 11:44:10 PDT 2003

Bill Bogstad <bogstad@pobox.com> writes:

> I recently took a course on human factors issues and computer
> interfaces and my understanding is that the HCI people have
> scientifically shown that gui's are inherently better than command
> lines in most ways and the less you ask a user to configure the
> better.

There's no real way to make sense of this statement.

"scientifically shown" -- many years of attempts by many groups to
disprove the thesis have failed.  The results supporting the thesis
are consistent, clear, and well-respected in the field.

"inherently better" -- better in every way, and/or better in a way
that is unavoidably relevant and important.

Put those two phrases together in any statement and you might as well
be saying you've invented a perpetual motion machine.  Either that or
you're a science journalist....

They may well have been successful at supporting some much more modest
claim.  But that's neither "scientifically shown" or "inherently

Note an interesting corollary to the above: unless there is (or has
been) controversy it's not science.  This is because science is a
process, not a technique -- an idea that should be familiar in this

Jeremy Hankins <nowan@nowan.org>
PGP fingerprint: 748F 4D16 538E 75D6 8333  9E10 D212 B5ED 37D0 0A03

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