[linux-elitists] Re: GNOME > you

Jeremy Hankins nowan@nowan.org
Sat Jan 3 09:31:53 PST 2004

Jeff Waugh <jdub@perkypants.org> writes:
> <quote who="Jeremy Hankins">

>> I'm perfectly happy with my ratpoison-like sawfish configuration.
>> Clearly the how/what distinction that we were talking about at the
>> start is an article of faith for you, and not something you can
>> defend.  Thus there's no hope of ever reaching common ground for
>> discussion.  So never-mind.
> Well, that's an easy way to cheat yourself out of the
> discussion. Obviously it's *my* faith that is at fault. Perhaps you
> should restate your 'how/what distinction' in less abstract
> terms. Right now it's voodoo-la-la-land, with very little solid ground
> for argumentation.

Is it just me, or do the above two paragraphs say almost exactly the
same thing (minus the bit about my wm)?

Recap: you defended your usability perspective by claiming that folks
don't care about how, but do care about what.  I found that a surprising
argument and explained that I don't see how you can make that
distinction in a way that works for you.  I went on to explain that I
see the distinction as a result of choice and context.  Choosing the
line to draw between how & what (which is determined in large part by
your choice of idiom) is a very important decision from a usability
perspective.  So any viewpoint which simply accepts a given distinction
between how & what is addressing only a small part of the issue.

Short version: I'm asking you to provide a more objective and less
psychological basis for the distinction between how & what than what I
described.  Unless you can do that I'm forced to conclude that your
position is circular, because you're defending the choice of idiom by
reference to the choice of idiom.

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

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