Usage - Coders vs Writer

Derek Broughton news at
Mon Apr 21 13:08:37 UTC 2008

cherryfinals wrote:

> The common thread I'm referring to, is how all the Linux coders keep
> insisting that 'real computer people' have to use a command line.
> Here's a clue... 90% of the business world wants to get work done and
> are never going to take a massive step backwards to teaching people how
> to use a terminal window.

While I agree that there are too many people who insist that "real" work has
to be done at the command line (I used to hang out on the Exim developers
list, where there were frequent rants against the use of things like Webmin
because "if you can't understand how to configure an SMTP server by hand,
you shouldn't be administering an SMTP server") I think you miss an
important point.

I firmly believe if something can be done with a GUI, it should be. 
Particularly, configuration editing should be done through an interface
that enforces syntactic correctness, instead of through an editor that lets
even the most experienced admin make mistakes.

But when it comes to explaining how to do something _here_ - in a text-based
medium - it is both simpler and more accurate to show them how to do it via
the command line.  Any time that describing how to do something in a GUI
would need me to explain more than two levels of menu, I give up and give
instructions for a command line version (unless the question is
_specifically_ how to do something in a certain GUI).

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