OT (was: New non kubuntu)

Clay Weber claydoh at midmaine.com
Tue Jul 14 15:27:31 UTC 2009

As to the never ending debate on the cli vs gui subject, the fact of the 
matter in our case imo is the context and the venue.

This is a mailing list, and as such is a textual, non-linear medium (in 
comparison to forums and irc) . So in many ways the text-based commands are 
not only easier to fix some issues, they are much more concise for 
troubleshooting issues - for the person offering the help, the command line 
information gathered from the help-seeker is much more useful and, well, 

On the other hand, teaching someone how to use an application with a gui can 
be rather difficult in a text-based venue. Where a picture is worth a thousand 
words, a web forum or wiki page is priceless. You simply cannot do in an email 
list what you can do here:
And even in forums, you can often at least post a small image of what you are 
describing in your text. Why not point to a (hopefully) already existing 
tutorial or how-to on the web somewhere?

Here in the email world, the cli often will be the appropriate choice. What do 
you do when Synaptic or KPackageKit barfs, giving no useful information in 
it's gui as to what went wrong, for example?

The cli is not just for old-school 'luddites' and 'power users', and the gui 
is not just for the 'average joe' or 'inexperienced' users. Like it or not, 
the command line is the basis for much of what we use, even if we don't see 
it. One of the tougher jobs to promote more adoption of Linux is to minimize 
the fear of the command line, to show where it is easier and more powerful, 
that it is *one* of the many tools out there.

Clay Weber

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