New on kubuntu

Derek Broughton derek at
Tue Jul 14 17:52:17 UTC 2009

Billie Erin Walsh wrote:

> There is one much loved member of this forum that was given CLI
> instructions. Look where that lead. IMHO, he would have been much better
> off if not given instructions on how to do something in the terminal. 

Again, I have to disagree.

> [
> In some cases it's kind of like handing a child a nail and hammer. They
> wind up hitting their thumb. ]

A kid has to learn how to use a hammer sooner or later.  In the particular 
case, I really, really, doubt that the particular tool made the slightest 
bit of difference - taking us back to my mention of working helpdesks...

> Synaptic is generally smart enough to
> keep someone from getting into some of the mess's he manages. That
> little black square in the middle of the screen is a _VERY_ powerful
> tool. It should be used by novices with extreme caution.

That took me a while to figure out.  On my system it's never little, let 
alone black.  Who on earth ever thought it was a smart idea to make the 
default background black, anyway?

You're right, though, that Synaptic in particular, and GUIs in general, 
should prevent making many errors, and I have _always_ supported the use of 
GUI tools for precisely this reason.  That doesn't mean I'm going to try 
explaining how to use them on a mail list, unless I absolutely have to.  
However, this began as a specific complaint about newbies being shown how to 
do things with command line apt - and I maintain there is no trouble they 
can get into doing that, that they can't get into with synaptic.

> One of the biggest fears most of the Windows users I talk to about Linux
> is that you have to use that command line stuff to do anything. Well, at
> one time that was how it _had_ to be done.

Not really.  Linux has had decent GUIs since almost the beginning, but I get 
your point.

> But, modern Linux systems can
> be used without ever touching the CLI for what most average home users
> want to do [ case in point - ME ]. When they try to make a move to Linux
> the first thing they get hit with is the CLI commands and they run like
> rabbits. Now, if you don't want people migrating to Linux that's a good
> way to get rid of them.

I'd say it's people trying to _scare_ them with the CLI that makes them run.  
Treat it as the simple tool it is, and there's nothing to worry about.

>>> Treat all stressful situations like a dog does.
>>> If you can't eat it or play with it,
>>> just pee on it and walk away
>> I so love this, however my keyboard would get pretty stinky.

On any other day, I'd appreciate it, but I have a dog with terminal cancer 
who's about to make her last vet visit today...

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