[Ubuntu-be] Console or Graphical?

Stijn Verslycken mailstijn at gmail.com
Mon Feb 25 23:49:39 GMT 2008

On Tue, Feb 26, 2008 at 12:12 AM, Dries Van Hooydonck <
driesvanhooydonck at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hello everybody!
> I am wondering if you Ubuntu users use the system graphical or
> console-based, through the terminal....
> Me for myself I prefer most things graphical at the moment because I am
> only beginning to learn how to use the terminal. But I think as the years
> rise, the GUI will be past and I will use the terminal more . I know this
> guy who really does everything (listening music, mailing, msn,  ftp, ...) in
> the terminal.
> So what about you guys??
> <https://lists.ubuntu.com/mailman/listinfo/ubuntu-be>
Bash (or any other shell environment) can be extremely powerful and
straight-to-business, especially for procedural repetitive tasks, automation
of tasks,...
It also allows you to have a strong grip on anything that happens at the
core of your system, since there's always that command prompt even if
there's no graphical user interface available.

A shell-centric approach has some negative aspects too, though:
- Many people who're not really familiar with unix-like systems get lost: sh
(and derivatives) is not DOS, it has a lot of powerful commands but it's
cluttered at the same time, especially for those who don't know anything
about it (yet),...
- Learning to use all these command line tools isn't that easy: many people,
in fact most "ordinary people", won't be interested to learn them at all.
- GUIs were not invented to be thrown away: many applications require a
decent GUI.

==> We don't want to turn our watches back for over 20 years, so an
intuitive graphical environment is uttermost important for daily tasks like
browsing the web, checking your mail, play media, ....!

Personally I don't really like a too minimalistic approach on this, so I
prefer environments like KDE or Gnome (or XFCE). But other people prefer
snappier (but uglier?) desktops. I think they all have their qualities and
down sides: once again, you have the freedom to choose!

As a commercial example you could take a look at Apple: they've even
eliminated the command line more or less and provide a very good looking
user interface on top of a unix-like system without truly showing the latter
(unless you start digging). This should be the goal of one noob-friendly
Linux desktop, to make Linux even more appealing to novice users.
Ordinary computer users should be able to do anything they desire
intuitively, without the use of a terminal. Even system/server management!
For that reason I'm quite a fan of tools like Suse's YaST.


Stijn Verslycken
mailstijn at gmail.com
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