[rescue] "I prefer a GUI"

Mike Parson mparson at bl.org
Tue Jun 14 13:42:25 CDT 2005

On Tue, Jun 14, 2005 at 07:04:54PM +0100, Mike Meredith wrote:
> On Tue, 14 Jun 2005 09:35:06 -0500, Wes Will wrote:
>> But don't count on good documentation, there is none.  Insufficient
>> background, no step-by-step instructions for the assistance of the
> This is a shame, because Unix used to be known for good documentation.
> Not the right kind of documentation for a new user perhaps, but at least
> you had a good chance of finding complete reference documentation for
> all the important commands by just doing 'man somecommand'. Now you
> can't even be sure that'll work.

And man pages that say, "refer to the infotex page for the real info,"
just make me cranky.

>> neophyte, and all too often an attitude of "I figured it out, you're
>> stupid if you don't."  Just be patient, and ask people who've done it
>> for a leg up (after you've tried it once or twice yourself).
> Make notes. Try to make them a few steps before you say "Uh oh! I'm
> going to need notes on this later". Keeping a large A4 notepad next to
> my keyboard was the one of the wisest things I've done recently ...
> the brain cells have taking to learning things and then wandering off
> on holiday.

Take notes, lots of notes, write down simple things, even if it seems
obvious at the time, it might not be so obvious at 3am when it breaks
and you have to fix it again.

>> Try Eric S. Raymond on for a quick look, he says it better than I.
>> http://www.catb.org/~esr/writings/cups-horror.html
> Printing. For some reason Unix printing has pretty much always been a
> disaster area :(

Which is sad, seeing as how early Unix was used for for document
processing, but I guess a photo typesetter isn't exactly an HP inkjet,
is it?

Michael Parson
mparson at bl.org

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