[rescue] tired of current GUIs / a rant about the daily

Bill Dorsey dorsey at lila.com
Wed Oct 23 18:24:35 CDT 2019

Hi Gary,

Interesting perspective.B  Given that home computers have been largely 
displaced by specialized devices like smart phones, tablets, smart TVs, 
etc. it seems to me that most computer software that isn't targeted at 
developers is instead targeted at professional users.B  You say the level 
of expertise required to use computers has steadily increased?B  Well, 
you already pointed out one reason for that when you said, "as the 
technology has progressed."B  For surely it is true more often than not 
that increased complexity accompanies technological progress.B  Not only 
has the technology progressed in computing, but it has similarly 
progressed in the various other fields for which computer software is 

You could certainly make good arguments about whether we are getting a 
good return on the increased complexity that usually accompanies 
technological progress, and I'm sure I would agree with you in many 
instances that the costs exceed the benefits. But the yardstick that we 
may apply in making such a judgment is lost on the bean counters that 
usually make the decisions about what to fund and what to cut.

- Bill

On 10/23/19 6:35 PM, Gary Sloane wrote:
> That's great; we're more concerned with time-to-manufacture than time-to-use.
> Most companies define 'human labor' as only that which THEY pay for. What
> about the 6 hours of time I had to spend twirling my thumbs because my
> machined was installing a Microsoft Windows update, and I couldn't safely
> interrupt it?
> Even though I'm a software engineer, I don't care nearly as much about the
> level of difficulty and time spent CREATING software as compared to the level
> of difficulty and time spent USING software.
> The biggest complaint I hear from users is that 'only a programmer can use
> computers'. To some extent that has become true; the level of technical
> expertise required to use a computer has steadily risen as the technology has
> progressed. But to hear you guys debating makefiles vs. CMake vs. Bazel is
> ironic; the majority of people who use computers are NOT programmers, do NOT
> create software, and waste an incredible amount of time waiting for their
> machines. If the computer professionals didn't view the world from only their
> perspective, the priorities in software development overall would change (for
> the better) and the end user would, once again, be put first. Not the
> programmer.
> Gary

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