Nick Hockings s96121272 at
Wed Jul 25 19:37:09 UTC 2001

Quoting Alistair Davidson <lord_inh at>:
> Believe it or not, the overwhelming majority of people aren't hackers.
> They don't care how their machine works. All they care about is whether
> it does work.
> I quite like travelling by train. I don't want to be forced to learn
> about how the train works in order to use it- all I want to do is buy a
> ticket and get onto the train, then get off when I reach my
> destination.

Learning engineering to ride the train would be like kernel hacking to write a 
letter. But you still need to know about train timetables, different fares, 
railway maps, etc.. To use a wordprocessor & email you still need to know your 
file system, the different possible formats, and how to protect your private 

Gnome should not (as MS does) create barriers to progression from total newbie, 
through expert user to hacker. How far anyone chooses to go depends on their 
needs, but the path should be clear. It is much easier to become an expert user 
if the structure of the system is plain to see. Lets not have that 
*#^!MSpaperclip trying to second guess the user, and inaccessible formatting 
characters. Rather honestly say exactly what each function does.

Nick Hockings.

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