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Re: Thrash Theory

From: s. keeling
Subject: Re: Thrash Theory
Date: Sat, 30 Sep 2006 23:56:00 GMT
User-agent: slrn/ (Debian)

Htnakirs <>:
>  This is an opinion of mine, please feel free to air your views about
>  it.
>  How Linux?
>  1. Many years ago, before a really user friendly GUI appeared, the
>  Programmer and user were fused into one entity. You needed programming
>  knowledge to be able to use a computer.

When I bought my first computer, I was not a programmer, and I learned
how to use it by learning what programs there were available for it
and how to use them.  Only later, I learned there were programs called
compilers and interpreters (eg. "Mix Power C" and "4-DOS").

>  2. With the advent of the GUI, it became possible for people with no
>  programming knowledge to wield the power of the computer.

With the advent of the GUI, the potentials of any given program were
in the user's face, instead of being buried in Help files (or man
pages).  BTW, X Window is GUI, and vastly superior (by design) to its
alternatives.  X Window is Unix, and one of the best proofs of the
superiority of the Unix idea.  Yes, I know about DEC, and DEC Windows;
it obviously doesn't matter now.

>  3. UNIX which was running most of the previous generation PCs, suddenly
>  found itself sidelined.

"Previous generation PCs"?!?  You mean workstations, of course.  Very
proprietary, very expensive compared to early PCs, and generally only
affordable by businesses.

>  4. Programmers of UNIX (which was a true OS product) suddenly found
>  themselves brought down from their pedestal.

Unix was a proprietary product from AT&T.  It was licenced to numerous
workstation manufacturers/distributors and sold commercially, and
given away to educational institutions (ie., Berkely).  Others, such
as RMS and Torvalds and (Larry) Wall preferred the Unix model but
didn't like its commercial and functional limitations, so came up with
workalikes and less hobbling tools which could be used on Unix-ish

>  5. The only way they could climb back is by bringing programming back
>  into the user's experience.

?!?  How many users do you know who care about programming?  How many
users do you know who understand a command line is a feature, not an

>  6. The result is Linux.

Linux is the result of one guy's wanting to run a Unix-ish OS on his
'386, not to mention a whole lot of other people wanting the same
thing and helping out in any way they could.  Add to that all the
prior work RMS and Wall, et al, did which made Linux an instant hit
once they all converged.

Unix was a great idea.  It was hobbled by business interests to the
point that some smart guys decided they had to create an alternative
sans hobbles.  They did, and some of us will be eternally grateful for
their having seen the need and for having done something about it.
Because of them, I'm no longer tied to crap from Redmond that locks
up, crashes, costs me an arm and a leg, forces me to throw perfectly
good computers away, and tells me what I am allowed to do with my

Google "Unix Wars".  RMS+Torvalds+Wall(et al) == freedom to use your
computer as you see fit, not as your vendors choose it to be used.

Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced.
(*)          Linux Counter #80292
- -    Please, don't Cc: me.

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