[LINK] Critique of the Flaws of Open Source
glen.turner at aarnet.edu.au
Wed Apr 14 10:59:17 EST 2004
On Wed, 2004-04-14 at 07:25, Chirgwin, Richard wrote:
> - UI Design
The author misses the most important factor here: the
youth of decent UIs for UNIX. UNIX has a history of
really bad GUI toolboxes. It's only recently that
it has been possible to build programs using a decent
That also means that a lot of beginners mistakes in
UI design are being made.
> - Documentation
This is an industry-wide problem. Look at the amount
of useful documentation which comes with a Windows PC.
The author also ignores mail archives and Google in
Users who can’t figure out how to do something
runs to alt.projectx.devel and asks the same
question as hundreds of users before them. Some
expert takes pity on their plight and responds
to their question, but never documents this answer.
This isn't to say that I think documentation is
adequate. But nor is it as dire as she makes
out -- people look in documentation for answers,
but OSS software has additional resources for
answers beyond the documentation.
> - Feature-centric Development
Again, an industry-wide problem. I particularly
hate the graphs in Excel and OpenOffice -- both
have feature creep without addressing the core
problem of displaying data well.
> - Religious Blindness
Hmmm. I think this conflates OSS programmers and
OSS lobbyists (for the want of a better word). Most
programmers are painfully aware of their works pros
and cons compared to similar programs, if only because
users point out the cons in very graphic terms.
> A good essay...
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