Hackers, users and Usibility - Was: Re: Control Center Behavior

> (Let me also echo Seth's sentiment that we should in no way listen to
> polls on gnomedesktop.org. ;-) The "real desktop market" by which I
> mean the easiest 5% of Microsoft market share for us to claim, in
> order to get started as an interesting desktop OS, is pretty much by
> definition going to be _totally_ silent on _all_ of our forums. If you
> know enough about computers to distinguish GNOME from the rest of the
> OS, and post to a forum, you are not a typical desktop end user, _at
> all_. End of story. Your needs/wants are going to be totally
> different.)

AFAICS , what I see from yourself and Seth is over-anxiousness to break
with Gnome's image as being the hacker's desktop. Don't alienate and
dismiss what is after all the majority of your users - the Hackers.

Appart from that, most of the users of the forum are 'users' - that's
the idea. Hackers have their lists - users have their forum - most of
their problems are a joke for myself or anyone else on this list to fix
- but I set up the forum to help the "new and un-experienced" users with
GNOME. So the forum users are EXACTLY who you should be listening to.
These are the users who's friends aren't hackers - these are the people
who are a single gnome user in a sea of microsoft - these are the users
who will tell their m$ using friends if they like gnome and feel that
their opinion counts - these are the users who represent what your
average microsft users thinks of GNOME.

It's a good thing that none of them read this list. Havoc, you're a very
well respected hacker - an insult from you holds as much weight as a
complement, And i'm not one to tell you what to do - but yeah mmm....

> We all need to realize that if we want to succeed on the desktop, we
> are going to be coding for a silent majority; and the only way to get
> their needs right is to follow usability heuristic rules, and go out
> and actively user test and solicit feedback.

I would argue that usibility is universal. What is usibility afterall? -
the idea is to make the interface intuitive. A perfectly useable
interface is one that reflects the logic of the human subconcious - it
should interface with the subconcious so closely that we barely have to
think to use it - everything just "makes sense".

And is a hackers subconcious not the same as a M$ convertee - usibility
should be designed for the big picture - if something is done the right
way then it shouldnt matter what platfrom someone is coming from - they
will grow to love it because it is relaxing to use.

And whatever happened to the ideal of making the perfect desktop and not
gearing it towards M$ convertees (that's what KDE's for). The idea of
GNOME's mission to claw for 5% of the microsoft market share makes me

> Of course we should use hidden prefs and the occasional compromise and
> so on to keep developers comfortable in the environment. But IMO we
> are after users who are entirely silent in all online hacking forums.

drop by sometime ;) not a lot of hacking going on.

hmm, I may regret this e-mail in about 10 min
better press send quickly :)


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