Re: [Usability]User Object Simplification?

On Mon, 2003-02-17 at 16:22, Havoc Pennington wrote:
> On Mon, Feb 17, 2003 at 04:11:15PM -0500, Sean Middleditch wrote: 
> > This is really get out of scope for GNOME, I think, and into "vendor
> > land."  Application installation/removal for most Linux/UNIX's using
> > packages doesn't make this at all something GNOME can expect to do and
> > do right.  Independent vendor tools are an absolute must (since each OS
> > packages things differently - breaking a single app across several
> > packages, like Debian tends to do, or bundling multiple apps into one
> > packages, like source-based distros will).
> I do think GNOME could offer features like this with hooks where
> vendors could provide the right functionality for their system.
> It'd take a good bit of thought on how to implement it but it isn't
> necessarily that complicated; e.g. on Red Hat removing an app by
> clicking on its desktop file doesn't come down to much more than:
>  rpm -e `rpm -qf /usr/share/applications/foo.desktop`
> (in general, there are some corner cases)
> On Debian it'd be about the same.

Not even.  This could be really confusing for a lot of packages, ones
that ship multiple apps (i.e., trying uninstall the Calculator would
remove all of GNOME Utils), or not fully remove apps that are broken
into multiple packages (notice how Debian seems to break a single app
into many packages, when it really doesn't make any sense whatsoever to
do so - take Abiword, for example, or Open Office).  Also imagine how
the dependencies could really confuse people.  "If you uninstall Blah,
you'll have to uninstall Foo Bar and Baz" - most people would hopefully
at least then not uninstall the app, but it could still cause some
confusion, and fuzzes up the idea of a "Remove Application" feature,
since it wouldn't actually work in many, many instances.

The way things are packaged up on Linux/UNIX these days, it isn't at all
user friendly.  We're thinking of GNOME with this Object Simplification
- *packages* need the same thing, really.  As a user, I don't
install/manage libgconf, bonoboui, abiword-common, abiword-gnome,
openoffice-fonts, etc. - I just have GNOME, Abiword, and OpenOffice.  I
don't use gnome-utils, I use Calculater, Dictionary, etc.  The mapping
between applications, support data/libraries, and system packages is a
huge, barely understandable mess.

Systems like we have now work great for admins, or coders, but not for
users.  Giving users an easy interface to something that can only be
understood by an admin or coder is rather silly, imho.

Putting up gnome-utils or bonoboui in source packages is great, since
only coders/admins need deal with those.  When they're packaged up for
the end user the same way... ugh.

> Havoc
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