tech_worldview == clarity;

by debianjoe


David said my pic was broke…this is probably more enjoyable anyhow.

If you spend any amount of time in any kind of open discussion regarding *nix or BSD type systems, you’re bound to run across *gasp* people with strong opinions.  For the most part, I don’t participate in things that don’t directly affect me or that don’t fit my particular ‘tech worldview’.  I would say that easily 98% of the strongly voiced opinions are due to either Parkinson’s Law of Triviality or Sayre’s Law, however you want to view it.  I’m sure that the term “bikeshedding” is nothing new to my BSD brothers and sisters, but there are a few points that I personally use subconsciously that will ultimately determine my views on any subject.

Simple > Complex

Given the option between 2 choices, the quickest and simplest implementation will be my generally preferred option.  Everything about most of the software that I use reflects this.  sc is a great example.  I don’t need libre office if all I’m doing is making a few numbers automatically have some arbitrary math done to them when I make changes to some other number.

Functional > Form

I USE software for a specific purpose, pretty much every time.  I’d much rather have a predictable piece of software that works than a beautifully constructed piece of art that doesn’t do what I need out of it.  When there is the possibility of making something both functional and nice to look upon, then that’s going to be my choice.

Semantics > Syntax

This is the one where I guess I must differ from a lot of people.  I have more respect for creative and useful programs (and their programmers) than a someone who makes a well-constructed house of uselessness.  I’m not saying that obfuscation is good, not by any means.  Rather, it annoys me to no end when someone shares something that they’ve done that is a proof-of-concept or neat tool they’ve made, and then the first response is in regards to the format in which it was written.  Creativity in programming is the big hurdle, and that’s where I’d personally like to see more emphasis.  I assure you, there will be no lack of time for people to fix your indentation, and there will be no lack of volunteers if the project is actually worth having.

Context Matters

While I’m all about doing the most with the least, it would be totally unreasonable for me to expect someone who is working on projects with webgl to be using links2 or w3m.  ed is so inefficient for me that it would grind my work to a screeching halt.  Obviously, it can be used for huge projects, but it’s not worth the effort to swap to something I find drastically harder to deal with just for the sake of “being minimal.”

So, when the discussion inevitably swings around to “What’s your thought on ____ init?”  I will either go on a horrible rampage about how sick I am of this particular topic, or I’ll look at the things that I consider my few clear points and ask the great question: “Does it init?