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Re: looking at the survey (UI)

May I interject something here, too, that the survey seems to fail to ask:
I am mearly a user, know, nor care one bit for compiling or programming.
But we are talking of an operating system, one of many.  We buy our
machines off the shelf, fully functional, so we think.  It is the same as
when we are lucky enough to buy a new car or home theater, we expect to
turn it on and it works and we can go where we want, with a little drivers
training, of course, or by tuning into the right program or inserting the
right CD disk in the sound system.  So why is it that when our commputer
gives us error messages such as: "this program has performed an illegel act
and will be shut down." that we have no choice but shut down and hope we
can get it going again.  That is exactly what happens with teh most used
operating system.  It took me years and lots fo money to find out that it
was my operating system, not me or the application I was using (the
application being an engineering program.  

I will need to still run these engineering programs and they are not
written for LINUX, and so far, dont know how to make them do so, until WINE
is ready.  And please dont say that there is a like program in LINUX, that
does not fly with my clients.  They tell me what program I must use, which
means, I use that program (in my case, Autocad 13/14) and not another
"like" program (like intergraph or DesignCAD).  Also, the learning curve
for all these programs and operating systems is costing industry millions a
month just to train their ppl to use them, and much more just to hire techs
to keep the systems running right and ansering our questions.

For use, we expect an operating system to do just that, OPERATE, and
regardless of the brand  of gasoline we use or the route to aunt millies
house.  Or regardless of which TV station we wish to watch, or which type
of music we like, the operating system must work or we are very unhappy and
do have the right to demand our money back for all but the computer's
operating system......Let's hope the government wins their case, the entire
industry depends on it....

At 03:33 PM 10/21/98 EDT, you wrote:
>Rating scale:
>Crucial: This issue is one of the most important things I consider in
>  evaluating a computer system
>very important: This issue is very important to me in evaluating a computer
>  system
>important: This issue is important, but I am willing to compromise for more
>  important issues
>relevant: I consider this issue when I evaluate a computer system, when all
>  else appears equal
>unimportant: This issue is not relevant for/to me
>User Interface:
>   - Having a graphical interface to applications and system 
>crucial. i need to be able to use a graphical windowing environment,
>because of things like netscape.
>   - Having a command-line interface to applications and system 
>crucial. otherwise i wouldn't be able to actually perform any work.
>   - Intuitive user interface 
>important. if it's tough, i'll be able to figure it out eventually. A
>powerful user interface is much more important. (Maybe that should be a
>   - Consistent user interface (things behave the same way even comparing
between two separate
> applications) 
>relevant. it might be nice, and maybe one day i'll take advantage of it..
>   - Consistent graphical and/or textual user interfaces, and the ability
to exploit both to the user's
> advantage 
>what's the difference between this question and the last? And didn't we
>make "the ability to exploit both to the user's advantage" better worded,
>somewhere along the line?
>   - Dumping error messages to a text file as well as to the screen 
>This is only relevant to me for misbehaving proprietary programs
>(open-source programs never seem to have this problem..) And I try to
>avoid these programs anyway. So I guess the answer is 'relevant'. But
>maybe I'm just saying this because I already have this feature and don't
>realize how important it is.
>   - Having a program which explains error messages 
>   - Intuitive error messages from the OS and applications from the
beginning? Rather than an
> interpreter... 
>I say we combine these two into
>   - Intuitive error messages from the OS and applications
>in which case I would say 'very important'.
>   - Being able to access context-sensitive help information 
>I've learned to live without it, but I think it would be neat. 'Important'.
>   - Being able to access a index of functions so that an experienced user
can find information quickly
> (needs reworking) 
>How about 'being able to access or search an index of keywords or help
documents, so experienced
>users can find information quickly'?
>crucial. I wish 'man -k foo' were better. Currently I use infoseek as my help
>document search engine, because I don't have any good documents local to me.
>And since I'm networked, I don't need them anyway...
>   - Multiple-languages (support for several languages) 
>   - Multi-language (support for several languages simultaneously)