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Re: ::scr Ramblings of a Classic Refugee or How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love OS X
On Wednesday 06 February 2002 13:15, you wrote:
> > BER is pretty universally accessible... you can download free tools to
> > decode it for display
> I don't need to download a tool to use ASCII. I don't need to learn a new
You just need to learn a new syntax for every file instead :-)
> I can send the file to anyone anywhere and they'll be able to use
> it too. Using BER is wrong for the same reasons that using CP/M formatted
> floppy disks is wrong. Yes, there are free tools available to manipulate
> them, but it is erecting unnecessary barriers.
But there's no good reason for using CP/M formatted disks; it's not that they
can express things that a tarfile dumped onto that disk can't. But BER can
encode all sorts of information that's really unweildy in ASCII.
> True, NFS is hard to debug because it's too damned complex in all sorts
> of other ways :-)
Pah, it's a piece of piss. The implementations aren't great, but the
protocol's almost *too* simple!
> > Because when you're dealing with an XDR, you use
> > an XDR tool. Having to download something rather than using Notepad is
> > just not a problem in practice!
> Actually it is. It is reasonable for me to trust tools such as vim on
> servers, and let's not forget, you've got it already, you need it already,
> and everyone knows it.
Eheh. I had to install vim at a user's request on love!
> It is not, IMO, reasonable to use some odd tool
> designed for use with a complex data format, which would not be needed
> were it not for that weird format, which no-one knows, and which requires
> seventeen gigabytes of libraries just so it can load a file.
Now that's just *not* true :-(
Explain why people *aren't* using text for everything. Where is the big push
to use textual encoding for images? PNM and XBM files exist. Who bothers? The
ability to edit them in text is nowhere near as useful as having them
compact. The same with filesystems. I can't think of *any* filesystem that
uses an ASCII format for its control data. Filesystems are the most crucial
data formats we have... likewise with various forms of database.
I suppose you wouldn't use filesystems or SQL engines on your servers, then,
because if they go wrong you would have to install a *special tool* or
*download documentation and go at it with a hex editor*, right? Rather than
just trusting the fecking thing to work and fix itself, and take backups,
since the disk dying underneath it is as much (or more) of a problem as the
software failing to do something for you and requiring manual intervention?
Being able to edit something in a text editor is *not* all that useful. We've
got by fine for years without requiring it. As time passes and more layers of
abstraction get built up the need for it should be *lessening*.
Alaric B. Snell
http://www.alaric-snell.com/ http://RFC.net/ http://www.warhead.org.uk/
Any sufficiently advanced technology can be emulated in software