Re: A would-be user's first XSL experience (long)

Subject: Re: A would-be user's first XSL experience (long)
From: Chuck Robey <chuckr@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 19:11:50 -0400 (EDT)
On Mon, 31 May 1999, Paul Prescod wrote:

> I'm sorry but encouraging users -- especially knowledgable users like
> yourself -- to use cut and paste into an HTML form as a UI for XSL is a
> little perverse. I mean there's no way to save your work except to paste
> it out again! And I doubt it would work across browsers. I mean it makes
> sense for the first hour or so but after that you should figure out a
> better way!
> I hate to invoke stereotypes of Mac users but you seem to be begging for
> it. It seems you'd rather waste an hour a day cutting and pasting instead
> of a single hour figuring out how to use the tools at your disposal.
> Consider it an investment -- there's a lot of other interesting
> command-line driven Java software out there. Once you figure out how to
> use one, you know how to use them all.

There is something to be learned here.  Todd Fahrner, and *not* Paul
Prescod, represents the type of person publishing tools *should* be made
available to.  This means making them useable, not putting in their
hands.  There is a strong tendency amongst knowledgeable programmers,
when making tools, to ignore useablility, saying "it they are that
stupid, they shouldn't be allowed near the computer".  I don't want to
seem to be putting (possibly false) words in Paul's mouth, but you have
to consider the tool's target audience.

(BTW, those words came from an ex-boss of mine.  I ignored him, and was
extremely successful doing that).

Consider please the (NOT)overwhelming success of DSSSL.  You ignore your
audience at your peril.  Disregard them, and they WON'T follow you.  
I'm a programmer myself, just to expose my own prejudices, but folks
should really study the reasons why DSSSL has not become a universal
success. Perpetrating the same logic that provided DSSSL is not going to
fix things.  Maximizing flexibility ought to be reconsidered, perhaps it
is not the most important thing.  Curtailing some flexibility *if it can
provide simplicity* is important.

Chuck Robey                 | Interests include any kind of voice or data 
chuckr@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx       | communications topic, C programming, and Unix.
213 Lakeside Drive Apt T-1  |
Greenbelt, MD 20770         | I run picnic (FreeBSD-current)
(301) 220-2114              | and jaunt (Solaris7).

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