* at 11/05 11:49 +0100 Dave Hodgkinson said:
> Roger Burton West <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> writes:
> 
> > Putting pretty interfaces on existing unstable systems does not
> > help to make them simpler...
> 
> That's part of it. Landing a thudding great book of what the thing
> _can_ do, rather than a cookbook of what you _want_ it to do is very
> offputting.

but then what you want to do differs greatly for different people so
instead of one book with lots of information you have to sift through
you get lots of books you have to sift through to find the right one.
I imagine most computer neophytes find their first visit to the
computer section of any large bookshop pretty damn confusing to start
with. 

plus you're assuming people know what they want to do, or even what
they can do. The fact that you could have _two_ windows open at once
was a revelation to a friends dad recently. 

There is a very real argument for devices that do one thing and one
thing only but do it in a very simple way without all the flimflam
that accompanies most modern computers. Donald Norman has quite a few
good books on this.

> Or make it like the Tivo - it "just works".

which is kind of a proof of the one thing very well point.

struan

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