Author interview: UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook
Posted Jul 22, 2010 10:38 UTC (Thu) by obi
In reply to: Author interview: UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook
Parent article: Author interview: UNIX and Linux System Administration Handbook
To make a system more simple is often to hide complexity; this is usually done by taking decisions on behalf of the user, and that reduces control.
when I'm using Linux, I want that control, and I accept the exposed complexity, and the consequent requirement that I learn about it, as the price of that control.
There's other ways. In the Ruby/Rails world there's a pattern of "Convention over Configuration". The idea is to make the common things really easy, and the uncommon things possible. By making some decisions and choosing some defaults up front, you cover 90% of the cases and make it really easy for anyone to jump in. But you still have the ability to override these choices explicitly.
The only criticism I've heard against this is "Explicit is better than implicit" (see f.e. "The Zen of Python"). The reasoning goes that with CoC there's a lot of magic, and little discoverability; one has to dig in the docs to know exactly what and how one can override. But IMHO it seems like a good thing that you have to do effort to deviate from the norm; and that when you do it becomes really obvious.
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