Hi Tayssir, thanks for the links. [You're welcome.]

Welcome to ThoughtStorms. Good to have you here :-)

Is it really true you took the circus to Iraq?

PhilJones

I hope I didn't give that impression; I just thought it was honest and sad. ;) I don't really have anything to say about myself, and yet I didn't want to waste that URL space, so I put the link there.

(For those who don't know, there's a forum I visit where you have space to put a URL for others to visit.)

It's probably more useful to change it to something like : http://www.democracynow.org/streampage.pl

Tayssir John Gabbour

Note for self (if I get hit by a car tomorrow, nevermind):

  • cites on DavidNoble, NoamChomsky (see if can apply manager/worker antagonism to "planning department" (programmers))
  • ProgrammingLanguagePlatformWar, cite very old kernighan/whatshisface paper in "interactive programming environments" which spelled out reasons for unix success. (better analysis than standard in computer "science". cite feynman caltech commencement address? exaggerated desire for static formal mathematical aesthetics a symptom of having no strong science tradition?)
  • Drew Crampsie's software co-op, and also that businessofsoftware thread on other co-ops. Bring Albert Einstein's "Why Socialism?" paper pointing out the US exaggerated educational model, as well as Eric Sink's claim of why such things are difficult due to greed motivation. (gotta bug drew.)
  • Clean up metatool entry.

Hi Tayssir,

Good to see you here. Thanks for the new contributions, good stuff. Chomsky right, of course. BTW have you seen what I'm up to recently? http://www.nooranch.com/sdidesk/wiki/wiki.cgi/ScreenCasts

PhilJones

Hi Phil.

I just saw the SdiDesk screencast, and it strikes me as something I can actually use, unlike most software. ;) I wondered what your thoughts were on not having a Save button, implicitly saving stuff like (I hear) on the Palm. Since you're interested in UI issues and simplifying.

Tayssir John Gabbour

Cool.

re : non-saving. My feeling is that there needs to be a way to "back out" of changes you're in the process of making, and of telling the machine you didn't really mean those last five sentences you typed. That could be done by recording every keypress and allowing those to be "undone", even between sessions. But that seems excessive in terms of both recording and having to navigate back.

So the alternatives are

  • to give an explicit save : "OK, this is a mile-stone I may want to go back to", or
  • to do implicit automatic saves at regular intervals.

I suspect the latter is more confusing. If you go the implicit route, you'll still need to offer the user an explicit "force" save option and you'll have to explain that. Probably the easy way to explain it will be to call it "save". Meanwhile, if the user is looking at old versions to revert to, she'll have a harder time recognizing which version she wants if they are arbitrarily machine-decided auto-saves.

In SdiDesk, of course, the issue is made more complex by the different modes. It seems sensible to me that explicit saving is combined with switching from the edit mode to the presentation mode. That's obviously what we're used to on web-based wikis like ThoughtStorms. But some people might find it confusing. Also, the explicit switch modes without saving ("Preview") might need a bit more explanation.

PhilJones