Linked by David Adams on Fri 5th Aug 2011 16:08 UTC
Graphics, User Interfaces A couple of days ago I read a blog post by Stephen Ramsay, a professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Fellow at the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities. In it, he mentions that he has all but abandoned the GUI and finds the command line to be "faster, easier to understand, easier to integrate, more scalable, more portable, more sustainable, more consistent, and many, many times more flexible than even the most well-thought-out graphical apps." I found this very thought-provoking, because, like Ramsay, I spend a lot of time thinking about "The Future of Computing," and I think that the CLI, an interface from the past, might have a place in the interface of the future.
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Two distinct beasts...
by zima on Fri 5th Aug 2011 17:00 UTC
zima
Member since:
2005-07-06

Command line, CLI, with its usually a bit arcane commands, is a somewhat different concept from natural language interpretation. Treating them as very related (considering the topic used above, mentioning the CLI repeatedly; contrasting them both with GUI...) is possibly counter-productive.

As a side note, IIRC there were also some research suggesting that, in many scenarios, CLI merely is perceived as faster than GUI (supposedly because CLI requires greater attention, which masks perception of time); but actually timing some common tasks tells otherwise.

And scifi "computers" are mostly just a storytelling tool, to woo the audiences with cheap tricks...

PS. Winphone7 is a more real-life example to consider. Very text based. But TBH... I'm not entirely convinced it fits the way our minds work (particularly with the early demonstrations of WP7, I can't get rid of the feeling that the presenters appear relatively lost; people who were meant to promote the product, show how nice it is, hence supposedly familiar with it). It took us some time to get decent ~WIMPy paradigms, and maybe they are what works for humans... (obligatory car analogy: kinda like it took some time to develop the steering wheel; since then, no "refirement" was able to replace it; maybe autonomous cars can change that, maybe a central "swinging joystick" controller would be a fit in them - but that would be only because of very different overall approach, almost like "computer, do what I want to be done, so that I don't have to (authorisation: 8295 somebody-who's-not-quite-sure-why-he-is-needed-onboard)")

Edited 2011-08-05 17:20 UTC

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