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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by Icaria on Sat 6th Aug 2011 12:58 UTC
Icaria
Member since:
2010-06-19

Depends upon the task as much as it depends upon the user as much as it depends upon the tools in-question.

More interactive, trial-and-error oriented activities will obviously benefit from a GUI. Users unfamiliar with the tools will benefit from both graphical toolkits and a common syntax/set of utilities, from which they can draw upon the domain-general knowledge a user should have.

The real weak link (ignoring for a moment the existence of the computer illiterate) is the tools, which tend to be horribly inconsistent, regardless of whether they're graphical, or terminal-based.


I'm reasonably mixed in my usage patterns. Without even thinking about it, I often find myself using both a graphical file manager and BASH (for the purposes of file management) at the same time. I don't generally feel that one offers a benefit over the other but then I practically use my file manager like I would an interactive CLI tool, typing to navigate and employing keyboard shortcuts to invoke file operations.

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