Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 30th Jan 2012 20:39 UTC
General Unix Finally something really interesting to talk about. If you've used UNIX or any of its derivatives, you've probably wondered why there's /bin, /sbin, /usr/bin, /usr/sbin in the file system. You may even have a rationalisation for the existence of each and every one of these directories. The thing is, though - all these rationalisations were thought up after these directories were created. As it turns out, the real reasoning is pretty damn straightforward.
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Legacy exists
by spiderman on Tue 31st Jan 2012 20:14 UTC
spiderman
Member since:
2008-10-23

Why do we have to deal with the sexagesimal anachronism when dealing with time? Why 60 minutes in one hour instead of 100? Doesn't it make more sense?
Why do we use the obsolete Gregorian calendar? Why all the months are not equal?
There was an attempt to modernize the calendar during the french revolution. It lasted 12 years and was reverted back to the Gregorian calendar.
The answer is simple: we have built a culture on top of the Gregorian calendar. Changing it means reinventing almost 2000 years of culture for little benefit.
But then, the french revolution still reinvented thousands of years of culture. Why did that happen despite the cost? Because it was worth it. The new system of government is way better than the old one. It has real benefits.

Any attempt to change a file system hierarchy is not worth the trouble. There is no benefit and lots of things to reinvent, starting with the file system hierarchy itself. For what benefit? Having /usr called /users? ln -s /usr /users. Pointless. It's the exact same thing.

I'm not against progress, I'm all for it. But please, starting over for redoing the same thing is not progress. It's a huge step back.

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