Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 25th May 2012 14:55 UTC
General Unix James Hague: "But all the little bits of complexity, all those cases where indecision caused one option that probably wasn't even needed in the first place to be replaced by two options, all those bad choices that were never remedied for fear of someone somewhere having to change a line of code... They slowly accreted until it all got out of control, and we got comfortable with systems that were impossible to understand." Counterpoint by John Cook: "Some of the growth in complexity is understandable. It's a lot easier to maintain an orthogonal design when your software isn't being used. Software that gets used becomes less orthogonal and develops diagonal shortcuts." If there's ever been a system in dire need of a complete redesign, it's UNIX and its derivatives. A mess doesn't even begin to describe it (for those already frantically reaching for the comment button, note that this applies to other systems as well).
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Re:
by kurkosdr on Sat 26th May 2012 11:00 UTC
kurkosdr
Member since:
2011-04-11

The problems of Unix is that:

1. Graphics and audio stacks that don't suck are proprietary (read: belong to Apple). Android is intended for mobiles and we can't be sure if it's graphics and audio stack will fit the desktop's needs.So that leaves X.org as the only real choice for non-Apple systems. You know, the one that's slow and has hardware accel issues like tearing. The much praised nvidia drivers actually have to replace a significant part of X

2. The terminal sucks. The commands have no logical consistency, for example ls prints the result by default, find doesn't, and they were made with the thought one command's output might be a input for another. Someome needs to build wrappers for Unix's CLI commands, now. This would also seperare interface fron engine.

3. The fact the hard drive unix is installed gets labelled as "/", and everything else is essentially mounted on a virtual folders inside /mnt is also insane. Let's be honest, this is a hack because unix was designed for systems with only one drive. If this can't be fixed, let's at least fix it at terminal/GUI level so we can have HDD2:something.jpg instead of /mnt/hdd2/something.jpg

4. Commands should be seperated by ASCII "unit seperator" not spaces. Using the space as both a seperator and a legit filename character is bad. Which reminds me, control characters should be banned from filenames.

Anyway, as a last note, the author of the linked article is falling into the same trap the unix haters handbook fell, treating "Unix" as if it's one thing. Proprietary Unix systems like OS X and HP-UX with truckloads of resources behind them are different from FOSS projects like PC-BSD with little resources behind (sorry free software fanatics). The only grudge one may have with OS X is that theydidn't bother to fix the terminal because it wouldn't look good in a WWDC presentation.

Edited 2012-05-26 11:04 UTC

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