Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 25th Jul 2012 22:18 UTC
OSNews, Generic OSes The article I'm about to link to, by Oliver Reichenstein, is pretty terrible, but it's a good way for me to bring up something I've been meaning to talk about. First, the article: "Apple has been working on its file system and with iOS it had almost killed the concept of folders - before reintroducing them with a peculiar restriction: only one level! With Mountain Lion it brings its one folder level logic to OSX. What could be the reason for such a restrictive measure?" So, where does this crusade against directory structures (not file systems, as the article aggravatingly keeps stating) come from?
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Comment by kovacm
by kovacm on Thu 26th Jul 2012 07:24 UTC
kovacm
Member since:
2010-12-16

it is time for new things ;)

and yes, folders do confuse ALL new computer users (special older people) because they are to abstract to them.

when they get use to them, than it is ok but there must be some more logical way to deal with files/objects.

Filesystem with files and folders _concept_ was broken as soon as we we start to use email: suddenly you have _files in email_ ?!?!!! WTF? "I know than I have file on my C: disk but where are stored files in emails??" - this was start of breaking concept of folders and files...

it is time for new things ;)

btw access to bare filesystem will be always mandatory for content creators: programers, web developers, musicians, photographers, CAD users...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by kovacm
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 26th Jul 2012 07:28 in reply to "Comment by kovacm"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

and yes, folders do confuse ALL new computer users (special older people) because they are to abstract to them.


Show me the science. Parroting the party line is fun and all, but I want the science. Without it, this is all hot air.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by kaiwai on Thu 26th Jul 2012 08:07 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Show me the science. Parroting the party line is fun and all, but I want the science. Without it, this is all hot air.


I second that - as soon as I explain that folders are like a filing cabinets (with folders inside folders being like folders in a filing cabinet) then they realise that they can organise the files easily. It is amazing how I too hear the 'anti-directory' brigade and ignore the fact that people have been doing the same thing in the real world with filing cabinets for years but when it comes to the computer then apparently it is 'all too hard and complex'. Oh and for a fair chunk of them they lack organisational skills but in the real world rather than changing the dynamics of the whole organisation to cater for their disorganisation the manager will tell them to get their act together. Apparently when people come to computers all the expectations of organisation go out the window because a computer is some sort of magical device that magically does stuff for people whilst ignoring the fact that a computer is little more than a glorified calculator that only does what it is told - garbage in garbage out.

Edited 2012-07-26 08:09 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by boblowski on Thu 26th Jul 2012 10:32 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
boblowski Member since:
2007-07-23

Show me the science. Parroting the party line is fun and all, but I want the science. Without it, this is all hot air.


Thom, I'm totally on your side on this issue, but still he does have a point.

I've spent quite some time instructing professional computer users. Many of them do seem to have a problem with hierarchical structures (or just don't see the benefit).

Just not sure if the problem is that hierarchical structures are too abstract.

Since in my experience most of those who seem to have problems are either younger (say under 30) or older (say over 50), I feel the real problem is with poor or lacking computer education in schools.

Perhaps the problem is (just thinking here) that it simply takes energy to work with and set up hierarchies in a meaningful way. And 'modern' or new computer users have grown up with this fatalistic image that anything computer 'just works' (or just doesn't work) and they just don't see the benefit of spending any energy on that.

I mean, this really seems to be something specific to computer users. I've never met a biologist that didn't get taxonomies or any office worker that couldn't exactly describe his/her position in the company hierarchy...

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by mistersoft on Thu 26th Jul 2012 14:44 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
mistersoft Member since:
2011-01-05

but I think a valid point might be that *even if*
the older people among new computer users find
folders or hierarchical directories 'hard to abstract to'

...the current 'young generation' of new and not so new computer user will make up the huge majority of older computer users in the future!

and they'll have grown up with this ever changing computing landscape, and be naturally more adaptable to different computing paradigms (in various directions), hopefully including variations on our current favourite file systems and folder/directory trees..

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by Adam S on Thu 26th Jul 2012 15:01 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
Adam S Member since:
2005-04-01

My mother has been using a computer for over 15 years and still doesn't get the concepts of folders/directories. She continues to create new ones with an increasing number of underscores to get them to the front of her exploding "My Documents" folder.

I've seen this happen before to others. I think phasing out the file system is a GREAT idea. The problem is that we need a next-generation solution for power users too, because, yeah, emailing documents is a mess.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by clasqm on Fri 27th Jul 2012 08:09 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
clasqm Member since:
2010-09-23

Show me the science. Parroting the party line is fun and all, but I want the science. Without it, this is all hot air.


A worthy call, Thom. But let's recall that your own article starts with "I have honestly never seen a single person have any issues with directories, nested or no, and as old as the concept might be, the people I interact with seem to be able to handle it just fine."

You've been to university, you know that the plural of "anecdote" is not "data", so for you to suddenly demand "science" after basing your entire argument on your own perceptions is really way out of line.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by kovacm
by kovacm on Fri 27th Jul 2012 14:26 in reply to "RE: Comment by kovacm"
kovacm Member since:
2010-12-16

"and yes, folders do confuse ALL new computer users (special older people) because they are to abstract to them.


Show me the science. Parroting the party line is fun and all, but I want the science. Without it, this is all hot air.
"


regarding facts: I work as instructor with dozen of people in few companies in last 8 years. I know what I am talking - there should be better way than this.

Obviously it is a problem since Apple try to solve it with "All My Files" option in Finder.

and I am not going to fight with bunch of IT experts if hierarchical file system is best way. I already said:

IT professionals (content creators) will continue to use it! Other users, office and casual, have no need for it! And whole idea with files start to fell apart as soon as you have file in Mail client and not in file system (hidden from user - you should start complain back in 1993. ;) )!

beside, IT professionals should thinking in this direction http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zumdnI4EG14 , and not "if hierarchical file system is best"... ;)

Edited 2012-07-27 14:26 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2