[H-GEN] In office scheduling program...

Frank Brand fbrand at uq.net.au
Thu Jun 1 01:05:02 EDT 2000

[ Humbug *General* list - semi-serious discussions about Humbug and ]
[ Unix-related topics.  Please observe the list's charter.          ]

On Fri, 02 Jun 2000, you wrote:
> [ Humbug *General* list - semi-serious discussions about Humbug and ]
> [ Unix-related topics.  Please observe the list's charter.          ]
> ..snip..
> > One day I'd like someone to take me through the logic that shows
> > intuitiveness is (the best|the only|a reasonable) measure of
> > the ease of use and general worthiness of any given piece of software.
> > jason

I dont't think Andrew suggested that intuitivenes was the best|the only|a
reasonable measure. He simply said it was intuitive. Ease of use is a totally
different concept to "general worthiness of a given piece of software". If an
intuitive interface and ease of use were the only criteria, maybe everyone would
use Access as a database and Oracle, SAP etc would go out of business.

It must be self evident (as Andrew says in his follow up) that, if an interface
is intuitive then it will be easier to learn to use. After the initial learning,
the intuitiveness of the interface may not matter that much at all. One of the
compromises that many people/companies make is the trade-off between ease of
use and software capability. For instance, a lot of experienced typists
preferred using WordPerfect 5 rather than Word when the changeover to office
was made in the early 1990's; but newer younger typists and staff forced to do
their own typing as typing pools lost favour preferred Word as it was a much
easier interface to use. How many people now use WordPerfect 5 although the
functionality is similar for the majority of people? I suppose this confirms
rational behaviour...given similar functionality most people opt for ease of
use and intuitive interfaces. I used to work in a company where the IT people
resisted the move to Win 3.1 and wanted to stay with DOS/WordPerfect 5 as they
(rightly) felt command line had much lower overheads and could achieve the same
result at lower cost (incidently the that general manager shortly after got
moved on). But, when people had to do their own typing and the cost of
computers/RAM dropped, Windows/The Office just killed 'em.

Interestingly, read Doc Searles (bottom of page 24) in the current Linux
Journal regarding the real strength of Microsoft.  Larry Augustin noted that
"open source developers have not understood the significance of Microsoft Office
which - more than Windows - is at the core of Microsoft's appeal".

Methinks I have rambled sufficiently.

Frank Brand
E-mail:- fbrand at uq.net.au
Home Page:-http://www.uq.net.au/~zzfbrand

* This is list (humbug) general handled by majordomo at lists.humbug.org.au .
* Postings to this list are only accepted from subscribed addresses of
* lists 'general' or 'general-post'.

More information about the General mailing list