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Re: .doc file concerns
Re: .doc file concerns
Wed, 27 Jun 2001 03:06:08 -0400
On Tue, Jun 26, 2001 at 07:12:58PM -0500, Thornley, David wrote:
> If I'm going to write a simple document, I frequently use Word.
> If I'm going to write something complicated, I use a better tool,
> such as LaTeX or a real page layout program.
"Real page layout programs" also tend to have binary file
On Tue, Jun 26, 2001 at 05:26:14PM -0700, Mike Castle wrote:
> I consider Word to be an inferior tool.
It's also a straw man. Dissing Word, however much it deserves
it, isn't going to make the fundamental problem go away.
> > Choosing an inferior tool just because the version control
> > system can't handle
> > a full-featured one is a poor way to work.
> On the other hand, using a tool that makes products that can be
> stored, compared, branched, merged, and so forth is attractive.
Of course it's attractive. Is it THE make-or-break requirement
for every program? Maybe to some of us -- but then, we're all
pretty rabid about version control, or we wouldn't be here in the
first place. Our users often have different priorities; for
them, version control, merging, etc. are nice-to-have's at best.
Until, of course, we can sell them on the idea. We can do that
by saving their ass; we won't do it by insisting they use tools
*they perceive* to be inferior (however much *we* may disagree
with their perceptions).
On Tue, Jun 26, 2001 at 10:12:24PM -0700, Paul Sander wrote:
> [a lot of good sense!]
> Most authors I know [...]
> don't care about branching or merging, except
> under extreme circumstances. And even then, they avoid branching and
> merging; whether this is because the can't or won't understand basic
> version control concepts, or because the merge tools are inadequate,
> I don't know.
Some of each, I suspect. They can't understand the concepts
*because* the tools are inadequate. I didn't understand merging
-- I mean really grok it -- until I'd seen CVS do it a few times.
But hand an author (who isn't an utter geek) command-line CVS and
they'll run screaming. So how are they going to see these things
Recent versions of Word have a little of this stuff. It's pretty
basic and somewhat broken, of course, but the fact that it
*exists* says that there was enough demand for it for M$ to
devote resources to that rather than some other feature. Which
in turn argues that the concepts aren't inherently beyond (all)
non-techies, as long as they're presented in a form they can
understand (which Word does pretty much manage, I think).
| | /\
|-_|/ > Eric Siegerman, Toronto, Ont. address@hidden
| | /
With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. However, this is not
necessarily a good idea.
- RFC 1925 (quoting an unnamed source)