The Dream of the 90's is alive on Hackers.town
@thegibson you know, that's one thing that I've never understood. the usual response (from non-hackers, usually) is something to the effect of "it was worse in the 90s/80s, why romanticize it", and it kind of just dawned on me
what is wrong with trying to make a future of that same feeling with community or 'frontier' but with the convenience/technology we have now
it doesn't have to be "terrible like it was", but it can be better than it is currently
is any of this relatable or am I just not in the right mind tonight
Things were not worse then.
two things happened to destroy the modeled future that we lost.
one, 9/11... we lost our future in the states that day... and due to that, much of the rest of the world did too due to our influence.
the consumerization of IT DID NOT make anything better.
that was the lock-in for surveillance capitalism.
in the 90's, while the tech wasn't mature, we had the frontier you mentioned, and it made everything better...
it was freedom... and freedom that I work daily to restore.
@thegibson this is a big brain post and I yield humbly
But let me tell you, one thing that keeps me up at night...younger generations don't get it.
They don't understand what those communities were like or are about because they've been washed over.
Their entire "computing" world is a cellphone that runs a web browser. They think "computing" is doing shit in a web browser. Think about that.
It terrifies me. I don't know how to pass the torch.
Instant gratification. I'll elaborate.
Before the internet was corporatized, and made for the masses, any online community had to be something you wanted, and sought out.
As late as 2012, everyone I knew had at least a laptop. Now, 90% of people I know IRL use a phone **exclusively**. And I do mean exclusively.
The small screen doesn't lend itself to complexities. If "it" isn't on Facebook/Twitter/Snapchat/YouTube, "it" is, essentially, "the deep web"
I hope so. But here's a potential roadblock.
We will age out, we will die.
If the next generation is sufficiently wooed by the walled garden, there's no push. There's no drive. There's no need to explore further.
One thing for sure: we cannot blame the users or the prisoners of those systems for being there. They got conned and then children were born into the con. It is up to us (vanguard and calvary) to bring things that can pull them out if we're concerned about longevity.
Otherwise, it's just nostalgia gone digital.
"Download the Calm app today"
"Grab the free Poshmark app now"
"This is Turo. Get the app today."
This is why Mastodon apps disappearing from stores is scary to me. If it's not in the app store, it doesn't exist.
They could give UX work more recognition, or we could stop making software and tools for the Lowest Common Denominator.
At some point you have to put some amount of responsibility on the end user to actually understand how some things work, rather than hiding it from them.
(Obviously the happy place is somewhere in the middle; I'm just making sure we keep that in mind.)
@clacke @bamfic @devnull @electricsand @thegibson
it’s worse than that, many in the foss world are actively hostile to UX efforts. I have watched many a designer pit actual free effort into designing better stuff only to have their work straight up ignored - to many developers, “UX” is made up woo, like crystals and incense
@bamfic @electricsand @devnull @thegibson @clacke there are barious levels of hostility. you should see the epic arguments that ensue when someone dares suggest that VI is bad UI. it was user research on how and why VI is bad that precipitated the crewtion of modern gui text editor conventions (present in every text box).
You would have to define "bad". Different tools cater to different audiences, and as such, the tools have different UI/UX needs.
I do 100% of my text editing and code writing in either vi or vim. I don't think you mean to suggest that I've selected a "bad" tool. It's excellent for a user like myself, and I can use it more effectively than a tool made for the masses.
Making one tool for everyone is sometimes "bad" in that it centralizes.
@devnull @zensaiyuki @thegibson @bamfic @electricsand @clacke Exactly this -- we often forget that the original vi editor was intended for use over leased 110-baud lines to a loaded time-shared mainframe. Given that level of technology, vi is an exemplar of usability compared to, say, any X11-based editor.
@devnull @zensaiyuki @thegibson @bamfic @electricsand @clacke
Also, I believe in Raskin's philosophy that "intuitive" is meaningless when it comes to good UX/UI; it's all about its habituability. Vi and emacs are both very habituating editors, despite their lack of discoverability.
Contrast with, say, Word. "Intuitive" only insofar as its UI is discoverable (which I claim the ribbon undermines); but, not at all habituating.
I still revile that popular word processors always copy Word.
@zensaiyuki @devnull @thegibson @bamfic @electricsand @clacke No, I just disagree with his findings based on empirical evidence. In The Humane Interface, he goes on to describe the use of quasi-modes in exactly the same way any Vi user would make use of ... well, vi.
I did not learn vi as my first editor. Believe it or not, that was MicroEMACS. But it was the only editor which not only stuck with me throughout the years, but offered a consistent and repeatable UI across all platforms.
@zensaiyuki @electricsand @thegibson @bamfic @clacke
I don't think anyone else was making any arguments, and certainly not throwing out any ad hominems, just trying to point out that UI/UX will have different goals depending on the audience for any given tool.
I am also not interested in some kind of editor war. I don't think I use the best tool, I think I use a tool that works well for myself and I understand perfectly that it's not for everyone.
@bamfic @electricsand @devnull @thegibson @clacke hey by the way, I am sorry for coming off as combative. i think it all started off with a joking tone and nuances were lost between the many parties in thus thread and the lossy nature of text. i am really not trying to flame war, “pod people” was supposed to be hyperbolically funny.
@bamfic @electricsand @devnull @thegibson @clacke there is also a certain amount of arrogance and pride involved- like the difficulty of linux is the whole point- it’s a mountain they conquered, and people who want to level the mountain are a threat to that achievement.
but also, consistent, well designed UI is kinda boring to make. like paint by numbers. way more fun to incent a new gui toolkit or window manager
@bamfic @devnull @electricsand @TheGibson i agree with that but i think it relies too much on generations being different. the world is. i've always been the super nerd kind yet i'm tired of everything always fucking up on me anyway. having to fiddle with things is interesting until every problem starts to look the same and you just want it to be over and get paid while generations of other nerds made sure all you have now is a pile of hacks that people expect to keep the world running
The ratios seem the same. The sort who hacked computers 25 years ago are the sort doing all the above and more today.
But yeah we *really* need to work on UX for the rest of the world.
(and I'm not even joking, rly; my bestie's got a lot of MH and cognitive probs and termux made it a lot easier for her. probably because it wasn't like every shitty classroom in her shithole of a HS 😒)
(I'm still VERY pissed she didn't get access to a better education b/c reasons)
A bunch of technomancers in the fediverse. Keep it fairly clean please. This arcology is for all who wash up upon it's digital shore.