Monday, November 16, 2009

We need to make everything easier

[I need to check that this little rant isn't completely off-base (false).]

We (programmers [especially of free or open-source software]) should be using tools that make it easy (i.e. easier) to let others collaborate with us.

I use Inkscape and I love it. It's a great, kickass vector-graphics editor and creator. I've used Illustrator before, as a trial and ... as pirated software, and I'd love to use Illustrator. I'd switch in a heartbeat – but it's $~270-300 ["~$270-300"?], so ... no thanks. Inkscape is good-enough.

But the PDF output is bloated. And I keep thinking about it. And I keep almost-downloading the source code, and all the tools, and I get as far as thinking these thoughts before I write this instead.

And I'm too scattered, in terms of the tools I use (let alone those I'd like to use!). I've programmed in dozens of languages and many more libraries and hundreds of different tools – just give me everything in one click and suddenly your development team is marginally more capable. Even if I do nothing other than read your source code.

This argument is completely general too. We need to (eventually) make everything easier – in the limit, no barrier isn't worth eliminating (even as everything of worth is defined by it's intrinsic 'barricades'!).

No comments: