Re: Climbing Clueful Mountain

Ron Resnick (
Fri, 4 Apr 1997 17:39:28 -0500 (EST)

At 10:53 4/4/97 -0500, you wrote:
>On Fri, 4 Apr 1997, Ron Resnick wrote:
>> (This is a big part of the
>> confusion here, I think- I'm quite against the whole notion of
document-centric computing,
>> and compound documents as terminology. I think documents are *not* a good
>> for the daily activities networked bits are going to permeate in our
lives. When
>> I go shopping or drive my car or have a beer, there are no "documents"
>> But the networked bits will be in all these places, and more.
>> I think the Taligent "people places things" imagery, and the Orfali-coined
>> "shippable places" is much more apt).
>I had to bud in on this one point.
>You've got to learn to walk before you can run. Compound documents are
>a simple, appealing metaphor for the desktop that will ready the masses
>for shippable places. They're needed now for this reason, IMHO.
>Budding out .. 8-)

Don't agree Mark, on 2 counts.

One, in the context of the initial post, my complaint about document-centered
terminology was in relation to some runners (hopefully :-) , not walkers.
I'm taking it for granted that my audience is on the higher rungs of Mt.Clue,
and understands that the name of the game is intergalactic objects, not
merely the desktop. My comments weren't addressing the "masses".

Two, when we *do* start to target the masses with this stuff, I still think
you want an imagery that makes it accessible to them. Joe Sixpack
(no, not Kiniry or Barrera) probably can't even spell "document", let
alone "compound" or "centric". Don't confuse him with stuff that maybe
made sense on a desktop, but isn't relevant when the interface you're
giving him isn't a computer screen, but is just his old familiar objects -
his beer can, his remote, his LazyBoy. That is, Joe is a *person*, in
his *place*, doing his *thing*. Not a document in sight. The fact that
as he cracks open a fresh brewskie, the damn thing's shadow initializes,
connects to the bitspace, contacts anheuserbusch to report that brewskie
can serial #44534325 is about
to get drunk at 3:47PM at 12 Elm St., Topeka Kansas is unknown to him.
He only cares when his shadow queries
the poor brewskie and finds out it's the last damn one! THAT, he can understand.
THAT, he cares about. THEN, he can appreciate the bloody bits flying around,
as it auto-orders a fresh case of beer to be delivered.

I find document terminology to be very confusing. I remember talking
to Gayl about this - it only sinks in when you stop saying "document"
and start saying "container" - documents obscure the issue.
I say forget this document stuff. Objects are where it's at.

>Mark Baker, Ottawa Ontario CANADA. Java, CORBA, OpenDoc, Beans
> Will distribute business objects for food.