[FoRK] Clarifications and expansions... Re: What the hell just happened?

Jeff Bone jbone at place.org
Fri Apr 9 12:08:22 PDT 2010

PJ riffs Felten's Disneyland metaphor:

> My takeaway is:  The iP(ad/hone) is Disneyland: shiny and pretty but 
> ignore the man behind the curtain and fer gossakes don't mistake the 
> plaster-on-chickenwire fairytale castle walls for a real load-bearing 
> structure.

There's metaphors that are good for illustrative purposes, and then there's pushing a metaphor too far...  re:  "load bearing" --- it's just UNIX under the hood, with not particularly any greater deviation from some kind of non-existent Platonic UNIX ideal than e.g. the standard deviation of various "UNIXen" that littered the landscape back in the day, e.g. early-90s.  (There were some weird UNIXen back then;  I ported a fair bit of shit to many of the fringier ones at one point or another.  Sequent, anyone?  AIX, even.)

As for load-bearing, it depends on what you're building.  Adobe, for instance --- the material, not the company --- is fine for building nice little flat-roofed houses in New Mexico.  You aren't going to build a skyscraper with it.  Similarly, you're never going to build cloud-scale shit on Mac OS X.  But that's not its apparent purpose or goal, is it?


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