DevNull's recent activity

  1. Comment on Game of Thrones petition: 500,000 demand series eight remake in ~tv

    DevNull Link Parent
    May 31st - Here's a link to the trailer Official Deadwood Trailer I've been waiting for a lotta years for it, so I hope it doesn't suck! Wu? Who! Who!

    May 31st - Here's a link to the trailer
    Official Deadwood Trailer
    I've been waiting for a lotta years for it, so I hope it doesn't suck!
    Wu?
    Who! Who!

    3 votes
  2. Comment on Data shows “Game of Thrones” is taking a historic critical nosedive in ~tv

    DevNull Link
    How is 'Lost' not on their list of epic nosedives?! I loved that show, and even though I saw the shark coming I still watched it right till the bitter, horrible terrible end (and wow was I...

    How is 'Lost' not on their list of epic nosedives?! I loved that show, and even though I saw the shark coming I still watched it right till the bitter, horrible terrible end (and wow was I pissed!).
    But that was nothing compared to the ruining of one of my favorite shows - Dexter.

    As for GoT, having never read the books, I lost interest the minute they starting the zombie apocalypse stuff sometime in the last season. This addiction to zombie movies/shows, I just don't get it!!! LOL (although I loved Walking Dead for 3 seasons or thereabouts). But enough is enough for me! LOL I'll still watch the last couple of GoT episodes though... but only as amusement kinda like how I watch Ridiculousness ;-)

    PS: I loved the statement in the article "Our data is accurate as of" - um, never I would say. Not knocking IMDB, it's just how I feel about statistics in general when used to support an opinion ;-)

    4 votes
  3. Comment on Nest, the company, died at Google I/O 2019 in ~tech

    DevNull Link
    As a software geek my only interest in smart home stuff is in seeing what kinda software I can build and what kinda crazy shiat I can make it do! But as part of daily life, my personal view is...

    As a software geek my only interest in smart home stuff is in seeing what kinda software I can build and what kinda crazy shiat I can make it do! But as part of daily life, my personal view is that it's a case of just because I can do a thing doesn't mean I should. (yes I'm aware of the contradiction lol)

    I've spent the past 16 months learning about the awesomeness of the Raspberry Pi lineup and other tiny computers, along with the software to run them, and I'm absolutely loving it so far! Other than having to write Java code LOL I saw a tiny Linux-running computer the other day that was literally embedded in an ethernet port - you'd never know it was a fully operational (with wifi) computer to look at it it!
    One of the projects I started lets the user remotely control whatever is connected to the Pi - via their cell phone or any browser. One intended target product: the smart bird bath :-) (no I'm not joking, it's real)
    So yeah I kinda dig the technology involved, but I'd never use it in my home.

    And PS: I am all kinds of giggly about Google's Inbox being killed already. Yet another example of some cool ideas being done because they're cool not because they help the user in any way.

    2 votes
  4. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    As I was reading the Wiki I found it interesting that it's integrated into the Linux kernel now and there are all kinds of projects with it! Almost 20 just on the Wiki including one that reads...

    As I was reading the Wiki I found it interesting that it's integrated into the Linux kernel now and there are all kinds of projects with it! Almost 20 just on the Wiki including one that reads like it might do Google Drive / One-Drive or other cloud stuff - very cool.

    I wonder if I missed anything where any of the various file manager apps might have implemented any of those. But still, I just didn't see those apps allowing me to "just manage the data I want" and not have to wade thru huge filesystems and stuff I'd work with only when I had my SuperUser outfit+cape on. In a way, I always saw this project as being mostly about the UI side of things. But having the technology like FUSE to bring -ALL- the data sources to the same dance - that's really the key I think.

  5. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Sounds like it would be a great tool for creating data source plug-ins for this possible app... ;-D Thanks for clarifying that! I don't know what I was doing wrong earlier but every search I did...

    Sounds like it would be a great tool for creating data source plug-ins for this possible app... ;-D
    Thanks for clarifying that! I don't know what I was doing wrong earlier but every search I did on it showed me mobile only stuff! Now I see what you're talking about though, and yes, definitely something we'll have to look at integrating. It would limit the plug-in developer to the *nix platforms though, doesn't seem to have a Windows port. Doesn't matter to me, I'm sure there will be platform-specific plug-ins and personally I expect I will have finished migrating to KUbuntu by then ;-)

  6. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Sure thing! https://windowsreport.com/file-explorer-tabs/ I was a huge WindowBlinds junkie back in the day! Great company/products. These days I use a free app called Windows Style Builder which...

    Got a source for that handy? The only announcement I am aware of regarding adding tabs to anything is the new Windows Terminal which has them.

    Sure thing!
    https://windowsreport.com/file-explorer-tabs/

    Regardless, I already use Groupy anyways, which is a Stardock program that adds tabs to all Windows windows, including File Explorer. It's great and I would highly recommend it.

    I was a huge WindowBlinds junkie back in the day! Great company/products. These days I use a free app called Windows Style Builder which lets me hack the living hell out of Windows7 LOL I even got rid of those clunky min/max/close buttons!

    In terms of tabs in Explorer... for what it's worth, the free "Better Explorer" is pretty nicely done. XYplorer is always out there but I don't know what's going on, they don't seem to have done much work in the past few years. Personally I pay for the leader of the pack, and sadly a bunch of d-bags - Directory Opus. Talk about old apps growing "crufty" LOL but it does what I need and none of the others can.

    2 votes
  7. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Isn't that more targeted at mobile apps? I'm not sure this project will extend that far, managing files (or data) from a cell phone seems fairly UN-fun! LOL But yes, there are definitely a number...

    FUSE tools

    Isn't that more targeted at mobile apps?
    I'm not sure this project will extend that far, managing files (or data) from a cell phone seems fairly UN-fun! LOL
    But yes, there are definitely a number of options already available that can map & mount just about anything and make it look like a file-system! In fact, I'm counting on it!
    "On the backs of giants" - the only way this project will happen I am certain of that much!

  8. Comment on What is the most creative app or website you know of? in ~creative

    DevNull Link Parent
    LOL it was either that or /dev/asshole :-) and I didn't think I'd get away with that one! I used to use the id d.null (my first name being David) because I have a neurological issue that effs with...

    LOL it was either that or /dev/asshole :-) and I didn't think I'd get away with that one!
    I used to use the id d.null (my first name being David) because I have a neurological issue that effs with my short-term memory - so when things get said to me, often, they right into /dev/null ne'er to be recalled!

    PS: Bash is great, in the way-way-back before bash I was an outcast for loving the ksh (korn? korne?). Which I think Bash borrowed some nice stuff from.

    3 votes
  9. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Eventually, sure, a touch of AI to help a user keep a workspace complete (or create one) would be great, and it's most certainly feasible today just using Python. But my initial goal is far...

    The thing about Org, though, is that it requires constant manual maintenance. What I get from your post is something way more automated, capable of understanding the context of the user's tasks and respond to that in a smart way.

    Eventually, sure, a touch of AI to help a user keep a workspace complete (or create one) would be great, and it's most certainly feasible today just using Python.
    But my initial goal is far simpler: I'm staring a new project, so I need to create a new workspace. I add "data sources" for some local folders, some source code on my workstation, other libs/etc on a network share or ftp, maybe a shared common docs folder for that client, and some specs documents, of course an email folder where my GMail sent/received for this client, and some web-site bookmarks for the client's site and some reference sites I'm using (for THAT PROJECT). Creating that workspace should take less than 5 minutes, and bam, it appears in the tree-view (as an example of a UI component, others could be used). By default that tree would be linked to the listview, and while it looks a bit like Explorer, it only has the data sources I just listed - no "My Music" no Control Panel or C:\ - and I can order the stuff any way I want. And since one of those shares will be on a Linux host and have a HUGE path, I'll just name it "\newproject2" and that's all I need to remember. OH, and I need to do some simple stuff with the database so I'll add that as a data source too. Nothing complicated, that gets done in the actual db-admin app (like MS-SSMS). And when I need to add, for example, a Google Drive data source for this project, it should take less than 60 seconds. And this would be the most UNCLUTTERED, CLEAR and EASY data/file management "workspace" ever seen.

    I'm not a developer yet, but I'm an experienced user and have lots of contact with developers, and I ask myself if all that is feasible as an open source project. I may be wrong, but I don't think even Gnome or KDE could pull that off, to be honest. The concept of "activities" comes to mind, though.

    It's absolutely feasible right now, but as I note elsewhere - "On the backs of giants" - I don't intend to write my own file-system drivers, I did enough of that with K&R c on A&T Unix boxes. The pieces already exist, and they're damn good.
    As for the KDE Activities fiasco - that's not a technology problem, that's a politics problem. Way over-thought, way over complicated, and the few articles I've read about it (by developers this is) made it clear that even THEY didn't know WTF it was or how to use it.
    WHY???
    Because as long as a person holds onto that old paradigm about managing "data", they'll never "get" how an app with the new paradigm works - or WHY.
    Unless you give them an app that can appear familiar - but provide a path to the new.
    My design says that upon installation the app auto-configures itself with a default workspace called "Explorer" and includes data sources for everything from "My Computer" to Recycle Bin and Control Panel. The app will be able to do 100% of what Explorer does - that's dead ass simple and there are examples of "Build your own Explorer" on CodeProject.com all over the place. But the minute they click +Workspace and are guided through it, everything changes.

    And one other note about KDE Activities..... it's proof that some folks are getting the hint, and this new paradigm - which again, I didn't invent and it ain't original though (see plan9 from 1960) - and realizing that it has to happen. We simply have too much data these days, and too many places where it's kept. And every effing one of them wants us to use a separate app or tool to access it. It's not sustainable and I have seen some very bright developers and power business users absolutely drowned by the massive amount of data and just could not keep track of it all using all those different apps/tools.

    At the same time, I wonder if that's too much added complexity for a rather trivial problem. Most people think in terms of closets, drawers, boxes, cabinets, etc. The concept of "file" is a metaphor in itself. Do we really need another abstraction? To be honest, I don't even see the need for the aforementioned "activities". And, regarding the complaints of your clients, sometimes people don't really know what they need.

    I couldn't agree more, that's why you won't find ANY new spiffy terms or names in my design. Enoughs enough.
    You got a workspace, and in it you have a bunch of data "things" in a tree-view with a list-view displayed in a tab. Not a single new concept or term.
    There's not really a new "layer" of abstraction to this, but as for "need" - only time will tell if it's needed or not. When life was about a C:\ drive and maybe a network share, then no, not really. Do this for me - count how many different "sources" of data you have - from your Gmail to Google Drive or One-Drive, dropbox, any FTP servers? Network servers? How many hard drives? :-)

    Regardless, I think those ideas would probably be easier to implement in open source projects such as exwm or stumpwm (as you can see, I'm an Emacs guy). And reducing the scope might be a good thing for such an ambitious project.

    Absolutely this will be open-source and will be done by making full use of existing open-source building blocks!!! I listed my first take on the technology stack.
    Honestly the only thing WE'll be doing is putting stuff together and designing the UI and the glue for all the pieces!

    Answering to your question, I would love to collaborate. But I don't know how yet. I'm quite the beginner.

    I don't need only people with my 35yrs experience mate - in fact - I need the opposite!
    I don't even need only programmers - I need people, for example, who are willing to take the time to jot down notes about how they used their computer for work today. And the various ways they accessed data - and most importantly - how much time doing file management!
    I also need people who can use a pencil and paper - or Photoshop - and shoot around ideas for how to make the app look/feel in a way that makes the task automatic or even pleasing. And most of all, I need people willing to take the time to COMMENT, CRITIQUE, ASK QUESTIONS, CHALLENGE - just people who are willing and daring to investigate the possibility of JUST MAYBE introducing a new paradigm shift, and making the biggest change to the computer world since C:> became Windows 10 and KUbuntu! :-)

    THANKS for your reply mate - for just taking the time to read my ramblings, think about it, and pose the questions. :-)

    2 votes
  10. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link
    A few folks have pointed out that certain aspects of the concept can already be achieved by using XYZ or other already-existing tools or apps. And I don't disagree, in fact I achieve much of this...

    A few folks have pointed out that certain aspects of the concept can already be achieved by using XYZ or other already-existing tools or apps. And I don't disagree, in fact I achieve much of this on a daily basis. All the technologies to create something like this now exist and work (finally), including the cool drivers/utils that make non-file-system data available to be accessed appearing just like a file-system, and the ability to allow a user to tweak your app's look with their own css! I do understand that it's POSSIBLE, today, to do ALL of this and more.

    But it doesn't exist as single application, easily installed, configured, and used daily - for non-programmers and people who don't want to spend a week learning the internals or nuances of the technologies.

    I've spent a massive amount of time researching and testing out - if not every, very close to it - option for data management (aka file managers) on both Windows and Linux. If anyone would like to ask about a specific one, throw it out and I'll tell you what I know about it. I'm not bragging, it was a lot of wasted time, because not 1 app out there ever even hinted that they were implementing a totally different paradigm for how to manage data. As I mentioned, the closest was a Linux app that removed all the menus and toolbars and forced keyboard only usage. Radical, but you're still dealing with the same huge paths and having to use tons of symlinks and mount points. Not to mention, data sources like cloud drives and email.

    Don't get me wrong, I am not belittling the people who have put in such great effort trying to solve the very same problem I am looking to solve. In fact I actually paid for Directory Opus years ago because it came closest. But those folks are stuck in the Amiga days (which is when the app was created), and their app is Explorer on roids. And on Linux as well (my preferred platform) I have spent countless months trying every app you could possibly name.

    I appreciate the note that hey, this COULD be done now, with XYZ + etc...
    But the thing is, it's NOT, every release of the OS or the app is more of the same.
    And as I begin posting concept design images and screenshots and usage scenarios - it will become more and more apparent just how drastically different this new paradigm is - and how different the app will be.

    2 votes
  11. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull (edited ) Link
    I'm not exactly sure whether I should be starting a new thread, deleting/replacing my initial post here, or what! But yesterday I posted a relatively disorganized stream of consciousness and it...

    I'm not exactly sure whether I should be starting a new thread, deleting/replacing my initial post here, or what!
    But yesterday I posted a relatively disorganized stream of consciousness and it was of course, confusing and not clear whatsoever.
    The design concepts have been an ongoing pet project of mine for over two decades, but the technology wasn't there.
    And while I have piles of notes and prototypes and research - none of it was organized, nor readable by anyone but me! LOL
    So I APOLOGIZE to the group for not taking the time to prepare before posting.
    It was purely a case of - ok now I've made the decision, the excitement overtook me and I wanted to reach out and share my thoughts and excitement with fellow geeks!

    Now I would like to post what I hope is a more clear introduction to my idea, which I am keeping very very brief.
    Just a page or so of text only - with the next step to be some concept screenshots and usage scenarios.
    I am also not sure how best to do that - my instinct is to put them on my web-server instead of posting directly, I'll have to read up on the Tildes guidelines. Personally I hate it when someone asks me to be interested in their idea and then expects me to go off-site to their own little groovy web-site where I usually find advertisements and porn! LOL I assure you, if I post my personal web-site links there will be neither of those and nothing beyond what I say is there - information about this project. But if it makes more sense to post stuff here directly for now, I'm ok with that too.

    And now.... I'll try a second take on my yesterdays excitement! :-)
    Note: I am using the name 'Abcde' because I don't have a name yet and had to use something! All my other ideas were from my inner 12yr old LOL

    Introduction to the 'Abcde Data Interface' Design

    This work is very much a clear example of "On the shoulders of giants", and none of it is original thought or work. As such this project will be 100% open-source and will use the GPL/LGPL, or some variant that makes sense and preserves the value system. -David

    Design Concepts & Goals


    The core design concept of Abcde is two-fold.
    First, to provide a single unified and complete container for all data elements
    that are related and/or inter-dependent, and nothing that is not.
    Second, to relieve the user from the burden of having to know the specific details about the source and underlying technology of those data elements.

    The first concept gives us a container, let's say a tree-view.
    It has top level nodes for every disk or folder that are used for a specific activity/project/etc (called a workspace),
    along with any other related data elements, for example a cloud drive, an email folder, or a database.
    As well as web-site links/bookmarks, all organized just as within a browser, but listed here with all the other related data.
    There would not be entries in the tree-view that were not required or related, such as the virtual folders
    seen in Windows Explorer like 'Control Panel', 'Recent Places', 'Downloads' or 'My Documents' (to name a few).
    Data sources may be local or remote and use any protocol for which a data provider is installed (via the plug-in mechanism).
    A data provider is nothing more than a service that allows the user to access data. All Windows computers come with a data provider called the NTFS file-system, as well as an HTTP data provider by way of the http protocol used by all web-browsers.
    The second concept means that adding/configuring these various data sources does not require the user to have an understanding of the underlying technologies or protocols involved. They simply need to know the location and have proper credentials. These would be encoded into the form of a URI (Uniform Resource Identifier). All web-browsers use a type of URI which is the web-site address, that begins with the protocol (data provider) and location, thus http://www.Google.com is a type of URI. The user does not need to know how the http protocol works to know how to use the web. Neither will they need to understand how files are accessed from their Google Cloud Drive in order to manage them in this paradigm.
    Those are the 2 core design concepts.

    The primary goal of Abcde is to provide a new paradigm for data management which is not only more intuitive and logical but also more efficient and less prone to data loss. Not being able to find a file or worse wasting unnecessary time looking for the file before concluding that you cannot find it admist the thousands of files and folders you try to manage using Windows Explorer. To accomplish this goal much of the complexity of current file management tools and technologies will be eliminated. The new paradigm also makes it much quicker and easier for the user to locate data items by limiting what is displayed in the workspace, eliminating unnecessary and unrelated items and systems administration components.

    Basic Terminology


    Data Item - A single user data element
    ex: File or Folder
    Data Source - A location consisting of one or more Data Items
    ex: D:\Development\Current\Clients\ABCompany\Projects
    Data Provider - The os driver which provides access to a Data Source
    ex: NTFS, ext4, FTP, Google Drive, GMail
    Data Container - A UI Control which provides access to one or more Data Sources
    ex: Tree-View, List-View, Image-View, Text-View
    Data Application - An application, internal or external, which provides functionality to manipulate the contents of a Data Item
    ex: Photoshop

    Basic Concepts


    NOT ANOTHER clone of Windows/File Explorer or Linux file managers
    NO enforced complexities: by default the app would begin with a default configuration of local data sources very much like Windows Explorer, but with step-by-step wizards to help the user create functional workspaces and thus migrate to the new paradigm with minimal effort
    Data Source labels don't need drive letters or a full path
    (each Data Source can have root specified other than native root of mount)
    Copying/Moving data items across data sources is transparent
    (uploading a file from a local drive/folder to a cloud server, or ftp server)
    Data Sources can be sorted or manually ordered
    State persisted automatically (for every object globally, the app opens exactly the way it was when you last left it)
    Control of look/feel/behavior is absolute and complete, but default styles are provided
    (this allows the user to write custom css or html, by virtue of vue.js/photon)
    UI Components can be replaced with other libraries/components, or custom components / sub-classed components,
    provided the required functionality is present, UI Components should be pluggable

    Basic Objects


    App -> ActiveGroups -> Workspaces -> DataSources + UI Components

    The application window can contain one or more Active Groups
    (listed as links in the titlebar, or possibly on a tabstrip docked left/right, etc)
    Each Active Group can include one or more Workspaces
    (contained in a Tab on a Tabstrip along the top or bottom)
    A Workspace will include one or more Data Sources
    (displayed in one or more UI Components, linked as necessary ie; Tree-View<->List-View

    UI Components - Specific to Workspace


    Navigation-Pane (Breadcrumb/Path)
    Hierarchical-View (Tree-View)
    Flat-View (List-View)
    Content-View (Image-View, Text-View)
    Utility-Pane (shell cmdline)
    Toolbar

    UI Components - Common


    Titlebar (Custom, not OS generated, includes App menu + Workspace links)
    Toolbar
    Tabstrip
    Statusbar

    Technology Stack


    Proof-of-Concept: (uncertain - depends on team input)
    Prototype: (uncertain - depends on team input)
    Final: Windows/Linux - Electron, Photon, Vue.js, node.js, ngx

    Potential Data Providers


    NTFS (local disks, mounted network shares, unc shares)
    ext4
    SFTP
    Google Drive / One-Drive / Dropbox
    GMail / Outlook
    Media: Mobile Phone
    MSSQL / mySQL
    Procman / Tasks / Apps
    Special Drivers: HTTP-DISK / FILE-DISK (http://www.acc.umu.se/~bosse)

    Up Next: Concept Screenshots & Usage Scenarios
    (hopefully later this evening)

    Links to References of Interest


    Plan 9 from Bell Labs
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plan_9_from_Bell_Labs
    Under Plan 9, UNIX's "everything is a file" metaphor was to be extended via a pervasive network-centric filesystem, and graphical user interface assumed as a basis for almost all functionality, though retaining a heavily text-centric ideology.
    (see section on 9P Protocol)
    All programs that wish to provide services-as-files to other programs speak a unified protocol, called 9P. Compared to other systems, this reduces the number of custom programming interfaces.

    GNU Hurd
    http://walfield.org/papers/200707-walfield-critique-of-the-GNU-Hurd.pdf
    (see section 2.2.3 - Persistent Translators)

    Windows Drivers
    http://www.acc.umu.se/~bosse/
    (these are data providers that make various data sources available as file-system objects - ALL open-source and available)

    Electron-based File Manager (el-file)
    https://github.com/mflorence99/el-file
    An existing file manager based on Electron, but which fully employs the outdated and unworkable paradigm.
    See section on Technology Stack

    4 votes
  12. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link
    I recently read that Microsoft's big new plan to "improve" File Explorer in the next, or maybe it was upcoming, version of Windows - the addition of tabs! w00t w00t! LOL I am working on a brief...

    I recently read that Microsoft's big new plan to "improve" File Explorer in the next, or maybe it was upcoming, version of Windows - the addition of tabs! w00t w00t! LOL

    I am working on a brief introduction which details my design concepts and goals, hoping to clarify some things for any new folks that might stop by. I will include usage scenarios, but could really use some help if anyone wants to lend a hand. Basically all you'd have to do is talk about some of your normal work usage with the computer and I'll ask some questions. Won't hurt a bit :-) In all seriousness, I only live in one small corner of the computer world - and if my predictions about usage scenarios are way off, I really want to know now and not after a year of 28 hour days and truckloads of red-bull and jack-links! So any help would be much appreciated.

    1 vote
  13. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    [Let me try this new-fangled "reply" thing again!] Indeed that is very much where some of the core concepts come from! Absolutely nothing original about what I refer to as "my idea" - the only...

    [Let me try this new-fangled "reply" thing again!]

    Sounds like a slicker implementation of some of the ideas in plan9. For the most part.

    Indeed that is very much where some of the core concepts come from!
    Absolutely nothing original about what I refer to as "my idea" - the only original concept is how I envision myself using it with my specific projects! :-)
    There are some things about plan9 that I don't necessarily agree with, including the most basic "everything is a file". But now would be a great time for me to say the most important thing I left out of my post: This remains a very fluid design that continues to evolve as I go through iterations of building bits and pieces of stuff to see how an idea will (or not) work out, and as I try to prove out some of the technologies involved. I definitely do NOT have a hardened technical design that cannot be deviated from or improved upon. I have a basic set of goals and design concepts - and once we get a group of people who all agree with that core set - then we move ahead.

    As for my "everything is a file" comment, what I mean is that I don't think it has to be that confined to meet the goals/design-concepts. And I think that would be limiting unnecessarily. That is not to say that someone couldn't plug-in a provider to turn something into a file if that's how they wanted to manage it. You're probably already familiar with this awesome project, but just in case you're not: http://www.acc.umu.se/~bosse/
    a bunch of file-system drivers for non-file-systems including "File-Disk" and "Http-Disk" (this one intrigues me, having a file-system style access to my web-server via http, so cloud for the common man LOL).

    This intrigues me. Do you mean, the same data can be represented either as a file system or a database? Or, some things can be represented in multiple ways? That seems a bit far-fetched to me.

    I'm actually not sure how this would play out in reality, and it's not a required element of my design/goals. And I mean to throw technicalities around, but a hierarchical file-system can be represented/displayed as a flat list right? And a database certainly can. Google Drive for example, presents as a local file-system but I honestly don't think technically it is. But here's my point: I would think we start with traditional file-systems, local system, network shares, ftp, samba, even google drive and one-drive. But each data source can specify the root, so right now in my Windows Explorer I might have F:\Development\Client-ABC\Project12 - my data source might point directly there with no drive letter (NOT that it would ever be hidden to the user, just that it wouldn't have to be specified!) - so Project12 becomes the root and I don't have to care if F:\Development gets moved to the new J: drive. Kinda like symlinks only better, because they're more reliable and not breakable! LOL I will draw up some illustrated usage scenarios that will clarify some of this. But to answer your point - while it's not far-fetched to me to have multiple ways of PRESENTING the data source, in the end, if you have a provider that can marshal the data and a viewer that can show it, I don't see it being impossible. Impractical perhaps LOL

    I think if this actually wants to be effective, it needs a solid business plan. Not as in 'how to make money', but more like 'how to become successful and popular'. Because right now in the world there is not much 'ubiquitous' software that doesn't ship with an OS:

    A web browser (chrome or firefox)
    MS office
    Adobe suite
    Steam
    Specialist software (DAW, CAD, 3d modeling, game engines, etc.)

    That's it. If this software isn't as popular as one of the above, then I say it hasn't really done much in terms of actually fixing this problem for the world. And the problem is that to a naïve viewer, at first glance, this doesn't look much different to explorer.exe/Finder.app, and so it's a tough pitch to get someone to install it. Thoughts?

    Hmm.... well, I'm not sure that, at least initially, this would be aimed at a naive user.
    Let's look at this example: as far as I'm aware, no Windows boxes today are sold with 7zip (or WinZip before that). Yet every computer I go to has it, even though Windows CAN do some of the same simple things.
    But a better question to look at is this... the latest word from MS is that in the next big version of Windows they have finally decided to "improve" Windows/File Explorer by <gasp> adding tabs!!! LOL But they'll still have MyDocuments, MyMusic, ad infinitum. So - SAME paradigm.
    Now I'm not exaggerating when I relate my own experiences - but you tell me if yours differ - in all the years since I began taking on clients that use Windows (I was a Unix-only shop initially) - until this VERY day - Windows 10 back to Windows 98 - and I have NEVER had a client that didn't complain about managing their files and hating Windows Explorer -AND- who had a Desktop so cluttered they could never find the file they wanted without several profanity-laced minutes!
    I don't know 1 person who uses Windows who doesn't struggle with file management, but I deal strictly with business users and people who have more than a desktop or a MyDocuments with a few dozen files. And when it comes to something like MS-Word and you see a user do File->Open and you see the number of files, the BEST naming schemes don't work. Add to that "Hey is it on the K: drive now? Or back to N:\Documents\New\Recovered???".

    Here's my opinion (worth what you're paying for it): In today's world of massive hard drives and mountains of files on various drives in various locations - to continue using standard file-system methods of managing the data is the most inefficient thing a person can do with their computer second only to Facebook :-) LOL

    The world doesn't need another file manager - we already have Directory Opus and XYplorer - which people PAY for!!! And the freebies which are cobbled garbage. Those ALL do the SAME THING: Here's a bunch of tabs with a treeview and a listview, and all your drive letters. Have a ball! And if you have thousands of directories and dozens of levels deep, well good luck navigating!

    The opportunity as I see it is for an intuitive, efficient "DATA MANAGER" that let's a user deal with the data in a sane way. The average business user doesn't need or WANT to see C:\ when all their stuff is on D: or a network share. Shit, -I- don't even want to see my C: and when I need it for admin stuff, I can always have 1 workspace that is set up exactly like Explorer! LOL

    This also I don't quite get. You want me still to have an external web browser and email reader. Yet, this app already has to speak the email protocol and the web protocol; isn't that redundant? Why not make it do everything?

    Well I just don't see that as being feasible. But FIRST, let me change my comment that "you will STILL use your external apps" - to "you CAN still use your external apps". In many cases they may not need to - for example - I have already embedded Chromium in several of my apps because it's not as bloated as Chrome and the users so far have not missed a damn thing. And they like having it "internal". Simple text editor? Done that too, the most popular core editor in existence is Scintilla and it's been embedded in tons of apps. And guess what, it's dead simple to embed that as well (I've done a working prototype of it).

    An important note here: Obviously the design is for data-providers to be plug-ins and NOT statically embedded. If the user enables the web-browser, Chromium plugs in. Same with all the various file-systems, and previewers etc...

    But back to why not make it do everything - here's a few examples just from my own workstation - I use Photoshop and Illustrator, not a chance in hell of embedding those and making it work. Visual Studio and Eclipse for c# and Java IDEs. I do get your point - absolutely - and I agree to this extent. My first reaction to a situation like this is always to make it flexible and not enforce anything we don't have to, and also, to not reinvent the wheel - unless I I think the current wheel is square and mine will be round :-)
    And to reuse a comment I put in another post.... my design goal is bring all the data sources together so you can manage the ITEMS themselves, not necessarily to provide every feature you'll ever need to modify the CONTENT of the items. I want to be able to move or make a backup copy of my .psd - not necessarily add new adjustment layers and re-render it. (This does not imply that viewers won't be there so you can see a preview of that .psd - obviously)

    2 votes
  14. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Yes indeed! In fact I've fallen in love with KUbuntu since they're now up with Plasma. If I were doing this project for myself I'd do it on KU and forget Windows altogether. KU is hands down the...

    This reminds me somewhat of some of the goals for KDE/Plasma's "Activities" concept: that a user would have a customized desktop layout that can directly surface all of the relevant programs and documents for a given task, and easily switch between these "activities" depending on what they are trying to do.

    Yes indeed! In fact I've fallen in love with KUbuntu since they're now up with Plasma.
    If I were doing this project for myself I'd do it on KU and forget Windows altogether.
    KU is hands down the most customizable OS (look/feel/behavior) out there, in my opinion.

    What you're pointing out is that people have realized that the old paradigm doesn't work - I'm not the only one, or the first, by any stretch.
    People want to have ALL the data for a "project" or "activity" or in my design "workspace", and do not want ANY other data presented to them.
    I don't need to see my C: drive 99% of the time and definitely not for any projects.
    And I don't give a crap that it's C or D or J - drive letters have never been worth a damn.

    Your idea seems somewhat larger in scope than KDE's version, and I'm particularly curious how one might try to unify the UX for relational databases and document oriented filesystems, but you might find it interesting to explore the strengths and weaknesses of how their version works out in practice.

    Again, I really shouldn't have spewed out my post like I did....
    My design-concept/goals is to provided a unified LOGICAL place to have access to ALL the data sources for your "activity" or "project"(etc) - but NOT necessarily to provide all the extensive capabilities to do 100% of the things you may need to do with that data. So - in Explorer I can see my .psd Photoshop document, move the file, make a backup copy, and in some Explorer clones you can even preview the image! But if I want to do work on that image I'm going to WANT to open Photoshop. Follow?
    So yes I would envision having database providers that give me a data source - right there in my tree view or list view - showing my databases and tables for THAT specific activity/project - and maybe I can browse the data and even edit it (simple grid work with binding). But I don't envision replacing the database manager. (interesting sidenote though, I did recently build a pretty complete replica of Microsoft's db manager SSMS so that my apps now have a run-time db manager built right in, including creating/dropping tables, indexes, you name it - all possible with the MS library SMO)
    In my previous post there is a link to a site that has all sorts of providers that are file-system drivers - such as http-disk - a drive mapped over http which appears in Windows Explorer as drive W - pretty slick. Basically it's cloud storage.
    And that too - for all my clients I have a Google Drive account - why should I have to add/remove/copy/etc files from my local system to that Google drive using another program??? It's basically the same (in logical terms) as if I copied a local file to, say a backup network drive - right?

    The biggest reason I haven't personally invested a lot of time in KDE's version is that setting everything up for every project is pretty time consuming, and I usually just end up with one or two very generalized activities like

    BINGO! That's why I didn't pursue it and it's the same problem that so much open-source projects suffer from. They forget that the average user doesn't love the complexities and intricate control that makes things take forever to do.
    This thing I am envisioning would massively different, with pre-configured data sources based on monitoring your past usage (with a little help from some Python predictive AI ;-)) - even which apps you use for each activity/project, simple to monitor. I'm no different than most users - if it takes too long I don't give a damn how effen cool it is, I'm out. If this aspect of making so quick and easy for the user to set up their projects/activities and just GET TO WORK - then no way this thing will fly.
    Oh and the problem with the attempts so far to get anywhere near the solution to this is pretty simple... overthinking the plumbing instead of taking the straight approach. And sadly, Gnome is as bad at this as Microsoft.

    1 vote
  15. Comment on Any developers/designers interested in a helping build a proof-of-concept for a new type of data-centric app? in ~comp

    DevNull Link Parent
    Hi tak and thanks for the reply! Posting about my idea publicly is something I've thought about for a while but hesitated for many reasons. My big mistake was that I did that "Ok effit! I'm just...

    Hi tak and thanks for the reply!
    Posting about my idea publicly is something I've thought about for a while but hesitated for many reasons.
    My big mistake was that I did that "Ok effit! I'm just gonna do it NOW!" thing - that never works out well. ;-)
    I really should have put together a more accurate and clear - but brief - intro to the project and not just posted that stream of semi-consciousness.
    My apologies for that, and I am already working on that intro.

    You actually described exactly what I do NOT want this to be - a file manager or Explorer replacement!
    And I am fairly certain that the problem already exists and has since day one.
    To qualify that: At least it does in my segment of the computing world, which is data-centric business use - any business user with more than a few dozen folders or few hundred files. Programmers would be at the top of the list, but I have developed software for accountants, law firms (which I still have software being sold for), mortgage banks, title insurance companies - it's a long list - and the #1 complaint from every user, the absolutely biggest area that causes serious problems - is not managing their data, or rather, not having tools that made sense to them - for managing their data. Picture a small (5 person) law firm who cannot afford a $40k document management system, and who's users don't really understand a file system - and who's Desktop has more files than pixels - and they LOSE A DOCUMENT, they just can't find it. And for bigger companies with IT departments? They teach their users how to use Windows Explorer. They just have to keep an eye on drive letters and massively long paths and folders.
    Again - I'm only saying this for my industry - but the problem most DEFINITELY exists.
    And Explorer clones like the god-awful Directory Opus ($$) and XYplorer ($$) give you a nice tab strip to keep losing files with.
    But they ALL use the same paradigm - a disk with a drive letter (or a mount point and long dir path on Linux) - and some more drive letters - and more long paths - and yet still, where are your web-site bookmarks related to that project or client? Ohhhh..... they're somewhere else.
    Am I painting a better picture? I'll cut it there for now and do a proper intro summary.

    As for having multiple data sources, Explorer already does that with everything from Control Panel to those "My ***" folders you can't touch.
    There's no reason why my tree-view can't have local drives/folders, a network share, maybe an ftp location, and my Google Drive - and even GMail - right in the same tree if I want. The underlying provider of the data source doesn't - and SHOULDN'T - matter. Just like clicking on a .zip shows it to you like a folder, but, it's not a file-system folder is it?

    Showing users drives they never use, or should never touch, and saving their files in a single "My Documents" or worse, "Desktop" - using drive letters even, and massively long paths that are impossible to remember - NONE of that is intuitive to ANY user I've ever come across - or me :-)
    The paradigm simply doesn't work, at least not very efficiently.
    The paradigm I am trying to explore is much closer to a commercial document management system than it is to Windows Explorer.

    I hope that clarifies it a bit - and thanks again for the reply mate!

    2 votes
  16. Comment on Daily Tildes discussion - allowing users to post anonymously? in ~tildes.official

    DevNull Link Parent
    Wow THANK YOU! That's all stuff I never thought about, and I am embarrassed by how narrow my thinking and conceiving of ideas has become in my recent past. Thank you for taking the time to explain...

    Wow THANK YOU! That's all stuff I never thought about, and I am embarrassed by how narrow my thinking and conceiving of ideas has become in my recent past. Thank you for taking the time to explain all this stuff.
    It all makes perfect sense now, most certainly!

    I honestly wonder if perhaps my understanding of social media, not to mention my acceptance of it's mechanisms and peculiarities(!), has devolved back to my earliest days when I was part of a very small, very specific group (old school programmers) who used email and "listservs" and share and discuss ideas. A world where your email address, real name, employer or educational institution, even your phone number and office location - were all attached to every word you wrote! The notion of anonymous comments by anonymous users hadn't really been invented. It was a world where you knew that your comments were being read by a real person, and while that world was not eden and there were certainly conflicts, they were generally handled in a civilized way and often with a phone call or over coffee.

    When I discovered a bug in our Unix mail system that allowed me to spoof an email to a faculty member I disliked from the chancellor of the university (this would be Syracuse University), it was because nobody ever imagined why anyone would ever want to send an email and not sign their name to it! LOL

    I ramble :-/ I guess I really have to keep in mind how little I understand about social-media. One would think that it would be ever-present in my mind, this realization - as I signed off Reddit a month ago after just 2 or 3 months there - and signed off Facebook over a year ago, using the excuse that building my own web-site gave me more creative freedom. It did. I built a great site and love it. Too bad nobody but me ever went to it.

    Thanks again mate

    4 votes
  17. Comment on What is the current feeling about users having alternate accounts on Tildes? in ~tildes

    DevNull Link Parent
    A lack of understanding on my part, and not enough reading of the posts here. Coupled with some pretty bad experiences on Reddit, as one example. But honestly, I should have asked questions before...

    A lack of understanding on my part, and not enough reading of the posts here.
    Coupled with some pretty bad experiences on Reddit, as one example.

    But honestly, I should have asked questions before giving opinion.
    It's one of my lesser qualities, which I assure you I am working on resolving.

    4 votes
  18. Comment on What is the current feeling about users having alternate accounts on Tildes? in ~tildes

    DevNull Link Parent
    Oh wow - YES absolutely NOW I'm seeing what folks are talking about! (I feel a little closed-minded and kinda stupid for not realizing this - been a hard week for my brain LOL) I absolutely agree...

    Oh wow - YES absolutely NOW I'm seeing what folks are talking about! (I feel a little closed-minded and kinda stupid for not realizing this - been a hard week for my brain LOL)

    I absolutely agree - sounds like a great idea.
    My only concern is to keep Tildes as awesome as it is now - and not allow anonymous comments of the type seen on many other web-sites.
    Regardless of the decision made - I'll support it absolutely.

    5 votes
  19. Comment on What's a common misconception or misunderstanding you would love to see corrected? in ~talk

    DevNull Link Parent
    And you too are a writer?! I guess I shouldn't be surprised by that, but I find it intriguing and have to wonder how many other programmers are either writers, painters or artists in some other...

    And you too are a writer?! I guess I shouldn't be surprised by that, but I find it intriguing and have to wonder how many other programmers are either writers, painters or artists in some other manner.
    For me, a finished set of lyrics or philosophical musing that drove home the point could have as much elegance as that algorithm I wrote the day before.

    By the way I'd like to invite you read my post in ~tech
    https://tildes.net/~tech/d7c/any_developers_designers_interested_in_a_helping_build_a_proof_of_concept_for_a_new_type_of_data

    as this project, in my mind anyway, is the biggest opportunity for artistic expression meeting the left brain workaday world that I personally have ever considered undertaking. And it has potential to change the way people work with computers (but perhaps I am being grandiose and dreaming too big ;-)).

    PS: THANK YOU for the kind words. I wish that at 25 I was merely the a-hole that I am today LOL

    2 votes
  20. Comment on Daily Tildes discussion - allowing users to post anonymously? in ~tildes.official

    DevNull Link Parent
    Interesting, and I cannot disagree - thanks for explaining that. Regardless of the outcome two things are certain: I will support the decision and continue here, happily. Because 2: the population...

    Interesting, and I cannot disagree - thanks for explaining that.
    Regardless of the outcome two things are certain: I will support the decision and continue here, happily. Because 2: the population of folks here is impressive, intelligent people and intelligent discourse. I'm very thankful... honestly. And because of the qualities of the community in general, I don't see the usual anonymous shit-talkers finding much motivation to come here spewing.

    I do have a question - and perhaps I haven't read enough posts here yet - and this is NOT meant to instigate disagreement - as I said, I support this issue either way it turns out.
    But while you explained HOW it could work - I still have to ask, what benefit is there to it? And why would someone want this feature?

    PS: Thank you for your reply, and it's civil and courteous quality. (I'm not being sarcastic, I'm just a recovering Reddit user)

    3 votes