[mythtv-users] manual scheduling -> "no upcoming recordings"

f-myth-users at media.mit.edu f-myth-users at media.mit.edu
Fri Nov 4 21:24:58 EST 2005

    Date: Fri, 4 Nov 2005 20:04:50 -0400
    From: Greg Estabrooks <greg at phaze.org>

    > Currently, MythTV's configuration system looks like the "Bad Example"
    > section of any book on user interface design.  Class, let's review:

     Then get to it, or try to encourage those who have the ability to
    do the work. But to do that would require a less "YOU SUCK, EVERYTHING YOU DO 
    SUCKS" position. And while I understand that may not be your intent it is 
    how your posts come off. 

It's certainly not my intent, and I appreciate your comments and those
of some private posters who are trying to set me right on this score.

But consider how this started:  I got burned -really- badly (days of
lost work) because of a bad UI.  So I posted the reasons it was a
problem.  And then I posted a list of -other- UI problems that I'd
written a week earlier, before I even knew I was about to be
victimized by -more- bad UI :)

Now consider the reaction:

The -public- reaction was predominantly negative, mostly consisting of
thinly veiled "you're an idiot" sorts of responses, and often eliding
the most serious of the bugs and instead attacking the trivial ones.
(E.g., no one yet has dared to argue that the UI -shouldn't- be
checking for duplicate devnames in the Capture Cards menu, presumably
because it's an indefensible position.)

The -private- reaction was overwhelmingly positive, and extremely
disturbing.  I'm currently sitting on messages from at least half a
dozen people who have -all- said in their messages that they are
AFRAID TO SPEAK UP because they don't want the sort of public
vilification that I've just endured.  Either they don't want to deal
with being the victims of a flamefest, or they're afraid of not being
listened to when they want help later; their reasons vary, but they're
all depressing.

Users who are afraid to report bugs are a symptom of a very serious
problem in the list's sociology.

It's absolutely true that I became both more argumentative and more
abrasive in responding to the public "you're an idiot" contingent,
because their basic goal seemed to be to minimize even the importance
of any of these UI bugs, e.g., to claim that there was no bug there
in the first place and thus that patches for the behavior would be
unwelcome.  I have no idea if this opinion is shared by the majority
of the development team.  But I felt it was important, both because
I'd personally gotten screwed by the UI issues, and because I had a
large contingent of lurkers saying "it screwed me too! but I dare not
say anything in public!", to at least try to argue my side of the case
as strongly as I could---namely that Myth has a usability problem
that's (probably) not very difficult to fix, and that would benefit
people widely if it were.

At this point, with the exception of forwarding to -dev and/or
checking-in bug reports on those bugs that seem definitely related to
Myth (should I do either? still uncertain), I'm going to have to
mostly bow out of this whole discussion, though.  I've stated my case,
I've at least gotten the UI issues that I've seen out on the table,
and now I've got one and maybe two Myth boxes to reinstall (again,
dammit!) in an effort to actually get a working system.  It's been
a couple of weeks now.  With a little bit of sanity-checking in the
UI, it could have been a couple of days.  Yeah, I'm unhappy about this.

-Then-, once I have a working system and some time to explore it,
I might be in the situation of actually being able to submit patches
for some of the UI issues.  But until that happens, I can't even test
anything I produce, so it would -clearly- be inappropriate for me to
be submitting actual code fixes at this point.

Thanks for your comments.

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