Joel On Software quote

timeless timeless at
Thu Sep 9 17:43:20 UTC 2004

Gervase Markham wrote:
> Joel believes that cutting down quoting, rather than encouraging it, 
> is good social interface design :-)

i'm not always a fan of joel's, but in this case i have to agree.

Christopher Hicks wrote:
> Joel is always right for Joel's Universe and Joel is certainly good food 
> for thought in other universes, but in this case the food leaves me 
> feeling a bit ill. 

the use of quoting @bmo makes me feel more than a bit ill.

> In the Chicks Universe where I live having people 
> clued enough to quote makes problems like chat spam nearly nonexistant 
> and certainly not enough of an issue that anyone has complained in ages. 

you don't live in my real world. i'll gladly forward the quote garbage 
from my inbox. it's a flood so believe me you should decline my offer.

all garbage is certified as having come from bugzilla-daemon at

> Conversations (particularly in terms of bugs) tend to drag in additional 
> participatings through time and can be somewhat complex.  Expecting new 
> participants to read the whole bug to get up to speed on the issues 
> works for some folks some of the time, but quoting provides the 
> opportunity to contextify subsequent comments enough that diving all the 
> way in isn't absolutely necessary. 

so send them a link with the relevant items highlighted. you can do this 
in bonsai, e.g. suppose i wanted to point you to the changes to 
show_bug.cgi where we moved to using .pm files, i'd just offer:,1.24,1.26

you could quickly read just the items that mattered, and i wouldn't need 
to make a checkin into the log which said "interesting modularization 
changes are: <blockquote> followed by 10-15 lines quoting all of those 
lines which are already in the log</blockquote>.

> For instance, there's no reason for 
> the LDAP admin to need to know or wade through all of the screen layout 
> niggling that's gone on to answer which LDAP schema we need to work 
> from.  The new bugzilla Reply feature has been very popular and 
> appreciated in our bugzilla for providing just enough context for 
> somebody that's newly cc'd into the bug.  The concept of forcing people 
> to wade through and establish their own context instead seems 
> unnecessarily cruel.

In your system it might work, but I'm still waiting for one person who 
uses bmo to point me to 5 cases where quoting was useful. This is a real 

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