intelligent following of directions, or following them by rote...

Linda Walsh
Fri Oct 7 22:40:00 GMT 2016

Andrey Repin wrote:
> Greetings, Linda Walsh!
>> Achim Gratz wrote:
>>> Now, that last question of yours: No, the package manager should never
>>> allow you to not install a base package.  These are in category "Base"
>>> precisely so the rest of the system can rely on the functionality
>>> provided.
> [snip]
>>         But back to the 1st Q.  What other programs will fail to work
>> if the base-version of vim isn't installed?
> The question is not about vim...
	But it is about vim.  That's the package the user wanted to
install their own version of.

	There is such a thing of not following rules, guidelines and 
instructions without thinking about the situation.

	If you follow things without thinking, you'll often end up
screwing yourself in the long run.

	How many installer packages tell you to accept their "default"
(always says "recommended") vs. choosing specifics?  The defaults often
contain items you don't want while not providing things you do.  The
default for Nvidia drivers is to install 3D-drivers even if you don't
have a 3D screen and goggles.  What's intelligent about that?

> It's vim only now, tomorrow it'll be something else.
	Right, Today, it's taking a walk by the seashore, tomorrow
it's jumping off a cliff.  Um.. no!  If you do some research and/or know
a bit about what you are doing, you can stop before you jump off the cliff.

> You have to stop and draw
> the line somewhere, if you, as a package maintainer, want a predictable
> behavior for all future installations.
	But you can't get predictable behavior now.  It's running
on windows (1st problem), 2nd, it doesn't follow MS-Win conventions.
3rd, Windows sends out incompatibility patches on a regular basis.
Documented features in windows are ignored and overwritten in cygwin --
so you already have unpredictability.  I haven't installed any updates
to my system since the new user-auth/password stuff was added in because
the stuff I have works now with a NT4 type samba domain controller.  Above
that is NT5 w/active directory -- installing LDAP and losing _easy_
control over what I already have (enough research and struggle and I might
get it back, but I have other things to do that have higher priority. 

	As for package maintainers needing some specific behavior --
if a backdoor to your system was part of the "base" system, would you
stick to your "line" and install it?  If you say "no", then you are 
using your brain and not doing it by rote.  If you can do it, why shouldn't
other people be able to do it on their system(s)?  

	Another simple example -- where does one install cygwin?  In
the /cygwin dir (Windows says not to do that -- it wants programs
in "program files" or "program files (x86)).  Who do you follow?
How about whether you install it in /cygwin or in "/" so files @
/etc will be in \etc on windows?  Cygwin recommends installing it
in /cygwin, but at one point (don't know about now), most of the devs
admitted that they installed it in "/" for their personal use.  

	Anyway, thinking about what you are doing and why things are
they way they are, is important -- which is why I asked, what affect
on the cygwin installation would be if you didn't install the base
vim package?  If you don't know the answer, then maybe the defaults
are for you, but if you have an idea of what vim does and how it might
be used to run the rest of cygwin, then you might experiment to find
if things fail or continue to work w/o the base-vim.  Just a thought.

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