The most frequently heard argument about usability is that programmers are such a special breed that they can no longer see that what’s a perfectly fine interface for them is incomprehensible to the ordinary user. At which point the fifth cavalry arrives in the form of usability enthusiasts^Wspecialists, who proceed to tell the geeks where they get off.
However, I have just discovered that while I’m a certified (okay, it’s a Sun Java certification, but it’s a certification of sorts) programmer, I can be a stupid user with the rest of them. A very human feeling, I’m sure.
I tried to use K3B to burn a couple of Knoppix CDs for my daughter, who’s doing a presentation on GNU/Linux at school tomorrow. I thought maybe she’d like to raffle them off to her classmates. (The brave kid is only ten years old, but I digress.)
I dragged the Knoppix image I had downloaded to the the big shelf with the cd and dvd icons, and started to burn my new project. Wrong… I had actually enveloped the iso image in a new iso image or something, and the freshly burned Knoppix wouldn’t boot.
Of course, I should have chosen Tools/CD/Burn CD Image — at least, when I did that, everything worked, except it didn’t actually choose the right file. The image was in /home/boud/Desktop and selected in the file panel. When I choose the Burn CD Image menu option it assumed /home/boud/. But that was soon put to rights by my enormous geek skills — there’s a nice select file button. From that point on, everything was plain sailing.
And I have added “Genuine User” to my other credentials. Or was that luser? (And I’m still not sure my diagnosis was right, in the end. Could’ve been a freak incident that destroyed two CDs in quick succession from a box without any other duds. Could be.)