Quoteing mailing-lists / zesiger.com, on Tue, Jun 15, 2004 at 08:13:35AM +0900:
> I don't know how much of the thread you read through, but I repeated at 
> least half a dozen times that the command line isn't the issue. It's the 
> general anti-userfriendliness mentality in the *nix community. I just 
> started with "cp" as an example.

Its a bad example, and what does user-friendly mean, anyhow?

Its marketing speach. The real question is how fast to learn is it, and
how effective  to use is it?

If it interests you, you should read this:

  http://www.cryptonomicon.com/beginning.html

You may not agree with him, but its a great read.

The unix command-line is optomized for **use**. That optimization might
have made it harder to **learn**, but that's debatable, and for all the
whining over the years, nobody has made a shell that demonstrates how
the command line could be easier to learn if only it was only done a
little (or lot) differently, maybe because it can't be done?

I've typed "cp" many times a day, for close to 12 years, and I'm
perfectly happy it's 2 characters (like all the other commonly used
commands - consistency that makes it easier to use!), and I was told
only once that "cp" meant copy, couldn't have taken more than a few
minutes.

Are you really prepared to argue that the unix command line would be
measurably easier to learn how to use if you renamed mv, cp, ls, rm, and
cd to other names?  Somebody is as likely to guess "relocate", "Copy",
"show', "delete", and "go", and they won't even guess the last one,
because anybody so uninformed about the shell that they are reduced to
guessing is unlikely to even know that there is such a thing as a
current working directory.

Anyhow, guessing the name for a command is as stupid a way to try and
use the command line as clicking on icons is to learn how to use a GUI,
or guessing the name of a method is to leaning how to use a ruby class.
Before you start at the command line, you need to know how to get help
(apropos), before you start with a GUI you need to know that hovering a
mouse over something might get you a help message, and before you start
learning ruby you need to know how to use an API reference.

Cheers,
Sam