Re: [dev] suckless distro

From: M Farkas-Dyck <>
Date: Wed, 25 Jun 2014 12:38:01 -0500

On 25/06/2014, Sylvain BERTRAND <> wrote:
> What I mean: it's totally suckless to write more LOC if it
> reduces the technical cost of the overall software stack (SDKs
> included!).
> In the reality, each case is different, and people won't draw
> their line in the same place. The important thing is not to
> overshadow the global technical cost.

Now, I can't honestly claim to write for all the suckless community.
But I shall write for myself at least.

Computers are meant to do tedious work for us. That includes us who
program them. The appropriate metric of code quality, ergo, is how
much easier it makes one's life. To this end, mental costs trump
technical costs by far.

A reusable component with well-specified interfaces makes my life much
easier, for I need not reimplementate that functionality each time I
need it, and it works uniformly across all usage sites, which means
less to remember. Even if it takes more computer time, to a point I
care not, for computer time is cheap and my time is costly.

Make is such a component. I needn't care how many files I need to
build; I just write a makefile and it does so.

You clearly deem a shell an acceptable technical cost, tho itself not
a simple program. C compilers and OS kernels are yet other technical
costs. I use all these programs as they give me a uniform common
interface to launching and connecting programs, machine code
generation for various architectures, and the machine itself.

Losses arise when components cause more grief than they're worth. Make
itself is easy to build and use. GNU autoshit ain't; its mental costs
due to nonuniform interfaces and other faults are too great.
Received on Wed Jun 25 2014 - 19:38:01 CEST

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