[Mailman-Developers] Configurability (was Re: [ANNOUNCE] Mailman 1.0b9)

Roy Smith roy@endeavor.med.nyu.edu
Wed, 03 Mar 1999 15:23:56 -0500

I agree 300%.  Once something has a zillion different options, it just
becomes too complicated to get your head around and understand.  Often,
it's not obvious which options are trivial (i.e. set the color the text in
the title bar) and which are important (i.e. specify the hostname of the
mail server).

Also, the more options you have, the more unexpected combinations there
are.  "I never thought anybody would be stupid enough to set their text
color to red, their background color to red, and their highlight color to
red, all at the same time!"

It also makes it harder for help desk people to provide useful help.
Anybody who has ever done help desk duty knows how frustrating it is to
talk to somebody on the phone and tell them to "click the xyz button in the
upper left hand corner of the window" only to have the user say there is no
such button, and the problem turns out that they've simply reconfigured
their client so much that the button is now somewhere else.

--On Wed, Mar 3, 1999 11:34 AM -0800 Greg Stein <gstein@lyra.org> wrote:

> If you make something too configurable, then it becomes unapproachable.
> It is simply not useful any more because there are too many knobs to
> turn.

Roy Smith <roy@popmail.med.nyu.edu>
New York University School of Medicine
550 First Avenue, New York, NY  10016