Case-sensitivity: why -- or why not? (was Re: Damnation!)

Will Rose cwr at
Sun May 21 18:13:55 CEST 2000

Neil Hodgson <neilh at> wrote:
:> When we teach our children to write we teach them case sensitivity, I do
: not
:> remember any governing body suggesting we should drop case sensitivity
: from
:> written language in order that 'everyone' will therefore be able to write.
:> I also cannot believe that this is a difficult lesson to learn.
:> How many times would you have to be told before you understood it? Once or
:> twice?

:    While I /know/ that Unix file names are case sensitive, that doesn't stop
: me from mistyping them. This is something Windows and Macintosh do right -
: removing a cause of error for no real limitation in functionality.

Well, not everyone thinks that way; I've gone round this problem a number
of times.  I prefer CP/M / MSDOS to Windows (ie. force a single case), and
Unix to both.  My guess, and it's only a guess from the trend of previous
discussions elsewhere, is that there are an equal number of people on each
side of this argument.  I certainly know that my current case-preserving /
case-insensitive filesystem drives me up the wall; I finally gave in and
wrote some tools (in Python, as it happens) to clean it up by forcing
upper case.

And no, I'm not an especially good typist; it's just that I, like many
others, for some reason take account of case when reading tokens.

cwr at

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