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Ugh
Authored by: babbage on Apr 03, '02 12:23:28PM
Why exactly is this better than just typing, say, "open Internet Explorer" or, for ones you use a lot, "alias ie 'open Internet Explorer'", etc? Seems like a whole lot of non-portable overhead to save not-very-much typing.

Also, the argument that having a simple ~/.aliases file is kinda bogus, as such a simple home directory based configuration -- as opposed to whatever init stuff in OSX's Library directories -- is *portable*. The alias file I'm using on OSX was originally written on one Solaris account and later extended on another Solaris account and then RedHat. Then I copied it to OSX and it works there too, and I've recently copies it to Debian and FreeBSD accounts, and it works on those also. No sweatwork on my part to do this, just ftp over the file when I get a new account somewhere.

For all the virtues of doing things the "native Apple way", it smells a whole lot less portable to me, and thus is a whole lot less appealing. I've yet to hear anyone explain why doing things the apocryphally Apple way is better than a simple ~/.alias setup. Can you offer a justfication?

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one small reason
Authored by: mithras on Apr 03, '02 02:00:41PM

Well, in this case, these aren't aliases you'll wan't to use on any other OS anyhow. So I think it's just fine to put the aliases in the Wilfredo Sanchez-style files. (which, by the way, are more annoying to go edit, but are on the other hand more clean-feeling, in my opinion)

But it doesn't really matter. Perhaps you would like to put your more 'portable' aliases and login scripts in .aliases and .cshrc, and your OS X-specific ones in the init directory.



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Can you say autocomplete?
Authored by: semios on Apr 03, '02 02:33:52PM

For one the shell will autocomplete for you. I think the handiness of that in itself makes this trick worthwhile. Besides, it simply makes the gui and the cli integrate better. A lot of people may not know about the open command anyhow.



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Couple of reasons.
Authored by: porkchop_d_clown on Apr 03, '02 03:00:32PM

First "open Internet Explorer" only works if you first type "cd /Applications".

Second, I don't know about you, but I find typing "open /Applications/BBedit/BBedit 6.1 Lite for OS X" a royal pain.

As for portability - huh? You want aliases to be portable? And as for using Library/init/tcsh - there is nothing sacred about using a 30 year old model for managing config files. One of the things I like about Darwin is the way it updates some of the useless baggage that other Unices are still saddled with.



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Couple of reasons.
Authored by: babbage on Apr 03, '02 03:48:41PM
First "open Internet Explorer" only works if you first type "cd /Applications".

Well I'll back off on that point then. I was told that OSX maintains a database of available applications, and that you can abbreviate the full "open /Applications/Internet Explorer.app" form to simply "open Internet Explorer" if you've opened the app through the GUI in the past. Testing this suggests otherwise though, so now I'm a little confused on that one.

Second, I don't know about you, but I find typing "open /Applications/BBedit/BBedit 6.1 Lite for OS X" a royal pain.

So don't type it then. if it's something you're going to do frequently, the dock isn't *that* painful to click on, or you can go ahead & set an alias for it. (Typing "iexplore" opens Internet Explorer for me, as that happens to be the name on Windows too.) Moreover, it's rare that I open *applications* in the first place -- much more frequently I'll just open a document [and tab completion helps you out here], and occasionally I'll override the default filetype bindings if I need to (say) open an imagage in an editor rather than a viewer. This doesn't come up much though -- ususally just opening raw documents works fine, is what I meant to do, and doesn't gain from any kind of aliasing. In my case at least.

As for portability - huh? You want aliases to be portable?

Uhh, yeah. That's the whole point. I have regular access to OSX and Solaris, and less frequently (once a week or so) use Debian Linux and Cygwin. I really, really like it when I don't have to develop new finger memory based on where I've just ssh'ed into. I really like being able to mask things like file locations by wrapping them into an alias that, maybe with some one time minor editing, allows the same command to work anywhere.

And as for using Library/init/tcsh - there is nothing sacred about using a 30 year old model for managing config files. One of the things I like about Darwin is the way it updates some of the useless baggage that other Unices are still saddled with.

I don't have a problem with that -- I'm delighted to be able to work on a Unix that isn't saddled with X11 as the only graphical interface -- but I still want to be able to transfer tools from one box to another as painlessly as I can. This means enforcing a degrree of standardization, and that sometimes means that "worse is better".

Even if the Libary/init/tcsh scheme is cleaner -- and I'll readily concede that it is -- the benefit for me is mostly lost if I can't transfer that elsewhere. Put the other way, if this scheme is 10% better than the alternative, but causes 15% more work on each other platform to get them to behave the same way, (thus 15% more work times however many other platforms I work with regularly), then in the end I lose by going with this scheme. Like I said originally, it's a nice idea but I still have yet to hear why it makes more sense to do things this way as opposed to the traditional way. I remain unconvinced.

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Couple of reasons.
Authored by: Dr.Evil on Apr 03, '02 05:15:19PM
First "open Internet Explorer" only works if you first type "cd /Applications". Second, I don't know about you, but I find typing "open /Applications/BBedit/BBedit 6.1 Lite for OS X" a royal pain.

Actually, you can just type open -a "Internet Explorer" to get it to open from anywhere. That does prevent auto-completion, though, and isn't very helpful for open =a "BBEdit 6.1 Lite for OS X". :)

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I never knew that.
Authored by: porkchop_d_clown on Apr 03, '02 11:40:11PM

thanks.



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