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#1 2012-05-03 18:20:31

zym
Member
Registered: 2012-03-31
Posts: 10

About the ArchWay

I found there is a bit of a redundance, even in the 2.0 Arch way.
So I edited a bit.
It would be great to get some responses about it.
I also think it could be still optimized.

The following principles comprise what is the philosophy behind Arch Linux. 
Their priority is represented by their order.

1. Simplicity
without unnecessary additions, modifications, or complications

2. Elegance
combining simplicity, power, effectiveness, a quality of neatness and an ingenious grace of design 
“[...]perfection [is] [...] when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

3. Versatile
capable of doing many things competently; having varied uses or many functions

4. Expedience
easy, or quick; convinient

I would really enjoy feedback about what I did to the Arch way,
thanks
Simon

P.s: Editet because my question was answered

Last edited by zym (2012-05-07 16:07:31)

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#2 2012-05-03 18:38:37

alphaniner
Member
From: Ancapistan
Registered: 2010-07-12
Posts: 2,754

Re: About the ArchWay

I think a porgramm should do one thing well instead of a lot of things.

Monowall (or whatever) would be an example of an OS designed to do one thing.  That is not what Arch is, so I think versatility is quite appropriate.


But whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain - that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it. In either case, it is unfit to exist.
-Lysander Spooner

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#3 2012-05-03 19:00:02

jasonwryan
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From: .nz
Registered: 2009-05-09
Posts: 19,336
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Re: About the ArchWay

The versatility applies to Arch itself. You can install Arch and make whatever of it you want - you can adapt it in a wide variety of ways, limited only by your imagination and ability.


Arch + dwm   •   Mercurial repos  •   Github

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#4 2012-05-03 19:31:35

/dev/zero
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From: Melbourne, Australia
Registered: 2011-10-20
Posts: 1,176
Website

Re: About the ArchWay

zym wrote:

As I interpret it Versatility as bloat.

I prefer the original Arch Way to Arch Way 2.0. Versatility then maps to freedom. With freedom, you can choose to only use programs that do one thing and do it well. Well, except for pacman ... O_o


zym wrote:

I saw, that like me a lot of people use vi/vim over emacs.
Is this just an interpretation mistake by me or would the Arch way prefer emacs over vim as it is more versatile.

I'm not convinced that more people use vim. Without figures saying otherwise, it seems safest to guess that the numbers are about even. I know lots of people who use emacs.

I'm also not convinced that emacs is more versatile than vim. Vim can be scripted, and it can call external shell scripts, just like emacs. So long as some program is Turing-complete scriptable, it is as powerful as any other program with that property. I do think vim is simpler than emacs, and therefore at least as "Arch-like".

Personally, I'm not interested in editor wars unless some smelly, low down, hairy, short-sighted, underhanded emacs user tells me that emacs is just as good as vim ...


Linux is NOT Windows | The Rootless Root
Toshiba Satellite i5-3230M 2.6GHz CPUs, 4Gb RAM, ArchLinux, wmii, nVidia GeForce GT 740M.

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#5 2012-05-03 19:39:17

alphaniner
Member
From: Ancapistan
Registered: 2010-07-12
Posts: 2,754

Re: About the ArchWay

/dev/zero wrote:

I'm not convinced that more people use vim. Without figures saying otherwise...

It's not use, but according to the package stats at archlinux.de, vim is at 37% and emacs at 21%.

I assume those are percentages of those 'surveyed' who had the package installed.


But whether the Constitution really be one thing, or another, this much is certain - that it has either authorized such a government as we have had, or has been powerless to prevent it. In either case, it is unfit to exist.
-Lysander Spooner

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#6 2012-05-03 19:48:29

adamrehard
Member
From: NY, USA
Registered: 2011-11-03
Posts: 154

Re: About the ArchWay

zym wrote:

I saw, that like me a lot of people use vi/vim over emacs.
Is this just an interpretation mistake by me or would the Arch way prefer emacs over vim as it is more versatile.

/dev/zero wrote:

I'm not convinced that more people use vim. Without figures saying otherwise, it seems safest to guess that the numbers are about even. I know lots of people who use emacs.

I'm also not convinced that emacs is more versatile than vim. Vim can be scripted, and it can call external shell scripts, just like emacs. So long as some program is Turing-complete scriptable, it is as powerful as any other program with that property. I do think vim is simpler than emacs, and therefore at least as "Arch-like".

Personally, I'm not interested in editor wars unless some smelly, low down, hairy, short-sighted, underhanded emacs user tells me that emacs is just as good as vim ...

Not to start another outbreak of "the" war, but what they (read: I) say is true. VI is a great editor, but a horrid everything else.
Emacs is a great everything else, but a horrid editor. smile


"The box said requires Vista or better, so I installed Arch"
Windows != Linux

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#7 2012-05-03 20:02:57

drcouzelis
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From: Connecticut, USA
Registered: 2009-11-09
Posts: 3,522
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Re: About the ArchWay

/dev/zero wrote:

Personally, I'm not interested in editor wars unless some smelly, low down, hairy, short-sighted, underhanded emacs user tells me that emacs is just as good as vim ...

I'm a smelly, low down, hairy, short-sighted, underhanded Vim user, you insensitive clod!

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#8 2012-05-03 20:09:07

triplesquarednine
Member
Registered: 2011-04-12
Posts: 630

Re: About the ArchWay

zym wrote:

Also I struggle a bit with the Versatility point.
As I interpret it Versatility as bloat.

I think the issue here may be your definitions/usage of the words bloat and versatility...

let me explain a little, starting with definitions, followed by my own interpretation, when applying these to Archlinux;

- Software Bloat -

Software bloat is a process whereby successive versions of a computer program include an increasing proportion of unnecessary features that are not used 
by end users, or generally use more system resources than necessary, while offering little or no benefit to its users.

I don't see how Archlinux can fall into that definition, unless the user installs enough useless crap to make it that way wink

- Versatile -

ver·sa·tile  (vûrs-tl, -tl)
adj.
1. Capable of doing many things competently.
2. Having varied uses or serving many functions: "The most versatile of vegetables is the tomato" (Craig Claiborne).
3. Variable or inconstant; changeable: a versatile temperament.  

I left out 1 definition for versatility, as it had to do with biology - but one through three, make perfect sense IMO.

(1) Arch's package/software management (power!) tools allow you to run and maintain your system with flexibility, choice and freedom; ie: if you want to run just binaries, you can do that. if you want to build your entire system (from source, with custmosized packages), you can do that too. There are plenty of customizations within this domain too, everything from controlling how packages are optimized to how they are built. this includes how the system is updated and maintained, as well... and as long as one is competent and has a little knowledge, you can do this very efficiently.

(2)tons of packages available. you really have a lot of flexibility and choice in what you can build on the base-system. it tends to be well optimized, not dragging in anything more than you need. - if that is how you want to go about it.

(3) You can use Arch for many different applications/purposes - which is versatility, in itself. A few of my own examples;

- I currently have a server running Arch.

- I have a RackmountPC (that runs headless with on/off operation) that is purposed as a sound-module (that i use with keyboard/guitar/mic). in concept very similar to this commercial proaudio module; http://www.museresearch.com/products/index.php ...

- My 'primary' Desktop PC, runs Archlinux (which is for both home use and work)

And that is just 3 things that i do. Arch can be run on embedded devices, used for HTPC, etc.

I would say 'versatility' was a very good choice of words.

cheerz

Last edited by triplesquarednine (2012-05-03 20:20:05)

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#9 2012-05-04 14:43:50

nomilieu
Member
Registered: 2010-07-03
Posts: 133

Re: About the ArchWay

Programs can be simple, elegant, versatile, and expedient all at the same time. netcat comes to mind as an example.
But yeah, the distro itself is rather flexible.

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#10 2012-05-04 14:52:44

ewaller
Administrator
From: Pasadena, CA
Registered: 2009-07-13
Posts: 13,414

Re: About the ArchWay

/dev/zero wrote:

Personally, I'm not interested in editor wars unless some smelly, low down, hairy, short-sighted, underhanded emacs user tells me that emacs is just as good as vim ...

Hey, I showered this morning.  And I am most definitely not hairy  tongue


Nothing is too wonderful to be true, if it be consistent with the laws of nature -- Michael Faraday
You assume people are rational and influenced by evidence.  You must not work with the public much. -- Trilby
----
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#11 2012-05-07 16:32:08

zym
Member
Registered: 2012-03-31
Posts: 10

Re: About the ArchWay

jasonwryan wrote:

The versatility applies to Arch itself. You can install Arch and make whatever of it you want - you can adapt it in a wide variety of ways, limited only by your imagination and ability.

Ah,
that would be more obvious if you would cross out the "having varied uses or many functions",  because the "capable of doing many things competently" explains this by itself.
I think something like "having the potential of doing many different things" or "allowing the users to do whatever they want to do with it", would explain it alot better.

Also i would like some people to comment on, what i found obsolete even in the ArchWay 2.0.

As i can't really contribute to Arch codewise.

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#12 2012-05-07 20:47:41

triplesquarednine
Member
Registered: 2011-04-12
Posts: 630

Re: About the ArchWay

zym wrote:

Ah,
that would be more obvious if you would cross out the "having varied uses or many functions",  because the "capable of doing many things competently" explains this by itself.
I think something like "having the potential of doing many different things" or "allowing the users to do whatever they want to do with it", would explain it alot better.

No, it actually makes far more sense to have both in there, IMHO.  "Capable of doing many things competently" is different than saying "having varied uses or many functions". ~ and personally i think there is a distinction to be made... Capable of doing many things competently (would seem to me) _could_ imply that it is able to do many things 'under one roof'. But by that definition alone, then my Mac is just as capable/versatile as Arch, but the reality is, in some ways it is not... For example, i can say my Mac is 'versatile' and 'capable of doing many things competently' because it is -> i can do everything from everyday type tasks, browsing the web, publishing something, editing photos, gmaes, etc. but it can also easily do things like host VMs, it can be used as a development platform (programming) to other purposes like working with 'proaudio'. 

My Arch install (however) is capable of doing all of that stuff, but it also can have specific 'varied uses or many functions' ~ meaning an Archlinux *itself* can be purposed in a variety ways, in ways not as easily done with my Mac, because everything doesn't have to be done 'under one roof'. we can get more specific than that, being as we build the system ground up - whether that be an embedded device, server, DesktopPC, music device, etc.

Personally, i like the current page how it was and i don't see why you feel that the definitions / explanations aren't good enough. I think there is a distinction to be made there, and both terms some up versatility in the context of Archlinux, quite nicely.

zym wrote:

As i can't really contribute to Arch codewise.

I don't contribute codewise. They are lots of ways to contribute, aside from coding. Help solve issues in the forums, report bugs, etc.

cheerz

Last edited by triplesquarednine (2012-05-07 20:53:35)

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#13 2012-05-16 13:19:21

Ishpeck
Member
From: Earth
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 48
Website

Re: About the ArchWay

adamrehard wrote:

Not to start another outbreak of "the" war, but what they (read: I) say is true. VI is a great editor, but a horrid everything else.
Emacs is a great everything else, but a horrid editor. smile

That's why I use vim from within an emacs terminal.


If I were to ask you a hypothetical question, what would you want it to be about?

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#14 2012-05-17 12:09:49

Mr.Elendig
#archlinux@freenode channel op
From: The intertubes
Registered: 2004-11-07
Posts: 3,740

Re: About the ArchWay

adamrehard wrote:

Not to start another outbreak of "the" war, but what they (read: I) say is true. VI is a great editor, but a horrid everything else.
Emacs is a great everything else, but a horrid editor. smile

Vi and vim are two different beasts, while vi is horrible to use, vim i friggin awesome. smile

Anyway, back to the OP:

I think the new one is a bit too simple and "academic"


Evil #archlinux@freenode channel op and general support dude.
. files on github, Screenshots, Random pics and the rest

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#15 2012-05-19 18:28:32

R09UE-RAVEN
Member
Registered: 2012-04-08
Posts: 19

Re: About the ArchWay

My problem with v2.0 is that it's very bareboned. That's sort of an ironic thing to say about something in Arch, but I liked the breath and depth of the original one. V2.0 is good on it's idea of implementation ethics, but it's completely missing what it means to be an Arch user. Where's the user-centric clause? Where's the user freedom? v2.0 is not giving these traits proper spotlight. Most people choose arch not because of the values with which it was developed, but because of the power and responisbility the final product puts on the user.

As I said, it seems too minimal - as in it should be fleshed out more. I'm a very hard-core minimalist (I love arch), but you should never take minimalism and simplicity to the point where you are cutting out vital organs. Part of what defines Arch from other distros IS the Arch Way and the fact that our values are very clear. There's a richness to them and there shouldn't be a need to refine it any more than it can be naturally refined.

jasonwryan wrote:

The versatility applies to Arch itself. You can install Arch and make whatever of it you want - you can adapt it in a wide variety of ways, limited only by your imagination and ability.

Versatility is a bit ambigous and open to interpretation for those who don't have a dictionary by their side. I liked how the original document spelled it out for completeness sake.

It should be remembered that this is the Arch Wiki. Shouldn't clarity be valued over compactness of text? Besides, using words with pinpoint intended meanings doesn't hold up that well in translation. I don't know what the equivalent of versatility is in Mandarin, but it probably doesn't mean the exact same thing.

Keep it simple, but no simpler.

Last edited by R09UE-RAVEN (2012-05-19 21:02:24)

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#16 2012-05-19 19:09:59

Trilby
Forum Moderator
From: Massachusetts, USA
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 14,191
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Re: About the ArchWay

Clrty ovr cmpctns f txt?  Thts nonsns.  We shld al writ lk ths.

wink  Jokes aside,  I completely agree.

Last edited by Trilby (2012-05-19 19:10:11)


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#17 2012-05-19 19:40:03

sonoran
Member
From: sonoran desert
Registered: 2009-01-12
Posts: 161

Re: About the ArchWay

In modern usage the negative connotations of "expedient" have all but replaced its original meaning. Those connotations include the makeshift, the opportunistic, the cutting of corners, and so on. The OED describes this meaning of expedient as "means and methods that are temporarily advantageous as distinguished from those that are right and just."

If what you want is the original meaning of expedient - suitability, practicality, efficiency - then use those terms. Any or all of them aptly describe Arch, while expedient does not.

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#18 2012-05-19 20:55:00

Bellum
Member
Registered: 2011-08-24
Posts: 230

Re: About the ArchWay

sonoran wrote:

In modern usage the negative connotations of "expedient" have all but replaced its original meaning.

You sure? I wasn't even aware that there was a negative connotation. hmm

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#19 2012-05-19 21:40:40

sonoran
Member
From: sonoran desert
Registered: 2009-01-12
Posts: 161

Re: About the ArchWay

Bellum wrote:
sonoran wrote:

In modern usage the negative connotations of "expedient" have all but replaced its original meaning.

You sure? I wasn't even aware that there was a negative connotation. hmm

First google hit for expedient:

ex·pe·di·ent/ikˈspēdēənt/
Adjective:   
(of an action) Convenient and practical, although possibly improper or immoral.
Noun:   
A means of attaining an end, esp. one that is convenient but considered improper or immoral.

That was not the original meaning of the word, but it is what it is used for now, that is, the reason one chooses to use that word rather than another (without the negative connotations).

Language is a living thing whose meaning is determined by how people use it. Dictionaries are simply snapshots of a language - much like installation cds of a rolling release distro - and necessarily lag behind the actual state of affairs.

It is usage that matters, not what a dictionary says. If that were not true we would all still be talking like Shakespeare or the characters in Deadwood. (more's the pity, I suppose, but there's no point trying to freeze the flux)

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#20 2012-05-19 21:53:32

/dev/zero
Member
From: Melbourne, Australia
Registered: 2011-10-20
Posts: 1,176
Website

Re: About the ArchWay

Bellum wrote:
sonoran wrote:

In modern usage the negative connotations of "expedient" have all but replaced its original meaning.

You sure? I wasn't even aware that there was a negative connotation. hmm

I think it depends on context. Consider the entries in The Devil's Dictionary:

Ambrose Bierce wrote:

IMMORAL, adj.  Inexpedient.  Whatever in the long run and with regard
to the greater number of instances men find to be generally
inexpedient comes to be considered wrong, wicked, immoral.  If man's
notions of right and wrong have any other basis than this of
expediency; if they originated, or could have originated, in any other
way; if actions have in themselves a moral character apart from, and
nowise dependent on, their consequences--then all philosophy is a
lie and reason a disorder of the mind.

--

INEXPEDIENT, adj.  Not calculated to advance one's interests.


Linux is NOT Windows | The Rootless Root
Toshiba Satellite i5-3230M 2.6GHz CPUs, 4Gb RAM, ArchLinux, wmii, nVidia GeForce GT 740M.

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#21 2012-05-20 19:14:25

ANOKNUSA
Member
Registered: 2010-10-22
Posts: 2,141

Re: About the ArchWay

R09UE-RAVEN wrote:

Versatility is a bit ambigous and open to interpretation for those who don't have a dictionary by their side. I liked how the original document spelled it out for completeness sake.

It should be remembered that this is the Arch Wiki. Shouldn't clarity be valued over compactness of text? Besides, using words with pinpoint intended meanings doesn't hold up that well in translation. I don't know what the equivalent of versatility is in Mandarin, but it probably doesn't mean the exact same thing.

Keep it simple, but no simpler.

You seem to say "versatility" as an ambiguous concept is bad, but then go on to say that using words with inflexible definitions is unacceptable.  Your contradiction likely stems from the fact that the Arch Way is itself versatile, to be interpreted according to the desires of the user.  The goal of a codified Arch Way as I see it is not describe what Arch is so much as what Arch is not: a pre-configured distribution intended to make life easy for the user.  In my view, the primary purpose of the Arch Way is to clarify the user-centric nature of Arch, and let the user know that the reason Arch is so great is because it isn't a distribution in the typical sense, but rather a set of tools to craft an OS to one's desires.  That is the very definition of versatility.

There's no doubt in my mind that "versatility" and "simplicity" translate quite well, as they're universal notions.  Going back to the "toolbox" analogy, one doesn't assume a hammer can only be used to drive only one sort of nail into one sort of construct, nor does one assume that a hammer ought to do anything more than drive in nails.  But there are still people who find other uses for hammers, whether the inventor of the hammer intended it or not.  It's no one's place to either restrict how a hammer is used, nor invent some kind of super-hammer that can do anything and everything.  Simply leave it up to the person with the hammer to decide how to use it.

Besides, discussions about what is or is not in line with the Arch Way abound on these forums, and the conversations almost always lead back to the same basic intent: Arch espouses the freedom of the user to do as they wish with the tools at their disposal.  If you can't understand that without a dictionary, then look it up; you're already online, aren't you?

Last edited by ANOKNUSA (2012-05-20 19:16:42)

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#22 2012-05-20 20:37:26

Brcher
Member
Registered: 2011-06-20
Posts: 31

Re: About the ArchWay

Cheap : Inexpensive
Fanatical : Devoted
Bloated : Featureful

The English (at least, maybe others) language has a glitch in it -- it allows us to define words with the same meaning, but negative or positive implications. This is because it is bloated smile (and, seems to lead to lazy thinking and problems far beyond our inability to clearly describe OS's)

Anyway, I've always liked the following description of C/C++, and think it applies well to Arch:
"It'll give you enough rope to hang yourself."
Meaning, powerful enough to specify something dumb, and accessible enough to do it easily. So try not to!

It seems like, what is being described in the OP's quote is that the user's commands to the machine are:
1) Precise in intent / unambiguous
2) Minimally verbose

Where 1 overrules 2. (again vaguely similar to C, although the minimal verbosity is up for debate smile )

I wonder if these are what is really intended by the description on the wiki. I also wonder if the apparently common confusion on these forums stems from using words like "simple" and "elegant," when they have multiple meanings, all of which are desired traits for different user groups (there's certainly a strong market for the Apple-style "click button, get result" version of simplicity)

Initially selecting more precisely defined words would lead to a less verbose description of what is really meant!

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#23 2012-05-20 21:27:48

ANOKNUSA
Member
Registered: 2010-10-22
Posts: 2,141

Re: About the ArchWay

Brcher wrote:

I wonder if these are what is really intended by the description on the wiki. I also wonder if the apparently common confusion on these forums stems from using words like "simple" and "elegant," when they have multiple meanings, all of which are desired traits for different user groups (there's certainly a strong market for the Apple-style "click button, get result" version of simplicity)

Arch Way wrote:

Arch Linux defines simplicity as without unnecessary additions, modifications, or complications, and provides a lightweight UNIX-like base structure that allows an individual user to shape the system according to their own needs. In short: an elegant, minimalist approach.

The emphasis is in the original.

What people seem to be asking for is a description completely lacking in evaluative statements, which is neither possible nor desireable.  Many people find it more "simple" and "elegant" to let their magical boxes do everytihng for them.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, and there are plenty of places one can go to get that.  Those people do not belong here, and if a perusal of the all the introductory literature doesn't make that clear, they'll learn once they come into the forums and are told to do their own homework.

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#24 2012-05-21 22:59:00

Misfit138
Misfit Emeritus
From: USA
Registered: 2006-11-27
Posts: 4,170

Re: About the ArchWay

ANOKNUSA wrote:
Brcher wrote:

I wonder if these are what is really intended by the description on the wiki. I also wonder if the apparently common confusion on these forums stems from using words like "simple" and "elegant," when they have multiple meanings, all of which are desired traits for different user groups (there's certainly a strong market for the Apple-style "click button, get result" version of simplicity)

Arch Way wrote:

Arch Linux defines simplicity as without unnecessary additions, modifications, or complications, and provides a lightweight UNIX-like base structure that allows an individual user to shape the system according to their own needs. In short: an elegant, minimalist approach.

The emphasis is in the original.

What people seem to be asking for is a description completely lacking in evaluative statements, which is neither possible nor desireable.  Many people find it more "simple" and "elegant" to let their magical boxes do everytihng for them.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, and there are plenty of places one can go to get that.  Those people do not belong here, and if a perusal of the all the introductory literature doesn't make that clear, they'll learn once they come into the forums and are told to do their own homework.

This is a man who "gets it".

You read, interpret and defend my words with the most enviable acumen.
I pick you for my team.

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#25 2012-05-22 01:36:57

Allan
Developer
From: Brisbane, AU
Registered: 2007-06-09
Posts: 10,428
Website

Re: About the ArchWay

Arch Way 3.0

Arch Linux is whatever the people who develop it decide it is...  If you want it to be something different, then start contributing.

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