Just like the fast-food restaurants present to us the various junk food products - some of which could hardly be named food - as top quality nutritional value, in the very same way the software developers present to us the junk software as top design engineering design of seventh star magnitude. Just like the fast-food restaurants make luxurious envelopes and presentation of the 'zero sugar cola' and 'bee honey' (made of high-fructose corn syrup of genetically modified maize and distilled by mercury polluting technologies), in the very same way the software developers introduce to us by the graphical desktop the junk kernel as 'user-friendly'.
The users may be stupid but they are not completed and rounded idiots ... and sooner or later they start noticing what is going on ... and how far it may go.
Nobody is surprised or concerned that the software engineering is McDonaldized. Nowadays everything goes McDonaldized, incl. the casino economy. As it goes the McDonaldization obviously will become the curse of the 21st century.
In the good old days there were some basic principles... and values in the software engineering. There were things that people believed in. There was respect to the user ... and morality and personal dignity of the developers. All these things are gone now. With every day and in any way they getting more and more extinct, maybe irretrievably... unless some day they get collected and pronounced as intangible world heritage of UNESCO.
There were some basic principles that we all believed in:
- reliability - the ability of the system to perform and maintain its functions in routine circumstances, incl. hostile environment (like
illiterate users for example)
- flawless operation - being complete in itself, free of bugs ... and missing new drivers for example.
- accessibility - the degree to which a product, device, service, or environment is available to as many people as possible.
- horizontal compatibility - the file formats, the video codecs and the user apps are compatible at user level
- vertical compatibility - the file formats, the video codecs and the user apps are compatible at least with the nearest two versions of
- balance - ability to maintain the optimal performance and resistance to deviations when expanding the system
- severability - if some parts of the software system fail, the others remain full-featured and fully operational
- unification - all the variations and modifications are reduced to unity or uniformity
- structure - the software presentation ... and the desktop interface are well structured, as natural as possible to the human
understanding, habits and skills
- synchronization - precise timing and co-ordination of the events in the system
I am not sure that the present day OSs have any accessibility (for they are fully inaccessible to people without solid scientific background
in visual cognition and situational awareness - we are not talking about sensory or motor disabilities ... or encyclopedic skills in OEM
drivers). We the present-day's OSs the users feel like cognitively disabled ... with two broken wrists.
What about the synchronization and balance, when 99 % of the time ... and of the computer resources are wasted on junk flash graphics, instead of being used for computational purposes ... for example.
How far this will go. Nobody can be sure. Maybe much further than one can possibly imagine. A time may come when the whole OS will comprise a 'nD' pseudo-graphics without any functional software ... and nhardware.